Getting your ingredients from the forest seems obvious in Brazil, but it is not. Very few people know how to distinguish in nature what is just to look at and what can be eaten. Jorge Ferreira is one of few that does. And he has become the right arm of chefs such as Alex Atala and Helena Rizzo, helping them to find new native ingredients.
Along with him, chef Henrique Gilberto and tea designer Dani Lieuthier took the head of the table we set up in the middle of one of the largest collections of plants in Brazil: Inhotim Institute.
The Institute - which is also the world's largest open-air contemporary art museum - has more than 4,200 listed species, many of which are edible, known as The "PANCS", Non-Conventional Food Plants.
Leading a group of 13 hand-picked participants they created, harvested, cooked, prepared and served, in less than 8 hours, a singular and surprising gastronomic experience, for 36 special guests who were at The MECAInhotim Festival.
The Mesa was held during the MecaFestival, a multicultural event that mixes shows, lectures, workshops, exhibitions and experiences.
One of the biggest challenges in preparing and setting up a Mesa during MECAInhotim was to think of something that was really unique and that was relevant to that park/museum.
Because it houses not only art works but also plants, nothing seemed as powerful as using the museum itself as raw material for a gastronomic experience.
Create and serve an unprecedented gastronomic experience made with the ingredients found and collected in Inhotim.
This experience should surprise and educate the guests about the power an the importance of using PANCs.
For this we must:
The experience should be served at 7pm for a selected group of 30 guests inside the 'Espaço igrejinha'.