Mastering the Art of Japanese Home Cooking

Masaharu Morimoto, with J.J. Goode. Ecco, $45 (304p) ISBN 978-0-06-234438-0
Morimoto, perhaps better known as Iron Chef Morimoto, brings his experience from competing in Kitchen Stadium and overseeing a group of international restaurants to this collection of 68 recipes geared toward family meals. More importantly, he brings an approach that demystifies Japanese cuisine. As he notes in the introduction, many dishes “might take years of training to produce at the highest level, but they require only a little know-how to become tasty, satisfying dinners.” At times, he seems to be carrying a rice chip on his shoulder, accusing his Western friends of underappreciating soup and claiming that the Japanese have undeniable gastronomic superiority over French and Chinese cuisine, but it’s hard to argue that he’s wrong, given the flavorful dishes he creates with relatively simple ingredients. The basic fish and kelp stock called dashi plays a central role in a pork cutlet and egg rice bowl, Japanese-style beef stew, and chilled udon noodles with scallions and ginger. Soups, stir-fry, and noodles each have their own chapter and a section on the underappreciated art of simmering features fish simmered with sake, soy sauce, and sugar, as well as slow-cooked pork belly with beer-teriyaki glaze. The 177 color photos range from utilitarian instruction on flipping a Japanese omelet to an artistic interpretation of rice grains clustered in the hand of the chef. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 10/03/2016
Release date: 11/01/2016
Ebook - 288 pages - 978-0-06-234439-7
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