The first day of Reale Seguros Madrid Fusión has come to a close, and an eventful day it was. For starters, Rodrigo de la Calle, who runs El Invernadero restaurant in Madrid, received the Healthy Gastronomy Award from the Spanish Society for the Study of Obesity, for his commitment to “turning vegetables… into something magical,” according to archyde.com.
Meanwhile, there were several interesting presentations, including one by chefs from the Madrid Institute for Rural, Agricultural and Food Research and Development, who spoke about the versatility of garbanzo beans, while chef Fran Vicente, from El Sainete in Madrid, spoke about the importance of chefs meeting the needs of customers with food allergies and intolerances.
Joan Roca also hit the stage to talk in detail about the menu he developed to be served to Heads of State at the UN Climate Change Conference held in Madrid in December. According to Roca, the menu aimed to reflect “a responsible code of ethics and giving back to society. A food chain that is environmentally sustainable, socially just and economically inclusive,” according to madridfusion.net.
Josean Alija, the chef behind Nerua in the Guggenheim Museum, also gave a presentation after being introduced by food critic and writer José Carlos Capel. Capel described Alija’s cuisine as “reflection and thought… [which] offers much more than its apparent simplicity,” according to the same site.
Alija spoke about the concept of time in cooking: the time that goes into devising and preparing each dish, the time involved in finding just the right product at the right time, the time that goes into telling stories and conveying values, etc. He then prepared several dishes using shrimp, gooseneck barnacles, and hake cheeks.