The ‘Modernist Cuisine At Home’ which is a second book release of Dr. Nathan Myhrvold and his team is geared to home based cooking. The book is as impressive as the first one, with the single volume weighing about 10 pounds and running into 456 pages priced at about $140. A separate kitchen manual comes along with the main volume which is very handy during the execution of recipes; the use of washable paper and plastic covers adding to the convenience of use.
A few of the various aspects of cooking discussed in the book can be highlighted below:
Cooking In Pressure Cookers
A lot of recipes are devoted to pressure cooking technique. In addition to the regulars like risottos, stocks they have rendered some novel techniques of cooking in the pressure cooker pertaining to canning jars, browning vegetables to name a few. The advantage of getting the entire day’s cooking done in almost half to an hour is obtained in a pressure cooker.
Sous Vide Cooking
Sous vide cooking has been given a place of great importance in the book. Sous vide cooking can be generalized as ‘focused slow cooking’. A major portion of the book has been allotted to this technique and its advantages over traditional cooking have been elaborated through the various recipes. The greatest benefit of sous vide cooking is obtained during meal planning. You don’t need to worry about the food getting burnt or remaining undercooked. If all is set to precise timings and temperature, you can serve the food when you are ready and not the other way round.
Focus On Adaption Of Basic Techniques
The book has devoted a lot of pages in elucidating the basic techniques. Additionally, suggestions have also been given on creating variations which are offshoots of the basic techniques, giving full scope to your creativity. For example, after explaining the basic pressure cooker preparation of braises, you are made aware of how to dish out variety in the form of pork shoulder fricassee, pork vindaloo and braised duck with steamed buns and so on.
Other Plus Points
The book is loaded with many useful tips on food preparations which give better results than the regular way of cooking like making the perfect emulsified cheese at home, getting the prefect steak done and many more. As for the equipment part, elaborate information on all items used in their cooking has been provided like on the pressure cookers, vacuum sealers, thermometers, scales, whipping siphons etc. The volumes, weights and the scaling factors specified for each recipe are most useful.
The most impressive part of the book is its talking photography; things are explained so vividly through pictures that text doesn’t matter much at all.
How Suitable Is The Book At Home?
How useful the book is at home depends on how interested is the home cook in techniques of modernist cuisine. If you are a fastidious cook interested in obtaining the perfect turning out of your recipes, then the book is for you.
Basically, the book is oriented for home cooks who want to dish out restaurant equivalent food preparations at home. Precise timings and perfect measures are the keywords here. No room for adjustments; doesn’t matter if it entails additional washing or working. It is a perfect tool for an expert home cook who is out to impress his or her guests. The book ‘Modernist Cuisine At Home’ is definitely, worth a buy.
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