February 08, 1988 12:00 PM

by Jacques Pepin

You may never need to eviscerate a baby lamb, but just in case, Pepin is here to show how it’s done in graphic color. This is no book for the shake-and-bake crowd, but a sophisticated guide for cooks comfortable in their mousselines (or heavy cream sauces). In this, the first of two huge, exquisite volumes, Pepin teaches with the aid of more than 1,300 photos. The complicated recipes are often rich. (Leaner versions of some are offered.) All are painstakingly described by Charles de Gaulle’s celebrated former chef. Pepin might forgive you if you had a butcher skin, cleave and truss the lamb while you work on the bread stuffing and shallot sauce. (Knopf, $35)

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