Long considered an important mainstay of the human diet, bread is rich in history, and, although bread is created from very basic ingredients, the craft requires attentive skills and complex techniques. In the tradition of Modernist Cuisine, this multivolume book will detail bread’s origins and evolution, honoring the work of great bakers who have influenced the diversity of bread throughout the world. Using a scientific, fact-based approach, this project will include a comprehensive discussion of ingredients, food safety, baking techniques, equipment, and Modernist approaches to bread. The team is creating a book that will add to existing knowledge so that home, restaurant, and professional bakers alike can learn new techniques and recipes.
The hope is that this project will be a collaborative effort with contributions from expert bakers, just as Modernist Cuisine featured recipes from leading chefs around the world. At this stage, the Modernist Cuisine team is researching and learning as much as possible by meeting with scientists, bakers, millers, and farmers who have invaluable expertise and knowledge about bread. As Myhrvold notes,“We have learned immensely from the experts we have met, but there are also people doing amazing things who we have not yet met. We hope that news of the book will help us connect with those people.”
The Modernist Cuisine team has grown as a reflection of this project. Award-winning chef and cookbook author Francisco Migoya has joined the team as head chef to oversee research, recipe development, and the culinary team. Migoya was most recently a senior instructor at The Culinary Institute of America and has led the pastry department at award winning restaurants such as The French Laundry in Napa Valley, California. He is a pastry innovator who has won widespread acclaim as one of the “Top Ten Chocolatiers in America” (2013) by Dessert Professional and one of the “Best Pastry Chefs of 2013” by Tasting Table. On why Migoya joined the team,“It is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to work with Nathan to create an in-depth book like Modernist Cuisine. I look forward to teaching people intimidated by bread baking that making great bread from scratch is doable and to push the boundaries on what’s possible. Bread is primed and ready for innovation.”
Peter Reinhart has also joined the Modernist Cuisine team to lend his considerable bread expertise. Reinhart has written nine books and has been a recognized leader in baking for over 25 years. The recipient of four James Beard Foundation awards, Reinhart is adept at explaining the science of baking in an approachable way and educating bakers on emerging trends. “Modernist Cuisine’s approach to food embodies a deep understanding in both the science and craft of cooking, which excites me,” Reinhart remarks. “There is a lot of tradition in bread baking. When you start asking questions about why we do things certain ways, and learn about each component in the baking process, then you are able to truly understand bread and forge into new territory.”
Additional hires to Modernist Cuisine team include Stephanie Swane as publisher and Maggie Wheeler as senior editor; both women assume newly created positions. The cookbook has no set publication date. Baking professionals interested in contributing should contact the team at firstname.lastname@example.org . Updates will be posted on modernistcuisine.com.
About Modernist Cuisine
The Modernist Cuisine team is an interdisciplinary group in Bellevue, Washington, founded by Nathan Myhrvold. The team comprises scientists, research and development chefs, a full editorial and photography department, and business and marketing staff—all dedicated to advancing the science of the culinary arts through creativity and experimentation.
They have published Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking (2011), Modernist Cuisine at Home (2012), and The Photography of Modernist Cuisine (2013), and produced The Photography of Modernist Cuisine: The Exhibition, which is currently traveling around the world.
The Cooking Lab, Modernist Cuisine`s in-house publishing division, published all three books. In addition to publishing, The Cooking Lab provides consulting, R&D, and invention services to food companies and culinary equipment makers, both large and small. Their research laboratory, operated by Intellectual Ventures, provides one of the best-equipped kitchens in the world and includes access to a full set of machining, analytical, and computational facilities. They also develop products to advance the culinary arts such as spherification kits, gel kits, and the Modernist Cuisine™ Special Edition Baking Steel.
About Nathan Myhrvold
Nathan Myhrvold is founder of The Cooking Lab, coauthor of Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking and Modernist Cuisine at Home, and author of The Photography of Modernist Cuisine. Former chief technology officer of Microsoft, Myhrvold assembled the Modernist Cuisine team after attending culinary school and finding a void in the information available about sous vide and the science of cooking. He routinely pushes the boundaries of culinary science as a chef, scientist, photographer, and writer. In addition to leading the Modernist Cuisine team, Myhrvold is CEO and founder of Intellectual Ventures as well as an avid inventor and prolific author in the fields of technology, paleontology, climatology, energy, bioterrorism, and more.
About Francisco Migoya
Francisco Migoya leads Modernist Cuisine’s culinary team as head chef. An innovative pastry chef, his most recent book, The Elements of Dessert (John Wiley & Sons, 2012), won a 2014 International Association of Culinary Professional cookbook award in the “Professional Kitchens” category. He received additional recognition from Gremi de Pastisseria de Barcelona, who awarded him Medal of Master Artisan Pastry Chef (2013). Migoya is the owner of Hudson Chocolates, and his experience includes working at both The French Laundry and Bouchon Bakery as executive pastry chef. Prior to joining the Modernist Cuisine team, Migoya was a professor at The Culinary Institute of America, where his areas of instruction included bread, viennoiserie, pastry, and culinary science.
About Peter Reinhart
Master bread baker Peter Reinhart will contribute subject-matter expertise to the book. One of his own books, The Bread Baker’s Apprentice (Ten Speed Press, 2001), won “Cookbook of the Year” awards in 2002 from both International Association of Culinary Professionals and the esteemed James Beard Foundation. His upcoming book, Bread Revolution (Ten Speed Press), is scheduled for release in October, 2014. Reinhart is currently a chef on assignment at Johnson & Wales University, where he teaches courses on baking and the juncture of food and culture.
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