Eat & Drink

A Sneak Peek into the Science that Goes into Asia’s #1 Chef Gaggan Anand’s Food

October 7, 2015

“Your country, the Philippines, contains an infinite resource of molecular gastronomy’s building blocks,” said Gaggan Anand, whose restaurant in Bangkok ranks as Asia’s #1 according to San Pellegrino, as he talked about Googling ‘carrageenan’ and the Philippines being among the top results.

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Charismatic, entertaining, and extremely down to earth, Gaggan Anand interned in El Bulli’s lab where he played around different ingredients and chemicals, experimenting different cooking techniques, and having much fun in the kitchen. His approach to food is intellectual yet relatable—easily comprehensible without having to think too hard. His creativity shines as he prepares some of his finest dishes from his restaurant in Bangkok.

Gagganfi

Indian spiced yogurt dipped in a vat of carrageenan, turning it into a bubble with an egg yolk-like texture. The thin film of yogurt skin gives way at the slightest pressure, allowing the yogurt to burst in the mouth. “You can just grab a pack of yogurt at 7-Eleven and make this at home!” he says.

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The Nut Bag: dehydrated lentils, coconut, tropical fruits, wasabi, peas, and other flavorful ingredients. Yes, it tastes Japanese and yes, the plastic bag is edible. Made from rice starch, this is a medicinal paper used by Japanese.

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Charcoal: one of Gaggan’s signature dishes. A mixture of different ingredients—seafood, garlic, ginger, onion, deep-fried in charcoal batter. Gaggan tells us that the inspiration of this dish comes from an encounter with a woman selling street food in the streets of Calcutta.

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For dessert, a spherical mango white chocolate mousse molded inside a balloon and dipped in liquid nitrogen. Different layers of texture make this sweet treat an experience.

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Discovering what is unknown to us is largely part of Cheryl Tiu’s new venture, Cross Cultures. Based on the belief that food is one of the most accessible ways to exchange culture, the event’s platform brings together culinary experiences across the globe, in a space that allows diners to uncover something truly unique and different.

Have you been to Gaggan in Thailand? Which of the dishes above are you most curious to try? Sound off in the comments section below!

Mikka Wee Mikka Wee

Mikka Wee is former editor of Pepper.ph and was part of the team until she got whisked away to Singapore in 2016 where she worked in advertising and eventually found herself back in the food industry. She currently does marketing work for two popular Singaporean dessert brands and is a weekly columnist for The Philippine Daily Inquirer’s lifestyle brand, Preen.ph. She has always been crazy about travel, food, and her dog Rocket.

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2 comments in this post SHOW

2 responses to “A Sneak Peek into the Science that Goes into Asia’s #1 Chef Gaggan Anand’s Food”

  1. DEEZQUS says:

    The Nut Bag and Charcoal.. I’d love to visit Thailand for these.

  2. Volts Sanchez says:

    Never wanted a nut bag in my mouth before #FirstTimeForEverything

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