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Cookbooks For The Science-minded, Know of any?
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cynicalb
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PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2005 8:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Marix - I believe the book that you reference is "The Physiology of Taste: Or Meditations on Transcendental Gastronomy" by Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin. I haven't read it myself, but Brillat-Savarin is always quoted as one of the classic minds in cooking.

Just recently picked up two titles at used book stores - the previously mentioned "On Food and Cooking" by Harold McGee (the original printing, not the new, revised edition) and "Larousse Gastronomique" (original English translation from 1961).

I've just skimmed "On Food and Cooking" and it looks like it will become one of my standard references. Very informative, and I already have ideas on how to use the information to improve my cooking.

I've been wanting to get a copy of "Larousse" for years, but the new editions are so expensive and trying to find a used one is almost hopeless. "Larousse" is like a Mark's Mechanical Engineers' Handbook for cooks - encyclopedic in layout and very broad in coverage. Everything that you ever wanted to know about cooking - at least from a French perspective. You must have a good grounding in cooking for it to be useful, but if you do, it is invaluable. It is especially good with respect to the evolution of cooking. Plus, I just love classic anything, so it is a wonderful addition to my book collection.
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cynicalb



Joined: 12 May 2005
Posts: 33

PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2005 5:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

An interesting entry in my "Larousse":

"CAT - Domestic cat whose edible meat has a flavour halfway between that of rabbit and that of hare. Cat's meat has often been eaten in periods of famine or siege. Legend has it that in the cook-shops the cat is often used in the making of rabbit fricasses. Examination of the bones would easily enable one, in case of doubt, to distinguish between the one animal and the other."

Hmmm....cat, the other white meat?
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DuxIl



Joined: 23 Sep 2005
Posts: 16
Location: Duxbury, Massachusetts

PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2005 1:16 pm    Post subject: Ho ho ho Reply with quote

I always taste with my thong. It is especially taste-sensitive... Laughing Out Loud
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2006 6:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

GUEST Z wrote:
some of these books are now installed on my little invisible wishlist ,,, what I want to know is , is there something like a vitamin bible out there? (something like grays anatomy <rough metaphor sorry> except about vitamins)?



Check out the PDR (Physician's Desk Reference) line of books. They publish more than just the PDR, including a book on herbal medicines and several on nonprescription drugs or nutritional supplements.

Jenny
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ldyvic



Joined: 03 Feb 2006
Posts: 8
Location: U.S.A.

PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2006 2:47 pm    Post subject: Many Cookbooks Reply with quote

If you all like to collect cook books, as I do. This website is a good place to start.

Who needs cooking school (unless you are in need of certifications and degrees) when you can buy all the books you need to teach yourself. :-)

http://marketplace.chef2chef.net/cookbook-store/index.htm
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Chef Ewok
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 07, 2006 11:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I found Mark Bittman's "How to cook everything" invaluable.
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McDee



Joined: 17 Sep 2005
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2006 2:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chef Ewok wrote:
I found Mark Bittman's "How to cook everything" invaluable.


I use Bittman for some things, refer to McGee for in-depth explanations, and Escoffier for very traditional classic cooking. I also appreciate Culinary Artistry by Dornenburg and Page for a quick reference on which foods have an affinity for others.
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newfanofCFE
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:05 am    Post subject: Cookbook Suggestions Reply with quote

Just gushed about this amazing web site in the "marshmallow" section so won't repeat. Suffice that I love you all for our mutual obsession!

My suggestion for cookbook follows my passion for baking. Rose Levy Beranbaum's Cake Bible (and I'm guessing her Pie and other "Bibles") is amazing. Her intro where she describes her Masters dissertation on sifting flour for a cake - is just the beginning. Her "Understanding" sections after each recipe tell you exactly why this cake is different from that one.

I've had the book for years and am still discovering things in it. It's the most bent, spilled on, book-marked, and deformed book on my shelves.

Also a huge Alton Brown fan, mentioned on many posts....but don't forget the guest he has on quite often! I'm embarassed to not know her name, but she is a food scientist, and historian and is wonderful.

Thanks again All - happy cooking!
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Michael Chu



Joined: 10 May 2005
Posts: 1617
Location: Austin, TX (USA)

PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 6:50 am    Post subject: Re: Cookbook Suggestions Reply with quote

newfanofCFE wrote:
Also a huge Alton Brown fan, mentioned on many posts....but don't forget the guest he has on quite often! I'm embarassed to not know her name, but she is a food scientist, and historian and is wonderful.

Shirley Corriher who wrote Cookwise. Both books (Cookwise and Beranbaum's The Bread Bible) are listed on the Recommended Reading page for those looking to buy a copy.
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Thor



Joined: 24 Jul 2006
Posts: 112
Location: Camp Hill, PA

PostPosted: Thu Jul 27, 2006 9:24 pm    Post subject: Lighter Shade of Science Reply with quote

After everyone has purchased one of the great books off of the recommented reading page to help support Michael and his outstanding webpage, you may enjoy the webcasts at:

http://www.exploratorium.edu/cooking/index.html

The couple I watched were informative and entertaining, but not overly scientific, as they seem to be geared for a large age range. The Thanksgiving Turkey thermodynamics lesson regarding heat loss/gain of a roasting bird made me wish I had paid better attention in school.
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nicu



Joined: 02 Aug 2007
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Thu Aug 02, 2007 2:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Check out the PDR (Physician's Desk Reference) line of books. They publish more than just the PDR, including a book on herbal medicines and several on nonprescription drugs or nutritional supplements.
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