Quantcast

Les Petits Chefs work molecular magic with John Placko

Making ice cream pearls with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.comIt’s always a great day in cooking club when John Placko comes to visit and work with us! This week we were so lucky to welcome Chef John of Modern Culinary Academy and Powder for Texture back to the lab for a little dabble in the molecular cuisine side of cooking.  John has worked with the boys a number of times before – they’ve made melon caviar, yoghurt sheets, carbonated strawberries, cranberry snow and chocolate micro sponge, they have sous vide-ed and caramelized bananas with coconut gel and snow (with bonus blow torch action!), they’ve made “rhubarb in textures” and carbonated fruit, cranberry foam, ice cream, ice cream pearls, raspberry niblets topped with pop rocks, cranberry meringues and edible gold (!), sushi with ginger caviar and last time he came, John made gingerbread micro sponge with candy cane ice cream and raspberry niblets

As you can see, John is quite the ambitious chef when he comes to work with the boys – his sessions are never dull! This week, we worked in four groups to produce four different items, so the boys were busy!

First up, we made panna cotta (using a mix with a vegetarian stabiliser – Carrageenan)

Kids making panna cotta with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.com Stirring panna cotta with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.com Putting panna cotta in ramekins with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.comThese set up in the fridge while we worked on other items…

A passionfruit “fluid gel’ – not quite jelly and not quite liquid, it’s perfect for pretty plating!

Moleular cuisine with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.com Passionfruit fluid gel with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.comThe gelling agent is “ultrasperse” – made from Tapioca, it’s a fine white powder used as a thickening agent that is a natural, cold water swelling starch. Magical!

Next up, meringue (no eggs – we used Versawhip which provides twice the aerating capability vs egg whites!). Doesn’t look like much at first – we used only one cup of liquid…

Measuring molecular ingredients with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.com Starting to whip meringue with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.comBut keep whipping and wow –

Whipping meringue with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.com Vegan meringue with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.comWe put this in a piping bag to practise our piping skills!

Putting meringue in a piping bag with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.com Piping meringue with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.comVerdict: “It’s not as easy as it looks!”

Next up, liquid nitrogen ice cream pearls…

Making liquid notrogen ice cream with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.com Making ice cream pearls with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.com Ice cream pearls with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.comMagical!

Then we got to plate – and eat!

Kids using piping bags and squeeze bottles with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.com with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.com Plating molecular magic with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.com Kids plating various dishes with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.comI love watching the boys get creative with these ingredients! They had a great example to follow…

Passionfruit fluid gel, ice cream pearls, panna cotta and meringue with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.comand they got to work…

Kids plating up with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.com Kids adding ice cream pearls to their plates with John Placko on eatlivetravelwrite.comJust the BEST!

“Is cooking club always this great?” wondered one new addition to the club as he left the lab? Actually, yes, with so many wonderfully generous chefs and food enthusiasts in Toronto who want to work with the boys – John is a perfect example of someone who is SO busy but who always makes time for us. We SO appreciate your generosity, John.

Follow John Placko

Read more about John here. Follow John on Instagram here.

 

 

, , , , , , ,

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.