Events

Tokyo Food Trends – Molecular Gastronomy Dinner Class

November 7, 2010 9 Comments
2010 tokyo food trends

Whenever Japanese food is discussed in Australia the focus tends to be on the ubiquitous sushi or sashimi, so for this year’s Crave Sydney International Food Festival we decided to play on the familiar as well as do something a little different.

Tokyo Food Trends – Molecular Gastronomy & More was an opportunity for us to showcase what modernist chefs are doing in Tokyo and beyond. The difficulty of course is Japanese food is a balance of subtle flavours so the use of MG techniques also needed to be subtle, as flavour is the most important thing.

The Japanese menu also evolved during the week, driven by availability and quality of produce each day.

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Here’s a run down of the nights’ creations and the inspiration behind each dish.

1/ Sashimi of hiramasa with shiro shoyu foam, gunkan-maki and roasted pepper caviar

Molecular gastronomy - sushi

Chef’s Armoury’s gunkan-maki

Photos: Lumiere Photographie

Gunkan-maki or battleship sushi is usually made with vinegared rice wrapped in nori – seaweed – with a topping of roe or the like. Taking the theme of the battleship, our gunkan-maki resembled an old school battleship complete with a nori sail. The white soy sauce foam was a perfect match for hiramasa kingfish.

Molecular Gastronomy Caviar Kit

Syringes of roasted red peppers and sodium alginate being dropped into a calcium bath

Photos: Lumiere Photographie

Techniques used

• Direct spherification – roast pepper caviar

• Foam – shiro shoyu sauce

Direct spherification - molecular gastronomy

Demonstrating spherification of roast pepper caviar

Photos: Lumiere Photographie

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2/ Hiyashi Tomato

In izakayas all over Japan, you can order hiyashi tomato – which is simply the best tomato you can find sliced into 5 or 6 pieces. We sought the best tomatoes available, in this case Johnny Lovebites and served it with some housemade kewpie style mayo. The translation of this evolved to a hollowed out Johnny Lovebite tomato filled with tomato water agar agar gel, served with a homemade miso mayo mousse.

Techniques used

• Espuma – miso mayo mousse

• Gellification – tomato agar agar
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3/ Shot of hot miso soup with negi infused oil

Reverse Spherification

Demonstrating reverse spherification – miso soup

Photos: Lumiere Photographie

A rich red – aka – miso soup was the theme ingredient – used to create large ravioli like spheres. These were transferred to hot water and the shots served with negi – shallot – infused oil for extra bite.

Techniques used

• Reverse spherification – aka misoshiru

• Infusion – negi and grapeseed oil
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4/ Oyakodon but not as you know it

Molecular Gastronomy - Sous Vide Supreme

Chef’s Armoury’s version of the Oyakodon

Photos: Lumiere Photographie

Oyakodon is the infamous rice bowl dish served with chicken and egg and simmered in a sweetened dashi and mirin stock. We took the individual elements and a little inspiration from two other Japanese dishes – kushikatsu (crumbed skewers) and onsen tamago (barely poached eggs traditionally cooked in an onsen – hotspring) to reconstruct our version of oyakodon.

Techniques used

• Reconstruction – of the traditional oyakodon

• Extended low temperature cooking of eggs in the Sous Vide Supreme water bath
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5/ Wake up call – yuzu jelly

Eddie Stewart

Eddie Stewart’s yuzu jelly

Photos: Lumiere Photographie

Eddie prepared a refreshing palette cleanser yuzu jelly, that were coated in a fizzy citrus maltodextrin mix.

Techniques used

• Gellification – yuzu juice
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6/ Suimono of snapper and seasonal vegetables

Leigh Hudson

Leigh Hudson’s suimono of snapper and seasonal vegetables

Photos: Lumiere Photographie

Snapper portions, carrots and turnips were all separately cooked in their juices sous vide. The delicate broth was a dashi suimono enhanced with porcini and dill oil.

Techniques used

• Sous vide

• Infusion – dill and grapeseed oil
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7/ Yabbies bathed in miso butter served with yuzu potato espuma

Naked Pan

Cooking yabbies in the Naked Pan

Photos: Lumiere Photographie

There is something magical about the combination of butter and Japanese miso, and when added to fresh shellfish it takes on a higher being. There were beautiful yabbies at the markets early in the week and freshwater marron mid- week. By Friday the live shellfish were looking a little tired, so wagyu was sourced from the local Hudsons.

Creamy yuzu potato foam was expelled from the siphon /espuma gun and finished with a few drops of tomato infused grapeseed oil.

Molecular Gastronomy - Potato foam

Siphoning out the yuzu potato espuma

Photos: Lumiere Photographie

Techniques used

• Espuma – yuzu potato foam

• Infusion – tomato oil
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8/ Matcha Green Tea Parfait

Eddie Stewart

Eddie Stewart’s Green Tea Parfait

Photos: Lumiere Photographie

On to dessert, Eddie prepared a delicious matcha and honey parfait rolled in crushed macadamia praline and served on a light bed of green tea soil with burnt caramel red beans.

Techniques used

• Soils – praline and green tea
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9) DIY dessert

The ninth course was a DIY dessert of Japanese black forest cake which by mid week had changed to a DIY dessert of Japanese coffee jelly.

Participants had fun creating their own coffee jelly spheres which were liquid on the inside and jelly on the outside, using the process of reverse spherification. Others earlier in the week made various incarnations of a black forest cake made with Japanese culinary black charcoal, chocolate espuma, chocolate ganache, green tea soil, sour cherry jelly and white chocolate cream.

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Thanks to all who attended.

 

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9 Comments

Jen B November 8, 2010 at 4:46 pm

The suimono of snapper recipe please and the miso soup spheres recipe. Looks so delicious

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Chiky November 10, 2010 at 1:03 pm

What an awesome event! You’ll have to run a ‘Tokyo Food Trends Part II’. Everything on the night was delicious. The highlights for me were the Miso Soup, and the Potato foam that went with the Yabbies. The siphon gun is ready, I can’t wait to have a go at making it at home.

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kbw95 November 11, 2010 at 2:40 pm

Miso soup reverse spherification recipe please 🙂

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Vaij November 11, 2010 at 4:42 pm

Can I please vote for the green tea parfait? that was just one of those OMG moments

Also liked the tomato jelly, and the egg and the fish consomee with the veggies (Seeing a sus vide pattern here?)

Also foams. Any and all.

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Maria November 12, 2010 at 12:31 am

Hello,

Wonderful pictures and great creativity! I am a fan of molecular gastronomy too

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Deidre November 12, 2010 at 5:58 pm

those miso butter yabbies look delightful, I would love to learn how make the miso yabbie dish with the yuzu potato foam. I am thinking of buying a siphon gun so would be great to build a repertoire of recipes. Are you planning any cooking classes for modern japanese food in the future?

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Chef's Armoury November 16, 2010 at 6:28 pm

Thanks, yes the seafood with miso, butter and yuzu potato foam was one of my favourites as well. And yes, we’ve just posted some new MG classes online and will be focusing on Japanese flavours. Here’s the link. Hope to see you there.

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pigflyin November 19, 2010 at 12:47 pm

Awesome event! with all the dishes being so yummy, I still like the yabbies in onsen 🙂 the best. If there is any chance that you could share the Espuma recipe (in a general ratio (the book) sort of way) would be so fantastic.

shiro shoyu foam was another highlight for me… but I think I would be ok with what I learn from the night.

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