From chemist to chef

A former biochemist has built a new career unraveling the mysteries of the kitchen

Kate Thomas
Nov 2, 2006
The great 19th century gastronome Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin studied chemistry before becoming the authority on all things epicurean, and in 1825 he happily announced the birth of food science: "Gastronomy has at last appeared, and all the sister sciences have made a way for it. Well; what could be refused to that which sustains us, from the cradle to the grave, which increases the gratifications of love and the confidence of friendship?" The connective tissue between science and good eating is the subject of The New York Academy of Sciences' "Science of Food" lecture series, in which wine, cheese, beer, and taste itself will be put under the microscope. The series was launched with an address on the "Science of Cooking" by culinary consultant and chemist Shirley O. Corriher, author of Cookwise: The Hows and Whys of Successful Cooking (Morrow, 1997), which won a coveted James Beard Award.For...