7 Books That 'Salt Fat Acid Heat' Fans Should Read After Marathon-Watching The Show
If you've already devoured the first season of Netflix's Salt Fat Acid Heat, then you know how incredible the series is. Host Samin Nosrat breaks food down into four elements — you guessed it: salt, fat, acid, and heat — and travels the world to explore the nuances of each one. You don't have to be a cook to fall for this show, as Nosrat explains in-depth the science, cultural inheritance, and pure love that goes into every ingredient in every dish.
Nosrat takes viewers to the olive oil orchards and Parmesan fromageries of northern Italy. She treks to Japan to explore the wonders of sea salt, miso, and soy sauce. She journeys to Yucatán, where she demonstrates the power of acid in sour oranges, salsas, and Mayan honey. And back home in California, she pairs up with her mom to show you an unforgettable lesson in heat.
In just four mouth-watering episodes, Salt Fat Acid Heat will certainly change how you think about food. And on top of that, it's sure to ignite your curiosity about the world's cuisine. So, once you've eaten up the first season, where should you take your brain next? Here are 8 books to keep your culinary journey going.
'Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat: Mastering the Elements of Good Cooking' by Samin Nosrat, Illustrated by Wendy MacNaughton
Obviously, you need to read the book that started it all. Salt Fat Acid Heat dives into kitchen science to explain how understanding the titular four elements can shape your cooking. Plus, the book includes 100 recipes (and variations) to try out for yourself.
'Eight Flavors: The Untold Story of American Cuisine' by Sarah Lohman
Sarah Lohman breaks down American cuisine into eight flavors: black pepper, vanilla, curry powder, chili powder, soy sauce, garlic, MSG, and Sriracha. Through these flavors, she delivers an astounding culinary history of America and the cultures that have shaped it.
'Honey and Dust: Travels in Search of Sweetness' by Piers Moore Ede
Piers Moore Ede was recovering from an accident on an organic farm in Italy when he was introduced to the magic of beekeeping. In this absolutely fascinating book, Ede takes you along as he goes on a quest to learn everything he can about the wonders of honey. Travel, food, nature—this book is rich with everything you're craving.
'Love, Loss, and What We Ate: A Memoir' by Padma Lakshmi
In this powerful memoir, chef and television host Padma Lakshmi takes readers into her immigrant childhood and explores "how we taste the world as we navigate our way through it." From her grandmother's kitchen in South India to the judges table of Top Chef, the tale of Lakshmi's journey will fill you up with all kinds of feelings.
'The World on a Plate: 40 Cuisines, 100 Recipes, and the Stories Behind Them' by Mina Holland
“When we eat, we travel.” In this mouth-watering read, Mina Holland takes you behind-the-scenes into the stories of some of the world's most beloved dishes. From the origin of kimchi to the story behind curries in India, this book will take you on a wild (and delicious) ride.
'Salt: A World History' by Mark Kurlansky
You already learned a lot about salt in Episode 2, but if you want to dive even deeper, be sure to check out this magnificent microhistory. Salt has had enormous values in cultures across the globe for centuries, and you're going to be absolutely hooked by its story.
'The Language of Baklava: A Memoir' by Diana Abu-Jaber
In this lovely food memoir, Diana Abu-Jaber takes you through her lifelong relationship with food as she straddled the culinary heritage of the Jordanian and American sides of her family. This is a beautifully-written book that will stick in your memory for a long time.