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Dave Arnold

Wed, 05/14/2008 - 20:37
Submitted by admin_rg
Dave Arnold
French Culinary Institute New York

Tuesday, September 16 2:00PM—3:10PM

The New Culinary Toolkit: Distilling, Infusing, Low Temp, Vacuum, Carbonation, and More Savory Workshop


Dave Arnold’s long-standing love of food, combined with a Masters of Fine Arts degree from Columbia University, led to a habit of tinkering with restaurant equipment in both artistic and scientific ways. After meeting fellow food tinkerer Wylie Dufresne, Arnold became even more passionate about things culinary – the high-tech cooking movement in particular. His hobby became a profession in 2005 when The French Culinary Institute tapped him to head its new Culinary Technology department. As director, Arnold dedicates himself to helping chefs achieve their most ambitious goals using new technologies, techniques, and ingredients. He teaches tech classes, including those covering sous vide, low-temperature cooking, and hydrocolloids. Most importantly, he plays with culinary tools – souping up a distillation machine bought off E-Bay, for example – and he has a lot of fun.

Arnold has become a well-known name in the field of culinary technology; he’s Food Arts magazine's contributing editor for equipment and food science and frequently lectures at leading industry conferences, including The National Restaurant Show and The International Hotel, Motel, and Restaurant Show. Arnold has participated in think-tanks for companies such as Unilever, offering his insights on the future of cooking. His work at the FCI has been covered in several publications, including Food & Wine, Time, The Economist and Popular Science, and his own hi-tech kitchen was featured in New York Magazine.


Caramelized Bananas with Lapsang Souchong Whipped Cream, Puffed Thai black sticky rice, & Clarified Tamarind Fluid Gel
Chefs Dave Arnold and Nils Noren of The French Culinary Institute – New York, NY
Adapted by
Yield: 10 Servings


• 50 grams red lime paste
• 500 milliliters water
• 10 ripe finger bananas, split in half lengthwise
• 100 milliliters clarified butter
• 100 milliliters Swedish syrup (golden sugar syrup)
• 100 milliliters dark rum
• Pinch salt

Lapsang Souchong Whipped Cream:
• 30 grams Lapsang Souchong tea leaves
• 500 milliliters heavy cream (cold)
• Simple syrup to taste
• Pinch salt

Puffed Thai Black Sticky Rice:
• 500 grams Thai black sticky rice
• 5 liters salted water
• Oil (for frying)

Clarified Tamarind Fluid Gel:
• 11/3 liters water
• 1 block tamarind (approximately 453 grams)
• Gelatin sheets (.5% total weight)
• Simple syrup
• Salt
• Malic acid
• Agar agar (.9% total weight)


For the Bananas:
Stir lime paste into water – make sure contents are completely mixed and that no lumps remain. Allow container to sit for at least 30 minutes (in fridge is best) so that paste settles to the bottom – liquid will look pink and cloudy, but more transparent than after initial mix. Decant liquid from container and refill, mix, and let sit again for at least 30 minutes. This can be repeated multiple times until sediment at bottom of container turns white. Put split bananas in vacuum bag in one layer and fill with enough of decanted red lime liquid to cover bananas. Seal bananas to full vacuum and let sit for 30 minutes. When ready to cook, drain bananas. Heat pan, add clarified butter, and then add bananas and salt to pan and sauté until golden brown. Add syrup and continue to cook until syrup caramelizes on banana. Add dark rum and flambé.

For the Lapsang Souchong Whipped Cream:
Combine tea and cold heavy cream in vacuum bag and package at full vacuum. Let sit in fridge for 8 hours to infuse. Strain cream through chinois, add salt, then whip to soft peaks. Add simple syrup to taste and whip to stiff peak.

For the Puffed Thai Black Sticky Rice:
Bring salted water to boil, add rice and overcook (at least 45 minutes or until very soft). Drain rice, spread immediately on Teflex sheets, and dehydrate at 135F for 4.5 hours. Once rice is dehydrated, fry it in 375F oil until puffed. Drain on paper towels.

For the Clarified Tamarind Fluid Gel:
Boil water and tamarind together until tamarind brick is soft and can be broken apart. Pass through food mill to strain out seeds. Weigh passed tamarind and weigh out 0.5% of that weight in gelatin sheets. Bloom gelatin sheets in cold water. Stir gelatin sheets into hot tamarind mixture to melt – if mixture is no longer hot, heat with gelatin sheets to melt and mix together. Freeze mixture in hotel pan. Once completely frozen, place frozen tamarind into perforated pan lined with 4 layers of cheesecloth set over hotel pan deep enough to catch clarified liquid. Allow tamarind to thaw in the refrigerator for two to three days. Strain clarified juice through chinois. Add simple syrup and salt to taste. Set aside about 50ml of the liquid. Weigh remaining liquid and measure out 0.9% of its weight in agar agar. Disperse agar agar in cold tamarind liquid and then heat while stirring until agar is fully melted (just to boiling). Pour into a half hotel pan over ice bath and let solidify. Cut up solid tamarind gel, purée in blender using reserved 50ml of tamarind liquid to help blend as necessary. De-aerate gel in vacuum machine to regain clarity.

To Assemble and Serve:
Plate bananas with Lapsang Souchong whipped cream, a sprinkle of puffed rice, and finish with dots of tamarind fluid gel.

Carrot and Cardamom-Infused Oysters with Lime Crème Fraiche
Chefs Dave Arnold and Nils Noren of The French Culinary Institute – New York, NY
Adapted by

Yield: 8 Servings


• 5 liters freshly squeezed carrot juice, skimmed and strained
• 130 grams aquarium salt*
• 3 grams finely ground cardamom
• 24 Long Island or North oysters

Lime Crème Fraiche:
• 250 grams crème fraiche
• ½ gram xantham gum
• 20 grams strained lime juice
• Zest of 1 lime
• Salt and pepper

To Assemble and Serve:
• Chopped chives

*preferably Instant Ocean brand


For the Oysters:
Use a high shear blender to combine carrot juice, aquarium salt, and cardamom to a particle size of less than 10 microns. Wash oysters (but do not shuck!) and lay them right-side up in a container big enough to hold all oysters and liquid. Pour carrot-cardamom mixture over oysters and let sit at a temperature between 50F and 70F, out of light, for 2 hours. Do not move or disturb oysters during this time or they will not eat the surrounding liquid.

For Lime Crème Fraîche:
Whisk together crème fraîche, xantham, gum, lime juice, and zest. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

To Assemble and Serve:
Remove oysters from carrot bath and rinse. Shuck oysters and use only those that have ingested carrot liquid for service. Top with mini-quenelle of lime crème fraîche and garnish with chopped chives.

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