This year’s meeting of the Euroscience Open Forum featured a workshop held by White House executive pastry chef Bill Yosses, who proclaimed to audience members how the food of the future will not actually contain real food, but various combinations of lab-created chemicals that mimic food.
Natural News writer Ethan A. Huff points out that Yosses and several other food experts showed a live audience [see video] how to create various foams, gels, solids, and other food-like textured substances out of chemicals that, when combined, resemble things like lemon souffle and chocolate pudding.
“These food scientists then shared samples of these laboratory creations with audience members who were told that the imitation food products are the wave of the future.”
“You take the compounds and you make the dish,” said Herve This of AgroParisTech, a science and research organization based in France.
“So you have no vegetables, no fruit, no meat, no fish, nothing except compounds. And you have to create a shape, a color, a taste, a freshness, a pungency, an astringency, everything,” added This, who compared traditional cooking methods such as “cracking eggs” and using real food ingredients to “living in the Middle Ages.”
Yosses said chefs can use the information he presented to gain an “understanding of what they’re doing and use that to improve the processes, to improve not only the flavor but the hygiene, the longevity, how to store things.”
Yosses stressed the importance of understanding cooking on a molecular level.
Transforming chemicals into food is nothing new for Herve This, the founder of molecular gastronomy.
In 2009, This and celebrated French chef Pierre Gagnaire claimed to have created the world’s first entirely synthetic gourmet dish — jelly balls in apple and lemon flavors and a lobster fricassee — made from ascorbic acid, glucose, citric acid and a few grams of 4-O-a-glucopyranosyl-D-sorbitol, a sugar substitute known as maltitol.
“In this brave new world, chefs will shun vegetables, such as carrots,” said This, “using the molecules which make up carrots” caroteniods, pectins, fructose and glucuronic acid ” instead.
Molecular and Physical Gastronomy was adopted by Hungarian physicist Nicholas Kurti and This, a French physical chemist, who held workshops in Erice, Italy where professional chefs and scientists once gathered to discuss a scientific approach to the preparation of food.
The molecular gastronomy concept exploded around the turn of the century thanks to chefs like Heston Blumenthal, Grant Achatz, Pierre Gagnaire, Ferran Adrià, Jose Andres, Homaro Cantu, Wylie Dufresne, Sat Bains, Sean Wilkinson, and Richard Blais among many others.
Heston Blumenthal has created radical taste combinations such as Mousse Poached in Liquid Nitrogen, White Chocolate with Caviar, Salmon Poached in Liquorice, and Cauliflower Risotto Sprinkled with Cocoa Powder.
Molecular Gastronomy “Should Have Health Warnings”
Famed molecular Spanish chef Ferran Adrià, claimed that he will close his restaurant, El Bulli, this year and will use his once world famous restaurant as a research lab.
German food writer, Jörg Zipprick had warned that El Bulli’s menus should carry health warnings informing diners of the additives in the dishes.
“These colorants, gelling agents, emulsifiers, acidifiers and taste enhancers that Adria has introduced massively into his dishes to obtain extraordinary textures, tastes and sensations do not have a neutral impact on health,”says Zipprick, who also claims that the polysaccharides from seaweed used by molecular cooks are suspected of causing intestinal cancer.
And Zipprick is not alone.
“Can we be proud of a cuisine which fills plates with gelling agents and laboratory emulsifiers? It would not occur to any fast-food chain to stuff us with 20 or 30 dishes full of chemical additives,”said top Spanish chef Santi Santamaria, referring to the El Bulli menu.
Don’t Eat Anything with Ingredients You Can’t Pronounce
Michael Pollan, an American author, journalist, and healthy food activist, argues that most of what we’re consuming today is not food, but rather “edible food-like substances” that are no longer the products of nature but of food science.
Although Pollan is referring to processed foods, sugar, and refined grains, and not necessarily food made using molecular gastronomy per se, Pollan stresses eating chemical free food and argues that when it comes to eating we’ve deferred to the voices of science and industry instead of following the wisdom of our grandmothers.
In fact, not eating anything your great grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food is one of the rules in Pollan’s book, “Food Rules”, which includes simple food rule phrases like:
* Don’t eat anything with more than five ingredients, or ingredients you can’t pronounce.
* Don’t eat anything that won’t eventually rot. There are exceptions” honey” but as a rule, things like Twinkies that never go bad aren’t food.
* Always leave the table a little hungry.
* Don’t eat breakfast cereals that change the color of the milk.
“We turn the corn into high fructose corn syrup to sweeten the sodas,”says Pollan.
“We also turn the corn into cheap feed lot meat. The soy we turn into cheap feed lot meat and hydrogenated soy oil, which is what all our fast food is fried in. The trans fats are lethal. So we are basically subsidizing fast food”
There’s really only one logical future for food, and that’s locally grown organic fruits, vegetables, free-range chicken and grass fed beef from small, community based farms.