Some of the biggest names in culinary science—José Andrés, Ferran Adrià, Nathan Myhrvold, and Harold McGee—are joined by the CIA’s Ted Russin in teaching the Harvard University massive open online course (MOOC) Science & Cooking: From Haute Cuisine to Soft Matter Science. More than 80,000 people around the world are taking the free class.
Russin developed and recorded several video clips with Chef Wylie Dufresne to be used in the course curriculum. The videos show both basic and advanced applications of enzymes in the kitchen while highlighting the collaboration between chef and scientist in cooking. Students registered in Harvard’s MOOC initiative, called edX, watch the videos before taking quizzes and completing assignments about the subject material. They work at their own pace and earn a certificate from Harvard by successfully mastering the course work.
This is the first time Harvard’s Science & Cooking has been presented as a MOOC. The popular undergraduate version of the course, introduced on campus in 2010, went online after experiencing overflow enrollment. It has been featured in the national media, including NPR, and Russin has been a guest lecturer for the undergraduate lecture series the past two years.