Discover How You Can Contribute to Modernist Pizza

We’ve been hard at work for the last year learning everything we can about the art, science, and history of pizza. Now we want to hear from you. Today we launched an online research contributions portal that we hope will encourage you to join in on our research process. Whether you love diving deep into research as much as you love Chicago-style deep-dish pizza, have decades of pizzaiolo wisdom, or are a bibliophile with a love of old cookbooks, we hope to connect with you. By visiting this new page on our website, you will be able to see some of the current research topics we’re investigating and discover how you can contribute to Modernist Pizza. Your knowledge, research skills, obscure collections—even your old photos—could help us tell the story of pizza and even land you a copy of our upcoming book.

Nathan and the team are excited about connecting with new people who, like us, are passionate and curious about food. “At Modernist Cuisine, we’re known for doing in-depth work. We’ve been working on Modernist Pizza for a year. Now we want to tap the power of the internet to meet people who collectively know something that we don’t about pizza,” Nathan remarked when asked about the new knowledge-sharing portal. “Library research by members of our team has already turned up important information about pizza, but there are many people who speak languages that we don’t or who have incredible first-hand knowledge to share. I think connecting with these people is a cool way to write the history of pizza.”

Before submitting information through our portal, please carefully review the guidelines for each topic. Participants whose submissions are selected may receive copies of the 2019 Modernist Pizza wall calendar, The Photography of Modernist Cuisine, or Modernist Pizza, or even be listed as a contributor in Modernist Pizza to acknowledge your help. Submissions that meet the criteria will be evaluated by our team for quality, uniqueness, historical significance, and editorial interest. It’s possible that some selected submissions for research topics will be posted periodically so that you can see some of the most interesting submissions we’ve received so far. We also welcome questions about each topic in the comments sections.

Click here to visit our research contributions portal. We look forward to hearing from you!

Modernist Bread preorders begin today!

Last spring we revealed news about the scope and size of our upcoming book, Modernist Bread. With five full volumes and a kitchen manual, this enormous tome will be almost the exact size (and weight) of Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking. We were thrilled by the tremendous response we received. We heard from many of you, and the top question was “When can I order the book?” The answer is: now.

Modernist Bread: The Art and Science Book Trailer from Modernist Cuisine on Vimeo.

Beginning today, you can preorder Modernist Bread on through Amazon.com, Barnesandnoble.com, Phaidon.com, Amazon.ca, Amazon.co.uk, Bol.com, and Booktopia.com.au. You can also order the book through local bookstores that work with Ingram Content Group.

Like our first book, Modernist Bread retails for $625.00 USD and spans more than 2,300 pages. It’s time to clear space on your bookshelves, stock up on flour, and practice team-lifting the delivery box with a friend or loved one—we anticipate that Modernist Bread will arrive in May 2017 with our first foreign language editions in the queue for 2018.

We know that some of you have been following the progress of this project for some time, so we wanted to celebrate the countdown with a taste of what you will discover this May. To mark the arrival of the next bread revolution, we have created a companion 2017 wall calendar that features 14 of Modernist Bread’s most intriguing photos, which, we hope, will inspire you with the hidden beauty of bread. And now when you preorder Modernist Bread on Amazon.com US, you will receive the calendar for free while supplies last—it’s a tongue-in-cheek way to thank you for waiting so patiently.

While the Modernist Bread calendar offers a sneak peek of our newest photographs, we’re celebrating the outset of our photographic journey with the 2017 Modernist Cuisine calendar, a collection of the bold images that started it all. A snapshot of our readers’ favorite photos, it takes the book’s most captivating images off the pages, placing them onto your wall. In addition, when you purchase the Modernist Cuisine tome, you will receive the companion calendar for free, while supplies last.

Both 12-month calendars include the story behind each photo, as well as listing holidays and foodie celebrations in the United States and Canada. Retailing for $14.95, the calendars will ship in October so that you’ll have them before the winter holidays.

This isn’t the only news we have to share—read on for more details about Modernist Bread including a preview of the volumes, the new publication date and website, and what our team has been up to since our last post.

More pages, recipes, and answers to discover

Initially we thought that Modernist Bread was going to be a smaller book . . .

The process of transforming wheat into flour and then flour into bread is scientific, technological, artistic, and fairly magical. The appearance of a steak changes when you grill it, but it still resembles its raw form. Bread, however, looks nothing like the raw ingredients that went into it. Naturally, we had a lot of questions when we started this book. As we learned more, our discoveries inspired new questions, techniques, and recipes. Bread is even more complex and intriguing than we could have imagined—and so our book has grown. Thankfully, we aren’t known for making small books.

For Modernist Bread, that means telling the complete story of bread in a way that has never been done before. Since our last post in April, we have performed more than 100 additional experiments, created more than 200 recipes, and taken hundreds of photos. In all, we’ve added over 300 pages to the book. We continue to find more historical texts and freshly published studies by scientists who study bread, grains, and nutrition. We don’t want to leave out these incredible insights or the ideas that they have inspired, so we gave ourselves more time to make the book we want to make.

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Although Modernist Bread will now be arriving on shelves in May 2017—later than we originally anticipated—it will be gorgeously illustrated, including modern scientific research and rigorously tested techniques and recipes. We have collaborated and consulted with 75 industry leaders around the world, including historians Jim Chevallier and Steven Kaplan, grain experts Steven Jones and Maria Speck, and bakers Ken Forkish, Richard Miscovich, Peter Reinhart, and Didier Rosada. During book production we continue to seek new answers, updating and improving the manuscript until the files need to fly off to the printer.

For now, we’re excited to share how the book will be organized. Like Modernist Cuisine, the first volume covers bread history, health, and the fundamentals of science. But that’s where the similarities end. The chapters in volume two provide a detailed look at the components of bread—from the grains that become flour to ingredients that have Modernist applications—followed by the third volume, a guidebook to the techniques of bread making. The final volumes are devoted to our recipes (as we said, we’ve developed quite a collection). These chapters span classic breads and Modernist interpretations, as well as recipes for pretzels, bao, flatbreads, and avant-garde loaves. And, of course, a book about bread would not be complete without all the wonderful condiments we love to smear and pile on bread. You can expect a new look for the casing of Modernist Bread too—the set will be housed in a sleek stainless steel case instead of clear acrylic. We’re looking forward to revealing the final design of the case and all of our potential covers in the coming year.

New challenges and surprises— our photographic journey continues

Photography is an incredibly important element for all our titles. It shows the story of food. With Modernist Cuisine, our photography team faced the challenge of showing ingredients and the science of cooking from a new, intriguing perspective. Taking inspiration from the Modernist culinary movement, we developed and adapted techniques not normally used in food photography—the result is a distinctive visual style that celebrates the power of food.

For Modernist Bread, our photography team has faced a new set of challenges. With a single-subject book of this magnitude, we’re figuring out how to show bread making from different perspectives—our illustrations need to be fresh and engaging through the very last page. As a result, our photographic style has evolved. We’ve improved many of our original techniques thanks to modern technologies and better tools, and our team has discovered creative ways to illustrate the story of bread. With more than 3,000 photos, you will be able to peer inside of a toaster to understand how it works, and you’ll also see the history and science of bread come alive in ways that will surprise you.

In addition to creating a striking book, we also want our illustrations to provide practical value. We recognize that one of the barriers to learning about bread is a lack of useful photography. Bakers, for example, rely on visual and tactile cues throughout the bread-making process, but these cues can be difficult to summarize in words alone or to accurately depict in pictures. Each week, our photography, editorial, and culinary teams work together to make sure those important details are captured in our step-by-step photos.

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Ultimately, we hope that our photography allows readers to see food as we do—as a beautiful source of inspiration, wonder, and imagination. That’s exactly why we decided to create our 2017 Modernist Cuisine and Modernist Bread calendars. Each month features striking images that bring complex phenomena to life, illuminating the hidden beauty of simple ingredients and capturing a magical view of cooking or baking.

Learn how to redeem our special bundle offer

We don’t want you to miss out on the opportunity to take advantage of the special bundles we’ve created for Modernist Bread and Modernist Cuisine on Amazon.com, which is why we want to make sure you have all of the details before you order either of the books.

Each Amazon coupon is good for a $15 savings—the value of the calendars—on the price of either book. Although this is a bundled offer, each item ships separately, when it is available. This means that you don’t have to wait until May to receive your Modernist Bread calendar—it will ship as soon as they are in stock in October. When you are ready to preorder Modernist Bread or purchase Modernist Cuisine, visit the Amazon product pages for the companion calendars first. The coupon is linked to the calendars—it will become available for you to use towards the book after you purchase your calendar.

Redeeming the Amazon coupons takes a few steps, so we’ve put together instructions to help walk you through the process. You can watch the video below or read through the steps just below it to find out how the special Amazon.com coupon works.

 

  1. Purchase your Modernist Bread or Modernist Cuisine wall calendar.
  2. The coupon for a $15 savings will become available after the transaction is complete. You won’t immediately see the coupon– it will be waiting for you when you’re ready to order your book.
  3. Go to the Modernist Bread or Modernist Cuisine landing page.
  4. Add the book to your cart. The coupon will automatically appear under the price of the book when you view your shopping cart or on your Amazon coupon homepage.
  5. Click or tap on the “Clip Coupon” button. This will apply the coupon discount to the book.
  6. Proceed to checkout. The coupon savings will appear on the final order page under the ‘Place your Order’ button.

If you have any questions about Amazon coupons or experience any technical issues as you go through this process, please reach out to the Amazon team here or via phone at 1-888-280-3321 or 1-206-266-2992 for international customers. They will be more than happy to help.

A book (and new website) for any baker 

Our goals for Modernist Bread may seem audacious, but in the end, they all come down to a single objective. This book is a call to arms for any baker to embrace the possibilities of invention and follow inspiration to make breads in your own way.

The future of bread is already under way on our new site, modernistbread.com. Starting today, you can visit us there to preview content from our book. Over time, we’ll populate the site with sneak peeks of the photographs, facts, techniques, and recipes in Modernist Bread.

Project developments are never-ending. Join our mailing list, check our blog, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for news and announcements.

The Art and Science of Bread

We are frequently asked what our next big project will be, and for almost a year we’ve alluded to “having something in the works.” In actuality, our culinary team has been working overtime baking and learning about bread. From crust to crumb, we are excited to finally reveal that our next book will be entirely devoted to the art and science of bread.

Why bread? Because it’s so ubiquitous that we now have vast, daunting selections of breads to choose from at most grocery chains. Many of us have started taking the bread course for granted when dining out. But bread shouldn’t be an afterthought on the table or simply a building block for sandwiches—breaking open a good loaf of bread, fresh from the oven, is an experience that can evoke nostalgia for years to follow. For many of us, however, baking bread at home is intimidating and shrouded in mystery. Unlike cooking, most breads are made by varying the amounts of four simple ingredients: flour, water, salt, and, of course, yeast. Yet the simplicity of these ingredients is complicated by the intricate science of the bread-baking process and by the fact that bakers must contend with an ingredient that is alive and sensitive to its environment.

With thousands of years of wisdom that inform techniques still used today, the art of baking bread is steeped in tradition. As such, we are researching bread’s rich past and studying the science therein. We have been fortunate to meet a number of talented bakers and chefs who are sharing their expertise and knowledge with us, and we remain on the lookout for new experts and resources.

This project comes with another exciting announcement as we welcome to our team Francisco Migoya as head chef and Peter Reinhart as assignments editor. We are incredibly lucky to have recruited two individuals whose contributions to pastry and baking have already set the bar high.

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Under the leadership of head chef Migoya, our bread program has blossomed in a relatively short time. His passion has led him to push the boundaries of pastry arts in savory, pastry, viennoiserie, and bread. Chef Migoya pairs sublime flavors with Modernist techniques to create exquisite, avant-garde pastries and chocolates that are almost too stunning to eat. Having worked as executive pastry chef at The French Laundry, and most recently as a professor at The Culinary Institute of America, his work has earned him recognition as one of the top pastry chefs in the country by both the Huffington Post and Dessert Professional, and he has been imparted Medal of Master Artisan Pastry Chef by Gremi de Pastisseria de Barcelona. Chef Migoya has authored three pastry books, winning a 2014 award for The Elements of Dessert from International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP).

Peter Reinhart Photo Credit Ron Manville

One of the leading authorities on bread, Peter Reinhart will lend his extensive expertise to this project. As a full-time chef on assignment at Johnson & Wales University, Peter teaches courses on baking and the juncture of food and culture. A best-selling author of nine books, his approachable methodologies and techniques have been embraced by home bakers and earned him numerous awards, including Book of the Year (2002) for The Bread Baker’s Apprentice from both IACP and the James Beard Foundation. Additionally, he won James Beard Foundation awards for Peter Reinhart’s Whole Grain Breads (2008) and Crust and Crumb (1997), with a nomination for Peter Reinhart’s Artisan Breads Every Day. His newest book, Bread Revolution, will be released in the fall of 2014.

Our hope for this project is that, by revealing the history, science, and techniques of baking bread, we will create an in-depth multivolume set of books that will be useful and accessible to amateur home bakers, passionate bread enthusiasts, restaurants, and small-scale bakeries alike. But because we are in the beginning stages of this book, we do not know how many volumes it will be or when it will go on sale. There is a lot for us to decide, but we will stay true to the approaches used for Modernist Cuisine, so readers can expect the same level of rigor and detail in our writing, illustrations, and photography as we attempt to showcase bread in a new light.

If you have a burning question about this project, or would like to contribute your expertise, we would love to hear from you. Please contact breadcontributions@modernistcuisine.com.

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