For the First Time, Here’s the Cover of Samin Nosrat’s Book, Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat

September 30, 2016

Anyone following Samin Nosrat’s journey of making her first book, Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat, knows that this book is personal. In it, Samin—a cooking teacher to folks high (Michael Pollan is very tall) and low (middle schoolers are not)—lets us into her kitchen and into her cooking process so that we can cook like she does: intuitively, with curiosity and joy.

The four keys we all have to know how to play with? Salt, fat, acid, heat.

There's a book cover in there. See it?

The cover, released for the first time right here right now just for you, is just as intimate.

Drumroll please

This pretty scene? It's the shelf of Samin’s essential ingredients—the real shelf in her kitchen; the real ingredients she reaches for daily; the real essentials of salt, fat, acid, and heat—but drawn by the book’s illustrator, Wendy MacNaughton. (The quote from Alice Waters is pretty great, too.)

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The idea for the cover drawing came about—how else?—in the kitchen, on a whim. Samin explains:

A few months ago, Wendy and the book's designer, Alvaro Villanueva, came to my apartment so she could draw the kitchen for the endpapers—the drawing could function as both a list of kitchen essentials, and as a way to welcome the reader into my kitchen upon opening the book.

We took a look at my long pantry shelves and realized they'd also look great on the cover—we could even wrap them around the spine onto the back of the book! Wendy kicked me and Alvaro out of the kitchen, put on her headphones, and drew for almost 3 hours straight.

The result? A cover that's just about as personal as it gets: my own kitchen, drawn by my favorite artist. I couldn't be any happier!

During its best moments, making this cookbook with @wendymac looks like this. #saltfatacidheat

A photo posted by Samin Nosrat (@ciaosamin) on

Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat comes out next April, but is available for preorder now. To celebrate, Samin is giving away a beautiful Staub Double-Handled Cast Iron Fry Pan over on her site. She loves how versatile it is—and it'll get a lot of use when cooking from her book.

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Fresh Tomatoes
    Fresh Tomatoes
  • mcs3000
  • Caroline Lange
    Caroline Lange
Editor/writer/stylist. Author of I Dream of Dinner (so You Don't Have To). Last name rhymes with bagel.


Fresh T. September 30, 2016
I got to recipe test a few recipes for the book. They were amazing! I can't wait for the book release!
mcs3000 September 30, 2016
Can. NOT. Wait.
Caroline L. September 30, 2016