I’ll be highlighting books that I am reading (or re-reading) on all sorts of topics this year — Douglas
Reading – Bread Is Gold by Massimo Bottura – 8 in a series
Food waste is a huge issue in today’s world. Millions of people go hungry every day and yet thousands of tons of food goes into trash heaps at the same time. World famous chef, Massimo Bottura had a unique idea of how to address this issue and chose the Milan Expo of 2015 to create The Refettorio Ambrosiano. During the 6 months of the Expo, other famous chefs would cook lunch and dinner for school kids and the homeless using mainly the supplies donated to them from other events and restaurants in the city. Chefs didn’t know what supplies they might have available until they arrived and then strove to create something useful, simple and yet, special for those meals.
For me, I am often intimated by chef-level food in the real world. I have understand why people are attracted to the new, the special, the dangerous, but I prefer more down-to-earth fare. This is exactly what these chefs created during their meals. Sure, they dressed up the dishes, but at their heart these dishes were about constraints, simplicity and food as love. It is mainly the constraints that seem to drive the chefs to a higher level, as with many artistic forms. Having too much, too many, too special anything often leads us to be lazy and superficial in our art. Cooking (and painting writing and drawing) within constraints forces us to be creative, more thoughtful and more unique than we might think possible.
There are a host of amazing recipes here and just as many ideas on how to use kitchen scraps, leftovers, slightly damaged or out of date fruit and vegetables — just like what you might find in your own home. I know that there are nights when our own dinner is driven by what needs to be used or finished or saved so it doesn’t end up in the trash or the compost pile. I will need to check out his book from the library again so I can go back and collect all the recipes I want to try. There were simply too many to absorb on first reading. Along with the recipes are the excellent essays of each chef’s experience in the kitchen, what they made and how they made it.
** My version of this book was available as an eBook from the Los Angeles Public Library
Massimo Bottura, the world’s best chef, prepares extraordinary meals from ordinary and sometimes ‘wasted’ ingredients inspiring home chefs to eat well while living well.
‘These dishes could change the way we feed the world, because they can be cooked by anyone, anywhere, on any budget. To feed the planet, first you have to fight the waste’, Massimo Bottura
Bread is Gold is the first book to take a holistic look at the subject of food waste, presenting recipes for three-course meals from 45 of the world’s top chefs, including Daniel Humm, Mario Batali, René Redzepi, Alain Ducasse, Joan Roca, Enrique Olvera, Ferran & Albert Adrià and Virgilio Martínez. These recipes, which number more than 150, turn everyday ingredients into inspiring dishes that are delicious, economical, and easy to make.
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** Many of these books may be available from your local library.
Check it out! † Available from the LA Public Library
Previously in (Re)Reading:
- Mozart’s Starling by Lyanda Lynn Haupt
- Milk Street: The New Home Cooking by Christopher Kimble
- The Wildcrafted Cocktail: Make Your Own Foraged Syrups, Bitters, Infusions, and Garnishes by Ellen Zacho
- 3-Ingredient Cocktails: An Opinionated Guide to the Most Enduring Drinks in the Cocktail Canon by Robert Simonson
- Chemistry: A Novel by Weike Wong
- Back Pocket Pasta by Colu Henry
- Steal like an artist 10 things nobody told you about being creative by Austin Kleon