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Old 05-07-2011, 08:23 AM   #1
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I'm looking to evolve to the next plane. Anyone made the journey?

Barbecue? I mastered that ages ago. Cajun? Fun for a while, but I've got it down. Mexican, Indian (Northern), 4 different kinds of Asian, Italian (Northern and Southern), Spanish? Conquered. Northwest? Tom Douglas himself asked me for a couple of recipes. Northeast? Check. French was a bit of fun, but the challenge faded.

Fusion kept my interest for a couple of years, but I'm starting to reach my limit there...I mean, when I start doing things like combining Cajun and Cambodian or German and Peruvian, I'm really digging.

The mad scientist in me screams to get out. I recently ate at wd-50, and my next challenge became clear: I was to join the cult of Wiley Dufresne. It's time for the next great evolution: Molecular gastronomy.

I've done some self-experimentation, mostly teaching myself how to make things like balsamic caviar (thanks to Chiarello, who taught me how wonderful it is on caprese), doing some things with fruits, etc. Made green eggs and ham with a side of bacon out of foam, that was kind of cool. But I need a tome on all the other aspects to this. Sadly, Dufresne has never written a book, and nobody I know has gotten into this sort of method.

Anybody ever gotten into it? If so, what books would you recommend? I'm pretty adept at absorbing advanced topics, so I don't need one that will hold my hand. Not a lot of them out there, and what I've found has universally had mixed reviews. Reviews I can't trust because I don't know how poisoned they are with novice cooks that got in over their head and decided that it was the book and not them. I'd like something pretty definitive before I invest in a liquid nitrogen setup and a centrifuge.

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Old 05-07-2011, 08:27 AM   #2
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There is a big discussion on eGullet.org on molecular gastronomy.
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Old 05-07-2011, 08:30 AM   #3
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I won't be ready for molecular gastronomy for another fifty years. I am still trying to figure out what to use parchment paper for.
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Old 05-07-2011, 08:33 AM   #4
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Just what is molecular gastronomy? Simple version please.
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Old 05-07-2011, 09:30 AM   #5
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Quote:
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I won't be ready for molecular gastronomy for another fifty years. I am still trying to figure out what to use parchment paper for.
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Old 05-07-2011, 10:28 AM   #6
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Quote:
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I won't be ready for molecular gastronomy for another fifty years. I am still trying to figure out what to use parchment paper for.
Regular parchment paper, or Martha Wrap?
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Old 05-07-2011, 12:00 PM   #7
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We don't do it in my restaurant, but I enjoy working with it on a research and development level. Books to read: Hevre This has a couple out on the subject, Adria Ferran from El Bulli Spain is hot (I know El Builli is closed right now, but it will re-open), and of course Grant Achatz from Chicago. Love to chat about this phenom.
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Old 05-07-2011, 06:22 PM   #8
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Just what is molecular gastronomy? Simple version please.
The simplest way to explain it would be the point where food meets science. It's Alton Brown....on HGH, anabolic steroids, and crushed deer antler.

It's the study of using various chemicals and techniques to create new kinds of food and dining experiences. You can Youtube the phrase and a lot comes up. The sous vide craze is a result of this style, for example.
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Old 05-07-2011, 06:23 PM   #9
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We don't do it in my restaurant, but I enjoy working with it on a research and development level. Books to read: Hevre This has a couple out on the subject, Adria Ferran from El Bulli Spain is hot (I know El Builli is closed right now, but it will re-open), and of course Grant Achatz from Chicago. Love to chat about this phenom.
Yeah, I'm going to be truling El Bulli this July when I'm in Europe. Very stoked about it. Sadly, Ferran doesn't have a book out, though. There's a book that came out from a foundation he started, but it doesn't appear he had anything to do with it.
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Old 05-07-2011, 11:30 PM   #10
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I made bacon spaghetti tonight. People are right: Bacon DOES make everything better, especially when it's made entirely of bacon.

I do have to work on the sauce some, though.
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