Originally published in 1991 and reissued in 1998, this third edition of James Peterson’s classic is infused with new life. Peterson overhauls the text by simplifying the book without taking out anything critical.
Many of the sauces are lightened and the old French names are dispensed with or relegated to a separate section. Many of the sauces in the current book are in chart form since the procedure is identical for large numbers of them, and there is a chapter that has all the charts for easy reference.
The author also standardizes the terminology for the consistency of liquids (for instance, in the “Liaisons” chapter, a chart showing thicknesses ranges from “water” to “mayonnaise”) because it is the consistency that’s most important (and the hardest) to show.
An updated bibliography and source list of purveyors is also included. The photos are redone to be included in a bigger insert with fewer images since the photos in the current book are too small for anyone to really appreciate the details. The technique photographs are larger and focus on the essential steps that a reader cannot visualize based on the narrative instruction. Also, there are more color photos in this edition with an emphasis on how-to and cooking techniques (since many of the sauces are derivatives of techniques like braising, sautéing, poaching, etc.).
Change in our kitchens
Reflections on cooking — and a career that’s based largely at the stove.
Flatbreads from around the continent
Beyond a supporting role
The great Sicilian-Neapolitan kitchen rivalry
Five ideas each month for eating better