In last week’s column, I wrote about food substitution and affinities, and how it’s good to have a reference when you’re trying to improvise in the kitchen. Right after I pushed the "publish" button on that column, I found an article about what sounds like the ultimate tool for kitchen experimentation: Chef Watson. Watson is the IBM artificial intelligence creation that gained some fame a few years ago when it was a contestant on "Jeopardy!" It has also recently been getting acquainted with the recipe database at Bon Appétit magazine, and the result is an app that lets you create recipes on the fly.
I’ve just started tinkering around with it, and since today’s a food holiday, I thought it would be fun to see what ideas Chef Watson could come up with to help us use up the remnants from our Fourth of July feasts. We're bound to have leftovers that we can't stuff in the freezer, so what would Watson do? For the menu producing the leftovers, I assumed a classic American summer holiday cookout would include hot dogs, baked beans, corn on the cob and watermelon.