A Sneak Peek into the Science that Goes into Asia’s #1 Chef Gaggan Anand’s FoodOctober 7, 2015
- Mikka WeeWords
“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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.