I had the pleasure of watching brilliance this morning. Aki came into the kitchen, muttering to herself, and finally asked where our neutral pop rocks were. In the meantime she had pulled out our togarishi and maldon salt and blended them together. When I handed her the pop rocks, she added them to the mix and then ground everything into a fine powder. She had me taste and it was amazing. I experienced a ton of tastes and sensations in just a few grains.
Aki had taken inspiration from Oriol Balaguer's presentation at the Star Chefs event, ICC, where he passed around chocolates seasoned on the inside with pop rocks. The effervescent chocolates seemed to bring a quiet to the audience as chefs chewed and then seemingly melted into smiles and childhood memories.
Aki's seasoning blend brings a whole new approach to salt and spice blends added to dishes at the last moment. The addition of the pop rocks adds motion to the dish. The spices and the interplay of textures and motion creates a much more complex blend of well, anything we choose. While today we have sparkling spiced salt tomorrow could be carbonated coffee crumbs and the next day popping pistachios.