Chefs Without Restaurants

Even More Cooking Issues and Food Science with Dave Arnold - Part 2

November 23, 2021 Chris Spear Season 2 Episode 119
Chefs Without Restaurants
Even More Cooking Issues and Food Science with Dave Arnold - Part 2
Show Notes Transcript

On this episode, we're joined by chef Dave Arnold. He’s the host of the Cooking Issues podcast, author of the cocktail book Liquid Intelligence, and creator of the Searzall and Spinzall. Dave is also the founder of the  Museum of Food and Drink, and the man behind the NYC bars Booker & Dax and Existing Conditions, sadly , both of which are no longer in operation. 

As I kind of expected going into this show, I  let Dave lead the way. I leaned into all those weird and intriguing food science topics. Our discussion went long, so I broke it up into two episodes, and this is part 2. You can find part 1 here

We discuss storing fresh tomatoes, using canned tomatoes, and pizza sauce. We talk about his upcoming book, working with Gellan, hot poker cocktails, and fermenting with koji. We also talk about potato doughnuts and Moravian Sugar Cake (and so much more).

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Dave Arnold

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Dave's Instagram
The (new) Cooking Issues Podcast
Buy the book Liquid Intelligence
Dig through the Cooking Issues blog

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Chris Spear:

Welcome to Chefs Without Restaurants. I'm your host Chris Spear. On the show. I have conversations with culinary entrepreneurs and people in the food and beverage industry who took a different route. There caterers, research chefs, This episode, we're joined again by Dave Arnold. This is part two personal chefs, cookbook authors, food truckers, farmers, cottage bakers, and all sorts of culinary renegades. I myself fall into the personal chef category as I started my own personal chef business perfect little bites 11 years ago. And while I started working in kitchens in the early 90s, I've of our conversation that we had. If you missed part one, go back literally never worked in a restaurant. and check it out. I'll put a link in the show notes. He's the host of the cooking issues podcast, author of the cocktail book Liquid Intelligence, and the creator of the Searzall and Spinzall. Dave's also the founder of the Museum of food and drink, and the man behind the New York City bars Booker and Dax, and Existing Conditions. Unfortunately, both of those are now closed. If you listen to part one, or if you know anything about Dave, you know that this could get a little interesting. We talked a lot about food science, cooking techniques and a bunch of interesting stuff that I kind of wanted to find out about. He talks a little bit about his new book, which is not going to be about cocktails. Trigger warning, he uses the word moist a lot. We're talking about how to store fresh tomatoes. And we also talked about using canned tomatoes, especially in marinara sauces. We also talk about potato bread, doughnuts and Moravian sugar cake. We talked about working with Gellan, working with things like Koji for charcuterie, and so much more. So I hope you love this episode as much as I did. I really enjoy talking to Dave. He's someone I have so much respect for in the culinary industry and has been a big influence on me. So I was really glad I got to talk to him for a little over two hours, which again is why I cut this into two parts. So if you love the show, please consider rating it and finance social media and let me know what you think. And we're gonna jump right into the show after a quick word from our sponsors. As a grits enthusiast I'm honored to welcome our newest sponsor, Professor Torbert's orange corn. I've been buying their products for a couple years now so I can speak to the awesome quality of these products. Professor tTorbert's orange corn is the result of its founders lifelong dedication to improving the world through science and agriculture. over 20 years ago, Torbert set out to answer a simple but revolutionary question. Can you naturally make corn more nutritious? Could you deliver the benefits of a vegetable through a grain? Today, non GMO orange corn is helping fight micronutrient deficiencies in more than 10 African countries. The vibrant orange color comes from significantly increased levels of carotenoids. Torbert decided to see what he could do with it here at home. To his delight, he found that not only could Americans eyee health otentially benefit from its higher levels of antioxidant carotenoids, but it also tasted unbelievably good. So when you choose Professor torwards, you aren't just saying yes to better flavor. You're also helping deliver better nutrition on a global scale. Tastes good, feels good. All of Professor torwards products grits cornmeal and cornflower are non GMO, gluten free and vegan. All their products are sold online at Professor torbert.com on Amazon, and wholesale. And now through the end of November. Professor turbots is happy to offer all Chefs Without Restaurants listeners 10% off on all orange corn products go to Professor Torbert calm and simply Use the promo code chef's 10 at checkout, that's c h e f s one zero. Did you know restaurants turnover employees four times faster than most businesses? What if somebody created an affordable and effective hiring solution for the restaurant industry? What if there were a job site that only focused on people looking for food service jobs? What if that site only cost $50 A year to advertise for every job your restaurant needed? Forget the big corporate sites like indeed and Monster, our sponsor, savory jobs has a job site exclusively for restaurants. The best part is savory jobs only charges $50 for an entire year, and you can post all the jobs you want. And for our loyal listeners, use the code savory 10 and get 10% off. That's S A Vory. One zero. So you go to savory jobs, calm and discover the job site shaking up the industry. And remember to use savory 10 for 10% off. And now on with the show. Thanks so much, and have a great week. Another project when I have some free time, I guess. So books, you have the book liquid intelligence, which came out a few years ago, and you mentioned that you're working on something. So what's the new book gonna be? The new book

Dave Arnold:

is cooking, not cocktails, and it's a tentatively I haven't really discussed this with my publisher yet, because I think they think they're getting a different book than the book I'm writing. But it's gonna be called Cooking issues. And it's about the miracle of moisture management, that how almost all cooking problems boil down to moisture problems. So like, we were talking about flowers, you know, protein damage starch, it's like all of this really is about understanding how the differences in different flowers, you know, how they respond to moisture, and how those moisture things respond when they're in the oven. And so we're, you know, in low temperature cooking, or in finishing, or in deep frying, or, you know, people don't really understand how things are roasted, or how vegetable cookery were all of these things. Like really, you know, I think helping people to understand how we're controlling both the internal moisture and the moisture at the surface. And the difference between those two things, is like nine tents of figuring out how to cook and then the How to Cook, right. And then there's, there's flavors and all that which is you know where your palate comes in, right, but the mechanics of it is really all about manipulating the moisture in it. And so like that, that's what it's about the miracle of moisture management. It's going to be the subtitle, right? So it's gonna be called Cooking issues. Maybe people would buy something called Cooking issues. In the miracle of moisture management. We'll see if I can convince my publisher but I mean, that's what it's fundamentally about.

Chris Spear:

That's a great subtitle.

Dave Arnold:

I've never had a problem with the word moist. I know some people do.

Chris Spear:

It's a hot button word. I used to work with someone who you couldn't even say that word.

Dave Arnold:

mean, like, moist? Is like bad for clothing. But great for cake. Right? Like it used to be. You're like, oh, ooh, that cake moist. You know what I mean? Like, everyone that was like a moist cake

Chris Spear:

is okay with that voice, though. I think that's the thing is

Dave Arnold:

voice. Yeah. But yeah, I mean, it's like, again, I gotta bring gotta bring moisture back,

Chris Spear:

other than your stuff that you put out? What are some of your favorite culinary resources? Like? Where do you recommend people check things out? Like if they just want to be a better cook in general? And I know that's a real broad term.

Dave Arnold:

Yeah, well, I mean, assuming that they already own Harold's book. If you don't own on food and cooking, like, you're definitely not gonna listen to anything I say if you don't already own on food and cooking, right? I mean, that's just or know about it. I actually read a lot of technical, I read a lot of technical literature, like a lot of technical literature. And it's, I think, hard. I do because I have to, and I don't know, I'm just used to reading it, I think it's actually difficult to get useful information out of a lot of technical literature because of the way it's written. So you have to sift through like 300 pages of stuff that is not useful to a real Cook, to get that one sentence that is very useful to a real cook. And that's kind of hard. So I can't necessarily recommend that people start sifting through technical literature. You know, thanks to thanks is the right word. Thanks to a lot of pirate websites out there, it's now a lot easier to get a hold of technical literature, it's a lot easier to get behind paywalls and to get hold of technical literature, and since the price of those things is typically unconscionable. I don't feel bad necessarily, about looking at that information. Yeah, but it's a whole whole different world getting getting behind those paywalls. And then, you know, I would find people that you trust and look at their information, you're talking about Daniel Blitzer. I've had like, some, you know, kind of, you know, heated arguments with him about, for instance, tomatoes, and whether they should be stored in the fridge or not.

Chris Spear:

What is your take right now in the fridge or not in the fridge? Okay,

Dave Arnold:

so first of all, I'm gonna say Daniel grifter is a trusted source. So if Daniel grits or says something, you at least have to take it seriously. So it's like, you don't have to believe you don't have to think he's right, necessarily. But you have to take what he says seriously. You know, so for many years, I'm sure a lot of us were trained, right growing up, you don't put tomatoes in the fridge. You don't do it, right. Because why? Because they turned mealy, because they turn to garbage, right. And it's well known thing called chilling injury in a tomato, where the texture of it actually becomes even more mealy, if that was humanly possible supermarket tomato for to become more mailing. Now, this advice was given to us in the days before the compulsory tomato, which by the way, I think are kind of a godsend, like those little cocktail tomatoes, and those Campari, tomatoes and things like that. I really honestly, like they're a godsend. Because any time of year, I can get something that is roughly tomato flavored, that is fresh, because those on the vine tomatoes don't taste like tomatoes to me, like those like weird little semi pink, soft balls that they sell in the supermarket, they don't taste like tomatoes to me. So I'd always grown up thinking that if you put a tomato in the fridge, you're an enemy of quality, right straight. And I still think I'm right to an extent. But Daniel Kretser did a an experiment where he went to his, you know, apartment in the summer, which he said wasn't air conditioned. But seriously, it's nice to pay him a lot more if you can't afford to air condition his New York City apartment, because New York City apartments are not livable without air conditioning. Anyway, so he was saying he didn't have an air conditioned apartment, which again, I find difficult to believe, but we'll take him at his word. And he took some tomatoes, and he put them on the on the counter. And then he put some in the fridge. And he said that what happened is, is that tomatoes keep ripening, right when they're sitting around, that the ones on the counter actually went over the hill and lost a lot of their vital characteristics. And so that if you're only going to store something for a day or two, and if the tomato is, you know, one of these ones that is kind of like not going to get great and is like where it is that you're actually better off storing it in the fridge for those short periods of time. And so I was like, You know what, alright, that's fair. But that's not how I roll with a tomato. So like, like, if I'm going to buy a, like a fancy tomato, the tomatoes that I buy, right? I buy them very specifically. First of all, they're fantastically expensive. It's the aunt Ruby's German, green and the German and the German stripe from the rubies green in the German stripe from Stokes farms. So you you go and you get these tomatoes, and you buy them based on what day they are going to become ripe. So you think of them almost like avocados, right? You buy an advocate, this is an avocado for today. This is an avocado for tomorrow. This is not avocado for two days from now, right? It's you know, only you know, people who don't think ahead that buy only today's avocado. And the same thing is true with tomatoes, if you're buying a really really good tomato. And so for those, you know, I bring them home, I put the towel out and I you turn them stem side down. Because the the bottom of the tomato, the blossom end of the tomato is the most fragile place and it's the place that ripens first so this most not only because of the stem, which goes in but because it's like ripening later. Like it's a lot better to put tomatoes with this with the stem and down.

Chris Spear:

I've never heard that like this, this is gonna make this podcast worth it. If nothing else, like I grow tomato so like that tip alone will help.

Dave Arnold:

Right well so first, like, you know, if you do leave a little bit of stem on because you don't want to be worried about breaking the tomato like, you know, the biggest problem with people taking tomatoes home from a market it when the stem ends are left on his stem puncture, right, so you're putting the two tomatoes together, and you get stem puncture from the stem and into the so if there's any stem and left on I usually trim it so that it'll sit flat. And if you know if you grow the the stem end is much more structurally sound right? So you don't want especially one of these big heirlooms, they get little pinholes in them from, you know, in the crack areas, they'll get little pinholes and those things if they're stored, if they're stored, you know what I call upside down, they can break even more on that side and leak out and cause kind of problems whereas they they tend to that's where you're gonna get the breaks there right? Sometimes we'll get them on the stem and but a lot of times in the fold and that and and they'll kind of skin over If you have it also stemming down, so I just find it to be better in general. And then I just wait and I watch the color wrap around towards the stem end. And when they are when the color is right, farmer, Farmer Ron hates people squeezing his tomatoes because they squeeze too hard. And so he has always told people that you can't judge a tomatoes ripeness by squeezing it. And I think he's actually wrong about that. Like, honestly, I pick up all the tomatoes, and I feel them, but I'm very gentle with them. You know what I mean? Like, I'm not like, you're how when people test avocados, they push on it to see whether they can get a thumb in print into it, right? I'm not saying push on a tomato that hard. But I'm saying is it's just feel what the feel work like what's going on under the skin, you can tell a ripe tomato by picking it up. But also by the color. He is right, that people don't focus on the color of the tomato enough to tell it's ripeness, but you have to know the color for a particular variety. And for a particular farmer, because they're going to change from variety, variety and place to place like I know exactly what a good aunt Ruby should look like. And it is true that you know, certain ripe and rubies can be firmer than others, right? And you don't want to rely on squeezing it to tell you but you can't really pick up a tomato to know what you got.

Chris Spear:

Yeah, I grow these pink tomatoes and they never get red. I mean, their color is pink when they're fully ripe. And just you have to know that that's what that tomato is gonna look like.

Dave Arnold:

Yeah, there's some people who if they've only bought like the red and the yellow tomatoes, like there are dead right, green tomatoes. The aunt Ruby's is the one. Now I don't want you someone who doesn't have access to a good aunt Ruby to go out and buy a subpar aunt Ruby. And be like, You know what I mean? So how I've never had I don't think a Maryland tomato. How are they?

Chris Spear:

They're good. I mean, I love growing my own tomatoes. I mean, you know, again, the reality is is like grocery store tomatoes are terrible. So even like a mediocre grown at home tomato is going to be better than anything you're gonna buy in the grocery store. Right?

Dave Arnold:

Right. Do you grow primarily eating tomatoes? Or do you grow like paste tomato, I

Chris Spear:

just grow for eating. I mean, I don't do any canning at home. I don't do any of that stuff. So it's just like, we're just going to be making BLTs lots of salsas. You know, I'll occasionally grow something to maybe make tomato sauce. I've never really made like marinara or spaghetti sauce from fresh tomatoes that I love. Like, you really have to grow a very dry tomato. It's just not worth it to me. I'd rather just get Kansas hammers autos and use tomato pay. So I'm just all about like the fresh summer tomato.

Dave Arnold:

I was gonna say I think I've heard some people recently hating on canned tomatoes and tomatoes, great. canned tomatoes are great. I mean as an ingredient. I mean, I don't eat them out of the can but

Chris Spear:

I didn't even know you're not. I don't say supposed to that you don't use the sauce. Like I had all these recipes for like pizza sauce where you San Marzano and I was just like pure rang the whole can and maybe that's okay to do. And then I read one book where it's like, no, you take them out of the can you rinse them off and you just puree the tomatoes and you throw away that that sauce and I like I had never heard that. I've never heard that.

Dave Arnold:

And talk about this place. Where do you where where do you hear this?

Chris Spear:

It was in one book and I can't even tell you off the top my head which book it was, but I have like 10 books on pizza and it was one of them and their sauces to like, take them out of the can rinse them and just use that but you don't use the tomato sauce in the can.

Dave Arnold:

A couple of quick couple of quick things. One, a old school classic. Like if you have like an Italian, like like an old school Italian cook in your family, right? And they're going to process their own tomatoes. They put them through a tomato screener that gets rid of both skin and seats. So right off the bat, you know if you ever tasted just the skins or tomatoes, like a big pile of skin Yeah. Nasty. Yeah, not good. Right. So like, I think the first mistake people make when they're making their own like, oh, I don't actually need to peel the tomatoes. You really do you know what I mean? Because it's made Oh, skins are bitter. Not a canned tomato. Not a problem because they've already been skinned for you. Right? And that's actually like why when I make like pico de GEICO myself, I'll usually use a mixture of canned tomatoes and fresh tomatoes so I get the fresh tomatoes which I don't skin right because I always want them to be raw. But then I also use some of the kind of cooked canned tomatoes as well and mix the two together. Typically. Now when it comes to getting rid of the sauce, years ago and I haven't read done it, but look at the back of the napkin. There are two ways to do this. And so you know for those of you that are buying at home, you're typically buying either I believe it's a 12 ounce or a 28 ounce can those are the two size 14 Whatever it's 20 something I think it's 28 and the smaller one might be

Chris Spear:

I think it's 28 is like the standard like I most of my recipes are 28 ounce Canna San Marzano is

Dave Arnold:

right and then they make a smaller right in restaurant service roll by number 10 cans and a number 10 CANS is significantly bigger. Then 28 ounces. Now, when you're buying cans of tomatoes in the supermarket, like your red packs, your hunts like whatever your your store brand, whatever you're buying. If you look at the back, typically it's going to say tomatoes. And then it's going to say either juice or puree. And then it's going to say probably citric acid, and it's going to say calcium chloride, right? There are some people who sell the tomatoes without the calcium chloride because calcium chloride is quite bitter. I actually buy the ones with the calcium chloride because I like the fact that the tomatoes hold their structure a lot better. If you're going to actually do a pureed sauce. Maybe that's not important. But for something like a pico de gato, I preferred the tomato to have a little more structure after the canning and so I use the ones with calcium chloride even though I detest calcium chloride flavor, okay. The ones that are canned in puree tastes like garbage to me, though, and you would want to rinse that puree off because it tastes canned, it tastes like can so like in the way that you might like Sacramento brand tomato juice, because you grew up drinking Sacramento brand tomato juice, but it tastes like canned product. And the stuff that's packed in puree has that flavor, the stuff that's packed in juice does not. So if you're buying one that says tomato juice, you should be fine. And so when I was at the French Culinary Institute, I would constantly tell the storeroom when I was doing recipes, I was like get the number 10 cans packed in juice, not the number 10 cans packed in puree, I hate the ones that are packed in puree. They taste terrible to me. So I think whoever wrote your book probably had a lot of experience with ones that were packed in puree versus ones that were packed in juice. But I highly recommend someone who can hear us right now go and run the test now because I haven't run a side by side test in 1516 years, right? So it could be that the technology has changed. You know, and I'm just resting on my, you know, mental memory of the past. But I guarantee that's where that author's idea that comes from because there's nothing wrong with the juice in one that's Canton juice,

Chris Spear:

like it would make it a more watery sauce. So like when I would see like a recipe that said like using like a 28 ounce can I would literally dump the whole thing in you know the blender and use that in the juice. If you were just taking the tomatoes out and then not adding any in you're not going to have all that extra liquid which makes sense in a pizza sauce because you don't want it to be super watery,

Dave Arnold:

right but the average person doing a pizza sauce, right? I mean, look at the average instruction for a pizza sauce average instruction for pizza sauce, our onion to your choice garlic to your choice oregano to your choice, you know, 28 rounds can blend reduced by half. So if you're going to reduce it by half anyway, reducing it by a little bit more than a half a little bit less than a half. I mean, you know what I mean? It's like, not that big a difference here. There, I get what you're saying here. So like in applications I'm not going to cook typically what I'll do is I'll crack the can open I'll take a fork of I'll just get all the tomatoes out with a fork. I'll throw them into the blender I'll blend them and then I'll dope in the juice to get the texture I want is typically what I'd in a non cooked environment non cooks like in a pod guy I won't just dump all the juice in because it's gonna get to water but I'll have it there and I can use it if I need it. You know, I remember

Chris Spear:

making some like in your class we did these shrimp that were coated in like a tomato jelly like you deliberately use the juice out of canned tomatoes and then mix it with another hydrocolloid and it gelled really quickly. Do you remember like what I'm talking about?

Dave Arnold:

Yeah, so and you might have then heard me rant because that was another situation where if they send us the puree, it's freaking useless. Yeah, so what we were doing there was gelatin is a hydrocolloid that actually when when you took the class with us still was under patent, so it was quite expensive to the average chocolate milk back in the day was stabilized with Carageenan. A lot of people have moved away from Carageenan for milk stabilization or they've moved away from caregiving in general. And since Joanne's patent has expired, a lot of people have moved to jellen. So if you look now at whipping cream in the supermarket, whereas on the back used to list Carageenan Turgeon as as the stabilizer, almost all of them is switched and Kaelin But gentlemen comes in a bunch of different varieties, but we were using one called Low Aysel low Aysel Joanne sets relatively relatively clear. And it's got a like a it's got a short texture, it's relatively brittle, right. And it also sets very quickly and once it sets, it's set forever. So we were big, you know, almost making like a cocktail sauce, liquid cocktail sauce, heating it with the with the gel in and keeping it hot. Then when you dip the shrimp in and pull it out. It coats the shrimp and then sets like this into a coating that stays there. It just stays there. And so Joanne's really good for things like that because then you know it's heat stable. So if you want to reheat it again later it's great if you want to eat it cold. It has a nice it doesn't have like a gummy texture to it. So it's good. It has very good flavor release. I think Wiley, my brother in law Wiley do frame he has donuts I think he uses. I think he uses Jelena and his glazes for that reason. Can't remember whether he's an ag or plays or a chill. Those

Chris Spear:

are some good doughnuts. Yeah, yeah. I

Dave Arnold:

mean, I don't know what the current status of it is. I mean, there's been a huge donut revolution in the past, you know, 10 1015 years, you know? Is a are Alex snacky still making donuts? So

Chris Spear:

we have a curiosity donuts. That's about 40 minutes from me. They have like four shops now all over and there's one in Tyson's Corner, Virginia. I was just there last week and had some amazing donuts. So I think they have like four or five places now. Kind of all here in the mid Atlantic.

Dave Arnold:

Yeah, nice. Yeah. I don't think they have one here in New York. If they did, I would have gone I feel like

Chris Spear:

there's one maybe in New Jersey somewhere. Is a Princeton, or at least they used to but yeah, good doughnuts, for sure. And I had Wiley's I think it was only like star chefs. They did like the mainstage. A donut demo maybe like three or four years ago.

Dave Arnold:

What are your thoughts on potato in a donut?

Chris Spear:

I love potato donuts. Actually, Alex makes they do a potato donut. And I've had those before.

Dave Arnold:

Yeah, the only potato donuts. I had a bunch of potato donuts in Maine. I always thought it was kind of a mainstay. Yeah. Yeah, they're interesting, right?

Chris Spear:

Well, it's like I have. Have you ever had the Moravian sugar cake that has like mashed potatoes in the dough? No. Good. Oh, yeah. So my mom went to college Moravian College. And it's like a recipe where you make mashed potatoes and it's a yeast dough, and then you put it in a like a quarter hotel pan, and you poke your fingers in it. So it has little divots. And then in the divots, you put like brown sugar and butter. So almost like a crumb topping and then bake it. And it's one of my favorite things. What's the texture? Chewy? Like a yeasted? Bread? I mean, it's a yeasted dough and then the mashed potato give it like a little more structure like density, but it still has like a really good yeast it fresh yeasted quick bread texture, huh? Yeah, you should find a recipe I'll find my favorite one. I should send that over to you. I haven't made it in a while. But it's one of those things like every once in a while when I think about it. I go and make a pan.

Dave Arnold:

Yeah, I mean, I put potato flour in my Parker house rolls, just so that you know, they hold on to moisture better. And they have a little bit of chew to them. So I put potato and you know, everyone likes a Martin's potato roll. Obviously,

Chris Spear:

I love Martin's potato rolls. Actually, there's

Dave Arnold:

one person who doesn't. Jim Lahey, you know, from Sullivan, he hates Martin's potato rolls. I think it's because everybody loves them. I think that's the reason why he hates them.

Chris Spear:

I mean, he has the right. I mean, he's kind of like the bread guy. So at least he eats good bread.

Dave Arnold:

Yes, he has earned the right to have whatever opinion he wishes to have about somebody else's breads. For sure.

Chris Spear:

Well, I feel like we could talk forever. Is there anything you want to share? Before we get out of here today? What have we not talked about? And anything you want to leave anyone with?

Dave Arnold:

If you you know, want to ask any, you know, random cooking questions, you know, come to cooking issues where, you know, we're still recording on Tuesday, although we're not on the heritage radio anymore. We're going to come out hopefully with a new series all related, you know, product not, you know, not entirely different, but kind of like a revision of the of the series all pretty soon. So keep an eye out for that. And hopefully the end of this year, like, you know, reveal and launch like the next big big product. But yeah,

Chris Spear:

exciting stuff. Yeah, I haven't asked a question a number of years. I know Natasha now she's like, super tough with getting your questions. And right.

Dave Arnold:

Well, so now like you're saying you have a Patreon, we have a Patreon. Now, you know, when we switched and what you know that one of the nice things about that is, what it does is it allows us to have a lot more interaction with with people. So, you know, for those people who are part of the Patreon, or you know, who join the Patreon, I'm sure you found the same thing, you can provide a much better service to those people, then you could when you didn't have that kind of interaction with them. So, yes, well, it's true that the hammer likes to bring the hammer down on people. At the same time, I think switching to this new system, you know, hopefully, you know, lets us be more responsive to people who do have questions. Yeah. Anyone who's a cook feels an obligation to give people value. Right to give people things otherwise, why would you wouldn't be a cook if you didn't want to give people things you wouldn't be a cook, you do something else, right. So you know, whether it's giving them food and having them enjoy the food or whether it's you know, but when someone is a member of the Patreon you feel obliged to try to give them some value for what they do. Right. So it's an extra responsibility, which the good the bad news is, is that you're having to, you know, do all this extra work that you might not necessarily have time to do. But the good news about being held to the fire more on stuff like that is I think it ends up making your product better, it makes you make a better product. Like, I know that I always do better, when there's a reason for me to do better.

Chris Spear:

Oh, yeah, me too. And now I have, you know, I'm getting my first sponsors now. So again, like you want the show to be really good and really clean and like, have it be sounding like it's well produced. So, you know, just having that now that someone's actually paying me partially to get the show out every week, it's like, Okay, I'm gonna do like an extra special job to get this out there.

Dave Arnold:

Right? Well, I'm sorry, then for going so off on tangents, hopefully have enough usable. Now this

Chris Spear:

is better than like the generic show. I mean, this is like, yet, when I talked to Daniel, we talked for three hours on a Sunday night, we went from like eight to 11, I'm like, you're good to keep talking. And we just kept rolling. So I cut it into two episodes, because I was like, this is the stuff that the people want to hear. They don't want to hear the same stuff that's on like, you know, people do the podcast rounds, right? Like, I'm sure you get people who come on every once in a while you've had guests where they're like, doing promos, and they're on like every cooking show, within a month or so it's like, if you follow these people, you're gonna hear the same stuff. So like, I want to kind of go into these weird corners of food.

Dave Arnold:

So we just recently started doing kind of more guests. And most of the people I have on are either people that I know, right? In which case, we're just shooting the breeze, or, you know, if someone's coming on for the book, which I didn't realize this was kind of unusual. It's like, I'm like, you have to send me the book, and I have to read it. Because I'm not going to talk to you about your book. If I haven't read the book, or at least, you know, you know, mostly read it. And so I've had a couple of people who kind of weren't used to that. So they don't really, I don't really give people the opportunity mean, you give them some obviously, like you just did you're like, is there anything else that you left out, you know, anything crap, you have to push, right? But then on the other hand, it's like, I feel like, a lot of times, people are a little bit lazy, in the sense that they don't. And again, like you can't get to know everyone you're going to have on your podcast or know everything about them. But if they have a product, they're Hawking, you know, you can try the product, right? I'm not gonna have someone on the show if I haven't used their product. Well,

Chris Spear:

that's not really what your show is. Anyway, you know, it's not the come on the Cooking issues Show and Tell me about yourself and your thing, like you're answering people's questions,

Dave Arnold:

right? Although we're starting to move in or no, we'll see how it works out. We're starting to move, but it's more like, like I say, like, if I'm going to analyze someone's book, it's going to be kind of on our terms, you know?

Chris Spear:

Well, depends on it depends on who reaches out, right? Like, I approached you, because I knew of you and wanted you to come on the show. So I already know a lot about you. If I pitched you and said Hey, Dave, can I come on cooking issues, you would be like, Who's this guy like, I don't know anything about him. Like, I have people all the time whose PR rep sends me things saying, Oh, love the show, which they probably never heard of it. My guest would be this guy I represent would be great for your show. And it's like this person, neither the guest or the PR person is probably ever listened to my show. And now I've got to do a shit ton of research before they come on my show. Like, this is probably not going to work. Like every once in a while. I got a really awesome one. But for the most part, no.

Dave Arnold:

Yeah, well, I mean, that's great. It's good to hear. Because a lot of times when they send that stuff, I'm like, Why? Why would you want to be on our show? Like, like, you know, like, the stuff that you write about? isn't the kind of stuff we normally talk about. Not that it's bad. You know, I mean, it's just not what we talk about. And do you really want me to sit there for an hour and pepper you with technical questions about your book? Or is that not really kind of what your stick is?

Chris Spear:

It's like, I'm friends with Richie. And I was I remember when he was on your show, I was like, you made it like that was like the pinnacle of like rich making as we're like, he was like one of the first people I followed on Twitter, like after I met you and I signed up for Twitter. Like he and I went back and forth for years. I've known him like 10 years. And we talked about like, all of the crazy shit we've talked about over the years on food and stuff. And when he made it on cooking issues, I was like, this is like the first big thing you've done like this is you getting out there rich.

Dave Arnold:

So funny. That's very, that's, it's nice to hear that you think about it that way. I love rich, which is great. Was he on only once when his book came out? He

Chris Spear:

was no he was on before that. I mean, this was years ago that he was on and I just had rich and Jeremy on my show together. So we did a three way podcast so they were on a couple months ago and that was a really fun one. Like people love that stuff when you have like, you know, a deep dive into like koji and fermentation and me so but yeah, I mean, I backed the MO fat like he and I at the same time like I backed you know, when you launched the moped thing and the popping gun and all that stuff, so I know him from way back then. And just remember like, that was the first time I even really remember hearing a guest on your show. like you weren't doing it a lot, but I thought that was really cool when he came on as a guest.

Dave Arnold:

You know, I met him actually, because he had been working with Mo fat, you know, he was helping us do some engineering work at a flavor exhibition we were doing around getting these bubblegum machines to properly dispense these flavor tablets that we were making for the very first show that we did at an in Brooklyn for the museum of food and drink. And yeah, I forget whether Peter Kim was the one who introduced us because Peter maybe attract anyway, he was working with us at mo fadd. And yeah, and then he was like, you know, I'm doing all this work with koji. I'm like, Okay. Back then, who was doing that? You know, there's, there's a number of people who were doing a lot of early fermentation work. So you know, Rich was doing it. You know, I didn't know Jeremy at the time. Personally, I know, he's been experimenting a long time with it. Ariel Johnson, you know, who, you know, was doing a lot of fermentation stuff. When she was working at the food Nordic food lab. And you know, and has continued to do it. That lab program was taken over by David Zilber. Who are another book I mean, like, there's a lot of people who've been doing it for, you know, obviously, I don't personally know Sandor cats, but you know, all, you know, praises to Sandor cats. I don't know him personally, I've never spoken to him. I remember for years, people will be like, What do you think about this fermentation? I'm like, I don't know, have you read Sandor Katz whether it's indoor cat says about it. Because here's someone who spent all this time knowing this stuff, you know, but he was there. This is a really interesting time a number of years ago, especially because, you know, there were some people out of Boston, who were doing a lot of interesting work for chefs and people interested in cooking on the actual microbiology of what was going on. Anyway, yeah, it's interesting, interesting time. Now, like, you know, I think everyone's interested in that stuff, which is, which is good, it only makes cooking better. In fact, I think that, you know, everyone's like all modern techniques, that was, you know, that was 2005 to 2008, no, nine or 10. And now, it's like, there's no such thing it's like, it's like, fermentations not gonna, like come and go. It's like everyone, like, the creative kind of edge of chefs. They're always looking for new ways to keep themselves interested to keep their guests interested to keep themselves interested to stay engaged, to learn more, to become more engaged with their craft. And in the same way that like learning the science behind cooking, and learning new techniques was a way to get yourself more engaged. Learning fermentation and learning how you can take these kind of simple, simple base materials, and just focus on them very finely. And then, you know, augment them through these processes. Fermentation is just also a tremendous way to keep yourself interested, keep yourself fresh, give your own unique stamp to what's going on. So I don't see them as like, oh, we used to do the modern stuff. And now we're all fermenting. It's, it's all us learning and you know, becoming more engaged. And I think better as a community for it.

Chris Spear:

Yeah, you're seeing less scarified things on menus, but I think people are taking the real beneficial, like, how to keep a vinaigrette emulsified, like that kind of stuff, more practical application, I think you'll see the same with you know, the, the, the koji is like, you know, people now making charcuterie and like super fast aging them, I think, as a very practical use for that kind of stuff.

Dave Arnold:

Right? I mean, I, you know, I have, I would be interested in doing a lot of side by side, you know, any, anything that claims to accelerate a process that has been going on for, you know, a cooking technique that's been going on for, you know, hundreds of 1000s of years. I'm always like, it's like, one of the techniques I did for cocktails rapid infusion with the with the, with the EC, right? People are like, Oh, so this replaces long infusion, I'm like, no different, you know what I mean, like a valid cooking technique, but different use if it produces a different result. And I think the same thing is going to be true with anything, it's called an accelerated aging, I think you're going to get, I think, what's going to happen is you're going to get a different product that has that, you know, rings a lot of the same bills that would get wrong in a traditional age product. And also has a much shorter cycle time, therefore making it much easier to integrate into a into a restaurant or even a home procedure, right. Yeah. But is any accelerate? Like, is anyone going to make a whiskey that they age in two weeks? That tastes the same as as one that is years old? I highly doubt it. Right? Can they make something that's delicious? Probably maybe.

Chris Spear:

I went nuts with that fast aging or whatever infusion in the ISI after I learned that from you. So I started to go down the cocktail rabbit hole, and I've been to Booker MDX and into existing conditions, both of which I love. There's nothing like a hot poker cocktail, you know,

Dave Arnold:

you know, they're such a pain in the butt like not that content poker. So I was never able to get them manufactured because they're inherently going to break and no manufacturer wants to make something that has such a short lifetime. That's not quantifiably. Right. Man, someday, maybe we'll have another we'll have another bar. We'll see. I don't know that. I have it in me to do another, you know, opening as the person opening it. But hopefully, I have it in me to be involved in another opening. So we'll, we'll see.

Chris Spear:

Yeah. Well, thanks so much for coming on the show. I really appreciate you coming on.

Dave Arnold:

Well, thanks for thanks for having me. I hope I hope you had a good time having me on I never know what's happening. What I was taught, is things just come into my head and go out of my mouth. So I have no idea how things have how things have gone. I

Chris Spear:

knew we'd go down the rabbit hole on a few of these things and go off on weird side tangents. I didn't expect to be talking about, you know, potato bread or canned tomatoes or really any of our conversation. So yeah, I

Dave Arnold:

mean, well, that's the plus in the mind isn't talking with me. It's no one knows where it's gonna. I don't know where it's gonna go.

Chris Spear:

Yeah. Well, thanks again. And to all of our listeners. This has been Chris with the Chefs Without Restaurants podcast, go to chefs without restaurants.org To find our Facebook group, mailing list and ship database to communities free to join. You'll get gig opportunities, advice on building and growing your business and you'll never miss an episode of our podcast. Have a great week.