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Science and Cooking

by Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Science

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This public lecture series discusses concepts from the physical sciences that underpin both everyday cooking and haute cuisine. Each lecture features a world-class chef who visited and presented their remarkable culinary designs: Ferran Adria presented spherification; Jose Andres discussed both the basic components of food and gelation; Joan Roca demonstrated sous vide; Enric Rovira showed his chocolate delicacies; Wylie Dufresne presented inventions with transglutaminase. The lectures then use these culinary creations as inspiration to delve into understanding how and why cooking techniques and recipes work, focusing on the physical transformations of foods and material properties.

Customer Reviews

Very Interesting but misses great

I am a food scientist and was excited to see this series a hoped it would represent a refresher course. While each episode opens with the science, they rush through it to get to the interesting chefs who practice the applied science. I feel that a course that more accurately reflected the title would have had the chef and the scientist at the same time or had the scientist follow the chef and explain what is going on molecularly in each if the chef's creations. The food industry has a missing link between the science and applied and this course has the potential to fill that void but currently falls short.

Other than that, I think that while some topics developed slowly and the translated episodes were hard to follow at times, the chef's applications were undoubtedly creatively brilliant, entertaining and idea provoking, which made it all worth watching.

Incredible potential

This series of lectures are full of very useful information, but you have to be patient, take notes and rewind a lot. I applaud Harvard for making this available, as well mad respect for any interested cook who slogs their way though the verbal torture and comes away more informed.

Great idea, bad execution

I watched lecture #1 & #7. Sadly, that's all it took to turn me off. The idea of the science behind cooking sounds fascinating to me. However, this class spends at least half the time (literally) introducing chefs and thanking tons of people.

It's like watching an American Idol finale... watch 40 min of crap and 5 min of good stuff.

Science and Cooking
View in iTunes
  • Free
  • Category: Science
  • Language: English

Customer Ratings