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Everything posted by Zoticus

  1. I wouldn't like to be in John Crace's shoes at the moment:
  2. Are you saying that he's not the best then? Or are you saying that his PR is the best but his food isn't, or what? I don't understand why you're so against PR anyway, surely the mass of attention that Heston gets is only because he's proportionally so much better than anyone else. and not because of press releases etc?
  3. I don't think defending Heston is acting like a 'prat'. All I see here is lots of amateurs having a dig. We should be celebrating Heston, his is an inspirational rags to riches story that gives hope to millions of deprived youngsters. From a poverty stricken one bedroomed flat with all the family in the same bed on the mean streets of Paddington, becoming a champion kick-boxing to survive, and using his muscular body to earn a living the only way he knew how by debt collecting. Selling everything he owned to eat in the great restaurants of the world, and then, with no formal training, buying and refurbishing a former 12th century pub, which he has made into the undispitued number one restaurant in the world, and on the way inventing molecular gastronomy and revolutionizng cuisine! Not only that, but he is also teaching the scientists how to do their jobs too, as well as discovering the food of the past!
  4. Based on one visit two years ago, I wouldn't say it even merits two stars. Mind you I'd say the same about Berasategui and Sant Pau.
  5. Right, the inventor of Molecular Alchemy is wrong, maybe that's why the programme isn't called 'jackal10: In Search of Perfection'.
  6. Perhaps you've got this the wrong way around. Where would Veyrat, Adria and Gagnaire be without treading the trail blazed by goodly Heston of the gleaming probe (thermometer)?
  7. Heston doesn't need to change his menu because it's perfect. He's proved it's perfect with science. If he changed his menu he would be conceding that it wasn't perfect since something that is perfect doesn't need to be changed, ever. I just think you don't get it.
  8. What shape is it? Loved the rectangular Black Forest Gateaux, round cakes are crap. Genius!
  9. Or perhaps c. someone who resents the knockers. Despite the facts, Sir Heston has placed British food at the top of world gastronomy. So why is it that so many people want to knock him? I notice that none of his critics here have their own pime time tv shows. More than just coincidence? I don't think so Don't worry, I won't respond to your insults. Have you seen the program btw?
  10. Heston is certainly not a Sir, and the claim that he is 'officially' the best chef on the planet is debatable. According to whom? ← According to the Queen of Britain and Restaurant Magazine.
  11. If these Parisian restaurants are so good, why is it that Sir Heston is officially the best chef on the planet?
  12. Despite pluggging BMW on desert island dicks, HB is the worlds only chef to have a knighthood. KNOW YOUR PLACE!
  13. Exactly. He is a GENIUS. The point about a programme on Leonardo Da Vinci is not to then pick up a brush and paint your own Mona Lisa. It's the same with Heston, watching a GENIUS at work is a humbling privilege and well worth the license fee.
  14. Heston is not only officially the best chef in the world, but he is also a doctor of science and has recently been awarded an OBE, which proves that He is a genius! Comparing him to Wall's is an outrage, it's like saying Leonardo Da Vinci is a house painter. Hestons food should make you proud to be British.
  15. Obviously, in order to cook something 'perfectly', you first need to have an idea what 'perfect' is and then adapt your means to that end. My point is not about differing tastes, about which we all know there's no arguing. What I want to say is that if something is cooked to an exacting technical specification, it doesn't automatically follow that it is perfect or even good. Fish protein sets at 40C (?). I cook it at 40C until it is just set. Therefore it is perfect. As you can see there is a missing premise. Just set fish protein is perfect. I'd take issue with this, because I think that what is meant by 'perfect' in this sense, is really 'the objective I seek'. In a scientific sense one can claim to have verified a theorem with complete success, and although not a technical term, this outcome could conceivably be designated perfect, but the aesthetic qualities of eating cannot be reduced to a successful experiment, and in fact the idea that achieving one's objective is enough in itself, also leaves the diner completely out of the loop. I think this sums up a lot of modern cooking. Merely inventing a challenge and then meeting it does not equate with perfection or pleasing your diners. To me, sous-vide salmon is like I imagine salmon to be had it been left in a shopping bag in the sun. Either way, it's vile and whether it's been arrived as the solution to an invented culinary problem via vacuum sealing and stirred water baths, or because you left it on the car seat on the hottest day of the year, it's still vile. Indeed, anyone who says something is perfect is effectively saying that it is as good as it gets, and when it's as good as it gets, that is the end of gastronomy.
  16. This encapsulates the problem for me: sous-vide/low-temp cooking rests on the assumption that 'perfect' is synonymous with 'just coagulated' protein. Personally, and I wouldn't go as far as claiming knowledge of 'perfection', a piece of good salmon placed skin side down in a hot pan and put in the oven until it's 'medium-rare' has a lot more going in terms of complexity and interplay between its various components, than the uniformity of a low-temp cooked piece of the same. I'm not ruling out that this method can produce superior methods, I just don't think that the term 'perfectly cooked' can be reduced to 'just coagulated'.
  17. No, I've eaten a fair bit of this kind of thing, and for me it's a trade off between uniformly soft texture, and flavour. Horses for courses, I suppose, but I can't help thinking that chewing has, rather unfairly, become bad manners in restaurant dining rooms. Not much, which was sort of my point.
  18. Completely different results for sure, but I would debate the desirability of eating 'just-coagulated' fish. Novel, perhaps, but hardly pleasant. Besides, low-temperature, moist-heat cooking in a hermetically sealed vessel is not new. What is new is the trend for cooking things that don't need to be cooked like this. Pork belly, lamb shank, pig-cheeks, oxtail all require a long a low temperature cooking, and they lend themselves well to sous-vide. Fish, and very tender cuts of meat can be cooked sous-vide, but there's really much reason to so other than to be different. Indeed, the lengths gone to to accompany a sous-vide piece of protein with some kind of Maillard reaction flavour seems almost self defeating. Finally, vegetables can be cooked this way with interesting results. This is probably the area with the most potential. For example, pisto (similar to ratatouille) stored for a few days sous vide looks and tastes much better than it would do otherwise.
  19. I think it's both. Allegedly, it can be used as a distinct technique that yields up original preparations, or it can be used to control portions, centralize production, and minimize staff and wastage. Unsurprisingly, chefs seem to dislike the latter use. Regarding the former, I've heard a lot spoken but seen little evidence of it. The now ubiquitous sous-vide pork belly used be called 'braised' and tasted just as good, if not better, to my humble palate. Nevertheless, there can be little doubt of the value of sous-vide for banqueting, which has seen a marked improvement in the last decade.
  20. The little sachets contain sepia, or cuttlefish, ink, not squid ink. I've never made direct comparison, but I suspect that the effect on the sauce either way is minimal.
  21. Our kids were started off on purees at about six months. These were made from fresh vegetables: courgette, green beans, carrot, potato, onion, garlic (and after a 12 months, broccoli), pulses: beans, lentils, chickpeas; with either chicken breast, fillet steak, or white fish, and, of course, a dash of extra-virgin olive oil. I've noticed that kids here eat more widely than in the UK, mine are no exception and they happily eat things like olives, fish, greens, and tomatoes. On the basis of my own anecdotal evidence, I'd say that early exposure to a variety of foodstuffs does give children a more adventurous palate.
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