The Great Canadian Chef from France


204 pages
Contains Photos, Illustrations, Index
ISBN 0-919845-38-X





Reviewed by Susan Patrick

Susan Patrick is a librarian at Ryerson Polytechnical University.


Chef Pierre Dubrulle runs a culinary school in Vancouver where he teaches French classical and nouvelle cooking. In this book, he presents recipes for what he calls an “approachable” French cuisine — classical dishes and techniques adapted to North American taste and product availability. All the dishes of a formal gourmet dinner are here: soups and salads, seafood, meat, vegetables, desserts, and of course Dubrulle’s version of the classic sauces which are the basis of French cuisine.

While there are a number of classic dishes like salmon quenelles in Nantua sauce and steak Bercy, Dubrulle has also included many of his own original creations, among them his stuffed sole and salmon, his battu (a combination of sweetened whipping cream, sour cream, and yogurt, used as a dessert topping), and his vegetable soups made of pureed fresh ingredients.

The recipes are set out clearly, with both American and metric measurements, and although sometimes complex (as each dish is prepared from scratch), they are easy to follow, and have all been tested both at Dubrulle’s school and by an independent cook. Recipes frequently include a personal introduction where the chef notes the origin of the dish and how he has adapted or created it. He also includes a useful glossary of cooking terms and another of French words and phrases encountered on a menu, and there are menus provided for special dinner parties.

The recipes are enhanced by wonderful colour photographs of dishes, simply but beautifully arranged, and there is a handy spiral binding so that the book will lie flat on the counter. The index follows the unfortunate method of listing recipes under their contents heading, rather than in a straight alphabetical listing by main ingredient, which is preferable in a cookbook — particularly as the contents are already listed at the beginning of each chapter. However, this is an excellent basic text of French cuisine and its techniques, with an emphasis on a nouvelle treatment of the classical style.



Dubrulle, Pierre, “The Great Canadian Chef from France,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed July 24, 2024,