The Gastronomist Gets Real. Making a meal with Ferran Adrià, the chef at El Bulli”
El Bulli may be the world’s greatest restaurant Located in northern Spain, but the main driver of such glory is the chef Ferran Adrià whose book provides an insight about home cooking. One of the most important facts about cooking that can be gleaned from the article is the fact that “The Family Meal: Home Cooking with Ferran Adrià” provided chefs with simple solution to homecoming problems. Covering special cuisine from all over the world, the article makes cooking an easy process that anybody can enjoy. The terminologies are simple, and the steps are even simpler and easy to follow. However, the gastronomic ideas are something to think about because knowing that Adrià is a master in his trade, everybody would expect a sophisticated individual to interact with, but he is a down to earth person even with his El Bulli hotel coming to an end and the beginning of a new life for the El Bulli foundation.
The main ideas that Adrià impacted in El Bulli is that both the staff and the client must eat the same meal because the staff are the internal marketers, apart from good meal, the staff must be properly paid and this include the interns. While this is not a normal practice, all the staff deserves a good pay because they translate into business for a restaurant. According to Mark Bittman, (2011), the staffs are underpaid as can be gleaned from the argument of the chef …”You want to learn how to cook in good restaurants? you work 110 hours a week. 35 are interns who are unpaid, and most consider it an honor to do little more than learn from the permanent kitchen staff of about 12”
In cooking, the article is clear about the quality of food, For example, even through the food can be cooked in less than fifteen minutes, the article directs that all food must be cooked as directed because the short cuts lead to low quality food. This Adrià argues is true even thought the client may not even realize the difference. According to Bittman, (2011), quality is important, and quality does not only mean the quality of food, but also service, ambiance, responsiveness, and employee relations.
The arguments presented in the article are valid, but I must add that Ferran Adrià is seasoned chef, and his book is terrific. Additionally, while the author made a fuss about the working hours, there are other things must be considered when talking about the cost of a hamburger, because I believe a hamburger can only be as bad as the price of the condiment and recipe. If cost is compromised than, quality will be compromised too. I must add that the article is shallow on the side of the cuisine because it does not provide information on how to acquire the requirements and. It is also subjective and not objective as it biased in favor of chef Adrià.
Adrià argues that cooking at home does not only require fresh foods but also like premade stocks, sauces and condiments. While the menu in the book is the works of Ferran Adrià himself, the book has many recipes and menus prepared to serve both high profile customer and friends. The recipe is for not only commercial cooking and home cooking
I also agree with the author that division of labor within the restaurant is important as can be seen with the staff at their station of work carry out their pre assigned duties. The division of labor makes everything properly organized and the customs get their quality meals in time. However, the credit is only given where it is due and in this case, the restaurant is not successful because of Adrià alone but the team of staff who know their place in the restaurant. Perhaps, it is not the cooking skills, but the management skill that makes Adrià a successful restaurateur.
Successful home cooking required both skill and food stuff that much I know, but I also realized another important factor, the drive to be the best. This has an implication to me, and other aspiring chefs, we must put our heart and make it a hobby not a job because Adrià loves cooking, and the articles idolizes him without noting his weakness and mistakes
“Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking
The book “Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking” by Nathan Myhrvold may have ciome at a time when everyone really needed a modern cuisine book, however, the book is full of flows and mistakes that even the most important information in the book is covered with cuisine errors, and mistakes. Any seasoned chef can easily realize the mistakes with almost 50 of the1522 recipes. While the books has its own limitations, I would like to think of this as a visionary ad bold move by Nathan Myhrvold because there is not book with such a large number of recipes. From the laboratory inspired cooking, and the attribution of Spanish cuisine tom Ferran Adrià, the book boasts of the largest collection of articles never seen before. I love the article’s critical stance and simplicity when it comes to explanation of the tools and ingredients required.
I also find the books an interesting read for any curious person because it is detailed yet simple. Though most of the recipes are experimental as some of the processes were extreme, the quality of the food products from the laboratory of Dr. Myhrvold Company Intellectual Ventures is excellence. In as much as the modern cooks may not approve to a number of recipes, I find the range of food products particularly wide that everyone should like. Nobody can afford to hate the cuisines especially considering the fact that Cris Young and Maxime Bilet took their time to prepare a detailed recipe.
From volume one to volume five, the books boasts of various projects that ended up being in a nice food for everyone. For example, volume speaks about food history, microbiology and nutrition in, and then volume 2 provides an overview of the traditional and modern techniques. On the other hand, volume three mainly focuses on then the science of cooking meat and plants, while volume four provides information about the use of thickeners, gels and foams. Finally, volume 5 provides information on wine and coffee, as well as recipes for finished dishes. While the book is worthy every dollar, it is important to note that pastry is not covered in the book but this is probably because Nathan Myhrvold did not consider pastry as importing. Happy reading
Having just read the book and the reviews, I find the book very interesting not because of the cost incurred in experimenting with the different cuisine but because it is detailed for anyone interesting in new and modern cuisine. Personally, I have tried a number of the recipes, and I find some very interesting while some just need questioning. For example, the author argues that “Saturated fat isn’t associated with heart disease anywhere, in any large study,” and this is one areas that most chefs, still find challenging that they have to deal with the saturated fat in a period when obesity and cholesterol levels are the main issues dinners have to deal with. Additionally, I find some new information about the perception about the government regulations on cooking because they are scientist and they confirm that the temperature at which the chicken and the pork are safe were regulated by the government purely on political grounds and not scientific grounds. While this is a bold statement, I think it is also right because in a number of occasions, I have been forced to go past the regulated temperatures and realized the products was even much better.
I also commend the book on the stance taken on low salt and high fiber because the authors have completely maligned this much-feared food. I for one have been taking these diets because of the popular opinion and I realize that even the healthy people must exercise caution because there is a limit to everything. In as much as there are scientific and political claims, the authors have gone out of their way to ensure that nobody feels threatened. In conclusion, the both agree with the book and disagree with some contents that every chef will just find abnormal while some contents are interesting and through provoking. I find it a good read for those who like to experiment.
Mark Bittman, (2011-July). The Gastronomist Gets Real. Making a meal with Ferran Adrià, the chef at El Bulli. New York time
Michael Ruhlman. Nathan Myhrvold “Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking” nytimes.com