Episode 40

The Alton Browncast

Michael Ruhlman

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The Alton Browncast #40: Michael Ruhlman

This week Alton interviews Michael Ruhlman about freeing people from recipes, the future of cookbooks, and what sets the great chefs apart. They try to predict the future of food and get excited about eggs.

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  • May I just say how brilliant and inspiring it was to hear the exchange regarding narrative and story around the 27:00 mark? The entire episode was great, but that bit really spoke to me. Bravo, sirs.

    MR: “We are the only animal who cooks our food, and the only animal for whom story is fundamental to our existence. It is second in importance to food and nourishment, more important than love, more important than shelter. People survive without shelter, without love. Almost nobody survives in silence, and as soon as silence is broken, that breaking of silence results in story.”

    AB: “Story is the only thing that keeps time from driving us insane, because it’s the only way we can order time, with story, with narrative; it’s the music of time, in a way.”

    MR: “It’s the way we order chaos, we wouldn’t be able to function if we didn’t order the chaos around us, and we do that through story.”

  • I have enjoyed all your podcasts but, particularly, this one as Michael Ruhlman is one of my favs. Great discussion on cooking by understanding food and technique rather than just following recipes.

  • Alton, I completely track with your discussion on cooking without recipes. I am constantly trying to convince people to learn techniques and understand food. Thank you, I was cheering as I listened!