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The Science of Cooking [Hardcover]

By Peter Barham (Author)
Our Price $ 34.99  
Retail Value $ 49.99  
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Item Number 226316  
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Item description for The Science of Cooking by Peter Barham...

Food preparation and cooking involves many processes which are well described by physical sciences. For those who wish to learn the chemistry and physics of cooking and why some recipes work and others fail, this science book helps unravel the mysteries of the art of good cooking.

Publishers Description
Many people cook, but few understand how recipes work, or why they fai l. This book will provide, in simple, direct terms explanations of the science that lies behind all cookery.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   244
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.5" Width: 6.25" Height: 9.5"
Weight:   1.35 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Jun 8, 2001
Publisher   Springer
Edition  2001  
ISBN  3540674667  
ISBN13  9783540674665  

Availability  0 units.

More About Peter Barham

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! <div>Peter Barham is a psychologist and social historian of mental health. He has published widely on mental health issues.<br><br></div>

Peter Barham was born in 1950.

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Product Categories

1Books > Special Features > New & Used Textbooks > Sciences > Chemistry
2Books > Special Features > New & Used Textbooks > Sciences > Physics
3Books > Subjects > Cooking, Food & Wine > General
4Books > Subjects > Professional & Technical > Engineering > Chemical > Materials
5Books > Subjects > Professional & Technical > Professional Science > Chemistry > Chemistry
6Books > Subjects > Professional & Technical > Professional Science > Physics > General
7Books > Subjects > Science > Agricultural Sciences > Food Science
8Books > Subjects > Science > Chemistry > General & Reference
9Books > Subjects > Science > General
10Books > Subjects > Science > Physics > General

Reviews - What do customers think about The Science of Cooking?

Good Food Book  May 27, 2008
Good book, easy read and to follow. A good way to learn about the chemistry and the science of foods.
The Science of Cooking  Jan 1, 2008
A review for science teachers:

Peter Barnam's The Science of Cooking (Springer, 2000) is a classic, much quoted in New Scientist and The Science of Christmas. After a general introduction at about a year 9 chemistry level it quickly moves on to Maillard reactions (which develop the flavours in cooked meat), the formation of insoluble gluten (from the proteins gliadin and glutenin) when flour is hydrated and kneaded, and the role of fats and oils in carrying aromatics (or emulsifying finely ground cocoa to make chocolate).

Most of all I enjoyed this book for the experiments it suggested (adaptable to inquiry learning). For example: How could you prove fructose is sweeter than glucose? Easy: Use a control, such as an artificial sweetener. But not all people will give the same interpretation when faced with the sugars. How can we show that they are detecting the control in a consistent way? And so on...Secondly, the text is punctuated with anecdotes about demonstration lectures on the Physics of the Black Forest Gateau or Soufflé Chemistry can almost hear this born teacher, winner of the Institute of Physics Prize for Promoting the Public Awareness of Physics, script a unique lesson for your students.

This little recipe book promises a few mouthwatering improvements to my own kitchen alchemy, and comes highly recommended.
scientifically informative but far from complete in the cooking aspect  Jul 2, 2007
Pros: Scientifically informative and solid. Knowing the chemical and physical facts behind cooking methods applied to certain group of food would definitely help one to produce constantly good cooking result. And the text is very well written, _no_ part of this book is boring to read.

Cons: This book is focused on western cooking methods, many highly interesting cooking methods which are very popular, even dominating in East Asia are not even mentioned in this book. For example, there is a chapter for sauces but soup was hardly mentioned in this book, as if soup is not a kind of dishes. However the art/science of soup cooking is very important for many people. I, for one, really looked for information for soup cooking in this book but was disappointed. And, the author seems think any sauce has to be at least a bit thick (containing reasonable amount of starch). But this is not true in Asia countries. We have many kinds of really tasty sauces which are totally fluid, almost as light as water. These light sauces are not only tasty but also have really nice aroma, nice colours, contains very little energy and they attach onto the main food very well. In the fish chapter, he said salted/dried fishes are very difficult to regain the good texture and taste, and wrote up 2 pages about a Norwegian disaster of fish making. But in east China, people steam salted sea eels and the result is so, so delicious. He should really have tried it out himself. In this book, the science of vegetable cooking is not mentioned. Nevertheless I think vegetable cooking is very important and I really want to learn the science of vegetable cooking from the author, I like his writing so much! And, in this book all doughs are baked but there are many people (mostly from East Asia) who steam doughs and the results are excellent too. For beef steak cooking, many professional cooks saute/shallow fry every side of a 2-3cm thick steak first (every side one minute) and then put it into pre-heated oven for 5-7 minutes. This cooking method is not mentioned in this book and actually I did want to know the advantage of the post-fry oven handling of a beef steak.

I really hope there will be a second edition of this book. I seriously suggest the author travel to Hong Kong and try out reasonably many different kinds of food in non-western restaurants in Hong Kong. Especially the famous soups, all kinds of vegetable dishes and all kinds of steamed dough-based snacks....
behind the kitchen  Jan 26, 2007
This book will teach you the chemical secrets of the techniques that usually are used in gastronomy, from the basic concepts to most complex. Knowing the scientific basis of the culinary processes, Peter Barham describes kitchen recipes in detail, of this way, will not fail any more.
This book also has some very interesting experiments to do at home, and that will offer help to understand of more practical way, the physical-chemistries concepts that try to explain.
If you are interested in cooking, and science doesn't bore to you, read this book!  Mar 24, 2006
A little to heavy on the science for my liking!...but there are some useful theories for beginners!


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