From Publishers Weekly
As one of LondonÖs most celebrated chefs, Blumenthal delights in confounding dinersÖ expectations with unusual dishes like crab ice cream, but there is a scientific method to his madness. This book, like his last, accompanies his BBC TV series, in which he travels around the world to immerse himself in the history and popular ways of making eight well-known menu items (including hamburger and risotto), then breaks them down in his lab kitchen to understand their parts, and finally reinvents them from the bottom up based on his new knowledge. Blumenthal not only uses scientific technology like MRI machines and gas chromatographs, he also draws on cognitive neuroscience theories to investigate, for example, how a dishÖs name influences the way people taste it, and he is as comfortable discussing technical details as he is rhapsodizing about a good baked Alaska. The recipes provided are clearly written, but the equipment, ingredients and time involved will dissuade many home cooks, and the book is really more about discoveries along the way than the end result. BlumenthalÖs lively intellect and dryly humorous, evocative writing will appeal to anyone interested in the process behind molecular gastronomy or who has ever wondered why certain recipes are constructed as they are. (July)
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"Blumenthal's lively intellect and dryly humorous, evocative writing will appeal to anyone interested in the process behind molecular gastronomy." —Publishers Weekly
"The approach is always fascinating with interesting info and idiosyncratic twists abounding. At heart Blumenthal simply believes in good food, and the bonus is that he can write very well—in places almost poetically—about it." —What’s On in London on In Search of Perfection
“What fun it is to follow in this gastro-wizard’s footsteps as he fastidiously traces the cultural history of the ingredients . . . [this] doesn’t detract from the reader’s pleasure in exploring the byways of Blumenthal’s capacious brain.” —The Observer on In Search of Perfection
"While science is Blumenthal’s forte, it is a background theme to his preoccupation with flavor and texture and the best means to capture these. The style is matter of fact, the narrative dynamic . . . Along the way he gives so many facts that a reading can’t fail to improve the quality of life." —Guardian on In Search of Perfection