Hellbent for Cooking

posted by Stal on 2010.01.27, under Stal
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Looking for a headbanging new cookbook for yourself? Ready to trade in advice from Martha for tirades from Mayhem or Gwar? Annick Giroux has written an international heavy metal cookbook titled Hellbent for Cooking, chock full of recipes from metal bands, hailing from over 30 countries.

The dishes are actually mostly tame (e.g. no offal) regional recipes from the band’s country. Still, I would love to tuck into a bowl of Macaroni Against Monotheism (involves 666 g of ground pork, pasta sauce and macaroni), or to sip from Richard Christy from Death’s trademark cocktail (the mighty Viking Testicle).

[ Finally, A Heavy Metal Cookbook / SeriousEats ]

Cookbooks I’m digging

posted by Diomedes on 2009.07.22, under Diomedes
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After some lunch converstaions, I figured it’d be cool to list the cookbooks I’m currently digging and open up the conversation for anyone who wants to talk about what they’re currently cooking.

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I started with a fermented food kick, there’s a great book by Sandor Ellix Katz called “Wild Fermentation” where he extols the virtues of fermented foods in your diet. This is a topic I’ve been curious about ever since I read Salt by Mark Kurlansky where a history of culinary and preservation using Salt was outlined. Fermentation is another basic method of preserving food prior to refrigeration, but also has been used to modify the nutritional content. The book is fascinating and really covers the spectrum from veggies, to cheese, to beer and more.

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I had so much success with my home fermentation that I moved on to Indian food which I’ve always wanted to learn how to cook. Not only do I enjoy most dishes I’ve had, but unlike a lot of my fermented products, my wife will eat these too providing an additional motivator. I have a good friend who spent years in India who, after mentioning my new culinary interests, went out on the spot and bought me 660 curries by Raghavan Iyer. The book is fantastic and gives authentic regional samplings, I’ve been slowly making my way through it. Once you sort of get past the complicated number of spices involved, I found the mechanically assembling the dishes isn’t all that tough and typically turns out pretty well even if you mess up a bit.

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Finally, I was reading Shark’s Fin and Sichuan Pepper: A Sweet-Sour Memoir of Eating in China by Fushia Dunlop. It’s more of a book about food than a cookbook, for that you have to turn to Land of Plenty (which is currently being shipped to me) or Revolutionary Chinese Cookbook. The book covers her experiences living and traveling through China, learning to cook cuisine and the important role it plays culturally. The book contains a smattering a recipies that relate to the chapter topics, but more than anything it helped me get “excited” about Chinese food in a more meaningful way than jadedly thinking about the heavy corn starch gel coated meats that get served to me at most Chinese restaurants.

What’s everyone else cooking now a days?

Fancy Fast Food

posted by Stal on 2009.07.17, under Stal
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Just when I thought I’d seen all possible niche food blogs out there, the long tail of the internet proves me wrong. Introducing Fancy Fast Food, featuring deconstructed, gourmet meals made entirely out of fast food take-out. Above, behold a Tacobellini, made out of a Taco Burrito Supreme.

[via Freakonomics]

On Baking Chemistry

posted by Stal on 2009.07.17, under Stal
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A follow-up from a lunchtime debate over the use of Vitamin C tablets in baking:

For even more comprehensive dough improvement, add vitamin C for better gluten development; an egg yolk for antistaling and better gluten development; 1/4 teaspoon ground fenugreek, rosemary, or cinnamon for enhanced yeast activity and better keeping qualities; 1 tablespoon sugar to feed yeast; and 1 teaspoon barley malt syrup, which contains enzymes to convert flour to yeast food.

-Shirley Corriher, Cookwise, p. 93

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