Review: My Paris Kitchen by David Lebovitz

October 7, 2014 5 stars, Book Review, Cooking, Memoir, Non-Fiction, Thuy 6

MyParisKitchen-DavidLebovitzTitle: My Paris Kitchen
Author: David Lebovitz
Publication Date: April 8, 2014
Publisher:  Ten Speed Press
Genre: Cooking, Memoir, Non-Fiction
Find It: GoodreadsAmazon, B&N, Book Depository
Source: review copy from Blogging for Books
Rating: 5 stars – stay up all night

A collection of stories and 100 sweet and savory French-inspired recipes from popular food blogger David Lebovitz, reflecting the way Parisians eat today and featuring lush photography taken around Paris and in David’s Parisian kitchen.

It’s been ten years since David Lebovitz packed up his most treasured cookbooks, a well-worn cast-iron skillet, and his laptop and moved to Paris. In that time, the culinary culture of France has shifted as a new generation of chefs and home cooks—most notably in Paris—incorporates ingredients and techniques from around the world into traditional French dishes.

In My Paris Kitchen, David remasters the classics, introduces lesser-known fare, and presents 100 sweet and savory recipes that reflect the way modern Parisians eat today. You’ll find Soupe à l’oignon, Cassoulet, Coq au vin, and Croque-monsieur, as well as Smoky barbecue-style pork, Lamb shank tagine, Dukkah-roasted cauliflower, Salt cod fritters with tartar sauce, and Wheat berry salad with radicchio, root vegetables, and pomegranate. And of course, there’s dessert: Warm chocolate cake with salted butter caramel sauce, Duck fat cookies, Bay leaf poundcake with orange glaze, French cheesecake…and the list goes on. David also shares stories told with his trademark wit and humor, and lush photography taken on location around Paris and in David’s kitchen reveals the quirks, trials, beauty, and joys of life in the culinary capital of the world.

As an avid reader of David Lebovitz’s blog, I knew that I wanted to add My Paris Kitchen to my cooking library as soon as it came out. His stories on life and cooking in France are funny, charming and delicious. I already have several of his dessert cookbooks in my kitchen and they are well used and well loved. While you may expect a former chef to be snobbish about food, Lebovitz is not. While he recommends getting the best ingredients you can afford, he isn’t stuck on labels or appearances so much shopping local and using what tastes good to you. My Paris Kitchen is a wonderful extension of Lebovtiz’s blog and is filled with funny stories and anecdotes about his life in Paris as well as over 100 recipes for modern French cuisine.

As Lebovitz states at the beginning of the book, this is not a traditional French cookbook. While there are traditional dishes, many of them have been updated to reflect a more modern sensibility. I am not very familiar with traditional French cooking so I can’t say really what the differences are. However, I can say that all of these recipes look delicious and seem like something I can make in my own kitchen. Some of the recipes I am dying to try are the Steak with mustard butter and French fries, butternut squash crumble, cherry tomato crostini with homemade herbed goat cheese, French onion soup, and the ham, blue cheese, and pear quiche. Of the desserts, I am most excited to make the chocolate dulce de leche tart, salted caramel-chocolate mousse, almond cakes with browned butter, and madeleines. There is also a handy Pantry section at the end of the book that has recipes for pantry staples like chicken stock and mayonnaise.

My Paris Kitchen is a book that I will take off my shelf over and over again, both as a tool and as inspiration. Lebovitz brings Paris will bring a little bit of Paris into your kitchen with this book. Filled with gorgeous photos of Parisian life as well as mouth watering fare, My Paris Kitchen will have you itching to get into the kitchen to see what you can cook up.

*I received a copy of this book from Blogging For Books in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my review or opinion of the book.

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  • I have a Madeleine pan… let’s do it.

  • Oh that sounds perfect for folks that love those kinds of real life stories (especially if they involve cooking)

    • He’s a great writer, Tabitha. I think you’d enjoy it. Try his blog first.

  • I reviewed this one awhile back. SO many of these recipes sounded amazing!