Someone holding The Flavor Equation cookbook by Nik Sharma.
Credit: Sarah Crowley

Our February Pick for Cookbook Club Is “The Flavor Equation” by Nik Sharma

published Jan 19, 2021
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According to our Cookbook Club Facebook group, a lot of you are completely smitten with January’s pick, Falastin. So many people having been sharing their photos of the beet tart, kofta and hummus, and, my personal favorite (so far), the butternut squash and zucchini with whipped feta and pistachios. Yum. We have a couple of weeks left, and I plan on making a few more things — including the za’atar eggs and sticky date and halva puddings.

Now, on to February! I’m thrilled to announce that The Flavor Equation by Nik Sharma is our cookbook pick for next month. Read on to see why we chose this book, and how you can participate.

Want to follow along with Kitchn’s digital Cookbook Club? Here’s how to participate.

  1. Get the book! You can buy the book on AmazonBookshop, or look for it at your local library; while some libraries are currently closed, you may be able to access a digital copy. Also consider buying from your local bookstore!
  2. Join Kitchn Cookbook Club Facebook group. This is our private space for all of you to talk about the book, ask questions, and chat about what you’re cooking. Click here to join! It’s very active.
  3. Share a recipe review on Instagram and tag with #kitchncookbookclub. Make a recipe from The Flavor Equation. Post a photo of your dish on Instagram, with a short review of the recipe in the caption.
Credit: Sarah Crowley

Why The Flavor Equation Is Our Cookbook Pick for January

The Flavor Equation was one of the most highly anticipated cookbooks of 2020. Not only did Kitchn include it in our fall cookbook roundup, but so did just about every other food publication. This is Nik Sharma’s second cookbook — his first one, Season, came out in 2018 and was wildly popular. I can’t recommend the curry leaf popcorn chicken enough! Nik’s recipes are meticulous in their execution, and his photography is stunning. He is also a longtime friend of the site, and in the past has given us a peek into his kitchen in Oakland (he lives in Los Angeles now) and even recently participated in Kitchn’s Food Fest for Thanksgiving. Anyway, when I heard this book was coming out I put it at the TOP of the list for things I wanted to include for Kitchn’s Cookbook Club.

You can read what The Flavor Equation is all about here, but the TDL;R is that Nik put his past life as a molecular biologist to use and got deep into the science of taste. He talks about everyday pantry staples and “flavor boosters” that add brightness, bitterness, saltiness, sweetness, and savoriness.

Credit: Sarah Crowley

Get the Book

When I asked Nik what recipe he made most in 2020, he said that it was the hazelnut flan from his new cookbook. So, I think that’s the recipe I’m going to start with next month. Let me know what you’re excited to cook in our Facebook group