The Science of Gastronomy

Start Date: 11/06/2018

Course Type: Common Course

Course Link: https://www.coursera.org/learn/gastronomy

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About Course

This course introduces a number of basic scientific principles underpinning the methodology of cooking, food preparation and the enjoyment of food. All topics covered have a strong basis in biology, chemistry, and physics application. Among others, they include the consumption of cooked food, the physiological and evolutionary implication of the senses, geographic and cultural influences on food, and the rationale behind food preparation. We will also discuss issues such as coupling of senses to improve sense stimulation; altering flavor by chemical means; and modification of the coloration to improve the appearance of dishes. Following the video demonstrations of the scientific principles of cooking, you will learn to recognize the key ingredients and their combinations for preparing good healthy food. At the end of this course, you will be able to: - appreciate the scientific basis of various recipes; - develop your own recipes by integrating some of the scientific principles into new dishes; - recognize the influence of the material world on human perception from the different senses; - appreciate the art of integrating science into cooking and dining. Important Note: This course is not designed for people with special dietary needs such as vegetarian, diabetic, and gluten-free diets. If you feel uncomfortable with any part of the assignments or activities of this course, you can substitute some of the ingredients or ask friends and family members to help with the tasting of your assignments. Alternatively, you may skip that specific assignment provided that you have fulfilled all other qualifying requirement to pass the course. Course Overview video: https://youtu.be/H5vlaR0_X2I

Course Syllabus

This week, we will continue our focus on the preparation of sauces and finish up the course with the last topic on dessert. After completing all the content, it's time to test your understanding on the entire course. Take the final exam and complete the post-course survey. Your valuable feedback will certainly help us improve future iterations of the course.

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Course Introduction

This course introduces a number of basic scientific principles underpinning the methodology of cooki

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Gastronomy Gastronomy is the study of the relationship between food and culture, art of preparing and serving rich or delicate and appetizing food, a style of cooking of particular region, and the science of good eating. One who is well versed in gastronomy is called a gastronome, while a gastronomist is one who unites theory and practice in the study of gastronomy. Gastronomy can be subdivided into four main areas, which are practical gastronomy, theoretical gastronomy, technical gastronomy, and food gastronomy. Practical gastronomy is associated with the practice and study of the preparation, production, and service of the various foods and beverages, from countries around the world. Theoretical gastronomy supports practical gastronomy. It is related with a system and process approach, focused on recipes and cookery books. Food gastronomy is connected with food and beverages and their genesis. Technical gastronomy underpins practical gastronomy, introducing a rigorous approach to evaluation of gastronomic topics.
Gastronomy Gastronomy involves discovering, tasting, experiencing, researching, understanding and writing about food preparation and the sensory qualities of human nutrition as a whole. It also studies how nutrition interfaces with the broader culture. Later on, the application of biological and chemical knowledge to cooking has become known as molecular gastronomy, yet gastronomy covers a much broader, interdisciplinary ground.
Molecular gastronomy The term "molecular and physical gastronomy" was coined in 1988 by Hungarian physicist Nicholas Kurti and French physical chemist Hervé This. In 1992, it became the title for a set of workshops held in Erice, Italy (originally titled "Science and Gastronomy") that brought together scientists and professional cooks for discussions about the science behind traditional cooking preparations. Eventually, the shortened term "Molecular Gastronomy" also became the name of the scientific discipline co-created by Kurti and This, based on exploring the science behind traditional cooking methods.
Gastronomy Etymologically, the word "gastronomy" is derived from Ancient Greek γαστήρ, "gastér", "stomach", and νόμος, "nómos" "laws that govern", and therefore literally means "the art or law of regulating the stomach". The term is purposely all-encompassing: it subsumes all of cooking technique, nutritional facts, food science, and everything that has to do with palatability plus applications of taste and smell as human ingestion of foodstuffs goes.
Molecular gastronomy Kurti and This have been the co-directors of the "Molecular and Physical Gastronomy" meetings in Erice and had considered the creation of a formal discipline around the subjects discussed in the meetings. The American food science writer Harold McGee, was invited for the first Workshop. After Kurti's death in 1998, the name of the Erice workshops was changed by This to "The International Workshop on Molecular Gastronomy 'N. Kurti'". This remained the sole director of the subsequent workshops from 1999 through 2004 and continues his research in the field of Molecular Gastronomy today.
Molecular gastronomy Hervé This started collecting "culinary precisions" (old kitchen wives' tales and cooking tricks) in the early 1980s and started testing these precisions to see which ones held up; his collection now numbers some 25,000. In 1995, he also has received a PhD in Physical Chemistry of Materials for which he wrote his thesis on "La gastronomie moléculaire et physique" (molecular and physical gastronomy), served as an adviser to the French minister of education, lectured internationally, and was invited to join the lab of Nobel Prize winning molecular chemist Jean-Marie Lehn. This has published several books in French, four of which have been translated into English, including "Molecular Gastronomy: Exploring the Science of Flavor", "Kitchen Mysteries: Revealing the Science of Cooking", "Cooking: The Quintessential Art", and "Building a Meal: From Molecular Gastronomy to Culinary Constructivism". He currently publishes a series of essays in French and hosts free monthly seminars on molecular gastronomy at the INRA in France. He gives free and public seminars on molecular gastronomy any month, and once a year, he gives a public and free course on molecular gastronomy. Hervé This also authors a website and a pair of blogs on the subject in French and publishes monthly collaborations with French chef Pierre Gagnaire on Gagnaire's website.
Molecular gastronomy The objectives of molecular gastronomy, as defined by Hervé This, are:
Gastronomy The derivative "gourmet" has come into use since the publication of the book by Brillat-Savarin, "The Physiology of Taste". According to Brillat-Savarin, "Gastronomy is the knowledge and understanding of all that relates to man as he eats. Its purpose is to ensure the conservation of men, using the best food possible."
Molecular gastronomy The original fundamental objectives of molecular gastronomy were defined by This in his doctoral dissertation as:
Molecular gastronomy Up until 2001, The International Workshop on Molecular Gastronomy "N. Kurti" (IWMG) was named the "International Workshops of Molecular and Physical Gastronomy" (IWMPG). The first meeting was held in 1992 and the meetings have continued every few years thereafter until the most recent in 2004. Each meeting encompassed an overall theme broken down into multiple sessions over the course of a few days.
Molecular gastronomy Molecular gastronomy is a subdiscipline of food science that seeks to investigate the physical and chemical transformations of ingredients that occur in cooking. Its program includes three axes, as cooking was recognized to have three components, which are social, artistic and technical. Molecular cuisine is a modern style of cooking, and takes advantage of many technical innovations from the scientific disciplines.
Eco-gastronomy In 2008 the University of New Hampshire, in collaboration with other institutions, approved with the Board of Trustees the dual major in Eco-Gastronomy.
Eco-gastronomy In 2005, Carlo Petrini provided a theoretical perspective of eco-gastronomy stating that ""agriculture and ecology are part of gastronomy because they help us understand where our food comes from and produce it in the best possible way – by simultaneously observing the principles of taste, respect for the environment and biodiversity""
Molecular gastronomy Though many disparate examples of the scientific investigation of cooking exist throughout history, the creation of the discipline of molecular gastronomy was intended to bring together what had previously been fragmented and isolated investigation into the chemical and physical processes of cooking into an organized discipline within food science to address what the other disciplines within food science either do not cover, or cover in a manner intended for scientists rather than cooks. These mere investigations into the scientific process of cooking have unintentionally evolved into a revolutionary practice that is now prominent in today's culinary world.
Gastronomy There have been many writings on gastronomy throughout the world that capture the thoughts and esthetics of a culture's cuisine during a period in their history. In some cases, these works continue to define or influence the contemporary gastronomic thought and cuisine of their respective cultures.
Molecular gastronomy In February 2011, Nathan Myhrvold published the "Modernist Cuisine", which led many chefs to further classify molecular gastronomy versus modernist cuisine. Myhrvold believes that his cooking style should not be called molecular gastronomy.
Molecular gastronomy There are many branches of food science that study different aspects of food, such as safety, microbiology, preservation, chemistry, engineering and physics. Until the advent of molecular gastronomy, there was no formal discipline dedicated to studying the chemical processes of cooking in the home and in restaurants—as opposed to food preparation for the mass market. Food science has mostly been concerned with industrial food production and while the disciplines may overlap with each other to varying degrees, they are considered separate areas of investigation.
Eco-gastronomy In a context made of a growing spread of movements, ideologies and approaches which promote critical consumption, the concept of eco-gastronomy has prepared the ground to a variety of projects.
Eco-gastronomy More than a simple form of alternative consumption, eco-gastronomy is an approach that can be adopted in this context.
Molecular gastronomy Chefs who are often associated with molecular gastronomy because of their embrace of science include Heston Blumenthal, Grant Achatz, Ferran Adrià, José Andrés, Sat Bains, Richard Blais, Marcel Vigneron, Sean Brock, Homaro Cantu, Michael Carlson, Wylie Dufresne, Pierre Gagnaire, Adam Melonas, Kevin Sousa, and Laurent Gras.