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Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat: Mastering the Elements of Good Cooking Hardcover – April 25, 2017
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"Just reading Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat will make you a better cook, adept at seasoning, balancing, understanding what it really is you’re doing and why... Make room on the bedside table—and the countertop." (Bon Appetit)
"I talk about Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat the way people talk about beloved pets or newborn babies; like I was a different person before I read it – and I was. I liked to eat, but hated to cook. I was a huge proponent of what I called "snack dinner," basically whatever I had that didn't require a cooking implement. Samin Nosrat (and illustrator Wendy MacNaughton) set me straight. Together they debunk the concept of recipes, instead teaching you how to build food (and flavor) from scratch and by instinct. Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat uses its eponymous guiding principles to chart a very delicious course toward never eating snack dinner again."
"My favorite metacookbook...[Nosrat] offers a beautifully simple checklist for ensuring a dish ends up in a good place...This is the book of cooking grammar that so many novices would benefit from...Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat is written smoothly and casually, and kept breezy via charming watercolors by the perceptive Bay Area artist Wendy MacNaughton...Nosrat’s book would be of value both to people who don’t consider themselves cooks and to people actively striving to become better ones." (Atlantic)
"Inventively illustrated...ambitious...[Nosrat is] a talented explainer." (Wall Street Journal)
"A cookbook that will make you a better cook...with helpful, charming illustrations from artist Wendy MacNaughton." (Boston Globe)
"An exhaustively researched treatise on the four pillars of successful cooking." (New York Times Book Review)
"Hundreds of cookbooks are published each year. Some are good. Others are exceptional. A few are essential. Samin Nosrat just published “Salt Fat Acid Heat — Mastering the Elements of Good Cooking” and I daresay this one is essential...That’s the fabulous thing about this book — it teaches readers about cooking, how to employ various techniques, and how to grasp that any subtle variations in technique can have significant impacts upon our end results. It is possible to learn how to cook great food...This book is bound to become an indispensable addition to cookbook shelves throughout America." (Dayton Daily News)
"Nosrat’s beautiful, approachable book demonstrates how these four are the only elements necessary to make delicious meals anywhere, any time." (Rapid City Journal)
"Provides the cook with far more tools for branching out and exploring their own creative potential - and that makes it a standout." (Midwest Book Review)
"An excellent cookbook and culinary resource that pares down the idea that it only takes four ingredients to make food taste amazing." (Belleville News-Democrat)
About the Author
Samin Nosrat is a writer, teacher, and chef. Called “a go-to resource for matching the correct techniques with the best ingredients” by The New York Times, and “the next Julia Child” by NPR’s All Things Considered, she’s been cooking professionally since 2000, when she first stumbled into the kitchen at Chez Panisse restaurant. She lives, cooks, surfs, and gardens in Berkeley, California. Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat is her first book.
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So much more than a collection of recipes, it gets to the heart of cooking. Why we want to be better cooks AND how to do that. I love the fold out on p. 193 "what should I cook" that advises to go back and read the book through before you practice...a brilliant observation that the book is about "the journey, not the destination" as are so many things we pursue and experience.
Samin is a wonderful storyteller and Wendy's illustrations add another layer to this important book. You'll keep this book on your bedside table first...then move it to your kitchen as a reference you'll use for years to come. Don't let this one get away!
**Note: one reviewer pointed out an error in the section that talks about osmosis. The author states that during osmosis, liquid goes from an area of high concentration to an area of low concentration instead of the other way around. Other than that, though, this book has been fantastic! I just thought I'd reiterate that point - the more reviews it's written in, the more chance it'll be seen, and the less misinformation is spread.