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Michael Symon's Carnivore: 120 Recipes for Meat Lovers

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Celebrity chef, restaurateur, and meat lover Michael Symon—of Food Network’s Iron Chef America and ABC’s The Chew—shares his wealth of knowledge and more than 100 killer recipes for steaks, chops, wings, and lesser-known cuts.
Fans across the country adore Michael Symon for his big, charismatic personality and his seriously delicious food. But there's one thing Michael is known for above all else: his unabashed love of meat. A devoted carnivore, Michael calls the cuisine at his six Midwestern restaurants "meat-centric." Now, in Michael Symon's Carnivore, he combines his passion and expertise in one stellar cookbook.
Michael gives home cooks just the right amount of key information on breeds, cuts, and techniques to help them at the meat counter and in the kitchen, and then lets loose with fantastic recipes for beef, pork, poultry, lamb, goat, and game. Favorites include Broiled Porterhouse with Garlic and Lemon, Ribs with Cleveland BBQ Sauce, Braised Chicken Thighs with Kale and Chiles, Lamb Moussaka, and Bacon-Wrapped Rabbit Legs. Recipes for sides that enhance the main event, like Apple and Celeriac Salad and Sicilian Cauliflower, round out the book.
Michael's enthusiasm and warmth permeate the text, and with 75 beautiful color photographs, Michael Symon's Carnivore is a rich and informative cookbook for every meat lover.

256 pages, Hardcover

First published January 1, 2012

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Michael Symon

26 books51 followers

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5 stars
166 (44%)
4 stars
134 (36%)
3 stars
55 (14%)
2 stars
11 (2%)
1 star
4 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 27 of 27 reviews
Profile Image for Optimist ♰King's Wench♰.
1,764 reviews3,836 followers
December 1, 2012
Let me preface this by saying, I cook. A lot. I call it a hobby, others call it an obsession, Sur La Table & Whole Foods call it a windfall. I've made many, many recipes by a whole host of chefs & I can honestly say I usually tinker with most recipes. There are 2 chefs I never alter their recipes-Micheal Symon & Thomas Keller. Why mess with perfection? And before I go any further there is a recipe that he's made on his show for spicy potatoes that's the shit, the bee's knees, the cat's pajamas, whatever. Trust me. I've made it twice & it'll rock your world. Just try not to think about the ridiculous number of calories you're ingesting. This recipe alone is worth the book.

I'll just go ahead & disclose that I've got a fairly serious crush on Mr. Symon which probably makes me less than objective but his food speaks for itself. His personality shines through in this book. He really, really loves meat & his zest for it is on display in this cookbook. The man is a born teacher. If you've just started cooking this is a good addition to your library especially if you like meat. There's not a lot of unusual meats in this one. It's broken down into the basics: beef, pork, poultry & game with a sides section at the end. Don't get me wrong this is a niche cookbook but if you're a meat lover & want to know how to cook which cut of meat to bring out the best flavor be it roasting, braising, frying, grilling or stewing, this is the cookbook for you. If you're interested in an all around cookbook, this is not the the book for you. You might want to start with Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking or Alice Waters The Art of Simple Food-both excellent.

Michael tells you what to look for in cuts of meat which ones are best for different cooking techniques & tells you how to achieve the most out of those methods. The thing that endears him to me & probably to a number of others is his joie de vivre & we get several anecdotal tales throughout this book. He uses unusual ingredients & by that I don't mean weird or hard to find, I just mean he puts things together in ways that are uncommon i.e. there's a recipe for chicken salad with mint in here. Mint? Who thinks to put mint in chicken salad? At any rate, I'm testing 2 recipes this weekend & I expect they'll both rock my world. That's how he do!
Profile Image for David Williams.
251 reviews7 followers
March 22, 2013
Michael Simon talking about meat, what's not to like? The layout is excellent, the tone is enjoyable conversational and the veggie recipes are awesome.

Book received for free through Goodreads First Reads program.
Profile Image for J. Gowin.
109 reviews27 followers
August 29, 2017
I bought this book on sale for $3.00 US, and I wouldn't advise spending more than that.

I'm a hunter and fisherman so I am always looking for good recipes for game, and this book has a chapter on it. The book also has chapters on beef, pork, poultry and lamb/goat. Too bad that the recipes were mostly things that I've seen in many other books or else just didn't interest me. Out of one hundred and twenty recipes I only found about six that interested me. That is five percent. So it is another celebrity chef cookbook with skippable chapter headers and glossy photos. It is not worth full price.
10 reviews2 followers
March 14, 2020
Just a heads up for my dairy free friends: There is a surprising amount of dairy in this cookbook. I'd say a good 3/4 of the recipes contain dairy. I mean, I know it's not a dairy free cookbook, but I found myself saying things like, "Really, Symon? Milk in your hot dog recipe, too? Aight, aight. Didn't see that coming."

I think most of it is easy enough to work around, but if you don't feel like finagling substitutions, this is probably not the cookbook for you.
Profile Image for Bunny .
2,232 reviews102 followers
October 24, 2013
I'm pretty much a fraud for even picking this up at the library, for two reasons.

1) John Besh should've won Next Iron Chef. I've never forgiven that show for picking Symon over him.

2) I'm only 1/4 carnivore. I don't eat lamb, or bunnies (OB-viously). I eat steak maybe once ever four months, and it's the cheapest kind every time because, you know. Poor. My go-to protein is chicken, and even then, it's simple chicken breasts, browned down, breaded, or baked.

However. This was on the new book shelf at the library, so I decided to pick it up. And it's not bad. Will I eat 97% of the recipes in here? No. Spicy Kale isn't my cup of tea. But the recipes are inventive, some are simple to prepare, and it's chock full of Italian words, which wheeee. I fully intend on making the brick chicken on the grill eventually.

Not a bad book at all. Well played, Symon.

John Besh's book was better though.
16 reviews
January 6, 2013
If you enjoy meat then this is the book for you. If you've ever wanted to try your hand at making your own hot dogs, bacon, pastarimi, sausage, or corned beef, then this is the book for you. If you want some new recipes for cooking beef, pork, lamb, goat, poultry or game then this is the book for you. There is even a chapter on sides to go with your meat dishes.

Michael Symon gives you tips on the best ways to cook the cuts of meat you choose for your family as well as suggestions for sides to round out your meals.

I'm hoping to try the orange roasted chickens soon and with the leftovers his chicken pot pie. I also plan to try the Spicy Pork Burger with Manchego Cheese and the Pork Pie. I saw him make the pork pie on The Chew and it looked fantastic. I have several more recipes marked to try.
Profile Image for Joanne.
152 reviews
December 3, 2012
I got this from the library to see if I wanted to add it to my ever-expanding cookbook collection. Although I really enjoyed reading it and it had some great recipes, it won't be going on my shelves, however. I like to cook, but an Iron Chef I am not, and a lot of the recipes were geared toward serious cooks! There are recipes for making your own sausages and even hot dogs, not to mention a whole chapter devoted to game. Symon also has some great recipes for offal that look great if you have a more adventurous culinary audience, which I unfortunately don't. The book is definitely worth taking a look at to see if it suits the type of cooking you do!

Profile Image for Gail.
1,411 reviews
January 7, 2013
I won this book in a first reads free giveaway but I still have not received my copy..I received my copy yesterday in the mail. There are some pretty interesting recipes in the book. I don't eat any wild game and some of the recipes seem pretty intense. I will be using this book as part of my gift swap gift for Christmas. Thanks for the free copy.
I just had to tell you that my son-in-law just loves the book. I had used the book with an Outback Gift Card as my swap gift and my son-in-law kept trying to get it back when he lost it. He finally ended up with it. He was so happy to have the book and the great recipes in it. Thanks again for my copy.
Profile Image for Dorothy.
7 reviews
October 24, 2012
There are some really great and easy recipes in this book. I haven't book an actual hardcover book in a few years, but Michael Symon was doing a book signing at the local Barnes & Noble so I wanted to get it signed. He is such a sincere person and if you had any questions about any of the recipes in the book you could write him and he would definitely respond. They are so simple and clear though there shouldn't be any problems making these. If you love meat, any kind, even chicken you will love this book!
Profile Image for Tammy.
35 reviews4 followers
January 4, 2013
I received this as a giveaway from good reads. It has a lot of useful tips but the recipes consist of ingredients most people do not have. Also there are techniques that many people will never use. The pictures are enticing I just can't see myself ever smoking my own bacon. For those reasons it did not receive a five star.
94 reviews
December 29, 2012
Some great recipes in here, and its hard not to love a book that loves Cleveland so very, very much. However, if you've never seen the man cook or are otherwise unfamiliar with his work, there are times when you will be absolutely lost. Less a cookbook and more a 'recipes from our show/restaurant' book.
Profile Image for Heather .
1,064 reviews27 followers
April 2, 2015
He wasn't kidding about this book being almost all meat...what I especially appreciate is that is is all meats from headcheese to tripe to calf liver, done in a way that isn't intimidating. For an Iron Chef this book is easy peasy with not too much ingredients and simple processes.
Profile Image for Nicole.
120 reviews
December 12, 2012
These are not recipes for the everyday home cook. Who has the time to grind their own sausage? Not my kind of food, nut I love Michael Symon as both a chef and a tv personality, and the directions for the recipes were clear and easy to understand.
Profile Image for Lee.
328 reviews
October 29, 2014
chefs don't always put out the best cookbooks for everyday cooking for the non chef. I'm sure his food is delicious, but I'm not going to stuff my own sausage, buy a pork tongue to make head cheese, or eat such things as lamb necks, rabbit thighs, or animal livers.

Profile Image for Rebecca.
255 reviews30 followers
November 25, 2014
I like his style of cooking and the layout of this cookbook. There is something for everyone and all types of meat are separated into categories. If you have a hungry husband or are a meat eater yourself, there is a recipe for you. I won't ever find or cook wild boar, but it's in there too!
Profile Image for Patti.
442 reviews17 followers
October 26, 2012
Beautiful pictures and great reading. But the recipes are not for the average home cook.
Profile Image for Janet.
820 reviews16 followers
December 9, 2012
I liked it enough and found some things I want to try making
31 reviews
June 28, 2013
I actually rented this from the library and loved it so much I bought it!
Great recipes for my carnivore hubby who cannot understand the world's obsession with quinoa and gluten free...
Profile Image for Kristen.
11 reviews
June 16, 2013
Great cookbook for meat lovers!!! There are a ton of great tips.... starting with purchasing to the best way to prepare each cut of meat to side dishes to accompany them. Michael Symon is the bomb!
Profile Image for Jeff.
16 reviews6 followers
August 11, 2013
Gathered a couple good ideas. I will definitely be attempting to home cure/smoke my own bacon and pastrami.
Profile Image for Virginia.
1,460 reviews4 followers
February 25, 2018
Worth it for the meat pie and meatloaf. Nice look to it. Made pork and beans but adjusted broth amount to create best bean soup ever. I love this cookbook.
Profile Image for Wendy.
1,017 reviews8 followers
March 17, 2013
I don't eat a lot of meat, and I hardly ever cook it at home, but I adore Michael Symon!!
Displaying 1 - 27 of 27 reviews

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