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The Naked Chef
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About the Author

Only 23 years old, Jamie Oliver is Britain's most talented, exciting and unpretentious young chef. Charismatic, streetwise and sophisticated, Jamie started cooking when he was eight and has worked with many of the biggest names in British cooking including Antonio Carluccio. He is currently working at the River Cafe in London. This is his first book.

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No, OliverDwho looks more like a 16-year-old soccer player than a well-known chef with a best-selling cookbook (in England) and a BBC series to his creditDis not naked; it's his recipes that have been stripped down to the basics and then adapted into a "repertoire of simple, delicious, and feisty" dishes, as he puts it. Writing in a casual, conversational style, Oliver, currently at London's acclaimed River Caf, comes across as as unpretentious and appealing as his recipes, from Ravioli of Smashed Fava Beans, Mint, and Ricotta to Asparagus with Any Interesting Melting Cheese to Fast-Roasted Cod with Parsley, Oregano, Chile, and Lime. There are mouthwatering color photographs of many of the dishes, and interesting kitchen observations are scattered throughout. Unusual but thoroughly engaging, this is strongly recommended. Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.

With charming finesse, 24-year-old British chef and BBC television cooking show host Oliver argues a convincing case for "getting naked" in the kitchen. His home-cooking philosophy advocates "stripping down those [restaurant] recipes to something quite basic, and adapting them to what I had in cupboard, pantry, refrigerator or garden." The 120 recipes are organized into 12 chaptersDherbs and spices, soups, salads and dressings, pasta, seafood, meats, vegetables, legumes, risotto and couscous, bread, dessertsDwith a concluding section on stocks and sauces. Oliver's suggested list of ingredient staplesDEnglish mustard, durum semolina, couscous, sea salt, soy sauce and capers, among othersDreflects today's global pantry. His culinary approach synthesizes top-quality, fresh ingredients with fundamental culinary concepts (e.g., composed salads, soups from stock) upon which readers can build. Oliver dispenses helpful tips and advice with boyish enthusiasm: "the perfect risotto should slowly ooze across the plateDthe fact that it isn't moving tells you that it's too dry. Yuck!" Succinct, user-friendly recipes range from traditional English home-cooking favorites, like Pot-roasted Rabbit with Rosemary, Thyme, Sage and Lemon, to international comfort foods, such as Fragrant Green Chicken Curry. A stellar pasta chapter showcases photogenic renditions of Beet Tagliatelle with Pesto, Mussels and White Wine, and Ravioli of Borage, Stinging Nettles, Marjoram and Fresh Ricotta. This is functional home cooking at its grooviest: Oliver delivers a hip classic that will appeal to a new generation of modern epicureans who face the challenge of cooking within the confines of tiny urban kitchens on time-pressed schedules. (Oct.) Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.

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