Wednesday, May 19, 2010

On Food and Cooking, by Harold McGee

On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the KitchenI'm putting this one up as a "twofer" today, since the other review I'm posting is a little brief.

I saw a reference to this book on another website (I'll hat tip it if my memory functions at some point), and thought it sounded quite interesting. Indeed, it is, but it's not something you just pick up and read through in one sitting. In fact, after having it checked out from the library for six weeks, I managed to only finish the first chapter! Sixty nine pages about milk, its history, its chemistry and its uses as a food product. I was about to start the egg chapter when I got the overdue notice from the libary.

This would be a fantastic textbook for people in a culinary arts class, or perhaps more of a reference book.

Just a couple of snippets of "fun" facts.

"If it's not too far gone, you can sometimes rescue a tightening cheese sauce with a squeeze of lemon juice or a splash of white wine."

"Eating cheese slows tooth decay...eaten at the end of ta meal, when streptococcal acid production is on the rise, calcium and phosphate from cheese diffuse into the bacterial colonies and blunt the acid rise."

One of these days, if I run across a copy of this book at a used book store, I'll have to grab it for my personal reference collection.

Great stuff, but not a quick ready by any stretch of the imagination.

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