Cook_inc. 26 – Diet is a chimera


Diet is a chimera

Diet, noun. [from lat. diaeta, gr. Δίαιτα] «a way of life». Variable, varied and more or less balanced … everyone follows a diet. For Cook_inc. 26 our writers, photographers and illustrators travel the world, delineating a chameleon-like path following some of the most identifiable and significant gastronomic lifestyles of the new Roaring Twenties. We travel with just one imperative: never-mind the diet!

Spontaneous, free, immediate and frank the cuisine of Macarena de Castro (this issue’s cover star pictured barefoot on the tractor with her faithful Pedro) is ‘pure Mallorca’. Let’s start the journey here, walking in her garden. Then from this sunny, bright Spanish island we bounce to another, arriving in chilly Iceland, wild and volcanic. It’s here we seek to deepen our understanding of the seasonal foods served at Slippurinn. Chef Gísli Matthías Auðunsson’s restaurant is based on endangered local food traditions from fishing to foraging that has seen the local community coalesce around its ambitions, helping create a thriving business that feeds an Icelander’s nostalgic palate.

Next, we head south landing on a new continent for two thrilling stories out of São Paulo. A Casa do Porco, Jefferson and Janaína Rueda restaurant, has helped revitalized the historic centre of the Brazilian capital with its focus on amazing ingredients and creating a fun, easy going eating space based on pork meat.

While at Corrutela, the concept of a youthful Cesar Costa, you’ll find a menu based on sustainability and demonstrating a minimal environmental impact philosophy. Costa is creating a zero waste destination and out of his kitchen comes an honest, delicious series of dishes where seasonal vegetables predominate.

Pursuing the veggie theme we fly to Asia, to Bangkok, where we find Garima Arora cooking at Gaa and offering her singular and surprising interpretation of Indian and Thai flavors. We then continue a little further east, to Hong Kong, where we follow the ‘VEA way’ of the dynamic Vicky Cheng who amazes us with his rendering of Chinese cuisine. His cooking is a dialogue between his personal experiences and emblematic ingredients of the Hong Kong culinary tradition.

Next, we completely change the scenography for Paris and the luxurious L’Ambroisie, the undisputed temple of an immortal cuisine, to meet Bernard Pacaud, the thoughtful Highlander with a heart of butter that promotes cuisine de civilité. Then we head to the Alchemist in Copenhagen for a full immersion across five acts and 50 impressions in the new cathedral to molecular cuisine 2.0. This enterprise is led by chef Rasmus Munk. Then we go to Moscow and the farm-to-table realm of Twins Garden led by two of Russia’s most innovative chefs, the brothers Ivan and Sergey Berezutskiy.

In Italy we immerse body and mind in the kitchen of thoughts, dreams and mad neurons of Alberto Gipponi at Dina restaurant in Gussago. Next while staying in Brescia, we head for Franco Ziliani’s Franciacorta early dream that now has becomea global success story for the sparkling wine. In Milan we chat with Canadian writer Meredith Erickson author of Alpine Cooking, a book full of recipes and stories gathered during her journeys into mountain culinary traditions.

And what else do we look for in the food we seek? Writer Serena Guidobaldi leads us to reflect on identity in the era of its gastronomic reproducibility, while Officina Didattica at Alma offers us a modern interpretation of the classic Abruzzese Virtù, along with dietary tips and technical tricks.

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