Comments: No cookbook has had more influence over how we cook and eat today, spawning, at the very least, a 40+ year interest in good food, in using great ingredients, and mastering certain fundamental cooking techniques. Mesdames Child, Beck, and Bertholle did much more with this book than teach generations of people how to prepare French dishes. They taught us how to get around in the kitchen, how to taste and their efforts have raised the standards of home and restaurant kitchens immeasurably.
Do you need a copy of this anniversary edition if you have an earlier edition? No, even the 1983 revision took into account certain changes in the kitchen, notably the availability of the food processor. But if you are remotely interested in classical cooking and you don't have a copy of this book, you absolutely should.
The book is exhaustive in its instructional approach, reflecting the authors' determination to make French cooking available to American cooks. The few illustrations are instructive and useful.