It pains us to say it, but if more people had this book, there would be less need for Ochef. Packed with practical information, cooking tips, and recipes, David Joachim's book is one of the best, most useful, and most accessible cooking reference books we have seen. It is also sold direct from the publisher under the title The Clever Cook's Kitchen Handbook.
The great thing about this book is that it covers a lot of ground. The problem with this book is that it covers a lot of ground. All the entries are categorized alphabetically, but there is a lot of information in the book that you won't find by turning to the section on Broccoli or the section on Thermometers or even looking through the index. It's not really a book that anyone will read from cover to cover, but without doing so, you're absolutely going to miss some of the
5,037 tidbits of information. Recipes 900 of them, good recipes are scattered throughout the book, but there should be a separate index of the recipes
The publisher of the book, Rodale Press publisher of Prevention, Men's Health, and some other health-oriented magazines has occasionally seemed to us to steer a little close to the alarmist school of "healthy cooking" in the books it publishes. But this book toes the line perfectly offering tips on cutting fat, retaining nutrients, etc., when appropriate, but also recognizing that butter, eggs, meat, and other scary ingredients add flavor, texture, nutrients, and can be part of a perfectly normal diet.
Unlike the monumental and brilliant Oxford Companion to Food, which is primarily educational, Brilliant Food Tips & Cooking Tricks is primarily useful, both as you plan to cook and as you actually
work in the kitchen.