elBulli's Cooking App Is Perfect

Illustration for article titled elBulli's Cooking App Is Perfect

Adrià en Casa is the cooking app by the most famous chef in the world, Ferran Adrià, the co-owner of elBulli—the best restaurant in the world that sadly is no more. It is the distillation of decades of experience and cooking technique into a clever app with a perfect design. I'm on a two month sabbatical now, but I'm enjoying it so much that I had to write about it.

The app will not teach you how to cook Adriá's amazing plates, but the plain menus that the restaurant's many chefs prepared and ate in its kitchen. All the dishes—some of them typically Spanish, like a mouthwatering black rice with scuttle fish—are deliciously perfect versions of classical recipes.

The best thing of this cooking app is its extraordinarily clever and clean design. Its beautiful three column menu preparation structure will guide you to make the three plates of each menu-first, main and dessert-simultaneously and just in time for lunch or dinner time. If you have ever entertained people, you will love this. Of course, you can prepare any plate separately too.


The three-plate daily menu approach is unique among cooking apps and it was made with families in mind (or any cost-conscious individual). They were created to save as much money as possible-the cost per person for each menu is about six dollars. They were also made to guarantee the nutrition values of a good diet, typical of Mediterranean countries like Spain. According to Adriá, the menu combinations are as important as the plates themselves.

Illustration for article titled elBulli's Cooking App Is Perfect

It also has all the recipes for basic preparations, like sauces and stocks, that you can freeze to save time at cooking time, just like a professional restaurant would do. Something that is known as la mise en place.

The ingredient listings, organized by three categories-stuff to buy fresh in the market, stuff from the pantry and previously prepared stuff from the your freezer-is both smart and time saving.


You can also create your own menus by picking the plates you want for each course. The app will automatically create new three-column preparation guides with the adequate timings. And you can assign the menus to a calendar, so you can plan easily.

The only bad (terrible!) thing: it is not in English. Too bad, because it would have been a great success, especially for the horrible "Spanish" restaurants in New York City and other American cities, which are a real disgrace, culinary terrorist acts ran by the likes of Batali and other so-called star chefs catering to uneducated palates with too much money and no clue about what real Spanish cooking is.


But that doesn't make it any less awesome. Like his food and kitchen, Adrià's app is best of class, the top standard that every other cooking app should follow. [iTunes]

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Help me understand why, as a principle, The Family Meal (or "...every other cooking app...") should be an app instead of a properly done ebook?