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Class project pleases Parisian palates with <delicious>soup</delicious>

By the mid-term exam, the students in Dan Ventura's class still couldn't stomach the cooking of an AI program they named PIERRE.

"It didn't kill anybody," said Ventura, a BYU computer science professor. "Somebody said the soup tasted like grass."

By semester's end, they were taking PIERRE's creations to dinner parties and preparing a presentation for scientific meetings.

But the true test came in the culinary capital of the world: Paris.

That's where Pierre met Sophie Grilliat, a French chef who owns a catering business. Ventura and a colleague hired Grilliat to pick three of Pierre's soup recipes that she would pair with appetizers and desserts at a festival celebrating computational creativity.

"The French people take their food seriously, so this was potentially career suicide for her," said Ventura only half-jokingly.

In fact, at first glance, Grilliat was uncertain that the recipes would produce soup that was even edible.

PIERRE doesn't just exploit ingredient combinations that you'll find in traditional recipes that are highly rated. Instead, BYU computer scientists folded in an extra measure of creativity so that PIERRE predicts unusual combinations that taste surprisingly good together.

At the festival, the plan was to serve soups during breaks between poetry sessions. Grilliat ultimately settled on three recipes with the following computer-generated names: Broth of Pure Joy, Divine Steak over Water and Scrumptious Broth with Bean. You can find the recipes below.

The soups proved so joyous, divine and scrumptious that they ran out of all three during the first break.

"My opinion about those recipes is mainly really good in terms of taste and on the principle," Grilliat wrote. "Actually those three recipes we decided to choose amongst a score the computer had generated were edible (which was not obvious at the beginning), and quite good!"

While PIERRE is strong in creativity, he's weak in culinary technique. Another AI chef from IBM has the same problem. But Grilliat loves the combination of using artificial intelligence to get inspiration and human chefs to make it a reality.

"It remains very stimulating to offer a new mix of ingredients we would never expect to suit with each other, which is one of the essences of cooking as one of the most interesting human experiences!" Grilliat wrote.

So geek out and cook one of these computer-generated recipes in your crock pot at home.

 

Heavenly Bacony Tomato Cacciatore

2 7/8 cups - chopped tomato

1 3/8 cups - green onion

1 cups - vegetable broth

3 1/2  red bell peppers

3 1/2 jalapenos

3/4 cups - banana

1/2 cup - basil

1/2 cup - lime juice

4 1/4 ounces - tofu

1/2 cup - soy sauce

3 slices - bacon

1/3 cup - olive oil

1/3 cup - yellow onion

1/3 cup - celery

4 1/4 tablespoons - lemon juice

4 1/4 tablespoons - bread crumb

2 7/8 tablespoons - red wine vinegar

1 clove - garlic

2 1/4 tablespoons - ginger

1 3/8 tablespoons - rice vinegar

2 1/8 teaspoons - red pepper

1 1/8 teaspoons - chili powder

 

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Homestyle bean with tomato

 

2 5/8 cups - red kidney beans, precooked

2 cups - diced tomato

1 lbs - ground beef

1 1/2 cups - tomato soup

1 1/4 cups - water

1 cup - white onion

7.5 ounces - pork sausage

4 cloves - garlic

1 1/8 ounces - pork tenderloin

2 1/4 teaspoons - chili powder

1 2/3 teaspoons - salt

1 2/3 teaspoons - coriander

1 1/8 teaspoons - oregano

dash of brown sugar

dash of cumin

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Broth of Pure Joy

3 cups - chicken broth

1 1/8 pounds - ground beef

1 1/2 cups - yellow onion

4 1/2 cloves - garlic

1 cup - spaghetti sauce

3/4 cup - white onion

3/4 cup - chickpea

3/4 cup - red kidney beans or mixed beans, precooked

4 3/4 ounces - steak

5/8 cup - chopped tomatoes

1 1/3 teaspoons - chive baton

bit of fresh parsley

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Divine Steak over Water

3 cups - water

1 1/2 pounds - steak

1 pound - pork sausage

1 cup - red kidney beans, precooked

1 cup - diced tomato

1 cup - brown rice

2 cloves - garlic

1/2 cup - shredded coconut

2 tablespoons - cayenne pepper

1 1/2 tablespoons - vegetable oil

1 1/3 teaspoons - tomato paste

1 1/3 teaspoons - chile sauce

1 1/3 teaspoons - butter

dash of lemon juice

a bit of fresh parsley

dash of coriander

salt and pepper to taste

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Divine Meat with Juice

 

1 1/4 lbs - alligator meat

2 1/2 cups - vegetable juice

2 1/4 cups - crushed tomato

1 1/8 cups - black beans, precooked

1 1/8 cups - red kidney beans, precooked

1 cup - chicken broth

7/8 cup - cheddar cheese

2/3 cup - tomato puree

1 tablespoon - taco seasoning

3 teaspoons - chili powder

2 teaspoons - olive oil

1 1/4 teaspoons - pepper

1 1/8 teaspoons - cumin

1 teaspoon - baking cocoa

bay leaf

 

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Zesty Mozzarellay Soup

4 cups - condensed soup

1 3/4 cups - mozzarella

1 1/3 cups - tapioca

1 cup - seltzer

7/8 cup - sour cream

3/4 cup - yellow onion

5/8 cup - leek

1/2 cup - red onion

1/2 cup - stewed tomato

1/3 cup - half-and-half

3 1/2 tablespoons - butter

3 1/2 tablespoons - gruyere

1 5/8 tablespoons - pepper

1 1/8 tablespoons - rice vinegar

2 7/8 teaspoons - salt

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Heavenly Beefy Water 

2 1/2 cups water

1 1/8 pounds ground beef

2 cups diced tomato

1 1/3 cups white onion

2 1/2 cloves garlic

2/3 cup chicken broth

1/3 cup mango chutney

1 cup mixed beans, precooked

2 1/2 slices bacon

2 ounces pork neck bone

1 1/4 tablespoons pepper

1 2/3 teaspoons olive oil

slice of bratwurst

dash of chili powder

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Zesty Soda with Onion

1 1/8 quarts - club soda

1 cup - green onion

1 cup - sour cream

7/8 cup - potato

3 red bell peppers

3/4 cup - yellow onion

5/8 cup - fish stock

5/8 cup - butter

1/2 cup - parmesan cheese

1/2 cup - white onion

1/3 cup - cheddar cheese

4 3/4 tablespoons - chili powder

1 clove - garlic

3 1/4 tablespoons - mozzarella

3 1/4 tablespoons - coriander

1 1/8 tablespoons - celery salt

1 1/4 leavess - bay leaf

1 2/3 teaspoons - ginger

1 5/8 teaspoons - salt

dash of pepper

dash of cayenne pepper