Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

ShaneH

"Modernist Cuisine" by Myhrvold, Young & Bilet (Part 3)

Recommended Posts

There is a list of errors in the books up here. Quite a few recipe changes. I think I'm going to take a few hours some weekend and mark the changes with a pen in my copy.

Will these errors be corrected in the second printing?

From the blog post, it sounds like it.

As much as I understand that they couldn't possibly root out every error in the books, I'm taking this as further proof of my usual philosophy that it never pays to be an early adopter.

Thanks, mkayahara, I didn't think to read the blog. And respectfully, I am sorry but I think you are wrong about the early adopter thing. Having seen these books firsthand and knowing what is in them, the mistakes (most of them are so inconsequential) don't bother me at all. I would willingly wade through the text if it was written in Pig Latin if I had to. These books make me so HAPPY.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The first version of the errata and clarifications is up on the MC website: HERE--- The online version is searchable and has a page numbering index so you can scan to see if a page has a correction. We’ll update this list when­ever new goofs are spot­ted. It’s avail­able in PDF for­mat HERE, in case you want to print it out or have a handy search­able ver­sion on your com­puter. The PDF also has hyperlinks to pages. If you spot a mis­take in your copy that isn’t already men­tioned here, please send them to: Email here

Thanks,

MarkC


Art Director

Modernist Cuisine

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

. . . .

And respectfully, I am sorry but I think you are wrong about the early adopter thing. Having seen these books firsthand and knowing what is in them, the mistakes (most of them are so inconsequential) don't bother me at all. I would willingly wade through the text if it was written in Pig Latin if I had to. These books make me so HAPPY.

I could not agree more.


Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

...is anyone else kind of concerned that there's so many errors in the recipes in the kitchen manual? Could we perhaps have some clarification of which mistakes are a bigger deal than the rest and should definitely be noted when attempting said recipe?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hmm, it's certainly a lot more mistakes than I would have expected in this kind of work, especially in the recipes. I don't care about a misplaced comma or misspelled word, but wrong numbers in a recipe are really not good and I'm a bit dismayed by seeing so many errors here. Maybe it's a good thing I kept the box, maybe I'll buy a 2nd printing and sell the first printing to a collector :laugh:

Actually, it would be neat if we could at least somehow obtain a correct kitchen manual down the road, at this high price and with such involved cooking, a wrong number can cause complete failure of a potentially expensive and time consuming dish....

It is great they are on top of it and post errors online, but the idea to mark up my expensive books with pencil (and who knows what works on the kitchen manual pages) is extremely unappealing to me.

So far it seems that 112 errors are listed for the kitchen manual. I have not looked at all of them to see if they are real errors (g for mg, 3 for 5) or just grammar etc. It would be great if the real fatal to a dish errors could be highlighted somehow.


Edited by OliverB (log)

"And don't forget music - music in the kitchen is an essential ingredient!"

- Thomas Keller

Diablo Kitchen, my food blog

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Will these errors be corrected in the second printing?

Yes, 99% of the errors or clarifications on the errata page were corrected for the 2nd printing. We also made some very very minor tweaks(tinting, color shifts etc) to a handful of photographs. Many times when a recipe ingredient changes such as reducing salt content, there is a ripple effect that goes on and changes need to be made elsewhere to jive. An example is a table parametric that says one temperature, but a marginal note might say something slightly different. These are best found by readers who are new to the content.

We are systematically going through each volume looking for typos and grammatical errors with a process called read-back. Basically, two people sit opposite one another each with a copy of the volume. Person A reads the section out loud, (not paying attention to the content) while person B follows along. The process although exhaustive is very effective at finding goofs. The kitchen staff has also double checked the scaling and portion sizes for recipes.

We are still looking to weed out goofs so if you find any, please submit them.

MarkC


Edited by MarkC (log)

Art Director

Modernist Cuisine

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

interesting info, never heard of that read back thing, that must take a long time! And a lot of concentration, books on tape never work for me, as I just zone out the talking eventually :laugh:

But it really would be great if eventually a short list of Fatal Errors could be compiled, those that would make a recipe simply not work. Or set the cook on fire.

I don't care about grammar; or speling tat mutsch unless it changes the meaning of a sentence to something else.

Hats off to the work you guys put into this AFTER it's been published! Errors always happen, they don't often get actively searched out, much less posted online and then corrected. I'm not happy they're in there, but I'm happy you take care of them.


"And don't forget music - music in the kitchen is an essential ingredient!"

- Thomas Keller

Diablo Kitchen, my food blog

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not exactly a goof, but the pressure cooker instructions for tough meats (eg carnitas) are quite confusing. They seem to imply that you bring up to pressure, vent, then cook. It is written as a sequence, but the 'cook for x minutes' is after the vent ... could be clearer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hmm, it's certainly a lot more mistakes than I would have expected in this kind of work, especially in the recipes. I don't care about a misplaced comma or misspelled word, but wrong numbers in a recipe are really not good and I'm a bit dismayed by seeing so many errors here. Maybe it's a good thing I kept the box, maybe I'll buy a 2nd printing and sell the first printing to a collector :laugh:

Actually, it would be neat if we could at least somehow obtain a correct kitchen manual down the road, at this high price and with such involved cooking, a wrong number can cause complete failure of a potentially expensive and time consuming dish....

It is great they are on top of it and post errors online, but the idea to mark up my expensive books with pencil (and who knows what works on the kitchen manual pages) is extremely unappealing to me.

So far it seems that 112 errors are listed for the kitchen manual. I have not looked at all of them to see if they are real errors (g for mg, 3 for 5) or just grammar etc. It would be great if the real fatal to a dish errors could be highlighted somehow.

I agree

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hmm, it's certainly a lot more mistakes than I would have expected in this kind of work, especially in the recipes. I don't care about a misplaced comma or misspelled word, but wrong numbers in a recipe are really not good and I'm a bit dismayed by seeing so many errors here. Maybe it's a good thing I kept the box, maybe I'll buy a 2nd printing and sell the first printing to a collector :laugh:

Actually, it would be neat if we could at least somehow obtain a correct kitchen manual down the road, at this high price and with such involved cooking, a wrong number can cause complete failure of a potentially expensive and time consuming dish....

It is great they are on top of it and post errors online, but the idea to mark up my expensive books with pencil (and who knows what works on the kitchen manual pages) is extremely unappealing to me.

So far it seems that 112 errors are listed for the kitchen manual. I have not looked at all of them to see if they are real errors (g for mg, 3 for 5) or just grammar etc. It would be great if the real fatal to a dish errors could be highlighted somehow.

I agree

I don't really want to mark my copy of MC - it seems like sacrilege to take a pen or pencil to such a beautiful work. I agree that a few typos are not a great concern but anything material like a quantity, ratio or temperature is very important. For me having an accurate Kitchen Manual would probably suffice - preferably a new one with an index as well.

Maybe the MC crew could offer a trade in on our original, but incorrect kitchen manuals. If not a trade in - perhaps the ability to purchase the V2 version after providing proof of purchase of the first printing.

Cheers,

Peter.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hmm, it's certainly a lot more mistakes than I would have expected in this kind of work, especially in the recipes. I don't care about a misplaced comma or misspelled word, but wrong numbers in a recipe are really not good and I'm a bit dismayed by seeing so many errors here. Maybe it's a good thing I kept the box, maybe I'll buy a 2nd printing and sell the first printing to a collector :laugh:

Just remember: All cookbooks have errors (and a helluva lot of them from what I've observed) and very very few (damn near zero) give errata. Please don't punish them for being honest and helpful. Take the errata for what it is: damn useful information.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Perhaps another way to say it is: to err is human; to not say anything about it is what too many other regular books and cookbooks do too often. I appreciate the guidance they have posted and ability to download the errata. Maybe, I will just consider the MC site the 7th volume during my reading and experimenting-I do that anyway and they will undoubtedly keep updating, revising and expanding the knowledge base! MC seems more of a living, evolving book and site than anything I have experienced previously. That is the uniqueness and why I am such an avid supporter.


"A cloud o' dust! Could be most anything. Even a whirling dervish.

That, gentlemen, is the whirlingest dervish of them all." - The Professionals by Richard Brooks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I noticed that MC doesn't explicitly address grill pans, although obviously the discussions about pan frying and grilling apply. I recently purchased a cast iron grill pan and have been using it on burgers and steaks (for searing only, after cooking sous vide). I thought it would be nice, aesthetically, to get some wonderful grill-marks onto my meats with this. But I was surprised to find that they tasted better - much better - with the grill pans vs. searing with my cast iron skillets. I think there are two things going on. First, the Maillard reaction might be intensified on the grill ridges since the heat is being transferred conductively into a smaller area and thus concentrated. And the drippings off the meat might also be vaporized, similar to a BBQ grill, to add additional flavor. Obviously, this technique is closer to pan frying, since BBQ grilling operates largely through radiant heat, but I think that using a grill pan over a regular (gas) stove might share some features of both. Am I on the right track here?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hmm, it's certainly a lot more mistakes than I would have expected in this kind of work, especially in the recipes. I don't care about a misplaced comma or misspelled word, but wrong numbers in a recipe are really not good and I'm a bit dismayed by seeing so many errors here. Maybe it's a good thing I kept the box, maybe I'll buy a 2nd printing and sell the first printing to a collector :laugh:

Actually, it would be neat if we could at least somehow obtain a correct kitchen manual down the road, at this high price and with such involved cooking, a wrong number can cause complete failure of a potentially expensive and time consuming dish....

It is great they are on top of it and post errors online, but the idea to mark up my expensive books with pencil (and who knows what works on the kitchen manual pages) is extremely unappealing to me.

So far it seems that 112 errors are listed for the kitchen manual. I have not looked at all of them to see if they are real errors (g for mg, 3 for 5) or just grammar etc. It would be great if the real fatal to a dish errors could be highlighted somehow.

I agree

I don't really want to mark my copy of MC - it seems like sacrilege to take a pen or pencil to such a beautiful work. I agree that a few typos are not a great concern but anything material like a quantity, ratio or temperature is very important. For me having an accurate Kitchen Manual would probably suffice - preferably a new one with an index as well.

Maybe the MC crew could offer a trade in on our original, but incorrect kitchen manuals. If not a trade in - perhaps the ability to purchase the V2 version after providing proof of purchase of the first printing.

Cheers,

Peter.

That's not a bad idea - being able to return a copy and purchase the corrected kitchen manual at some sort of discount. Although that seems like a bit of a logistical nightmare so I'm not sure that would ever happen.

I do like the idea of possibly adding a second "field" if you will to each correction - such as "Criticality of correction" and then perhaps something like using the typical color coded markings such RED for critical, YELLOW for warning, and GREEN for simple misspellings, etc.

It's absolutely great that the team has been so responsive in providing the corrected information online - another kudos to the team showing the passion for their creation.

Todd in Chicago

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

not punishing them at all, I think it's great they offer this but I also think that factual errors should have probably been caught before, we're not talking about a $30 book here...

Yes, being able to trade in a the kitchen manual for a corrected one - or at least be able to buy one w/o having to buy everything again - would be nice. I will never have the books in the kitchen or anywhere close to it, so if there's an error in there but it's correct in the manual I'll know it's a correction and can proceed.

As noted, this is really only important with real errors, where quantities, times, temperatures, things like that are wrong and will lead to failure. Once I spent 3 days on making something I'd be a very unhappy person if a print error somewhere screws things up and I end up with some inedible or ugly mess :cool:

I think the idea of marking errors with different colors - even if only on the online page - would really be helpful. I don't really have the time to work through all the posted errors to find out which are crucial, nor do I think I should unless I get paid for it :wink:

Maybe that dual reading test should have been done on a test print, after all, with this collection of books, it appears to me that they strived for perfection, not the next 30 min meal throw away. I'm sure they're even more unhappy about mistakes than I am, they put a ton of love and work into these books. But I'm also the customer that paid a crazy amount for the output...

Maybe a great first step would be the color coding, maybe there crucial errors that lead to failure are few and far between (my guess) and can be fixed at home. I'd never write in them, but a post it note can easily be applied or a printed page inserted. (on acid free paper of course).

Anyway, just my take on it. Of course there will be errors, nothing is perfect. I'm still surprised at the high number or errors I counted for the manual (as I'm sure the team is) and if there's a way to remedy this in the future, that would be great.

Or maybe I'll just sell my "first edition" to a collector and get me a 2nd print down the road, if I should find that the errors would really throw me off.


"And don't forget music - music in the kitchen is an essential ingredient!"

- Thomas Keller

Diablo Kitchen, my food blog

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've started correcting the more critical mistakes in the errata list using a label maker, trimming the text with scissors and then sticking them over the mistake in the book. Fixes the problem and relatively neat and not as time consuming as you might think. Just print out a big long label with 10 or so fixes and trim

rg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Regarding the recipe errors,on the rare occasion over the years i actually use a recipe from a cook book while cooking at home ,i have often found the end result ,no matter how vigorously i stay true to the original recipe never seems to turn quite as i expected or always look like the picture in the book.So im not too worried about some of the errors,because in general i always adapt the recipe to suit my own tastes,which for me is one of the best parts about being a chef.It then becomes my dish.

As far as i am aware,every cookbook i've ever owned contains many recipe errors i wasn't even aware of.I think recipes should only ever be seen as a guide,and one's creative juices should do all the rest.

I personally love the book and it was worth the wait,the extra knowledge i have gained from it already is worth the outlay.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We've tried to make the book as good as we could. The fact is that all cookbooks have errors, but I am not aware of any cookbook that has taken the full transparency stance that we have - telling everybody about the errors, providing an errata PDF, and correcting the errors in the second printing.

In fact, I will tell you a secret - many of our errors came because of proofing! It is very easy for a proofreader to find an "error" that isn't actually wrong. One classic example is the difference between converting an absolute temperature between Fahrenheit and Celsius (1C = 33.8F), versus converting a temperature difference ("increase the temperature by 1C = 1.8F). At some point in the process it is hard to add more review without having the review contribute some errors.

It is very easy to say that we should have found all the errors. Of course we "should" have, in some sense, but realistically speaking if you produce a brand new 2400 page, 1500 recipe cookbook, there will be a few errors. It is also easy to say that "for the price" we should have done better, except that prolonged futher review would only make the book even more expensive to produce. You can say that we "should have" looked even harder at the proofs - but I assure you we did look at the proofs very intensively.

Of course you wouldn't even know the number if we hadn't published the list. So I agree with a previous post that by being open we are exposing ourselves to criticism. That's why most book authors don't publicize their errors. It's a classic case of "no good deed ever goes unpunished". The more this occurs, the less incentive an author has to be open and transparent.

But so be it, we remain committeed to being open about this. We have fixed a lot of errors which will be in the first printing, but they will not appear in the the second printing. I am sure that we will find additional errors over time and as we do we will update the web site and the errata PDF, and update future printings.

By printing out the errata PDF, or using pasted in labels (as one post suggests) you can get access to our best knowledge at any point in time.


Nathan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We've tried to make the book as good as we could. The fact is that all cookbooks have errors, but I am not aware of any cookbook that has taken the full transparency stance that we have - telling everybody about the errors, providing an errata PDF, and correcting the errors in the second printing.

In fact, I will tell you a secret - many of our errors came because of proofing! It is very easy for a proofreader to find an "error" that isn't actually wrong. One classic example is the difference between converting an absolute temperature between Fahrenheit and Celsius (1C = 33.8F), versus converting a temperature difference ("increase the temperature by 1C = 1.8F). At some point in the process it is hard to add more review without having the review contribute some errors.

It is very easy to say that we should have found all the errors. Of course we "should" have, in some sense, but realistically speaking if you produce a brand new 2400 page, 1500 recipe cookbook, there will be a few errors. It is also easy to say that "for the price" we should have done better, except that prolonged futher review would only make the book even more expensive to produce. You can say that we "should have" looked even harder at the proofs - but I assure you we did look at the proofs very intensively.

Of course you wouldn't even know the number if we hadn't published the list. So I agree with a previous post that by being open we are exposing ourselves to criticism. That's why most book authors don't publicize their errors. It's a classic case of "no good deed ever goes unpunished". The more this occurs, the less incentive an author has to be open and transparent.

But so be it, we remain committeed to being open about this. We have fixed a lot of errors which will be in the first printing, but they will not appear in the the second printing. I am sure that we will find additional errors over time and as we do we will update the web site and the errata PDF, and update future printings.

By printing out the errata PDF, or using pasted in labels (as one post suggests) you can get access to our best knowledge at any point in time.

Nathan,

Any chance that second printing kitchen manuals will be available for purchase without the rest of the book?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The fact that a collection of books like those has a small percentage of errors in the 1500 recipes is unavoidable and completely understandable. Nathan and his team's complete transparency and diligence in tackling errata is very much appreciated. I have no problem updating my kitchen manual as I go along. The label maker idea is great for that.

On the other hand, its a bit frustrating to me that the Kitchen Manual does not list the recipes alphabetically. Unless I am missing anything (I am still in the browsing stage, even though I did make the brown beef stock yesterday), we have to browse through all recipes in a specific section in order to find the one we are looking for. For example, to find the Mac and Cheese you need to dig through the Plant section in the KM to find it. Why not list them alphabetically instead of "in order of appearance"? I am not sure anyone mentioned this before, so maybe I am alone with my quibble, but I am seriously considering making my own KM alphabetized list. If I do, I'll make it available here.


E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Any chance that second printing kitchen manuals will be available for purchase without the rest of the book?

No plans for that at the moment.

I think that selling the KM without the rest of the book would encourage people to just buy the KM which is not something that I support - I think that the knowledge in the main book is very useful. One could try to have a KM exchange program but that requires lots of logistic hassle which we are not staffed to do.

An additional reason why not is that we are creating a detailed index for the kitchen manual, which we will put online as a printable PDF. We will also include the index with the KM in a future printing, but not the second printing since that is already in press, and we couldn't get the index done in time. So even if I did want to sell an improved KM then I would wait for the one with the index.

Since we are putting PDFs of errata and the index online so you can print them, I think that will at least allow anybody with a current KM to get most of the benefits of the corrections and upgraded index.


Nathan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Time magazine named Modernist Cuisine to their list of the 100 most influential things in the world. The relevant portion of the list shows that MC is only two below "boobs" and above Groupon or Kate Middleton's dress.


Nathan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Since we are putting PDFs of errata and the index online so you can print them, I think that will at least allow anybody with a current KM to get most of the benefits of the corrections and upgraded index.

Well, Nathan it looks like you guys have thought of everything. I am referring to the KM index of course. That would be fantastic and will save me hours of work trying to alphabetize the list of recipes myself :smile:.

only 2 below "boobs" huh? Very much an achievement. :laugh:


E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

only 2 below "boobs" huh? Very much an achievement. :laugh:

Wow, MC was the 3rd most influential thing in the world! Way to go!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Question regarding the pasteurization of meats.

Repeatedly in volume 1 the authors detail the the inside of whole cuts of meat are sterile unless they've been jaccarded. The discussion of salmonella on chicken details that there are 2 "varieties" one that is fecal based and one that invades the ovaries and then the eggs.

Based on this, one would be led to believe that the inside of a chicken breast is sterile like other solid muscles.

If that is the case, why does the whole chicken breast have to be brought to temperature and held for pasteurization rather than just the surface, as one would be able to do for beef? The case is made that it's because chicken is often sold whole with skin on which would carry the majority of the risk, but that would still only affect the surface of the chicken breasts, would it not?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Similar Content

    • By K8CanCook
      Update!! --- the sale is still going on at Amazon as of Sunday (11/24) at 11:15am EST
      ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
       
      Did anyone note the sale price on Modernist Cuisine today (maybe yesterday)? Amazon and Target dropped the set of tomes to $379!!!
       
      This price looks like it will change after today...so get it ASAP!!!

      https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/0982761007?pf_rd_p=183f5289-9dc0-416f-942e-e8f213ef368b&pf_rd_r=SRFCHFB5EFTGAA8AZHJX
      -or-
      https://www.target.com/p/modernist-cuisine-by-nathan-myhrvold-chris-young-maxime-bilet-hardcover/-/A-77279948
    • By Kim Shook
      I think about this subject fairly often, but especially when I am thinking about converting a slow cooker recipe to sous vide.  While I love the texture and juiciness I get with sous vide, I find that I often want a sauce.  And I have quite a few slow cooker recipes that I know have good sauces, but the meat tends to be a little on the dry side.  Thus my ideas about converting.  I thought this might be a topic with legs if other folks are having the same questions.  
       
      I'd like to make this recipe: Cranberry Pork Roast.  I found a nice little pork loin roast (2.88 lb.) and have rubbed it with Penzey's Ozark seasoning and sucked it (family lingo for vacuum bagging).  My thought is to sous vide it and make the sauce on the side and just serve it with/in/on top of the sauce.  Advice?  Thoughts?  Warnings?  Also, if you think that this is more of an IP thing tell me that, too.  And, considering that the sauce is sweet, would you do it in steps in the IP?  
       
      Thanks so much!  
    • By Bollo
      I need a book on the application of rotavapor machine. I've searched something on web but i can't find something strictly professional for the kitchen please help me. To improve the research. 
    • By Darienne
      This is not encouraging for American consumers.  On the other hand, it's not surprising either.  From my current Consumer Reports e-download.   https://www.consumerreports.org/food-labels/seals-and-claims?EXTKEY=EE993PMAC&utm_source=acxiom&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=20190926_cromc_engagewkly
       
      I'd like to know what the current labeling standards are in Canada.  Next research project.  After dealing with the bumper crop of apples...
       
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...