Rob Mifsud, who has reviewed MC, interviewed Nathan Myhrvold, and even went toe-to-toe with nay saying critics of Modernist cooking, has a brilliant article on Slate.com today. This time (with a little help from our Recipe Library and his copy of Modernist Cuisine), he is promoting pressure-cooking as an easy, effective method of cooking. Mifsud delves into the history of the pressure cooker while pondering a question many of us have asked: Why don’t more people own one?
Last night Nathan was a guest on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!,” along with actress Jessica Alba and Congressman Barney Frank. Jimmy was very excited to meet and cook with Nathan — he’s quite the food enthusiast — in fact, he already owns a set of Modernist Cuisine and has been cooking sous vide at home for some time.
The Modernist Cuisine hamburger is a great example of the philosophy we extol in the book: even the most humble dishes can be worthy of extraordinary care and attention. You’d certainly lavish great care on your duck confit, so why not do the same for your cheeseburger? In the video below, Nathan demonstrates an abbreviated version of our cryo-frying method, which involves cooking the patty sous vide, giving it a quick dunk in liquid nitrogen, and then browning the outside by deep-frying. These steps ensure that your burger is perfectly cooked from edge to edge. But let’s be honest, it’s also pretty bad-ass.
It’s challenging to work in a kitchen adjacent to a machine shop and not get inspired to occasionally tinker. So we’ve developed a “recipe” for laser etching images onto the surface of an omelet! [Perhaps we’ll include this in a future edition of MC ] First, we make the same omelet base used in our iconic Striped Omelet recipe. We omit the mushroom stripes and instead cook a perfect disk of tender egg using a combi oven. A crucial step, it turns out, is vacuum-boiling off all of the gas trapped in the egg base before we cook it; otherwise, we’d end up with air bubbles and an uneven surface. Once the omelet cools, we put it in our laser cutter, turn the power down from “kill” to “stun,” and burn the image onto the surface. Some reconstructed cheese, cubed ham, and chives round out the dish.
This video shows the laser etching process, sped up 20x actual speed. Needless to say, the parametric recipe for the laser omelet would include additional celebrity faces.
Nathan also got to meet one of his favorite celebrities, Uggie, the Jack Russell terrier from the film The Artist. Nathan showed off a section of volume 3: Animals and Plants, and Uggie was particularly inspired by our rabbit recipe. Unsurprisingly, Uggie has a strong preference for free-range hare.
Last week during his presentation at Book Larder in Seattle, coauthor Maxime Bilet demonstrated one of the easiest techniques found in Modernist Cuisine: hyperdecantation. By pouring red wine in a blender, you cause it to froth, thereby allowing it to oxidize better and far more quickly. Watch the video, and try it yourself. It might just make your Valentine’s Day dinner that much smoother.
Tune into Bizarre Foods America with Andrew Zimmern on the Travel Channel tonight to see what the team creates for the man who’s tasted it all. Part of a Seattle-themed show, the episode also happens to feature Andrew’s visit to harvest geoducks at Taylor Shellfish–the very place we get our giant clams from, too! At another place close to our hearts, FareStart, where coauthor Maxime Bilet and the Staff Chefs happen to be volunteering a few days from now, putting on a dinner, Andrew teaches a class on cooking offal. Andrew of Bizarre Foods also visits the famous Pike Place Market and Vashon’s Sea Breeze Farm, and drinks a lot of coffee.
This episode airs tonight, February 6, at 9 pm (8 pm central) on the Travel Channel.
Whether you tune in for the game or just the commercials, you can’t watch the Super Bowl without snacks. But why pick up a bag of cheese puffs from the store when you can make your own? Wow your friends this Sunday with our Cheese Puffs recipe. In our Recipe Library we’ve included the recipe plus photos, tips, and how Wylie Dufresne inspired this and many other recipes in Modernist Cuisine.
Already have your Super Bowl menu set? Tell us about it in our Cooks’ Forum!