Friday, January 22, 2016

Think those are rocks? Think again! (food art)

Did some experimenting today to really dial-in a dish I'll be serving at EatDirt! (get your tickets here.You may THINK that is just a pile of rocks in the first picture, but it's actually our palate cleanser. smile emoticon I was inspired by a recipe for edible rocks from the restaurant Mugaritz, where soft boiled potatoes are coated in a mixture and dried to resemble river stones. I wanted to re-create the dish with a couple of changes: I wanted to feature fruit instead of potatoes, and I wanted the stones to look like basalt chunks instead of river stones. Success! 

A thin mixture of agalita (an edible clay), lactose, and charcoal powder makes a paste, then is flavored with vanilla and cardamom. Fresh fruit (pears and persimmons) are dipped into it, then allowed to dry in a barely-warm oven. The result is a slightly-sweet, crunchy coating (surprisingly not gritty at all) with a fragrant cardamom aroma around fresh juicy fruit. Fun to bite into! 

o take it one step further in evoking images of fresh stream beds, I presented the "rocks" with a fragrant mist of warm water infused with wild meadow herbs (sagebrush, wormwood, mugwort, yarrow), cardamom, and birch essential oil. It was poured over moss, rocks, and dry ice to create the mist seen in the last few photos. 

This dish is a treat for all the senses: crunchy rocks, juicy fruit, and the cool smell of a misty forest. smile emoticon And this is just the bonus course! I've designed 5 more courses this awesome for the event. I am so excited to share these creations with a group of people ready for an adventure!

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