EP///0014: The Creative Kitchen of Blanch and Shock in London


I went to London and I met up with Mike Knowlden and Josh Pollen from Blanch and Shock. 


They have a studio kitchen that is the hub for research on lots of different creative food projects they have going on . They also use the space to host monthly dinners, workshops, tastings and a range of other events.  They are very interested in what they call the “British Palate”. They forage and use lots of lesser known ingredients like Alexander Seeds, Hogweed, and lots more. 


We get into some of the interesting events they have cooked like “the brain banquet” where they were “asked to develop a dinner inspired by the brain for a project devised by the science event group, Guerilla Science. Over three days in March, a World War II bunker under Dalston was transformed into an architectural model of the brain. The eerie chambers were filled with sculptural installations, and experiments and memory tests were performed on the guests. We served five courses, interspersed with lectures from neuroscientists and psychologists who explained the processes of the brain, synaesthesia and memory.”


Check out their post on the dinner here::https://www.blanchandshock.com/brain-banquet


And an event based on refrigeration. “we presented a dinner inspired by the use of artificial refrigeration, from the global cold chain to the introduction of domestic fridges, and how they will shape our future. Based on the research of historian Helen Peavitt, whose book Refrigerator: The Story of Cool in the Kitchen is released later this year, we devised a menu which explores the ways in which the cold cycle can affect ingredients, inform techniques and have impact on our use of energy.

The meal featured five courses, beginning with ingredients that have never been refrigerated, followed by dishes which avoid or rely on refrigeration to increasing degrees.” 


Check out their post on the refrigeration dinner here: https://www.blanchandshock.com/fresh-adventures-in-refrigeration



They have found a way to push pause on the usually hectic and stressful business of cooking food. They can dig deep into all sorts of different topics, learn, think critically and come up with interesting and creative interpretations that are unique to them and their cooking.  




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