Methylcellulose - how much to use - Page 2
What surprises me is that I'm always surprised by what I find in our commercial "food products." I can't believe the garbage most Americans ingest as a matter of course! :mad:
Among the "molecular gastronomists" (which I am not, BTW, I'm just a foodie who watches too much Iron Chef), I understand that you disolve it in cold water and let it sit overnight in the fridge. It will "thicken" the water as it fully hydrates. Then, when you warm it up it gels to a jello-like consistency. Voila, "hot jello." Apparently, it's quite the rage to try to make "hot ice cream." Even weirder, it melts as it cools down.
Inspired by an episode of Dinner Impossible (the one with the Vegas magicians), I've got an idea to have a dinner party where everything looks like one thing, but tastes like something else. In that episode, Irvine made a "chocolate cake" that was essentially a high-end meatloaf and a "hot dog" that was actually desert (ice cream hot dog, jello tomatoes, shredded mango sherbert for cheese, cake for the bun). Like I have said, while I like "simple, natural, old fashioned" food and have nothing against those that eat a "purist" diet, what I'm going for here is the unique, bizzare, and innovative.
That being said, and in light of the tacit accusation by RSteve, let me document something publicly: I do not intend to "sneak" this in on anyone - period. I'm just a home cook and I know my house guests well enough not to give this or anything else to anyone who might reasonably expect to have an adverse reaction. I say again, I am not going to be anything but transparent with my friends that I feed.
Still, we've been bombarded with chemical food "enhancers" by the industries who are not AT ALL concerned with good quality food, or nutrition or health or anything else and unless the laws block them will poison people if it can make them rich, so that there are kids who drink diet soft drinks so regularly that fruit juice tastes bland and water is unheard of. And adults who can't seem to taste the horrendous after-taste of saccharine and aspartame or notice the weird taste of synthetic fats and the way they leave your tongue coated.
So while you may consider me defensively purist I am pretty disturbed by this trend to make food a chemistry project rather than a more simple and direct taste-guided affair. But i guarantee you i'm no health freak - and i do ignore the fads in the other direction too, i salt my food abundantly (and have low blood pressure) i drink plenty of coffee, i use white sugar in it, and i always had lots of cheese, butter and animal fats, (and have low cholesterol). I moved to italy in the 70s, and when i left i ate all kind of processed junk - i loved commercial oatmeal bread, cookies, etc - things with an ingredient list that stretches the length of the packaging. I came here, and found simple food. I had to learn to make the things i loved back home, and now having had my own versions, i can taste all the chemical junk in the ones i used to like.
My various returns for visits to the States showed me one fad after another - one year i asked for salt and people were horrified (salt is bad for you - not the 20 other ingrients in the bread they ate, just the salt, not the saccharine they fed their kids in the half-gallon bottles of diet soft drinks, just salt). On another trip i asked for sugar for my coffee and they looked at me like i had asked for muriatic acid. Another time it was butter, heaven forfend, we eat margarine, no butter.
Anyway, my gut reaction is to wince when i hear complicated chemicals being added to food.
Thanks for the spaghetti ice cream idea. I'll put that one in the bank for future use.
Commercially prepared food today does not require any cooking instruction to prepare . It requires a minor in chemistry and tecnology. Manufacturers will use anything to exdend shelf life and bring cost of product lower at anyones expense. On many occassions a product is introduced and is half way good only to be reformulated some monthes down the line . Ex. Stove top stuffing supermarket one and commercial has been changed God knows how many times. I believe one of the biggest offenders is Kraft almost everything they used to make was good . Now the store brands are equal or better. There cream cheese has more water in it everytime I buy it. Now I buy Walmart I feel its better and cost less. I d not mind paying for quality but when offered junk I go elsewhere. If you notice all their shredded cheeses now contain cream cheese. This gives it the ability to hold more water and therefore added weight . So there is less mozzerella in the mozzerella and less cheddar in the cheddar varieties.. The fact that they add the cream cheese is hyped as new better tasting , richer ?Only in America !! I call it ripoff
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume).
Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...