Molecular gastronomy is a scientific discipline involving the study of physical and chemical processes that occur in cooking.  It investigates the mechanisms behind the transformation of ingredients in cooking, attempts to explain them, and investigates the social, artistic and technical components of culinary and gastronomic phenomena in general (from a scientific point of view). Culinary art is the Art of Cooking. The word "culinary" is defined as something related to or connected with cooking or Kitchens A culinarian Gastronomy is the study of the relationship between Culture and Food.
Information revealed through the practice of molecular gastronomy research can be applied by cooks to improve their cooking, as it explains various reasons why things happen when cooking - for instance, why a soufflé rises. A soufflé is a light fluffy baked dish made with egg Yolks and beaten Egg whites combined with various other ingredients and served as a savory Knowing this information can enable a cook to create the optimum conditions for the rising of a soufflé, based on the science behind the transformation of the ingredients during cooking. A soufflé is a light fluffy baked dish made with egg Yolks and beaten Egg whites combined with various other ingredients and served as a savory 
In addition to its use in explaining the "why" of how we already cook, molecular gastronomy also often reveals information that is helpful in creating new techniques, recipes and dishes. For example, cooks are often taught that water is the enemy of melted chocolate, causing it to clump when being tempered. Chocolate ( pronounced or /-ˈələt/ comprises a number of raw and processed foods that are produced from the seed of the tropical Cacao tree  Molecular gastronomy reveals that in fact given the proper ratio of water and chocolate one can produce a "chocolate mousse" without the need for any other ingredients. Mousse ( is a form of creamy Dessert typically made from egg and Cream (classically no cream only egg yolks egg whites sugar and chocolate or other 
Observations made through the scientific investigation of the social and artistic aspects of food and cooking (e. g. how the ways food is prepared and presented affect us), can be used by cooks to understand and enhance the enjoyment of food.
This type of information is typical of molecular gastronomy, which seeks to dispel culinary myths handed down over generations and provide scientifically accurate information about the process of cooking, as well as provide information helpful in enhancing our enjoyment of food, cooking and eating. 
Since molecular gastronomy investigates cooking, it involves cooking during its investigations. Though it is often mistakenly applied as a term to describe the food and cooking of experimental chefs who embrace science, even though chefs are generally not scientists and the food and cooking of a chef involves much more than science, it also involves skill, creativity, art, craft, nature, technology and tradition - to name but a few things.
The term "Molecular and Physical Gastronomy" was coined in 1992 by Hungarian physicist Nicholas Kurti as part of the title for a set of workshops held in Erice, Italy that brought together primarily scientists and some professional cooks for discussions of the science behind traditional cooking preparations. Professor Nicholas Kurti (Kürti Miklós FRS ( 14 May 1908 - 24 November 1998) was a Hungarian -born Physicist who lived Though she is rarely credited, the origins of these workshops (originally entitled "Science and Gastronomy") can be traced back to a cooking teacher named Elizabeth Cawdry Thomas who studied at Le Cordon Bleu in London and ran a cooking school in Berkley, CA. Le Cordon Bleu ( French for " Blue ribbon " is the world's largest hospitality education institution with over 22000 students and a presence in 20 countries The one time wife of a physicist, Thomas had many friends in the scientific community and an interest in the science of cooking. In 1988 while attending a meeting at the Ettore Majorana Center for Scientific Culture in Erice, Thomas had a conversation with Professor Ugo Valdrè of the University of Bologna who agreed with her that the science of cooking was an undervalued subject and encouraged her to organize a workshop at the Ettore Majorana Center. For the Spanish film director see Victor Erice. Erice ('ɛriʧe Èrici is a historic Town in the province of Trapani The University of Bologna (Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna UNIBO) is one of the oldest continually operating degree-granting universities in the world Thomas eventually approached the director of the Ettore Majorana center, physicist Antonino Zichichi who liked the idea. Antonino Zichichi (born October 15 1929) is an Italian physicist who has worked in the field of Nuclear physics. Thomas and Valdrè approached Kurti to be the director of the workshop. Kurti already had great interest in the science of cooking, in 1969 he had held a formal presentation on the principle in London and also hosted a black and white television program in the U. K. entitled "The Physicist in the Kitchen".   Thomas, Kurti and by Kurti's invitation noted food science writer Harold McGee and French Physical Chemist Hervé This became the co-organizers of the workshops, though McGee stepped down after the first meeting in 1992. Harold McGee is an American author who writes about the Chemistry, technique and history of food and cooking and has written two books on kitchen science Hervé This (tis born 1955 in Suresnes) is a French physical chemist who works at the Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique. 
After Kurti's death in 1998, the name of the conference was changed by Hervé This to "The International Workshop on Molecular Gastronomy 'N. Hervé This (tis born 1955 in Suresnes) is a French physical chemist who works at the Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique. Kurti'". This helped oversee the organization of the subsequent workshops from 1999 through 2004. "Molecular and Physical Gastronomy" had been the title of This's doctoral thesis for his PhD in Physical Chemistry of Materials while "Molecular Gastronomy" became the term This used to describe his work in the field of the science of food and cooking, it was also the title of one of his books. Though the creation of a scientific discipline was not the original aim of the workshops, one has emerged from their origins. 
Up until 2001, The International Workshop on Molecular Gastronomy "N. Kurti" (IWMG) was named the "International School of Molecular and Physical Gastronomy" (ISMPG0). The first meeting was held in 1992 and the meetings have continued every few years there after until the most recent in 2004. Each meeting encompassed an overall theme broken down into multiple sessions over the course of a few days, including more than 12 sessions during the meeting in 2004.
The objectives of molecular gastronomy, as defined by This are:
The original fundamental objectives of molecular gastronomy were defined by This in his doctoral dissertation as:
However, This later recognized points 3, 4 and 5 as being not entirely scientific endeavours (more application of technology and educational), and has since revised the primary objectives of molecular gastronomy. 
Example areas of investigation:
The Hungarian born physicist Nicholas Kurti (1908-1998) became Professor of Physics at Oxford in 1967, a post he held until his retirement in 1975. Stock is a flavoured liquid It forms the basis of many dishes particularly Soups and Sauces Stock is prepared by simmering various ingredients in water including Professor Nicholas Kurti (Kürti Miklós FRS ( 14 May 1908 - 24 November 1998) was a Hungarian -born Physicist who lived He was also visiting Professor at City College in New York, the University of California, Berkeley, and Amherst College in Massachusetts. His hobby was cooking, and he was an enthusiastic advocate of applying scientific knowledge to culinary problems. He was one of the first television cooks in the U. K. , hosting a black and white television show in 1969 entitled "The Physicist in the Kitchen" where he demonstrated techniques such as using a syringe to inject hot mince pies with brandy in order to avoid disturbing the crust.  That same year, he held a presentation for the Royal Society of London (also entitled "The Physicist in the Kitchen") in which he is often quoted to have stated:
"I think it is a sad reflection on our civilization that while we can and do measure the temperature in the atmosphere of Venus we do not know what goes on inside our soufflés. The Royal Society of London for the Improvement of Natural Knowledge, known simply as The Royal Society, is a Learned society for science that was founded in 1660 " 
During the presentation Kurti demonstrated making meringue in a vacuum chamber, the cooking of sausages by connecting them across a car battery, the digestion of protein by fresh pineapple juice, and a reverse baked alaska - hot inside, cold outside - cooked in a microwave oven. vacuum chamber is a rigid enclosure from which air and other gases are removed by a Vacuum pump. Pineapple ( Ananas comosus) is the common name for an edible Tropical Plant and also its Fruit It is native to the southern part of Brazil Baked Alaska (also known as glace au four, omelette à la norvégienne, Norwegian omelette and omelette surprise) is a dessert made of Ice  Kurti was also an advocate of low temperature cooking, repeating 18th century experiments by the English scientist Benjamin Thompson by leaving a 2 kg lamb joint in an oven at 80 °C. Low temperature cooking is an unusual cooking technique a variant of Roasting, which is claimed to produce more tender and tasty results than traditional high-temperature roasting Sir Benjamin Thompson, Count Rumford (in German: de Reichsgraf von Rumford FRS ( 26 March 1753 – 21 August 1814 After 8. 5 hours, both the inside and outside temperature of the lamb joint were around 75 °C, and the meat was tender and juicy.  Together with his wife, Giana Kurti, Nicholas Kurti edited an anthology on food and science by fellows and foreign members of the Royal Society, "But the crackling is superb".
Hervé This started collecting "culinary precisions" (old kitchen wives' tales and cooking tricks) in the early 1980s and started testing these precisions to see which ones held up; his collection now numbers some 25,000. Hervé This (tis born 1955 in Suresnes) is a French physical chemist who works at the Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique. He also has received a PhD in Physical Chemistry of Materials for which he wrote his thesis on molecular and physical gastronomy, served as an adviser to the French minister of education, lectured internationally, and was invited to join the lab of Nobel Prize winning molecular chemist Jean-Marie Lehn.   This has published several books in French, two of which have been translated into English, including "Molecular Gastronomy: Exploring the Science of Flavor" and "Kitchen Mysteries: Revealing the Science of Cooking". He currently publishes a series of essays (in French) on Amabilia.com and hosts free monthly seminars on molecular gastronomy at the INRA in France.
The idea of using techniques developed in chemistry to study food is not a new one, it dates back to 18th century, and the discipline of food science has existed for many many years. Food science is a discipline concerned with all technical aspects of Food, beginning with Harvesting or slaughtering, and ending with its Cooking Kurti and This were colleagues and decided that a new, specific, discipline should be created within food science that investigated the processes in regular cooking (as food science was primarily concerned with the nutritional properties of food and developing methods to process food on an industrial scale). 
The term molecular gastronomy has been adopted by a number of people and applied to both the scientific investigation of cooking and to cooking itself, both modern cooking that uses scientific principles in it's creations as well as traditional cooking that re-examines it's methods through experimentation in order to discard incorrect or irrelevant information. Though molecular gastronomy is by definition a science and science is generally practiced by scientists, the existence of the interdisciplinary occupations of "food scientist" and "Research Chef" have blurred the lines between the disciplines. Food science is a discipline concerned with all technical aspects of Food, beginning with Harvesting or slaughtering, and ending with its Cooking This, coupled with the fact that the original objectives of molecular gastronomy included the "inventing of new dishes"  and the fact that some chefs have created experimental research facilities, such as El Bulli Taller , for their restaurants has served to further blur these lines and propagate confusion between what is and isn't "molecular gastronomy". 
In the late 1990s and early 2000s, the term started to be used to describe a new style of cooking in which some chefs began to explore new possibilities in the kitchen by embracing science, research, technological advances in equipment and various natural gums and hydrocolloids produced by the commercial food processing industry. Natural gums are Polysaccharides of natural origin capable of causing a large Viscosity increase in solution even at small concentrations A colloid is a type of mechanical Mixture where one substance is dispersed evenly throughout another Food processing is the set of methods and techniques used to transform raw Ingredients into Food or to transform food into other forms for consumption by  It has since been used to describe the food and cooking of a number of famous chefs.
Some chefs do engage in the scientific investigation of cooking. It is also true that the work of some scientists (particularly food scientists) involves cooking. “Chef scientists” also exist, and have for many years, particularly in the research and development departments of commercial food companies.  
Despite the best efforts of many to separate and distinguish the scientific investigation of cooking (molecular gastronomy) from the creative use of recently available information, technology and ingredients by cooks to produce non-traditional dishes in non-traditional forms, textures & flavor combinations (e. g. "New Cuisine", "Progressive Cuisine", "Nueva Cocina", "Culinary Constructivism", "Modern Cuisine", "Avant-Garde Cuisine", "Experimental Cuisine" etc. . . ). Molecular gastronomy continues to be used, in many cases, as a blanket term to refer to any and all of these things - particularly in the media.  As well, the terms "Molecular Cuisine" and "Molecular cooking" have been derived from the term and used by some to describe food and cooking produced with information, tools and ingredients associated with science or food science in general. Molecular gastronomy is a scientific discipline involving the study of physical and chemical processes that occur in cooking Science (from the Latin scientia, meaning " Knowledge " or "knowing" is the effort to discover, and increase human understanding Food science is a discipline concerned with all technical aspects of Food, beginning with Harvesting or slaughtering, and ending with its Cooking
Chefs often associated with molecular gastronomy because of their embrace of science include: Pierre Gagnaire, Ferran Adrià, Heston Blumenthal, Homaro Cantu, Wylie Dufresne, Grant Achatz, Sat Bains, Sean Wilkinson, Richard Blais, Kevin Sousa /Pittsburgh, Sean Brock, Marc Lepine /Ottawa, Will Goldfarb/NYC
Some of the chefs and scientists often associated with molecular gastronomy at one time adopted the term or acknowledged the movement. Pierre Gagnaire ( 9 April 1950 in Apinac) is a well known French chef and is the Head Chef and owner of the eponymous Pierre Gagnaire restaurant Ferran Adrià Acosta is a Chef born on May 14, 1962 in L'Hospitalet de Llobregat, Catalonia, Spain. Heston Blumenthal OBE (born May 27, 1966 in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire) is the Chef and owner of The Fat Duck Homaro Cantu, Inventor, entrepreneur Chef, and molecular gastronomer operates the Cantu Designs Firm in Chicago, Illinois, Wylie Dufresne is the chef and owner of wd~50 restaurant in Manhattan Grant Achatz (born 1974 is an American chef and restaurateur who is considered to be on the cutting edge of the movement of menu item construction often referred to as Molecular Richard Blais (born 1972 in Uniondale New York) is an American chef Some of these people had connections to or directly collaborated with Hervé This, which may have contributed - in part - to the mis-application of the term "molecular gastronomy" to their food and cooking. Hervé This (tis born 1955 in Suresnes) is a French physical chemist who works at the Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique. For instance, Hervé This and Pierre Gagnaire are collaborators and publish the products of their collaboration on Gagnaire's website. Hervé This (tis born 1955 in Suresnes) is a French physical chemist who works at the Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique. Pierre Gagnaire ( 9 April 1950 in Apinac) is a well known French chef and is the Head Chef and owner of the eponymous Pierre Gagnaire restaurant  As well, El Bulli and The Fat Duck are listed as partners in the EU funded European Research Project INICON, a project for the sustainable collaboration between chefs, science and the food industry for the modernization of cooking. El Bulli (as of 2008 the restaurant refers to itself with the orthography elBulli) is a three Michelin starred Restaurant run by chef Ferran Adrià The Fat Duck is a restaurant run by chef Heston Blumenthal in Bray, Berkshire, England. The INICON project publishes a manual on molecular gastronomy co-authored by Hervé This, and generally uses molecular gastronomy as the term to refer to the work of the organization throughout its website. 
Heston Blumenthal was once a Hervé This collaborator, publishing This's recipe for "Chocolate Chantilly" in his first installment of recipe writing for the UK newspaper The Guardian in 2001, followed by an account of his visit to This's laboratory in France in 2002 during which they developed a recipe for fondant containing egg whites instead of yolks and no sugar. Heston Blumenthal OBE (born May 27, 1966 in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire) is the Chef and owner of The Fat Duck  Blumenthal, at one time, adopted the term molecular gastronomy to describe some of the research going on at his restaurant, The Fat Duck. The Fat Duck is a restaurant run by chef Heston Blumenthal in Bray, Berkshire, England.  He was also a participant in 2001 and 2004 International Workshop on Molecular Gastronomy in Erice.  The 2001 meeting being where he met many of the scientists he works with today. 
Harold McGee, noted kitchen science writer, was one of the original organizers (along with Kurti and This) of the first of the International School of Molecular and Physical Gastronomy meetings in Erice and has "known Hervé This for over a decade". Harold McGee is an American author who writes about the Chemistry, technique and history of food and cooking and has written two books on kitchen science Though he stepped down as organizer after the first meeting, he attended all the meetings from 1992 through 2004.   He at one time defined molecular gastronomy as "the scientific study of deliciousness" in a contribution to the 2004 KVL Workshop on Molecular Gastronomy, in which he also proposed areas of focus for a university program in molecular gastronomy.  Harold's book, On Food & Cooking, mentions molecular gastronomy on pages 2 and 3 of the introduction. 
Ferran Adria notes in a document published in the 2003 history section of the El Bulli website entitled "About Molecular Cuisine" that up until 2003 his contact with the scientific world had been "sporadic". Ferran Adrià Acosta is a Chef born on May 14, 1962 in L'Hospitalet de Llobregat, Catalonia, Spain. He goes on to explain that this is why he had "never ascribed to any scientific origin of their (El Bulli's) creations" until his scientific collaborations in 2003. He notes that he had known Harold McGee and Hervé This through conferences since 2000.  In a 2004 online Q&A, he made a distinction between his work and molecular gastronomy and went on to comment on the potential longevity of what he saw as a molecular gastronomy "movement":
"I don’t understand the characterization of molecular gastronomy as a type of cuisine. It’s happening the same that happened years ago with fusion, it’s becoming a common place. There isn’t a molecular cuisine. There’s a molecular movement, the molecular gastronomy, where some scientists cooperate with the world of cooking. Clearly, the move acts upon cooking, but I don’t think it’s a cuisine per se. In twenty years, we could look back and see how many new techniques, more than concepts, were introduced thanks to this movement. Having said this, whoever says that this movement doesn’t have a future, only has to pick up a phone, turn on the TV or log-in the internet. Science has changed the world. "
Perhaps frustrated with the common mis-classification of their food and cooking as "molecular gastronomy", several chefs often associated with the movement have since repudiated the term, releasing a joint statement in 2006 clarifying their approach to cooking.  Still, other modern chefs have embraced molecular gastronomy. An organization known as "The Experimental Cuisine Collective" in New York which holds monthly workshops at which Hervé This has been a featured speaker and who's website lists works by This on the resources page  has members including some of the most well known chefs in the city. Hervé This (tis born 1955 in Suresnes) is a French physical chemist who works at the Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique. 
In the second century BC, the anonymous author of a papyrus kept in London used a balance to determine whether fermented meat was lighter than fresh meat. Since then, many scientists have been interested in food and cooking. In particular, the preparation of meat stock—the aqueous solution obtained by thermal processing of animal tissues in water—has been of great interest. It was first mentioned in the fourth century BC by Apicius (André (ed), 1987), and recipes for stock preparation appear in classic texts (La Varenne, 1651; Menon, 1756; Carême & Plumerey, 1981) and most French culinary books. Marie Antoine (Antonin Carême (8 June 1784&ndash12 January 1833 was a French chef and author Chemists have been interested in meat stock preparation and, more generally, food preparation since the eighteenth century (Lémery, 1705; Geoffrey le Cadet, 1733; Cadet de Vaux, 1818; Darcet, 1830). Antoine-Laurent de Lavoisier is perhaps the most famous among them—in 1783, he studied the processes of stock preparation by measuring density to evaluate quality (Lavoisier, 1783). In reporting the results of his experiments, Lavoisier wrote, "Whenever one considers the most familiar objects, the simplest things, it's impossible not to be surprised to see how our ideas are vague and uncertain, and how, as a consequence, it is important to fix them by experiments and facts" (author's translation). Of course, Justus von Liebig should not be forgotten in the history of culinary science (von Liebig, 1852) and stock was not his only concern. Justus von Liebig ( May 12, 1803 &ndash April 18, 1873) was a German Chemist Another important figure was Benjamin Thompson, later knighted Count Rumford, who studied culinary transformations and made many proposals and inventions to improve them, for example by inventing a special coffee pot for better brewing. Sir Benjamin Thompson, Count Rumford (in German: de Reichsgraf von Rumford FRS ( 26 March 1753 – 21 August 1814 Sir Benjamin Thompson, Count Rumford (in German: de Reichsgraf von Rumford FRS ( 26 March 1753 – 21 August 1814 There are too many scientists who have contributed to the science of food preparation to list here. - Hervé This, 2006 
The concept of molecular gastronomy was perhaps presaged by Marie-Antoine Carême, one of the most famous French chefs, who said in the early 19th century that when making a food stock "the broth must come to a boil very slowly, otherwise the albumin coagulates, hardens; the water, not having time to penetrate the meat, prevents the gelatinous part of the osmazome from detaching itself. Marie Antoine (Antonin Carême (8 June 1784&ndash12 January 1833 was a French chef and author is one of the five Basic tastes sensed by specialized receptor cells present on the human Tongue. " The observation is valuable, although the concept of a unique soluble "osmazome" providing flavour is today not considered valid.