I got this bad boy as a belated Christmas present from my big brother (see here why it was late), but I can confidently proclaim: it was well worth the wait.
This weighty tome from Jeff Potter looks like a text book, but dear lord, if all my text books were this readable, I would have read them all cover to cover by now.
Cooking For Geeks is made up of some science, some “hacks”, some interviews, and tonnes of little nuggets of fascinating facts.
Maybe you’ll love it for the recipes (whilst I haven’t yet tried any, they all sound amazing). Maybe you’ll love it for the miracle berries, or many of the other weird and wonderful additives (which sound AMAZING and I must experiment). Maybe you’ll love it for the stupidly dangerous over-clocked oven (pizza cooked in 45 seconds, anyone?).
If you’re me, you’ll surprise yourself by finding the section on pathogens the most interesting.
The only annoying thing is probably the fact that this book is written by an American, for Americans. Broiling? Seriously? It’s a grill. Also, the references to the FSA make you wonder about our own, British food standards. Must…do further research…
But the problems presented by that fact are minimal. Far too small a problem to detract from the pure joy that is getting immersed into the strange and wonderful world of geeky cooking. Yay!
There is also a Cooking For Geeks website to accompany the book. Double win.
Remember when I made that giant bread-based monstrosity? Yeeess…. I had a lot of bread innards left over.
Well, I did what I promised – I chucked them in a blender, and made fresh breadcrumbs. And then, looking in the cupboard, I spied a tin of crab meat. Oh ho! I said – crabcakes!
A recent trip to Sainsbury’s and a strange craving meant that I also had a jar of capers in the fridge – adds a nice tang to crabcakes. So here we go -
You will need:
- One tin of white crab meat (approx. 120-140g)
- 75g white breadcrumbs
- A dozen or so capers, roughly chopped
- 4/5 spring onions, finely sliced
- A tablespoon of mayo
- One medium egg, beaten
- A splash of lemon juice
- Half a teaspoon of chilli powder (or more, if you’re “well ‘ard”)
- Oil for frying – you choose
- This is fairly straight-forward – mix everything (except the oil, obv.) in a bowl. You can add other stuff if you fancy – garlic, lemongrass paste, grated ginger – be imaginative.
- Heat a splash of oil in a pan.
- Form the crabcake mix into small balls – I managed to get 10 out of this recipe, but you could do 8, slightly larger balls.
- Pop them in the pan and push them down slightly with the back of a spoon/spatula, to make them into cakes.
- Fry them over a medium-high heat for about 5-10 mins each side – you’ll have to use your intuition for this. They should be golden brown, but a couple of mine were more on the crispy/black side. Still nommy though.
- Serve on a bed of salad, and drizzle with your sauce of choice. Personally, I only had plain lettuce and ketchup. C’est la vie. They were awesome.