So even though I don’t use recipes a whole lot (unless baking or pastry comes into play), I definitely enjoy reading books about technique, and would especially like to start reading books about the creative molecular stuff or the super-refined classical techniques (i.e. The French Laundry Cookbook, Alinea, El Bulli, etc).
Some of the techniques in these books, as far as I’ve read from reviews, are super advanced. Would I like to try some of them? For sure! Other times, I like to look at the plated dishes, usually in awe, because they are edible art most of the time.
Another huge cooking tome, called Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking is coming out soon (March 2011, tentatively), first on Amazon.com.
Images belong to modernistcuisine.com. No copyright infringement was intended.
This bad boy is about 2400 pages of cooking technique, history, etc, split into 6 different volumes. All for the low, low price of $500.00 US (of course you can sense just a little sarcasm here). Of course that is not in my budget, but it looks exciting to say the least.
Check out the website for the book by clicking: The Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking