24 May 2015
Milano at Mercato del Duomo
The newly opened Mercato del Duomo next to the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, Milano is currently the city’s hottest location for all things food. At 6pm on Sunday, Zaiyu HASEGAWA will be in the Show Cooking area on level 1 creating some playful dishes using familiar Italian ingredients but adding his own creativity and flair.
The Japanese and the Italians share their passion for pasta. In Italy, pasta is an artisanal product that is also quick and apt for everyday consumption. For the Japanese, pasta is not foreign either and loved by both young and old. This love for pasta can be explained in relation to the Japanese’s obsession with long stringy pasta also known as noodles.
In Japan, a great variety of noodles exists and noodle makers are considered craftsmen. Many types of Japanese noodles – interestingly – come with shapes and textures that resemble Italian pasta. To enjoy noodles all year round, Japanese chefs have invented ways of serving noodles that are suitable for the changing seasons of the year. Experiments on noodle making and eating are still being pushed forward today.
While Japanese food (also known as Washoku) is celebrated as a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage, it is often portrayed as highbrow and archaic. In collaboration with Zaiyu Hasegawa, GEN would therefore like to introduce the friendly and evolutionary face of Japanese food through a reimagined pasta dish that blurs the cultural boundaries between Italy and Japan.
Zaiyu HASEAWA is one of Japan’s youngest and brightest chefs. His playful, inventive and self-taught cooking at his Michelin star restaurant Jimbocho Den in Tokyo attracts a global cult following including culinary giants like René Redzepi, Alex Atala and Massimo Bottura. Most recently he has given the team from Noma some lessons in Japanese cooking while they were in Tokyo earlier this year as well presented at The Culinary Institute of America’s ‘World of Flavours’ conference. Zaiyu is currently an official supporter of the Japanese Pavilion at Milano Expo 2015.
profile photo by Andrea Fazzari