Monday, May 17, 2010

Book #39 – Kitchen Confidential

14504376[1] I almost bought this book for Kyle at Christmas. Browsing around the bookstore, it caught my eye, and I thought it would be one he might enjoy. A few months later, it popped up on Amazon for some reason, and I snagged it for myself.

Kitchen Confidential is written by a chef, and is an inside look at the world of kitchens and chefs, from the point of view of someone that’s spent most of their life in New York, cooking at some of the famous places there.

The book goes through parts of his career and all the seedy things that are done in kitchens, including sex and drugs. It’s amazing to me since I saw some of that in 5-6 years of working in restaurants, and lots of inbreeding and movement of people together between restaurants, but not a lot of raiding of other employees. Then again, I was often a front of the house employee, not a chef.

If you like cooking, or are interested in restaurants, it’s a fun read. Near the end he talks about a competitor that doesn’t do a lot of what he says will make you fail. It’s nice to see him admit that there aren’t hard and fast rules, and that anyone can succeed in a restaurant, though most will fail.

I don’t look for the high end cooking he does, but I learned a few things. He gives away a few tricks, and inspired me to buy a new chef’s knife.  I enjoyed the book, and I don’t think I’d ever own a restaurant, but it did make me miss working in one.

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