Using tools such as homogenizers and centrifuges, working with a 20-person team, and producing a 6-volume book that exceeds 2,000 pages, it would seem as though Nathan Myhrvold, former chief technology officer at Microsoft, planned to publish a chemistry textbook when he set out on the 4-year journey that resulted in the "Modernist Cuisine." While the book addresses science as much as it does food, it's probably more likely to be found in David Chang's kitchen than on the bookshelves belonging to chemistry professors. Throughout the book, Nathan and his coauthors, Chris Young and Maxime Bilet cover sous vide cooking from front to back, offer a scientific look at grilling, share recipes from master chefs, and much much more (you can pretty much cover it all in 2,400 pages, right?).
So how does the former chief tecnology officer of one of the world's largest tech companies become a cookbook author? Well, he's always had an interest in food and even took a leave of absence while at Microsoft to attend culinary school in France. After retiring, he became increasingly interested in the techniques associated with modern cooking. So about four and a half years ago, he set out to write a book about modern cuisine that would discuss sous vide cooking, food safety rules, the science of heat traveling through food, etc. In his initial outline, he predicted the book would be about 600 pages. Despite his inaccurate prediction in page length, the book has finally been published and has been praised by many esteemed leaders in the culinary world. If you try to buy it on Amazon, you'll see it's already out of stock-- not bad for a former tech nerd turned culinary genius.
Nathan on the evolution of his 2,400-plus page book, "Modernist Cuisine:"
Nathan addresses the issue of food safety rules which are "as much about politics as they are about science" and addresses his unorthodox but tested method for perfecting roast chicken:
How to make the perfect 3-egg omelet: