A couple of books have caught my eye during the year and have naturally made their way into my Christmas wish list (and some I’ve already ordered myself). Please let me know if there are books you belive should be on this list that I have missed.
Culinary Reactions: The Everyday Chemistry of Cooking
by Simon Quellen Field
The back cover states “When you’re cooking, you’re a chemist!”. I couldn’t agree more and figured this was a book for me. I already have my copy in front of me and see there are many interesting observations and experiments described.
Heston Blumenthal at Home
by Heston Blumenthal
The Family Meal: Home Cooking with Ferran Adria
by Ferran Adrià
Ferran and Heston have jumped onto the cooking-at-home-with-great-chefs waggon. They’d be more than welcome to come and cook in my kitchen, but until that happens I’ll let their books inspire me. An important thing about these books is that, given their close collaboration with scientists, I have a high expectation that the advice given in all recipes should be scientifically sound (which of course is not the case for many other cook books).
Neurogastronomy: How the Brain Creates Flavor and Why It Matters
by Gordon M. Shepherd
I stumbled across this one by chance. It looks like a “must have” too me, and my copy is already on its way. In an interview with Salon, the author Gordon M. Shepherd, a professor of neurobiology at the Yale School of Medicine, says that:
“I began to realize that increasingly smell was for sensing the flavor of food. It goes almost unrecognized as we eat our food because we think it all comes from taste in our mouths. The more research that I did on flavor, the more I realized that the sense of smell was the dominant sense in flavor — and that we are almost totally unaware of it.”
The Oxford Companion to Beer
edited by Garrett Oliver
Having ventured into brewing I found this book quite irresistable!
The Kitchen as Laboratory: Reflections on the Science of Food and Cooking
edited by Cesar Vega, Job Ubbink and Erik van der Linden
I’ve mentioned this book previously. With 35 essays covering a range of topics this should be of interest to many Khymos readers!
Apart from these books we just have to face it: there’s no way around Modernist cuisine. If you don’t own a copy yet I’m quite sure it still sits there on the top of your wish list. And – if you happen to read Swedish – I would highly recommend the recently published book Matmolekyler (“Food molecules”) by Malin Sandström and Lisa Förare Winbladh (also check out their blog blog with the same name – also in Swedish).