The Duck Cookbook is another James Peterson winner. As with his previous eight works, Peterson uses this book to offer knowledge of his subject,
to instruct on skills and procedures and to provide a collection of diverse and inspired recipes.
James Peterson's regard for the novice cook is apparent and refreshing. Several procedures including "How to Cut Up a Whole Duck" include Peterson's signature "how-to" photographs- that is step by step instructions accompanied by a series of photos clearly depicting each move. In his easy, conversational style, the author shares basic terminology and preparation techniques with the reader. Describing the purpose for reducing broths he states, "Even though the word 'reduce' is almost ubiquitous in kitchens and cookbooks, I run into people who don't know it's just a fancy way of saying 'boil down.'"
Yet this book is no yawn for the experienced cook. Peterson covers his topic so thoroughly that The Duck Cookbook will likely become a valuable reference for professionals, too. Sauteing, Braising, Roasting, Confit, Smoking, Curing, Soups, Salads and Terrines and Mousses each comprise a chapter in the book. Each chapter opens with a brief description of the cooking method to which the chapter is dedicated. Tips on pairings, details on preparations and lessons from the author's personal experiences are interspersed throughout the text. The ethnically diverse recipes include haute cuisine to rustic dishes, classic to trendy presentations and simple to complex preparations.
In addition to his culinary and teaching gifts, James Peterson has a great talent for food photography. The proof appears in over fifty photos that showcase many of the book's dishes. The "how-to" photographs are also the handiwork of the author.
Dictionary.com defines ducky as "excellent, fine." A most
fitting description for James Peterson's latest project!