No-calorie food cloud a tasty alternative
'Le Whaf' is a French gadget that allows food to be broken down and inhaled
Posted: Sep 7, 2012 7:54 AM ET
Last Updated: Sep 7, 2012 8:47 AM ET
A European culinary trend offering a gastronomic feast without the caloric guilt is steaming into Ottawa.
The idea is called Le Whaf, where ingredients of a meal are boiled into a liquid, strained, then poured into a large French gadget, similar to a glass cauldron.Chef Norman Aitken cooks up a beef and mushroom consommé, which he samples for free. This cloud of food has no calories but it can satisfy the taste buds. (Ashley Burke/CBC)
It was inspired by a product called Le Whif, an aerosol that sprays particles of dark chocolate. It is a treat for people without any calories.
The inventor is French scientist and Harvard professor David Edwards, who then had the idea for Le Whaf.
It is now a popular movement for dieters in Europe because inhaling the air can curb appetite.
Chef Norman Aitken cooks up the tasty air at Juniper Kitchen and Wine Bar in Ottawa's Westboro neighbourhood.
The restaurant does not charge for the meal, which on this day was a beef and mushroom consommé — a type of clear soup made from richly flavoured stock, which has been clarified.
Ultrasound breaks up food
Aitken can turn the consommé into a cloud with the large cauldron-like gadget. It is still a novelty piece for Juniper.
"It's a vase that has an ultrasound planted in the bottom of it, so it agitates the liquid hard enough and fast enough that it will create a cloud," Aitken said, "It is used, essentially, as a vehicle for flavour."
The cloud of food can be inhaled through a straw. One customer, Carolyn Likely, said the cloud was, "a taste sensation without something in your mouth."
For the chefs, it is all about pushing their culinary limits by using a new way to satisfy their hungry patrons.
"When you're smelling wine, same premise. Instead you're going to smell it. You're going to, essentially, inhale it leaving you with flavour on your sinus and palate," said Aitken.
Top News Headlines
- 2 men jailed in Dominican wedding fight return to Canada
- Two Canadian men who were detained in the Dominican Republic for nearly three weeks after a post-wedding fight broke out at a resort have returned to Toronto, the latest step in a drama that the wife of one of the men said was "like a scene from the movies." more »
- Senators call for 'zero tolerance' on harassment in RCMP
- The RCMP should amend its code of conduct to explicitly define and prohibit harassment, a Senate committee is recommending in a newly tabled report. more »
- Are e-cigarettes safe to puff?
- As electronic or e-cigarettes grow in popularity, some health advocates want them to be regulated. more »
- Most groups don't want return of Trudeau speaking fees
- Most of the 17 charitable and other organizations that have paid speaking fees to Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau during his time as an MP say they aren't interested in having their fees returned, despite Trudeau's offer on the weekend to reimburse any organization unhappy with his services. more »
- Canadians in Dominican wedding fight freed from jail
- Huge ancient city at Angkor Wat revealed by lasers
- Montreal mayor resigns amid corruption charges
- TV chef Nigella Lawson's husband cautioned by police for assault
- Disabled woman's care before dying on bus still a mystery
- Student with bullied past, 'The Doorman,' graduates
- Parents of son 'brutally beaten' playing hockey want charges
- 'Standing man' inspires new, silent protests in Turkey
- G8 leaders agree to 7-point plan on Syria as summit wraps