A blog about food and cooking by Chris Norris

Wired for Food

Wired for Food

Wired magazine is full of weird stuff about technology, the internet, politics, our environment and the surreal nature of life.  When I find the time to work my way through an issue, I look at the world a little differently.  Here’s some interesting stuff from recent issues:

“Cool Whip: A delicious blend of sugar, wax and condom lube.”
Here’s a one page article breaking down the ingredients in Cool Whip to water, sugar, various oils and waxes, and finally, the equivalent of condom lube.  I can’t help but wonder what happens if you just take all this crap and throw it in a blender.  Might be a good you-Tube video …!

“What’s Inside Red Bull: Meat Sugar, Caffeine, and Bile!”
Another blender project.  Take some water, sugar, caffeine, vitamins and other chemicals that aid the body’s conversion of sugars to energy and hit the button.  Voila!  Red Bull!   Well, not quite.  Turns out you need some Taurine, an amino acid extracted from bull bile.  Don’t have any Taurine?  Heck, just pound a cold coffee with two sugars!

Molecular Gastronomy is gaining more attention, partly due to Marcel Vigneron, a Top Chef finalist last season.  Marcel’s creations involve using chemicals like sodium alginate, calcium chloride, agar, and nitrous oxide.  The result is food that takes on forms that aren’t anything like you had when you were a kid.  Or since.

And last but certainly not least, there is Chef Grant Achatz of the Chicago restaurant, Alinea.  Grant has created a new form of food art by designing new implements and hardware to create his dishes, introducing some of the same chemical techniques used by Marcel Vigneron, and literally sculpting each dish into its final form.  Alinea, open for about 30 months, is thought by some to be the best restaurant in the country.  Unfortunately, Grant is suffering from an advanced form of tongue cancer of all things, but remains at the helm of his restaurant.

– Chris

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