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Nik Sharma Books In Order

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Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

Season: Big Flavors, Beautiful Food (2018)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Flavor Equation (2020)Description / Buy at Amazon
Veg-table: Recipes, Techniques, and Plant Science (2023)Description / Buy at Amazon

Nik Sharma is a food photographer and cookbook author who is also a former molecular biologist who has been working as a writer for Serious Eats since 2020.

Nik quit his career as a biomedical researcher to pursue a career in photography, food writing, and cooking, and now makes use of his knowledge of biochemistry to understand flavor.

He published “Season: Big Flavors, Beautiful Food” his first cookbook in 2018, and the work went on to become an award-winning work. It won an International Association of Culinary Professionals Award and a James Beard Foundation Award.
He would then publish another equally great work that he titled “The Flavor Equation,” which was just as popular. In this work, he shared his soulful cooking approach from the perspective of the science of sensation and flavor.
Through the years, he has become known for cookbooks that show his unique and keen approach to cooking techniques and working with flavor.

Outside of his cookbooks, he is also the author of “This Is A Cook Letter,” the recipe newsletter, and founded A Brown Table,” a multi-award winning blog.

In the past, he worked as a contributor to “The Guardian Feast,” “Food52,” “The New York Times,” and “The San Francisco Chronicle.”

Nik was born in Bombay and moved to the United States to study molecular genetics. After graduating from college, he went on to work as a research scientist for half a dozen years but food was always on his mind.
It was during this time that he founded “A Brown Table” and once the blog started to grow exponentially, he decided to get into food as a career.

For a time, Nik Sharma worked as a pastry cook, before he moved up the ranks to become a food photographer and stylist for a startup in San Francisco.

Due to how successful he was working for the startup and the massive popularity of his blog, he was invited to be a regular columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle.
It was this gig that opened many doors as he came to write for other prestigious outlets such as “Food & Wine,” “Taste” and “Saveur.”

Soon enough, he got his first cookbook deal, and “Season” his debut work garnered rave reviews from the likes of the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and The New Yorker.

At some point, Nik Sharma and his partner moved to California and for a time thought of going to culinary school but he was terrified of a risky career change and taking a loan.
He decided to do something less conventional for a person of his stature, as he reached out to a dozen bakeries in the local and got a call from one patisserie.

He was then working a day job at a pharmaceutical company but still found time to stage their displays for a fortnight. Since he loved working at the patisserie, he soon quit his job at the pharmaceutical company to go work as a pastry chef.
Even though he has moved all over the United States over the years, he currently makes his home in Los Angeles with his partner, two cats, and dogs.

He is always happy to answer fan questions about changing your career, cooking, pets, and food science questions. He spends a lot of time on Twitter, Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram, where he takes the time to interact with his fans.

“The Flavor Equation” by Nik Sharma is a work that approaches recipes and cooking from a scientific perspective. It explains how flavor is composed of different qualities that can be put together to bring balance.
According to Nik, some of the important elements to consider include flavor, emotion, taste, sight, aroma, sound, and mouthfeel.

While it is not so readily apparent, our emotions typically affect how we perceive flavor and this will in turn affect our emotions.

The first part of the cookbook is a discussion of food colors, sound, and aroma as Sharma explains how the color of food changes while it is being cooked, and offers steps to ensure the brightness is not lost.

He also explains how the shape of food can make it appealing and then there is the effect of sound. He explores the crunch/crisp feel of celery and the creaminess, crispiness, softness, and smoothness of food.

He asserts that aroma often evokes memories which is a critical part of flavor. In the second section, he shows you how to map the many flavors in a recipe. He includes aspects of brightness and how this can influence how appealing food can be.
He also looks into bitterness as an element of flavor and provides several recipes that hit all the right notes, even as he always provides the science behind it.

Nik Sharma’s novel “Season” is a work in which he showcases his very unique voice. He asserts that some of his touchpoints are the US Midwest, Appalachia, and India but the flavors and ingredients that he puts into his foods are incredibly diverse.
He sometimes includes flavors from the American southwest, Middle Eastern ingredients, and spices such as pomegranate, sumac, and kefir, Mediterranean ingredients such as olives, and ingredients such as nori from umami Japan.

To provide you with several examples of some of the incredibly complex and intricate combinations of flavor there is a recipe for the Basil Yogurt with Sweet Potato Fries that has the comfort and feel of the Midwest while the Chile Sumac Pomegranate nut recipe is a very original appetizer.

In their sophistication and simplicity and the global nature of combinations of flavor, this is work that is most similar to the cookbooks by Ottolenghi and the Chronicle Books published “Bar Tartine” cookbook.
When you look at them from the perspective of personal narratives, they are also similar to “My Paris Kitchen” by David Lebovitz.

“Veg-table” by Nik Sharma has to be one of the most cookable collections of recipes from the bestselling author and founder and blogger of “A Brown Table.”

In this novel, the author showcases wide-ranging recipes that are good for main meals for cooks of all skill levels, who need to add more techniques to make more satisfying and delicious dishes.

Combining the more personal recipes from his debut “Season” and the scientific underpinnings of the second novel “The Flavor Equation,” it comes with more than fifty recipes including their unique characteristics, biology, and origins.
Sharma organizes his recipes into chapters by cooking methods, buying and storage, and plant family. The result is a massive collection of tried and true techniques and flavors perfected by scientific research and testing.
He combines his vegetable recipes with animal and plant protein recipes such as Green Curry Spinach with Crispy Salmon and Poppy Seed Coleslaw with Chicken Katsu.

You also get a wide variety of cold and hot soups, beans, salads, eggs, sides, rice, and sauces in the collection.

With more than 100 evocative and gorgeous photographs in addition to instructive illustrations, it is a work that perfectly balances intellect, beauty, and achievable and delicious recipes.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Nik Sharma

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