Creative Commons

Favorite dishes made easier and more delicious

Imagine a restaurant with a menu of items like beer-and-pretzel noodles, confit egg yolk, onion "glass" and pickled chorizo. As far as we're concerned, such unique offerings warrant making a quick reservation.

Sadly, no such restaurant exists, but the creative minds behind this culinary whimsy do: The dishes are from the blog-turned-cookbook Ideas in Food, by chef-consultant power couple H. Alexander Talbot and Aki Kamozawa.

The blog, full of eureka-inducing ideas, is an ode to kitchen creativity. And the book goes further, taking the lessons that have informed creations like blood-sausage cavatelli noodles and applying them to everyday recipes as well.

The dog-eared text secured its berth among our primary cookbooks on the merit of its seven-minute risotto alone; upon finding secrets for consistently perfect pudding (tapioca flour) and richer mac and cheese using canned milk (click here to download the recipe), we were ready to build it a small shrine.

But perhaps the most shocking feat is not an edible one: The book enshrouds otherwise dry and scientific explanations of cooking–a genre that generally collects dust on our highest shelves–with warm, practical and exciting calls to get in the kitchen.