The final entry is The Flavor Bible: The Essential Guide to Culinary Creativity Based on the Wisdom of America’s Most Imaginative Chefs by Andrew Dornenberg and Karen Page.
In interviews with home cooks, one thing became a common refrain when it came to that moment of standing in front of the fridge, trying to figure out dinner, or the farmer’s market shopper who purchases beautiful golden beets without a vague idea on how to prepare them. The Flavor Bible offers an alphabetical index of flavors and ingredients, with a cross-index of complimentary combinations. (More than 30 pair with bleu cheese, more than 75 with garlic). Many are classics such as nutmeg with cream or figs with that bleu cheese or tomatoes and mozzarella, while others strike a more contemporary chord.
This book includes no recipes. Instead, it’s meant as a reference for those who are comfortable or curious enough in their kitchen to
explore cooking through flavors rather than following strict recipes. Combined with Ratio and How to Cook Without a Book, this title offers a third, critical point in the development of any cook. At the end of the day, technique plus appreciation of what tastes good is essentially what trained chefs learn in culinary school.
Why It’s Important: M.F. K. Fisher once noted that she felt that Americans were “taste blind,” that they focused more
on the quantity of food, rather than the flavor of it. In our modern life, we’re often more focused on cost, rather than the taste of the food we buy. When you start to focus on flavor, it starts to change the way you perceive what you’re eating. Exploring more flavor combination can open your eyes to a whole new world of food.