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The Apprentice

The Apprentice: My Life in the Kitchen - Jacques P├ępin


A charming memoir told in a series of selected stories and humorous anecdotes, with recipes sprinkled in between. Chef Pepin is really likeable, down-to-earth, and unpretentious about food. I loved the stories about his family, growing up in France with his two brothers and cooking in his mother’s restaurant. I was amazed to learn that he was personal chef to President de Gaulle, and worked in the test kitchen for Howard Johnson’s when he came to the U.S. Most interesting were his observations on French vs. American palates, and how he came to appreciate the ease and flexibility of American manners and eating habits.