Kitchen Mysteries: Revealing the Science of Cooking (Arts and Traditions of the Table: Perspectives on Culinary History) by Hervé This

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  • fprincess on October 26, 2010

    Original title - Secrets de la casserole

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  • ISBN 10 023114170X
  • ISBN 13 9780231141703
  • Published Oct 26 2007
  • Format Hardcover
  • Language English
  • Countries United States
  • Publisher Columbia University Press

Publishers Text

One of the founders of molecular gastronomy, or the application of science to culinary practice, Hervé This is known for his groundbreaking research into the chemistry behind everyday cooking. His work is consulted widely by amateur cooks and professional chefs and has changed the way food is approached and prepared all over the world. Already translated into five languages, Kitchen Mysteries sheds further insight into the science of cooking, answering such fundamental questions as what causes vegetables to change color when cooked and how to keep a soufflé from falling. Hervé This illuminates abstract concepts with concrete examples, how sautéing in butter chemically alters the molecules of mushrooms, for example, and he explains the science behind tenderizing enzymes and gelatins.

Kitchen Mysteries begins with a brief overview of molecular gastronomy and the physiology of taste, and then discusses the science of soup, milk, bread, eggs, stews, salads, sauces, yogurt, cheese, fruit, sorbet, sugar, cakes, pastries, alcohol, jam, tea, mayonnaise, and vinegar. Hervé This explores the effects of boiling and bouillon, steaming and braising, roasting, deep-frying, sautéing and grilling, salting, and microwaving. He even devotes a chapter to wooden spoons, copper pots, and other kitchen utensils. Divided into thirty-nine short chapters and arranged to follow the sequence of a meal, Kitchen Mysteries is a straightforward, charming introduction to the scientific principles of food. It is written for readers who might not have a strong background in the culinary arts, yet Hervé This's revelations are no less profound. He continues to demonstrate his gift for making complex science digestible to the common cook.

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