updated December 8, 2011
The penultimate event of this year’s Science and Cooking lecture series at Harvard University (November 28) featured US White House Pastry Chef Bill Yosses (aka “The Crust Master”) and former El Bulli stagiaire Najat Kaanache (“The Pilgrim Chef” who trained under 9 of the world’s best) teaching modernist culinary techniques for applications in desserts. Essentially a primer in molecular gastronomy it was titled “Lip Smackin’ Science: Crystals, Emulsions, Foams, and Pink Vanilla Cupcakes.”
Thermomix in the White House?
This Harvard presentation was assisted by Australia’s star Thermomix demonstrator Lynette MacDonald who has taught other world-famous culinary masters about the super kitchen machine. (Later, a signed copy of Dani Valent’s “In the Mix” cookbook was presented to First Lady Michelle Obama by Lynette MacDonald, and Valent also writes that Bill Yosses ordered a Thermomix. So is there a Thermomix in the US White House kitchen? And if so, this begs the question: Will Thermomix soon be sold in USA?
Free public access to lectures by world’s best Thermomix-using chefs!
One of the best things about the Harvard Science and Cooking series is that these public lectures are free to attend by all who are eager to learn — and then they’re made readily available on YouTube. (What a bonus for anyone interested in creative cooking, recipe development, molecular gastronomy, science, culinary fundamentals, eating, and master chef spotting.) The Science & Cooking lectures are presented by a Who’s Who of world-class culinary visionaries: Ferran Adria (el bulli), Nathan Myhrvold (Modernist Cuisine), David Chang (Momofuku), Jose Andres (ThinkFoodGroup) and many more. Monday’s lecture also featured one of Najat Kaanache’s favorite tools — the Thermomix.
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Want to know about science and cooking? Look no further!
This is a full-on lecture. For anyone with more than a passing interest in food composition it’s both fascinating and fun. The ever-present Thermomix (used for pre-lecture prep) plays a background role during the lecture itself but receives its due praise at about 1:04 hr mark.
Thermomix used by master chefs in USA?
Thermomix is of course not sold in USA, so it’s interesting to note the additional presence at this lecture of “The Thermomix Lady” Lynette MacDonald who appears briefly (almost inconspicuously) at the beginning and end of this clip. The super kitchen machine is already in use by several top chefs in USA and according to Dani Valent it may be time to add Bill Yosses to this list. And here’s hoping Thermomix may one day be sold in the USA.
- “Science and Cooking: From Haute Cuisine to the Science of Soft Matter,” debuted at Harvard in 2010. The course uses food and cooking to explicate fundamental principles in applied physics and engineering. See a video about the course here
- See a list of all Science and Cooking lecture videos on YouTube