Photo by Lara Kastner
What if a course could change right before your eyes, and your palate, while you were eating it? The interjection of a temperature, texture, aroma, or ingredient would morph the course into two distinctly different ones. With this idea we explore how we can drastically change the identity of a course during mid-consumption.
At first thought this seems like an easy concept, and even one that is already common in the world of restaurants. Some traditional practices hint at it. While eating shabu shabu, you apply heat to various proteins right before consumption, changing them from raw to cooked. The tableside saucing and garnishing of a soufflé adds a flavor component to the dessert, and even the shaving of truffles over pasta produces a changing of the dish after it has left the kitchen. But with all of these examples the course is altered before the guest takes their first bite. Therefore they don't quite exemplify what we are shooting for. I want to create a dish that can be eaten as it is originally presented to the guest, and then at a calculated moment, roughly half way into it, interject a temperature, texture, aroma, or ingredient that essentially creates a new dish entirely.
As we started to explore the idea of the Jekyll and Hyde concept it became apparent that it would require additions dealing in areas of extreme to successfully transform the food enough, and change the eating experience of the dish dramatically to meet our goal.
The first way we approached this was extreme temperature additions. Obviously as cooks we change the properties of food on a daily basis in the kitchen by applying heat to various foodstuffs. That is what cooking is all about...and we are cooks. This is no doubt why we looked to this familiar direction first.