Like Jacques Pépin says: “Happy Cooking!”

Have you ever watched any of the videos of Jacques Pépin teaching how to cook a frugal meal or an elaborate dish? You can check those in a couple of his facebook channels here and here. He also recently appeared in The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon in a hilarious competition to discover who made the best turkey breast sandwich. He is just that adorable person that you would love to share a special meal with (particularly if he’s the one cooking!)

No matter what he is preparing, he makes it look so simple that it gives you the confidence of trying it yourself. I have ventured to replicate many of the recipes in one of his books that I have just finished reading: Jacques Pépin New Complete Techniques (maybe I should disclose that it took me at least a couple of years to read it from cover to cover, but I did it! If you are reading an entire cookbook, you don’t want to rush things…). I have lost count of the times that I have done my favorite recipes from it, for example:

  • the Hollandaise Sauce is a requirement in Sunday brunches at our home, which we use for Eggs Benedict — which in turn demands another technique described in the book: Poaching Eggs;
  • just yesterday I cooked salmon with green beans and a Béarnaise Sauce, which is a variation of the hollandaise;
  • the Pie Dough and Pie Shell is used for most of our pie needs: apple pie, cherry pie, chicken pie, and all of our quiches;
  • after we tasted the Raspberry Soufflé or the Chocolate Soufflé with Rum Sauce we learned to never throw away our egg whites, since we can use them for these simple but elegant desserts;
  • Proust’s Small Coffee Cakes, also know as Madeleines, are regularly present in our afternoon coffee breaks;
  • we are planning to cook a Rack of Lamb with a crust of herbs and bread for Christmas this year, which in the book he teaches how to trim;
  • and finally the Tarte Tatin is something out of this world…

This is a book about cooking techniques, and most of them turn out to be (or to become) recipes. Lucky us, that we can learn and eat good food at the same time! He has many other books that you can explore, and not only about food. He has lately turned his attention to painting (chickens are his favorite subject) and has released a new book: Jacques Pépin Art Of The Chicken. Need to check that one myself as well.

And like he always concludes his videos: “Happy cooking!”