Culinary Artistry within a Chef is a form of creativity and expression, especially as you define your cuisine. The direction you decide to take with your personal style usually relies on your background, education and experiences. Foodies and authors alike have similarly compared culinary artistry to live theatre or structural architecture.
The Co- Authors; Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page, provide food and flavour pairings as a kind of steppingstone for the recipe dependent cook. Their hope is that once you know the scales, you will be able to compose a symphony.
The Chef as an artist has much knowledge of ingredients- from seasonality to recognizing ingredients at their peak to successful flavour marriages. This knowledge allows them to cook with incredible layers and extraordinary depth. This eventually creates a buzz patrons want to experience.
My most prized section of this book is the Food and Seasoning Matches Made in Heaven section. This section is about 100 pages or 25% of the book, detailing ingredient matches in alphabetical order by protein, vegetable and seasoning, even cooking method. Its crazy the amount of time I have spent thumbing through these pages.
Reading further into additional chapters; Composing a Dish and Composing a Menu, you really get a sense of becoming a Chef and get inspired to create your own culinary art in your dishes on your menu.
I always recommend this book to non-chefs, ones that have a good balance of skill and technique and who are ready to distance themselves from recipes. This book allows you to bridge the gap from a practiced recipe to your creative food imagination.
Author: Chef Lyle Kennedy