Thursday, January 10, 2013

Library requirements

In the two year hiatus of this blog more than a couple food books came into my collection. However two of them have become my daily go-to books for inspiration and direction; The Flavor Bible and Michael Ruhlman's Twenty. The Flavor Bible is a list of ingredients with a sub-list of all the ingredients that pair with the category. So if you have a random impulse to buy crayfish and don't know what to do with them... The Flavor Bible lists everything that top chefs from around the world say pair with crayfish. And, between font style and punctuation, it tells you the "strength" with which it pairs. When looking at crayfish it lists basil and also thyme with thyme being the stronger match. This book is a great resource for recipe formulation. I use it more than any other book in my collection.

Ruhlman's Twenty explores twenty fundamental ingredients and techniques to our cooking today. There is a brief, or not so, dialogue about the properties of the subject and then recipes follow. The best part of it to me is that it is all the basics. One topic he chose is water. Hard to get more basic than that. Don't be fooled into thinking the book doesn't offer you anything either. He sets the groundwork for you to go into culinary ga-ga land if you want.  Blogs need a photo it seems so above is obviously a hard boiled egg, also which is in Ruhlman's Twenty.

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