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Liquid nitrogen-blast chef victim regains left hand

17 July 2009 by
Liquid nitrogen-blast chef victim regains left hand

A German chef, who blew off both of his hands in a liquid nitrogen kitchen accident, has had one of his hands reattached.

The young chef, known as Martin E from Stahnsdorf, near Berlin, was experimenting with a recipe involving liquid nitrogen, which is used to freeze food, when the accident happened.

Suddenly an "enormous explosion" occurred, during which the chef lost his right hand. Martin E was rushed to hospital, where his left hand was later amputated.

However, according to a report in a German newspaper, doctors have now been able to reattach his left hand.

"We expect to be able to restore the function of the left hand to between 60% and 70%," one of the doctors told theBerliner Morgenpost.

He added that up to 10 operations may be necessary and that Martin E's condition remains life threatening.

Liquid nitrogen can cause frostbite in humans upon contact, and can also create an explosion if the liquid turns to gas too quickly.

Heston Blumenthal, chef proprietor of the three-Michelin-starred Fat Duck restaurant in the Berkshire village of Bray, rose to fame cooking with the chemical - a technique known as "molecular gastronomy".

Molecular gastronomy, a culinary and scientific discipline, examines the physical and chemical processes that occur in cooking.

German chef loses both hands in liquid nitrogen explosion >>

Marco Pierre White hits out at molecular gastronomy >>

Molecular Gastronomy: Exploring the Science of Flavour >>

By Kerstin Kühn

E-mail your comments to Kerstin Kühn here.

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