February 16, 2012 Meeting
The Experimental Cuisine Collective’s February 2012 meeting will center around The Kitchen as Laboratory: Reflections on the Science of Food and Cooking (Columbia University Press, 2012). The editors and authors—chefs, scientists, and hybrids thereof—make a case for science inspired by the kitchen, where culinary knowledge is advanced by testing hypotheses rooted in the physical and chemical properties of foods. Using traditional and cutting-edge tools, ingredients, and techniques, the contributors to this unique anthology create, and sometimes revamp, dishes that respond to specific desires and serve up an original encounter with gastronomic practice.
From the seemingly mundane grilled cheese sandwich, pizza, and soft-boiled egg to Turkish ice cream, sugar glasses, and jellified beads, the essays in The Kitchen as Laboratory cover the chemistry, physics, history, and culture of a wide range of culinary creations. Editor-in-Chief César Vega, PhD, will discuss the motivations, contents, and anecdotes behind the making of The Kitchen as Laboratory, looking at science just as much as gastronomy. He will be joined by contributors Arielle Johnson (UC Davis) and Tom Tongue (IFP), who will present the research featured in their respective chapters.