Lifestyle Product Reviews Recipes

Experiments in Molecular Gastronomy w/ Uncommon Goods

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If you haven’t heard of UnCommon Goods, I highly suggest checking them out, especially as the holiday season approaches.  They have a great selection of personalized gifts (here) and anniversary gifts (here), as well as a carefully curated collection of items just for women (here). It’s also where I scooped up my now infamous “cookie-bandit” mug a while back. I had the pleasure of hearing the CEO speak on a panel a few years ago and was thoroughly impressed with the company’s mission and core values. Uncommon Goods strives to feature unique designs and handcrafted gifts created in harmony with the environment and without harm to animals or people. Operations are run out of the historic Brooklyn Army Terminal, including its warehouse where the lowest-paid seasonal worker starts at 50% above the minimum wage.

My friends and family know that I’m always down to host a dinner party.  And when I do, I always like to throw in a little something “extra” to surprise and delight my guests.  With that being said, I was completely stoked when the generous peeps over at Uncommon Goods sent over a Molecular Gastronomy Kit for me to test drive. And in case you’re wondering what the heck molecular gastronomy is, here’s a simple definition:

Molecular Gastronomy blends physics and chemistry to transform the tastes and textures of food. The result? New and innovative dining experiences. The term Molecular Gastronomy is commonly used to describe a style of cuisine in which chefs explore culinary possibilities by borrowing tools from the science lab and ingredients from the food industry.  

Think “caviar” pearls made out of chocolate or lemon-infused foam placed artistically atop your halibut. I always wondered how those fancy-schmancy restaurants pulled off these culinary feats, and I was beyond excited to see what I could recreate in my own kitchen.

Here’s a peak at all of the tools I received in my kit, including a deluxe hardcover cookbook:

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Not gonna lie, my initial experiment with Deconstructed Cocoa failed abysmally.  However, I had tons of fun in the process and eventually mastered the art of Reverse Spherification (trust me, it sounds way more complicated than it actually is) which allowed me to churn out these amazing little vanilla yogurt spheres that burst with flavor in your mouth when you bite into them.

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And of course I just couldn’t resist playing with my food the entire time that I was cooking…

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I decided to pair the yogurt spheres with freshly sliced strawberries.  These were a snap to prepare once I got the technique down, and I think they’ll make an excellent amuse-bouche at my next fête!

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The kit contains just about everything you need to create the yogurt spheres (just add yogurt and milk), plus a few other dishes as well.  But do note that you may need to invest in an immersion blender and perhaps some additional food additives if you want to take full advantage of the cookbook that’s included. You can check out the video below for a full breakdown of the reverse spherification process:

Thanks so much to the team over at Uncommon Goods for allowing me to play the part of a mad chef/scientist in the kitchen!
Stay tuned for my next creation!

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