2001 printing of 4th edition in French
|ISBN||2-08-200803-7 (2001 printing)|
Le Guide culinaire (French pronunciation: [l? ?id kylin?:?]) is Escoffier's 1903 French restaurant cuisine cookbook, his first. It is a classic and still in print. Escoffier developed the recipes while working at the Savoy, Ritz and Carlton hotels from the late 1880s to the time of publication. The hotels and restaurants Escoffier worked in were on the cutting edge of modernity, doing away with many overwrought elements of the Victorian era while serving the elite of society.
Many of the recipes Escoffier developed while working at the Savoy in London, and later the Ritz in Paris. He kept notes on note cards. Recipes were often created and named for famous patrons including royalty, nouveau riche, and artists. After leaving the Savoy in 1898, he began work on the book.
The original text was printed for the use of professional chefs and kitchen staff; Escoffier's introduction to the first edition explains his intention that Le Guide culinaire be used toward the education of the younger generation of cooks. This usage of the book still holds today; many culinary schools still use it as their culinary textbook.
An abridged English translation was published in 1907 as A Guide to Modern Cookery, and an edition was published in 1957 with an introduction by Eugène Herbodeau. An English translation of 1921 French fourth edition, by H. L. Cracknell and R. J. Kaufmann, was published in 1979 as The Complete Guide to the Art of Modern Cookery: The First Translation into English in Its Entirety of Le Guide Culinaire, including "some 2,000 additional recipes" omitted from the more than 5000 recipes of the 1907 translation. The 1979 translation was subsequently published as Escoffier: The Complete Guide to the Art of Modern Cookery (1983), and a revised second edition with new forewords was published as Escoffier: Le Guide Culinaire, Revised (2011).
Le Répertoire de la Cuisine, written by Escoffier's student Louis Saulnier, is a companion guide to this culinary reference.