The Food Lab: Better Home Cooking Through Science is a 2015 cookbook written by American chef J. Kenji Lopez-Alt. The book contains close to 300 savory American cuisine recipes.[3][4] The Food Lab expands on Lopez-Alt's "The Food Lab" column on the Serious Eats blog.[3] Lopez-Alt uses the scientific method in the cookbook to improve popular American recipes[3] and to explain the science of cooking.[5] The Food Lab charted on The New York Times Best Seller list,[6] and won the 2016 James Beard Foundation Award for the best General Cooking cookbook[2] and the 2016 IACP awards for the Cookbook of the Year and the best American cookbook.[1]

The Food Lab: Better Home Cooking Through Science
AuthorsJ. Kenji Lopez-Alt
PublisherW. W. Norton & Company
Publication date
September 21, 2015
Media typePrint, ebook
Pages960 (print edition)
Award2016 IACP Cookbook of the Year;[1] 2016 James Beard Foundation General Cooking cookbook award[2]

Lopez-Alt developed the cookbook over a five-year period.[4] He described the book not as a recipe book but as "a book for people who want to learn the hows and the whys of cooking".[4] The recipes in The Food Lab are arranged by the technique used to prepare them.[7] The cookbook also contains charts and experiments aimed at explaining scientific concepts like the difference between temperature and energy and the Leidenfrost effect.[7]

Emily Weinstein of The New York Times wrote that "the recipes are sophisticated in their grasp of how ingredients and techniques work" but noted that "it is Mr. López-Alt’s original, living body of work online that to many may seem like his even greater achievement".[3] Eric Vellend of The Globe and Mail wrote that "Lopez-Alt's relentless pursuit of perfection yields hundreds of unconventional kitchen tricks".[5] Silvia Killingsworth wrote in The New Yorker that The Food Lab resembles a "hybrid reference text" more than a cookbook, and that "Kenji’s appeal is that he channels the shameless geekery of hobbyists everywhere into inexpensive, everyday foods".[7] Penny Pleasance of the New York Journal of Books called The Food Lab "a seminal work that is encyclopedic in scope and can be used as a reference by even the most experienced home cooks".[8]

References edit

  1. ^ a b "IACP Cookbook Awards Winners" (PDF). International Association of Culinary Professionals. 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on June 16, 2016. Retrieved July 3, 2016.
  2. ^ a b "The 2016 Book, Broadcast and Journalism Awards: Complete Winner Recap". James Beard Foundation. April 26, 2016. Retrieved July 3, 2016.
  3. ^ a b c d Weinstein, Emily (September 29, 2015). "In 'The Food Lab,' the Science of Home Cooking". The New York Times. Retrieved July 3, 2016.
  4. ^ a b c Lopez-Alt, J. Kenji (September 21, 2015). "The Food Lab: The Book Has Arrived". Serious Eats. Retrieved July 3, 2016.
  5. ^ a b Vellend, Eric (March 15, 2016). "J. Kenji Lopez-Alt's Food Lab studies the science behind good home cooking". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved July 3, 2016.
  6. ^ "Advice, How-To & Miscellaneous". The New York Times. December 20, 2015. Retrieved July 3, 2016.
  7. ^ a b c Killingsworth, Silvia (October 3, 2015). "Kenji López-Alt's Obsessive Kitchen Experiments". The New Yorker. Retrieved July 3, 2016.
  8. ^ Pleasance, Penny (2015). "The Food Lab: Better Home Cooking Through Science". New York Journal of Books. Retrieved July 3, 2016.

General references