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Microsoft Idle Science

Ex-Microsoft CTO Writes $625 Cookbook 176

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the one-helluva-ramen-packet dept.
carusoj writes "Nathan Myhrvold, Microsoft's first CTO, made his mark in the tech world. Now he's cemented his place in the world of cooking and food science with the publication of a groundbreaking six-volume, 2,438-page cookbook. Some of the techniques in Myhrvold's Modernist Cuisine are intimidating, to put it mildly, calling for such daunting ingredients as liquid nitrogen and equipment such as centrifuges and rotor-stator homogenizers. But Myhrvold and his co-authors insist that the majority of recipes can be made in a conventional home kitchen — with a few recommended, inexpensive extras such as a digital gram scale and water bath for sous vide cooking." Dear Bosses: When you see the centrifuge on my March expense report, please note that this is a legitmate business expense. If you're still curious, we ran a story a couple years ago on Nathan's Kitchen Lab.
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Ex-Microsoft CTO Writes $625 Cookbook

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  • Re:Piracy (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Locutus (9039) on Wednesday March 09, 2011 @10:52AM (#35430642)
    first he has to sucker the world+dog into believing it's something they must have and no other cookbook is useful because the recipes are incompatible. Using exotic equipment is a good start at making it incompatible. It'll cost a few billion in marketing to get the drones to believe they must have it and nothing else will work.

    LoB
  • by Samantha Wright (1324923) on Wednesday March 09, 2011 @10:52AM (#35430644) Homepage Journal
    There's no mystery here. That's just how it's always been done, and for very good reason: To measure a volume, all you need is a cup with a line drawn on it. Meaduring weight or mass with the same precision requires a scale. Since humans generally prepare food at SATP, these are pretty reliable metrics.
  • by ProppaT (557551) on Wednesday March 09, 2011 @10:56AM (#35430730) Homepage

    Traditional cooking is more of an art than a science. It's a lot easier to eyeball volume than it is weight. I rarely cook from recipes, but when I do I rarely ever use measuring devices. I know what a cup of liquid or a teaspoon or tablespoon of this or that looks like. A pinch or a dash is a perfectly fine measurement for cooking. In other words, it just makes sense.

    This new style of chemical cooking is exactly that, chemistry, and things need to be very precise to get the wanted result. You need a scale to properly measure the ingredients to make gels, bubbles, etc. correctly.

    As a side note, baking is less cooking and more of a science. Sometimes you will see bakers using scales and you need the right proportions of leavening, salt, etc. to gain the desired effect. It's very easy to make flat bread if things aren't done correctly.

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