Seven Fires: Grilling the Argentine WayHardback
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- Publisher: Artisan Division of Workman Publishing
- Format: Hardback | 320 pages
- Dimensions: 221mm x 257mm x 33mm | 1,315g
- Publication date: 2 June 2009
- Publication City/Country: New York
- ISBN 10: 1579653545
- ISBN 13: 9781579653545
- Edition statement: New.
- Illustrations note: 250 colour photos throughout
- Sales rank: 20,602
The Argentines grill more meat per capita than any nation on earth. Francis Mallmann was raised in the mountains of Patagonia, trained in the great kitchens of Europe, and returned home to become the top chef in Buenos Aires and the biggest star on South American food television. In 1995 he gave up cooking fancy food and applied all the lessons of haute cuisine to maximizing flavor and texture with wood-fired cookery. His food is astoundingly bright and vivid with burnt, crusty tastes both rustic and refined. Recipes range across the menu, including non-grilled recipes for what to eat while you're building the fire. Most recipes are adapted for cooking indoors, so this is a cookbook for any season, any kitchen. Francis' seven fires are: Chapa - a cast iron griddle or skillet (the form most used in this book); Little Hell - cooking with fire above and below the food; Parilla - basically what's called barbecuing or grilling in the US; Horno de Barro - cooking in a wood-fired clay oven; Rescoldo - cooking food by burying in hot embers and ashes; Asador - cooking whole pigs or lambs affixed to an iron cross that faces a bonfire; and, Caldero - cooking in an iron cauldron or Dutch oven.
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""Seven Fires" is, in its essence, a love letter to Argentina's obsession with fire and food."
From first spark to leaping flame to last dying ember, grilling has a new frontier and Francis Mallmann is its trailblazer. He offers more than one hundred recipes, ranging from griddled mussels to a whole salmon that s salt-roasted to juicy perfection, from beautifully burnt tomatoes to crunchy smashed potatoes and lusciously charred oranges, from a butterflied leg of lamb that cooks in just minutes to if you can imagine a whole cow that roasts for fourteen hours! He also shares the secret to perfect steak every single time. Born in Patagonia, Mallmann grew up in the Andes, in a house where everything from the heating to the hot water to the kitchen stove was sustained by ever-burning fires. As a true prodigy, he trained in the greatest French kitchens and went on to become South America s most venerated chef. But at age forty he had an epiphany. He was, in his words, "tired of making fancy French food for wealthy customers in Buenos Aires." In an audacious move, he abandoned the fussy fine-dining scene to return to his roots and the language he describes in his mother tongue: fire. Mallmann calls his techniques the Seven Fires and all are represented in this book, with some extras thrown in for good measure. In glorious photographs, Mallmann illustrates technique after technique, from "parrilla" which is cooking on a grill to his boldest method, "asador," in which a butterflied spring lamb or pig is fastened to an iron cross, where it cooks for hours in the glow of live coals. A TV star in South America, Mallmann is a showman who adores cooking for a crowd he s served presidents, princes, and celebrities as diverse as Madonna and Francis Ford Coppola. "Seven Fires" is filled with food that anyone can prepare with little equipment beyond a heat source whether it s wood, charcoal, or gas fire. Signature dishes include Smashed Patagonian Lamb with Lemon Confit and Herbs; Salt-Baked Striped Bass; Boneless Pork Chops with Honey Gremolata; and Whole Andean Pumpkin Salad with Mint, Arugula, and Goat Cheese as well as a surefire recipe for the perfect steak. And because we can t always cook outdoors year-round, indoor variations are given for nearly all the recipes. With evocative photos that showcase Mallmann s food and the exquisite beauty of his home turf, "Seven Fires" will thrill grillers ready to explore the magic of fire, fine food s next frontier. "