Fake food

Fake FoodWhile “real,” “whole” and “local” foods get renewed attention, molecular gastronomy pushes the boundaries of “fake food” in an attempt to make something, seemingly, from ingredients that wouldn’t be considered foods in and of themselves.

Stretching the bounds of molecular gastronomy to their limits, 3-star Michelin chef Pierre Gagnaire collaborated with chemist Hervé This to create the first 100% synthetic recipe called Le note a note. Unveiled in Hong Kong in April, this appetizer consists of apple- and lemon-flavoured jelly orbs that are creamy on the inside and crackling on the outside.

Hmm… while this sounds impressive, I can’t imagine its invention is truly a first-time synthetic food accomplishment. After all, aren’t Kraft slices just a molecule away from being plastic?

What do you think about this event? Culinary breakthrough or Frankenfood horror story?

9 Responses to Fake food

  1. Diva says:

    I’m afraid I’m in the anti-molecular gastronomy camp. I have had it, and I know its kind of interesting, sometimes even impressive, but mostly its just off-putting to me. If I want to eat chemicals, I’d rather pop open a bag of Cheetos. Seriously. I can handle the odd dish here and there as part of a larger meal, for fun … say in a dessert, but I in no way want to spend an entire evening eating suspended this and faux-tapioca that. Its just not my ‘thang. I’d much rather have a plate of my mom’s meatloaf!

  2. Barb says:

    It’s an interesting concept for sure. To me it’s both frightening and wonderful that “food” such as this will be available in the future when all the real food is gone.

  3. So far, I hate the molecular gastronomy stuff. I can’t look at foam on my plate…and I once had a salad with blue cheese ice cream that was gross in this really hip and trendy restaurant that was all technique and terrible food.

    My take is that it is the extreme of the local, natural, organic movement and both are a bit too trendy for me. And, I”m a lover of my local market, but I can’t live on squash (which is what tennessee does in abundance).

    Now in all fairness, maybe I just don’t get it. I like to eat simple, Italian, whole, and I’m more about taste over technique.

  4. cheryl says:

    I respect the artistry and scientific know-how of these chefs, but I’d prefer that my apples look like apples and my carrots like carrots. That said, when I was in France recently, I did have a slow-cooked beef dish with carrot foam. I have to admit that the foam complemented the beef in a way that a side of carrots never could.

  5. danamccauley says:

    Love these comments! All great insights. i can’t help but agree with each of you.

  6. Natashya says:

    I am in the real food category too. I don’t want to eat dots made out of chemicals. Gimme a carrot.

  7. I’m with Cheryl on this. I can respect the scientific knowledge and creativity, but want my food real.

    I realize that many “everyday” kitchen techniques developed from such experimentation, but MG is a bit too out there for me.

    BTW, a chef recently blew off both his hands in a molecular gastronomy experiment gone wrong. Scary stuff.
    http://www.news.com.au/heraldsun/story/0,21985,25779352-23109,00.html

  8. Fax Foods says:

    You shouldn’t be eating fake food, you should be displaying it so your restaurant, deli or market will save money.

    http://www.faxfoods.com

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