Food for Thought: Stimulating Audiobook Listens for Your Summer Cooking

An Asian woman listens to an audiobook on her smart device with earbuds as she stands in front of a vegetable-laden cutting board
07/22/2020

These Five Titles are *Chef's Kiss*

Cooking is a roller coaster of highs and lows – a perfect embodiment of the saying, “hurry up and wait.” One moment you’re sweating over quickly sautéing garlic and the next, you’re twiddling your thumbs waiting for a sauce to reduce down. One moment you’re covered in flour, vigorously kneading a ball of dough and the next, you’re staring at that same dough, imploring it to hurry up and rise. Cooking is, to put it poetically, a microcosm of the human experience.

What better way to use those moments waiting for the oven timer to go off than to reconnect with what it means to be human? To laugh, learn, discover and question. This summer, while you’re upping your bread game, perfecting your chocolate chip cookie recipe or tending to a low and slow BBQ for hours on end, why not take the time to listen?

At Audible, you’ll find a buffet of titles that fit your lifestyle – from cooking titles to entertaining podcasts, thrilling audiobooks and more. In this post, we’re offering up five of our favourite titles for a stint in the kitchen or backyard. Bon appétit!

Get Back to the Basics with Samin Nosrat

Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat: Mastering the Elements of Good Cooking

Author:
Samin Nosrat
Narrator:
Samin Nosrat
Length:
5:57
Type:
Unabridged Audiobook

The brilliance of Samin Nosrat’s Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat is that it breaks down all of cookery into four fundamental elements. Salt enhances flavour. Fat adds texture and richness. Acid balances. And heat is there at every turn to transform the food into something new.

This isn’t a recipe book. Rather, it’s a breakdown of the fundamentals of cooking, meant to encourage your confidence as a home cook and empower you to make the right culinary decisions. Is your rich risotto missing something? Add a splash of acidity with some lemon juice. Does that blanched kale taste a little bland? Dress it with soy sauce and sesame oil to add salt and fat.

With a breezy approach to kitchen science, and a cool, cheerful tone, Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat gives you the tools you need to succeed as a cook. If you lack a little confidence, bring Nosrat with you next time you’re in the kitchen!

Go Behind the Scenes with Anthony Bourdain

Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly

Author:
Anthony Bourdain
Narrator:
Anthony Bourdain
Length:
8:19
Type:
Unabridged Audiobook

The late, great, Anthony Bourdain is perhaps best known now for his jet-setting food shows, in which he earnestly sought to connect cultures and people through food. But before his days as a globetrotting foodie, Bourdain worked in the steamy, smoky back kitchens of New York’s fine dining restaurants.

In Kitchen Confidential, Bourdain relates in vivid detail the camaraderie, the chaos and the “sex, drugs and rock n’ roll” of those kitchens, offering listeners an unprecedented backstage pass to a part of the restaurant typically shielded from public view.

It’s an incredible audiobook. As both creator and narrator, Bourdain’s wit, attitude and passion coat every passage like cream sauce on a rare steak. If you want the restaurant kitchen experience at home, sharpen your knives, crank up the heat and listen to Kitchen Confidential.

A chef places a sprig of rosemary on top of a plated steak dinner in a clean kitchen

If You Can’t Stand the Heat, Take a Break with Celeste Ng

Little Fires Everywhere

Author:
Celeste Ng
Narrator:
Jennifer Lim
Length:
11:27
Type:
Unabridged Audiobook

Not every kitchen audiobook needs to be about food. For many, cooking is like shifting to autopilot – you let your muscle memory do the work. And as you chop peppers or mix cookie dough all you want is to be shocked and amused.

Little Fires Everywhere is just for you. Celeste Ng’s audiobook about the secrets, lies and racial biases that bubble to the surface of an affluent, “progressive” planned community is riveting. It’s mysterious, thought-provoking and wholly absorbing.

If you need a break from the heat of the kitchen, listen to this audiobook. If you’re listening in the kitchen, just make sure you don’t burn the cookies – Little Fires Everywhere has a habit of stealing your attention!

Once you finish biting your nails alongside Little Fires Everywhere, check out Audible’s coming soon section for the hottest upcoming titles.

Pair BBQ Ribs with a Rib-Tickling Podcast

Comedy Club (Series 1)

Author:
Lloyd Langford, Tiff Stephenson, Jonny Pelham, Colin 'Anna Mann' Hoult, Kiri Pritchard-McLean
Narrator:
Length:
4:48
Series:
Comedy Club
Type:
Podcast Podcast

You’ve got the backyard, the BBQ and the cold drink. All you need to complete your summer cookout is that funny friend – the one who cracks jokes from the side of the grill. Let Comedy Club be that friend.

In this Audible Original Podcast series, we’ve showcased emerging and established stars of the comedy world, delivering their sets to a live audience. With seven Comedy Club series to choose from, each featuring a handful of comedians, you’ll have laughs to last even the lowest, slowest cookout.

Look to the Future of Food with Dan Barber

The Third Plate: Field Notes on the Future of Food

Author:
Dan Barber
Narrator:
Dan Barber
Length:
14:30
Type:
Unabridged Audiobook

For Dan Barber, chef and owner of the Michelin two-star restaurant Blue Hill at Stone Barns, the way forward is simple. It looks a lot like the way we used to live.

After a decade investigating farming communities around the world, Barber concludes that in order for deliciousness, nutrition and sustainability to intersect on the modern table, we need to get back in touch with the land.

This eye-opening audiobook leverages Barber’s personal insights and global analysis to advocate for a radical new (old) way of farming. An integrated system of vegetable, grain and livestock production, where each element feeds off and sustains the other.

The Third Plate is essential listening for those who love to cook – or those who simply love to eat – allowing you to approach food in a healthier way. And don’t just stop with the dinner table. For more ways to connect with a healthier you, check out our blog post on motivational and self-care titles.

While your curry is bubbling, your muffins are baking or your salad is patiently waiting to be dressed, take some time for yourself. Listen to one of the stimulating titles above, or create your own pairing, the perfect combo of food and listening for you.

What do you listen to while you cook? Let us know your ultimate food/listening pairings!

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