FAQs

Modernist Cuisine
at Home

About the Book

What is Modernist Cuisine at Home?

Modernist Cuisine at Home is the lavishly illustrated cookbook for home cooks created by Nathan Myhrvold and Maxime Bilet. The authors have collected in this 456-page volume all the essential information that any cook needs to stock a modern kitchen, to master Modernist techniques, and to make hundreds of stunning recipes. The book includes a 230-page waterproof Kitchen Manual that reproduces every recipe in a separate, portable companion. Drawing on the same commitment to perfection that produced Modernist CuisineModernist Cuisine at Home applies innovations pioneered by The Cooking Lab to refine classic home dishes, from hamburgers and wings to macaroni and cheese. More than 400 new recipes are included, most with step-by-step photos that make it easy to bring dining of the highest quality to your own dinner table.


Is the Modernist Cuisine at Home content just taken from Modernist Cuisine? What about the recipes?

You will find a few Modernist Cuisine dishes that have been adapted for home cooks, such as the iconic Striped Omelet, Caramelized Carrot Soup, Roast Chicken, and Modernist Hamburger Patty. However, the vast majority of Modernist Cuisine at Home is all new content and original recipes, designed specifically to empower cooks of all skill levels.


How is Modernist Cuisine at Home different from Modernist Cuisine? How is it the same?

The recipes and techniques presented in Modernist Cuisine at Home are all within reach of home cooks. Some recipes do call for specialized equipment, but none require anything that you can’t find at a cooking store. The book also provides suggestions for ways to improvise the cooking equipment that you don’t already have. For example, we offer several variations on ways to rig your own sous vide temperature-controlled water bath if you don’t have one handy. Although we look forward to the day when centrifuges and rotor-stator homogenizers are common household items, you’ll be able to cook most of the recipes in Modernist Cuisine at Home with the kitchen gear you already own.

Even though the dishes in Modernist Cuisine at Home will be familiar to any home cook, our culinary team developed the recipes with the same scientific rigor and Modernist philosophy that has made Modernist Cuisine so respected among the world’s top chefs. We believe that home cooks and professional chefs alike are curious about the fundamental changes that take place inside foods when they are cooked. In length it is 456 pages, which is about the size of volume 2 of Modernist Cuisine.


Does Modernist Cuisine at Home dumb down the scientific principles in Modernist Cuisine?

The principles behind Modernist Cuisine at Home are fundamentally aligned with Modernist Cuisineusing a scientific understanding of cooking processes to achieve the ultimate version of a recipeso we don’t think of the recipes in Modernist Cuisine at Home as being dumbed down. For instance, we could have dumbed down our Macaroni and Cheese recipe by calling for store-bought Velveeta. Instead, we teach you how to transform really great-tasting cheese so that it takes on the same melting properties of Velveeta. We think that’s actually pretty smart.

We specifically don’t call for the use of some hard-to-find hydrocolloids that we use in Modernist Cuisine, and none of our Modernist Cuisine at Home recipes require a centrifuge or a rotary evaporator, but that’s because we chose techniques that would not exclude home cooks based on the amount of money they can spend on exotic equipment, home kitchen space, or access to certain ingredients.


Since you left out some things like equipment, certain ingredients, and some techniques to make it easier for home cooks, does this mean that you admit that Modernist Cuisine is only for professional chefs, not home cooks?

We still strongly believe that home chefs can make most of the recipes found in Modernist Cuisine. What we wanted to do with Modernist Cuisine at Home, however, was to appeal to a wider audience who might be leery of using something like liquid nitrogen at home (though we think it’s perfectly safe when handled properly!). We also wanted to demonstrate that you can apply Modernist techniques and principles to common American home-cooked food like chicken wings and cream pie.


Why did you write Modernist Cuisine at Home so quickly after the first book?

After we released Modernist Cuisine, we discovered that there was a big community of home cooks who are passionate about Modernist cooking and will go to great lengths to achieve the techniques in Modernist Cuisine using improvised equipment and modifying the recipes to substitute some of the really hard-to-find ingredients. We thought these folks were onto something, so we wrote a book largely in that spirit.


Purchasing

Where can I buy it?

You can find online booksellers who carry the Modernist Cuisine at Home on our Buy page, and it is now available in French, German, and Spanish.


What international versions of MCAH are available?

There are currently translations in French, German, and Spanish, and we will continue to translate Modernist Cuisine at Home for more international audiences in the near future. You can find international editions here.


Registering Modernist Cuisine at Home

How do I register my books?

To register your books, use a smartphone to scan the QR code, which is located on the inside back covers. If you don’t already have a QR reader on your phone, we recommend ScanLife, which is free and available for Windows, Android, iPhone, and Blackberry. Once you’ve scanned the QR code, you’ll be taken directly to our site and prompted to log in. Then enter the scratch-off verification code located just below the QR barcode in your book.

Creating an account before you register your book will streamline the process, making it easier to log in after scanning the QR code.


How do I know if my registration worked?

Registered members will have an icon of the book in front of their name. If you experience issues with registration, please contact info@modernistcuisine.com.


How do I register my books if I don’t have a smartphone or tablet?

We understand that not everyone has one of these devices. Our registration will not link to a specific phone or e-mail device, so borrowing a tablet or smartphone from a friend or family member will work.

You can also register your books without a smartphone or tablet. Take a picture of your QR code with a digital camera and upload the picture to your computer. There are a number of online barcode decoders, like ZXing or QR Generator, which use uploaded pictures of codes to direct you to landing pages. Using one of these sites, upload your QR code photo to be directed to our registration page. Complete the registration process by entering the scratch-off number beneath the QR code in your book.


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