I drafted a lofty to-do list about 5 years ago of things that I wanted to accomplish within the next 10 years. Some items were ambitious, some were plain silly. I have surprisingly managed to cross out a few of them. Here are a selection:
Live by the ocean
Hike the Inca trail to Machu Picchu
Go to the Galapagos Islands
Eat at El Bulli restarant
Meet my future husband
Get married
Design my own home
Made it to Machu Picchu.
Who would have thunk. Out of all of those things, I thought eating at a restaurant would come before the husband. For those of you who are not familiar, El Bulli is was a famous restaurant in Spain that served up edible science and art on a plate (or in what ever vessel they have designed). Sounds crazy to go all the way to Spain for a meal, but hey, everyone has their crazy moments, this was going to me mine. Seems simple enough, plan a trip to Spain, make a reservation at El Bulli, show up. Humm, simple at all, it is not.
Hanging out with sea lions in the Galapagos Islands
Reservations at El Bulli are near impossible to secure. I have tried for three years. They are were only opened about 6 months a year, 5 days a week, 50 spots per evening. Their full year's worth of reservations can be filled up within days, and people even sell their reservations. My whole trip to Spain was going to be planned around this one meal, but alas, the 'is' now a 'was', and 'are' a 'were', because El Bulli is now closed. 

That was a very long-winded way to get to my point, to explain my excitement when I found this cookbook.
 The Family Meal, Home cooking with Ferran Adria, the head chef at El Bulli. It kind of feels like this, if I can't go there, then I will be more than happy to have a piece of it in book format.

There have been other books on El Bulli, but they are massive and full of glossy pages of molecular gastronomy that are not very useful to me unless the food can jump out of the book and into my mouth. Nope can't make that dish, I don't have an anti-griddle, or a container of liquid nitrogen, or sodium alginate.

This cookbook, on the other hand, focuses on the recipes that the staff at El Bulli prepared for their meals each night. Which is like a behind the scenes take on food. They are simple recipes, unlike the lab technician concoctions that are served in the restaurant.
 It reads like a comic book, and for a visual person like myself, all I can say is THANK YOU! Finally, someone made a cook book for us who can't seem to grasp wordy instructions. Just show me!
It has a visual to-do timeline for each meal, and pre calculated measurements in the recipes for different serving sizes, such as for 2 people or for 6 people or for a crowd. I'm in love with the photo filled pages.

So what are they going to do with the empty El Bulli? Well, I look forward to adding the El Bulli Foundation to my lofty to-do list, a research / educational facility to be opened in 2014. If you are into architecture, go here to see their design process of the building. I don't know what it all entails, but I will make it happen.

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