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Cooking for Geeks: Real Science, Great Hacks, and Good Food Paperback – August 12, 2010
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I admit to not having cooked any of the recipes. I've have read some interesting ones, however. I have really enjoyed the odd tips and hints (one was putting the muffin tin on the open door of the dishwasher to spray it with cooking spray). I have a feeling this will be one of those books passed around after opening on Christmas. Good thing we will have two!
If you love to cook and want to go beyond the recipes to create your own culinary masterpieces - read this book. Not only does it contain great info, it's fun to read as well.
One thing you must keep in mind is that some of the humor might get lost on you. That "u can haz cheezburger" might be a mis-spelling to some in the section on making burgers, it's a great inside joke to others. (I need to go back and check the book to see if it says "I made you a cookie, but I eated it.") To the sheer delight of both geeks and innovative cooks, many warrantee-voiding hacks to kitchen equipment are presented (like how to turn your home oven into a serious pizza oven). There a many very good interviews with all sorts of experts in cooking and science related fields (including Adam Savage of "Mythbusters" fame).
But the section of the book that blew my mind was the whole food chemistry section. And I don't just mean good general knowledge about protein chains or Maillard reaction that you'd learn on shows like "Good Eats" (not that "Cooking for Geeks" doesn't have that, too), but I mean bizarre things like "meat glue" and unusual jelling agents and maltodextrin+oil combinations. As a result that chapter, I've ordered Experimental Kit Texturas so look for my review of that after I get it.
I'm already planning this book as a Christmas gift for a few people.
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Hardly any attention paid to nutrition for example, which you would have thought would...Read more