This book is quickly becoming one of my favorite cookbooks. It has all the typical things I might mention as positives in a book review. It has a fantastic story about the owners and the beginnings of the restaurant, it has incredible photography, and it’s beautifully made. What sets this book apart from some of the other cookbooks of this caliber like The French Laundry, Under Pressure, and Modernist Cuisine is that the recipes in this book are not impossible!
Upon first glance they seem challenging. But if you think through them, plan accordingly, and don’t mind making a few substitutions (store bought chicken broth is an ok replacement for that 50g of home made called for in a giant recipe) or omissions you can actually accomplish a lot with this book.
While Eleven Madison Park is sometimes labeled as Modernist cooking and has 3 Michelin stars, many of the recipes use traditional techniques and ingredients. The Chicken Veloute and Brioche I’ve made on this blog are classical French preparations with nothing crazy about them.
The food in this book is beautiful and elaborate, but you can always be assured it will taste delicious. I currently have bookmarked at least 20 other dishes I’d like to attempt. Finding inspiration is no problem here, it’s finding time I am struggling with.