There are cooking books for cooks and then there are historical recipes re-interpreted and prepared to the highest standards, and it takes a meticulous person who has a clock turning his rotisserie to go this far.
Now think about that, it is something most would never have heard of and for a good reason. The idea of varying sizes of mechanical wheels using gravity’s pull and momentum to turn a rotisserie continually.
The idea of land purchases and the decline of the cultivation when peasants lands were lessened by government land purchases in the 16-18th centuries. And the idea of substandard English chefs whose establishment turned to the employing French chefs. Somehow things haven’t changed so much, and you’ll still find in Italy the savory and sweet umami tomatoes, or in France the marvellous provencal delicacies.
I am a little off topic, the fact is looking back we realize the importance of all cultures and their contributions to how we think and taste and enjoy ourselves in exploring foods. The single most important element is trying to find the balance between tradition and innovation something we refer often to as fusion.
While I know Heston has a different view on the importance of questioning all things, its his logo as you see below “question everything” and while I agree there are some things when we question them the obvious answer is not readily available. For example: Cappuccino is consumed before noon and while we argue it can be consumed anytime it may be true, but there is often a good reason for everything.
Or when passing the salt, you place it on the table and some argue the custom has to do with the belief that two people handling the same salt shaker will quarrel, not immediately but eventually over the possession of the salt. Some will tell you salt was almost sacred and one of the rarest guarded commodities so you place it on the table and not into the neighbours hands, should it drop.
Heston’s book is a series of recipes from 1390-1892 and it is genius when a chef delves so far into history and develops new recipes using sous vide, gels, kabosu jelly, etc. The end result is quite incredible and for those who have not tried his meat fruit, it looks outstanding and shows the meticulous nature of how a chef achieves the highest standards in and around the culinary scene using inventive techniques.