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Momofuku

4.19  ·  Rating details ·  6,257 ratings  ·  197 reviews
Never before has there been a phenomenon like Momofuku. A once-unrecognizable word, it's now synonymous with the award-winning restaurants of the same name in New York City: Momofuku Noodle Bar, Ssäm Bar, Ko, and Milk Bar. Chef David Chang has single-handedly revolutionized cooking in America with his use of bold Asian flavors and impeccable ingredients, his mastery of the ...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published October 27th 2009 by Clarkson Potter
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Community Reviews

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4.19  · 
Rating details
 ·  6,257 ratings  ·  197 reviews


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Chris "Stu"
Jul 26, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2010, recommended
Yes, I just read a cookbook cover to cover. Yes, it's crazy. Yeah, I don't think I have the cooking ability to do all the recipes.

But I think i can do some. I'm going to try, at least. The Momofuku Cookbook is three things, primarily. It's a coffeetable book, for sure. The photos are beautiful, absolutely gorgeous food porn. It's also a cookbook, which, to my eye, seems thorough and comprehensive. I have yet to try to cook out of it, but reading through a lot of recipes it seems that you need on
...more
Forest Graham
Nov 09, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This book is currently changing my life. Some dodo reviewers on amazon claim it's impractical... yeah, if your a complete pussy! It's actually really easy to cook from as long as you have an asian market close, or the internet. The "sources" page is awesome. I found it's actually cheaper, including shipping, to order bacon from the guy momofuku gets their bacon from, than buying whole foods' inferior but still good shit. A revelation!
Ehrrin
Jan 02, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: completed-2010
When reading cookbooks I usually read the foreword to get a sense of the author's perspective and philosophy, and then page through the recipes, reading here and there when something strikes me. But, I read David Chang's Momofuku book cover-to-cover, and thought obsessively about it when I wasn't reading it--like I would an engrossing novel. The book is set up that way--it's the story of how the Momofuku empire came into existence, and, more fascinatingly, how the dishes evolved. Chang's love of ...more
Elizabeth
Mar 16, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: foodies
Recipes are a bit too fussy for my liking- especially since many of the ingredients necessitate a trip to a specialty store.

The ginger scallion sauce was pretty tasty and the only recipe I ended up making (compliments of Amazon.com):

Ingredients

* 2 1/2 cups thinly sliced scallions (greens and whites; from 1 to 2 large bunches)
* 1/2 cup finely minced peeled fresh ginger
* 1/4 cup grapeseed or other neutral oil
* 1 1/2 teaspoons usukuchi (light soy sauce)
* 3/4 teaspoon sherry vinegar
* 3/4 teas
...more
Netts
Aug 06, 2013 rated it liked it
Loved his amusing, humblebrag story about how he stumbled into the hipster food fad vortex of questionably earned success. I can't help but like his bombastic self promotion because he does it intelligently and with a sense of humor. It's done in a tone that makes you a co-conspirator in his great food bamboozle and it's genuinely entertaining.
On the other hand, and not surprising, I'm completely unimpressed by the pedestrian recipes. This is not some kind of kitchen bible. There are a few decen
...more
Robyn Hawk
Sep 26, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviews
With Momofuku David Chang does for Asian cooking what Julia Child did for French cooking...Asian recipes you can make in your American kitchen.

Chang writes in the smart,edgy, funny and somewhat irreverent style that put him where he sits today, at the head of an Asian cooking dynasty! With four award winning restaurants (of the same name) in New York City, (Chang conquered this city that can take a new chef, chew him up and spit him out) we know that this is more than chef this is a business man
...more
John Mendiola
Jan 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Momofuku may be the first book that has so tangibly affected my life. It's inspired me to be more creative in the kitchen. Since starting adulthood, I've enjoyed cooking but it's always been pretty standard affairs. This makes me want to elevate what I do in the kitchen. It's given me a look behind the kitchen that shows like No Reservations don't give and shows like Top Chef give poorly. Cooking is such a science and an art and a craft all at once and I can't wait to keep doing it.

Also, the Mo
...more
Mike
Dec 05, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Truly awesome book.I was up all night reading it.Some early critiques mentioned that this is not for your average home cook,and it's not.Not many people are going to blow torch hair off a pig's head.(I would).But his story is worth the read about how he built his restaurants.
He said the editors got him to eliminate a lot of the "fucks",but there are are still plenty.He said "That's the way I fucking talk!"I curse a lot in the kitchen,it comes with the territory.
He issued Blackberrys to his chefs
...more
Adam
Jun 02, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: food
Here's my problem with this book: it's just fucking profoundly beautiful, food-wise but also almost entirely useless to me, as a home cookbook, considering the difficulty of preparing most of this stuff at home. This is evidence of culinary genius, but it's not a sensible home cookbook. For the most part.

So it should, then, function as the autobiographical story of David Chang and his restaurants' meteoric rise to the top of the food world and his own culinary artistry &c. Which it does. Bu
...more
Emilie
May 05, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: cooking-books
So, I'll only eat about a quarter of these recipes as written. But everything I have made using these recipes as a jumping off point has been delicious.
Although-- I will say that Francis Lam's ginger scallion sauce is superior and suitable for bathing. I wouldn't kick David Chang's ginger scallion sauce out of bed, but I probably wouldn't call it the next day.
Alopexin
Dec 28, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Inspiring and ingenious, but whenever he tries to talk about Asian stuffs (esp Vietnamese stuffs) I had to roll my eyes. He can try to make fusion and Asian inspired American food all he likes but the pretense that he understands Asian food culture is too much. The bit where he trash talked his mom's fridge kimchi was hard to read, but I don't think I could comment on that bc my mom doesn't make kimchi. But the bit where he was like "if a Vietnamese family doesn't have a jar of fish sauce vinaig ...more
Robin
Oct 19, 2011 rated it liked it
What got me to sit down for a long read (although I'd only planned to browse through it casually) was that it opens up like a quest story: the quest for a then-English tutor living in Japan, to find a master (shi fu) to teach him the secrets arts of making ramen. Then the usual hurdles he and his growing team faced as they first opened up the Momofuku Noodle Bar... But then-- bam. They're successful and famous. (It happens so fast, but I guess that's real life for you.) Because they'd started co ...more
Liana
Dec 13, 2013 rated it really liked it
Being a vegan puts me at great odds with someone like David Chang, but it doesn't stop me from being a big fan. I binge-watched his Bourdain-narrated PBS series "Mind of a Chef" in a manner of days last month, and it blew my mind. Since I could never eat at Momofuku Noodle Bar (or Ssam Bar or Ko or Milk Bar--Chang flatly refuses to cater to vegetarians), reading his cookbook was the next best thing. The sheer creativity and effort that goes into Chang's cuisine is far beyond anything I could eve ...more
A-BOMB
Mar 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I saw this book at Elliot Bay books which is across the street from the fine dining Mexican restaurant I worked at would kill time before my shift started. I thumbed through the forward and read about the author's obsession with ramen and his time in Japan, eventually landing back in NYC and opening up a noodle shop of his own. I then saw the chef at the Mexican restaurant experiment with making ramen noodles for himself and a few lucky staff and kinda chuckled. That chef told me about the Momof ...more
Bradley Mckellip
Jun 27, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Not a cookbook for your home kitchen. You simply can't make most of the shit he can, and that's why he's awesome. He has earned his reputation for his uncompromising commitment to food that tastes good, with absolutely no regard for convention. If you want to know how to make a multi-course dinner just like Momofuku Ko, this book will tell you how to do it. You simply have to understand that Momofuku Ko is one of the most respected restaurants in the world because no one else can do it like Chan ...more
Eling
Aug 04, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2010, cookbooks
Decided this counts as a "real" book as well because it is as much the story of Dave Chang + Momofuku + how the recipes came to be as it is recipes.

Really enjoyed this. Am probably skewed to like David Chang anyway; have liked everything I've had at Noodle Bar & Milk Bar, enjoy swearing, pork, and LOVE noodles, plus we share a surname, but am fully Team Momofuku after reading this. I think it was the use these two phrases: "the rest of the round-eye crew" and "I popped my meat glue cherry"
...more
John
Aug 26, 2015 rated it really liked it
Chang's writing leaves a little to be desired and there are some editing quirks, but he and Meehan have more than made up for that with Lucky Peach. A lot of the recipes skew a little sweet/sugar-heavy for my taste but that is easily remedied. Some of the temperature/timing needs to be played with to get the most out of your home kitchen—true for all cookbooks but somehow more frequently here in the recipes I tried. Most importantly, the food is delicious and the skill level required is relative ...more
Katrina
Jan 01, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I love food. I love reading about food and talking about food, and especially cooking food. Eating is OK too.

This book was an inspiration to me. I really like their approach to food, and I've had a lot of success playing with the flavors from some of their dishes in other contexts, too. I love the experimental attitude - this shit is delicious, AND fun to make. Win!

No chickens allowed in this kitchen. And I don't mean the feathered ones..
Yvonne Edwin
Sep 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I wouldn't cook out of this book (most of the recipes are far too complicated for me) but I loved reading David Chang's story of how he got to where he is today. This is more than a book about food - it's about having a passion for something, working hard at it, and disregarding social expectations.
Mitch
Jul 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: food
Well written fun read: a mix of cookbook and biography.. The recipes are a mix of totally doable to not at all possible. We've made some of the recipes including sauces and pickles.

Back in the old days cookbooks often had guides at the back. Suggestions of foods that would go together and could be done in one night. This book could really use that.
Gabe
Aug 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
David Chang is funny, irreverent and a complete culinary genius. That said, if you want to try these recipes, you better clear your fucking calendar because he takes labor-intensive cooking to a whole new level. Monstrously complex stuff, but totally worth it.
Erik
Jun 14, 2011 rated it liked it
Sort of a half memoir, half cookbook.

I enjoyed the memoir section, though am glad I do not work for Mr. Chang.

Most of the recipes are not all that interesting or practical for home cooks, though Bo Ssäm is definitely on the "to do" list.
Kris
May 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
Wonderful, inspiring book. It made me so hungry. The food photos are amazing.
Gary E
Dec 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
I saw this book sitting on the counter of a friends house yesterday. Being a foodie I have of course heard of Momofuku. There was something else gnawing at me about the restaurant though and I started to leaf through the book my friend Edie said I could take it with me if I wanted.

I did. That was yesterday at roughly 3:00 PM. This morning before 9:00 AM and I have read all of the story of the book and at least skimmed through the majority of recipes contained therein.

It turns out that one of my
...more
David Frazzini
Jun 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review is in response to complaints about the recipes in the book being too complicated for home cooks (and if you're reading reviews trying to decide whether or not to buy the book, please don't let those reviews stop you!).

The authors are very up front that some of the recipes aren't suited for a home kitchen and that they are included for those curious about how they're made in the restaurant. In other recipes they give very helpful hints about where you can cut corners and not hurt the
...more
Tina
Dec 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
While the female in me condones the kitchen anger / line about the strip clubs... Well at the end of the day, that's just not fair in judging a book. David Chang gave a very real account of his rise as a kitchen chef, which is more than I could ever do even on my social media. He's put a lot of soul into this book, even giving detailed directions for complicated recipes, and providing helpful resources in acquiring ingredients. For that, I applaud him and his achievements, and can not wait to tr ...more
Ericka
Oct 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Interesting Stories

I don't normally read cookbooks for the stories, but this one has the full story of David Chang's rise to superstar chefdom. I've seen several food documentaries with Chang and regarding his career, but this book really gives a solid foundation behind him and his restaurants. Plus the recipes are mouthwatering!
Connie Whitcomb
Oct 23, 2018 rated it liked it
I really enjoyed the intro and the history of how David Chang's restaurants got started. I also really liked the explanations of various ingredients. The recipes? All far to involved for me to want to try. Makes me appreciated what dining at one of his restaurants involves. Interesting.
Maggie Currie
Jan 31, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018-books-read
I discovered David Chang while watching The Mind of a Chef on Netflix during my pregnancy leave which lead me to get this book. I really enjoyed reading some of his back story, but couldn't help but wish that the recipes had been dumbed down for someone who is still a cooking amateur.
Joseph Lee
Jun 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I respect Chang so much, and reading his cookbook makes me respect him even more. The recipes are untraditional, and the process of creating them is also unconventional, and I like how original this book is.
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“A couple more bites, then Barbot unleashed his signature galette de champignons de Paris et foie grad mariné au verjus, huile de noisette, citron confit on us.” 0 likes
“2½ cups thinly sliced scallions (greens and whites; from 1 to 2 large bunches) ¼ cup finely minced peeled fresh ginger ¼ cup grapeseed or other neutral oil 1½ teaspoons usukuchi (light soy sauce) ¾ teaspoon sherry vinegar ¾ teaspoon kosher salt, or more to taste Mix together the scallions, ginger, oil, soy, vinegar, and salt in a bowl. Taste and check for salt, adding more if needed. Though it’s best after 15 or 20 minutes of sitting, ginger scallion sauce is good from the minute it’s stirred together up to a day or two in the fridge. Use as directed, or apply as needed.” 0 likes
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