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The 8th International Contest for Note by Note Cooking

The final event for the 8th Contest took place the 4th of June 20210

The 8th International Contest for Note by Note Cooking is now over. The topic was

Using pectins with as few sugar as possible

The results are here :

More :

International Contest for Note by Note Cooking N°8

« Playing with pectins »

Organizers :
Roisin Burke (<roisin.burke chez dit.ie),> http://www2.agroparistech.fr/The-8th-International-Contest-for-Note-by-Note-Cooking.html]

Introduction : Note by Note Cooking

Note by Note Cooking is the culinary technique using pure compounds, in order to build food (i.e. dishes).
The cook has to decide for the shapes, consistencies, tastes, odours, trigeminal sensations (pungencies, freshnesses…), temperatures, colours…
Of course, it deals with questions of nutrition, toxicity, and is part of the large « Note by Note Project » for sustainable development, important for feeding the humankind in 2050, when the population of the Earth will perhaps reach 10 billion people. This project is an important contribution to the fight against spoilage, while sparing water, energy, foodstuffs, and taking care of the environment.

The goal of this 8th contest :
Playing with pectins and a minimum content of sugar

For this new contest, we invite competitors (in the three categories : chefs, students, amateurs) to create dishes with interesting consistencies and/or flavours using pectins.

More details

First, to produce their dishes, competitors will have to select the ingredients in order to get as close as possible as “pure note by note cooking”, which means having only pure compounds in the dish. This will be one criteria of the jury, even if some pratical solutions can be found sometimes, when quite pure fractions are used (for example, oil is a mixture of triglycerides, or corn starch is only 80 % pure amylopectin).

The dishes submitted to the jury will be appreciated to their degree of proximity to the pure “note by note" cooking, but obviously, we will also judge the originality of the implementation.

The jury will favor productions that do not contain plant tissues (fruits, vegetables) or animals (meat, eggs, fish) whole, but rather unprecedented fractions of such compounds. Participants will be free to purchase these fractions or produce them themselves.

(1) Professional chefs : they will be judged on their skills to produce a recipe using pure compounds or a mixture of pure compunds and designing the shape, colour, texture etc. This group have access to specific note by note ingredients and specialized equipment in professional kitchens and should have a good skills level.

(2) Students : depending on the applications, there can be two groups, those that are culinary arts students and those that are science students.
Like the professional chefs, the former most likely have access to specific note by note ingredients and specialised equipment. The other students may or may not not have access to these ingredients or equipment. In the case of the culinary student the judging criteria is similar to that for the professional chefs but the level of skills of culinary arts students may be less. If the other students have a science background, the judging criteria could include the use of scientific knowledge to maximise the use of ingredients which were available.

(3) Amateurs - the best use of ingredients which were available.

Where can you find the ingredients ?

For cooking Note by Note, you simply need your kitchen, kitchen cupboards and supermarket. Below, you can find pure compounds e.g. water, sugar, salt, xanthan gum, lecithin etc.
Some can be extracted. For example, if you acidify milk and extract curds (mostly casein), you prepare the whey. Or from wheat flour, if you make a dough and wash starch off to, you can separate gluten (that can also be bought at bakers).

There are other cheap ways to get ingredients :
- look for deals on the internet through companies such as Amazon
- email suppliers and ask for free samples (small amounts)
- visit trade shows and ask supplier companies for free samples.

Examples of suppliers

Iqemusu (2017). The 24 Notes. [online]. Available at : https://iqemusu.com/en/the-24-notes-note-by-note-cooking/

Louis François (2019). Louis François- Food Ingredients Since 1908. Available at : http://www.louisfrancois.com/index_en.html

MSK (2019), MSK catalogue. [online] Available at : http://msk-ingredients.com/msk-catalogue-2019/?page=1.

Sosa (2019). Sosa Catalogue. Available at : https://www.sosa.cat/

Texturas (2012). Texturas Albert y Ferran Adria. Available at : http://albertyferranadria.com/eng/texturas.html

The proposed dishes will be appreciated according to their proximity to « pure note by note cooking » (using pure compounds instead of simple mixtures). Also the originality of the use of such compounds will be evaluated.

Each proposed dish will have to be :
1. described in a .doc file by a recipe (Roman 12) giving
1. the ingredients, including quantities
2. the process
2. shown by photographs.

The candidates will have to accept that their recipes and pictures can be used (with their name) by the organizers and the partners of the contest (see authorization of use in the bottom of this document).

Evaluation :
Feasibility, reproductibility
Originality of the work.
Using pure compounds will be preferred to using fractions.
Of course, the productions should not be toxic.
The flavour complexity will be appreciated : dishes have a shape, consistency, odor, taste, trigeminal sensation, temperature…

Who can participate ?
The contest is free, open to all. But there will be different categories, such as : culinary professionals (chefs), students, amateurs.

How to participate ?
For applying, it is enough to send an email with post address, phone number, signed authorization of diffusion of the contest material.

Then, for proposing the result, one has to send a file (fichier .doc) describing the recipe in details, with a powerpoint document (fichier .ppt) showing the various steps and the final result, with high resolution pictures 300 dpi.

Dates :
- application at any time before 30th of May 2021.
- document being sent before the 20th of May 2020.

Prize Event :
AgroParisTech, Paris (Friday 4th of June 2021)

Prizes will be given by the partners. The best results will be displayed on various internet sites (Forum Note à Note d’AgroParisTech...). They will be shown on posters during itinerary exhibitions.

Thanks to our partners
Sociétés Iqemusu, Belin/Pour la Science, Louis François, Editions BPI

Autorisation de diffusion

Je sous-signé ……………….. demeurant ……………………….. autorise les organisateurs et les partenaires du Troisième Concours International de Cuisine Note à Note à diffuser les recettes et les images soumises pour participation au concours.

Fait à ………………………….. le …………………………………..

Signature :
Annexe :
From Molecular Gastronomy to its applications :
« Molecular Cuisine » (it is over)
and « Note by Note Cuisine » (don’t miss this next world
culinary trend !)

Hervé This

1. The scientific work

In 1988 Nicholas Kurti and I created the scientific discipline that we called « Molecular
gastronomy » (remember that the word « gastronomy » means « knowledge », and not cuisine, even haute cuisine ; in the same way, Molecular Gastronomy does not stand for cooking !).
The aim of Molecular Gastronomy was, is and will be forever : looking for the mechanisms of
phenomena occcuring during dish preparation and consumption.

2. An application in the kitchen

In the beginning of the 80’s, we introduced also « Molecular Cuisine », whose definition is :
« Producing food (this is cuisine) using « new » tools, ingredients, methods ».
In this definition, the word « new » stands for what was not in kitchens of the western countries in 1980.
For example : siphon (to make foams), sodium alginate (to get pearls with a liquid core, spaghettis of vegetables, etc.) and other gelling agents (agar-agar, carraghenans, etc.), liquid nitrogen (to make sherbets and many other innovative preparations), rotary evaporator, and more generally, the whole set of lab’s equipment when they can be useful ; another of new « method », finally, the prepration of the Chocolate Chantilly, of beaumés, gibbs, nollet, vauquelins, etc. ( Cours de gastronomie moléculaire n°1 : Science, technologie, technique (culinaires) : quelles relations ?, Ed Quae/Belin)

Of course all these items are not completely new (many gelling agents are used in Asia for millenia, and many tools are used daily in chemistry labs), but the goal was to modernize the technical component of cuisine.

Yes, the expression « Molecular Cuisine » is poorly chosen, but it had to be introduced at some time... and it is not within the Encyclopedia Britannica Dictionnaly. And Molecular Cuisine will disappear... because of... see below !

3. The next culinary trend : Note by Note Cuisine !

The next proposal is much more exciting, and its name is NOTE BY NOTE CUISINE.

It was first proposed in 1994 (in the magazine Scientific American) at a time when I was playing at using compounds in food, such as paraethylphenol in wines and whiskeys, 1-octen-3-ol in dishes, limonene, tartaric acid, ascorbic acid, etc.
The initial proposal was to improve food... but the next idea was obvious, it is to make dishes
entirely from compounds.
Let’s say it differently. Note by Note Cuisine is not using meat, fish, vegetable or fruits, but rather compounds, either pure compounds or mixtures, such as electronic music is not using trumpets or violins, but rather pure waves which are mixed in sounds and in music.
Here, for Note by Note Cuisine, the cook has to :
– design the shapes of the various parts of the dish
– design the colors
– design the tastes
– design the odors
– design the temperatures
– design the trigeminal stimulation
– design the consistencies
– design the nutritional aspects
– etc.

The feasability of this new cuisine was already shown by many meals :
– first Note by Note meal (called Note by Note N°1) shown to the international press in Hong
Kong by Pierre Gagnaire in April 2009
– two dishes shown at the French-Japanese Scientific Meeting (JSTS) in Strasbourg, in May
– whole Note by Note Meal served by the chefs of the Cordon bleu School in Paris in
October 2010
– Note à Note meal served the 26th of January 2011, as a launching event of the International
Year of Chemistry, at UNESCO, Paris, by the team of Potel&Chabot
– Note by Note cocktail serve in April 2011 to 500 French chefs freshly starred at Michelin,
in Espace Cardin, Paris
– Note by Note Meal served in October 2011 by the team of the chefs of the Cordon bleu
Schools Paris
– Note by Note dishes made by chefs of the Toques Blanches International Association, in
Paris, 3 Decembre 2011
Many questions arise from this new cuisine :
– land development
– economy
– sensorial
– technique
– art
– politics
– nutrition
– toxicology
– etc.

But :

1. humankind is facing an energy crisis : it is not sure that traditional cuisine is sustainable (it
is not !)
2. the New will always beat the Old
3. cracking products from agriculture and farming is already done for milk and wheat ; why
not carrots, apples, etc. ?
4. The objections made to Note by Note cuisine were done half a century ago against
electronic music, and guess what you hear at the radio today ?
In other words, are not we at the equivalent of 1947, when musicians such as Varèse and some
others were investigating electronic music ?

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