As many of you may already know, I love gadgets and occasionally I share tech news I've learned with hope that it'll make your life a little easier and more fun. With that in mind, this latest "innovation" -- a tech-obsessed chef who has developed edible food off a color inkjet printer -- is something I thought many of you would enjoy, especially since it relates to foods. .
A Chicago-based chef, Homaru Cantu, appears to be a major tech geek. He has modified an inkjet printer to "create" dishes made of edible paper that can taste like anything from birthday cake to sushi. Here's how it works:
- Ink cartridges are loaded with fruit and vegetable concoctions instead of black/colored ink
- The paper tray contains edible sheets made of soybean and potato starch
- The otherwise normal inkjet printer generates tasty versions of foods, based on images downloaded from the web
Additionally, the menu at Cantu's restaurant (Moto) is edible, as customers can tear it up to turn a bowl of gazpacho into a new version of alphabet soup. Cantu will even season menus to taste like the main courses. He'll also prepare edible photographs flavored to fit a given theme. For example, an image of a cow might taste like filet mignon.
However, until the paperwork is filed on patents, the chef isn't revealing how he modified the print heads to write in vegetable juice. Nor is he giving away any recipes for his colorful inks, other than to say carrots, tomatoes and purple potatoes are involved in "the formula."
Cantu's Culinary Inventions on the Horizon
Inkjet food is merely one of the more "conventional products" Cantu has in development. He's also currently experimenting with liquid nitrogen, helium and superconductors to make foods levitate and has tested a hand-held ion-particle gun to do just that.
He also aspires to cook steak with a hand-held laser to sear the center of the meat until it is well done on the inside and medium rare, or even raw, on the outside. Cantu imagines using the laser to bake bread as well -- with the crust on the inside of the loaf. And that's still not all: Cantu remarks, "I want to make food float, I want to make it disappear, I want to make it reappear, I want to make the utensils edible, I want to make the plates, the table, the chairs edible."
While all of Mr. Cantu's inventions and aspirations sound exciting, not to mention incredibly interesting, I'm going to have to pass. So thanks, but no thanks -- I'd rather eat real food, and on a plate, not above my head.