Friday 21 May 2010

Don't Try This at Home: Culinary Catastrophes from the World's Greatest Chefs. Edited by Kimberly Witherspoon and Andrew Friedman

Published by Bloomsbury Publishing
Distributed by Raincoast Books

Various chefs from around the world share their personal tales from the kitchen. An eel invasion, cooking with laundry, accidental creations, a dinner party with a difference, an unexpected snowstorm, a blind cook, an owl, and a shock in the kitchen are just a small sample of the subjects contained within the pages of this book. Whether you are looking for the more outrageous experiences, the heartwarming and inspirational, or the just plain funny, you are going to find it all in this entertaining and eye-opening collection.

I found this book to be a quick and addictive read. I also found it to be greatly entertaining and surprising since I could never have imagined many of the situations that the featured chefs encountered. During visits to restaurants I have always assumed that things ran as smoothly in the kitchen as they were made to appear. Things always seemed so easy, so perfect and it's a wonderful testament to chefs the world over that they can overcome the countless challenges and ensure that their customers have a pleasant and relaxed dining experience even as chaos runs rampant behind the kitchen doors.

Many of the cooking shows on TV give the impression that preparing a meal is easy, and even when those meals are multiplied to restaurant style numbers they hardly seem to break a sweat. I found it refreshing when shows like Hell's Kitchen & Kitchen Nightmares (okay so I am a Gordon Ramsey fan!) appeared on the scene and revealed some of the challenges and hard work involved in the restaurant industry. This book takes it still further as the featured chefs set aside their pride and bare it all.

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