Being a chef is not only about cooking and thinking of new recipes. It’s also about researching new ingredients and techniques, as well as creating new products. At least here, at Instituto Brasil a Gosto. Thiago de Andrade, chef of the institute, is constantly in transit between São Paulo and Fortaleza, the capital of Ceará, since December, 2018. Thiago is one of the mentors of the Laboratory of Creation in Gastronomy of the School in Social Gastronomy Ivens Dias Branco. He is guiding student Rafaela Yngred Pontes Medeiros in the development of a sustainable product with inputs from the region. The program’s final results will be announced on January, 31st.
The invitation to participate in this initiative came shortly after the school coordinator and director visited the institute founded by Ana Luiza Trajano on a trip to São Paulo. “When they started the project, Lina (Luz) and Selene (Penaforte) thought of the Instituto and they contacted us. That’s when they invited me to be one of the four mentors for the approved researches”, says Thiago.
In Fortaleza, the chef’s work consists in teaching, monitoring and accompanying a gastronomic project in the confectionery area, focused on the Ceará culture. The student mentored by Thiago, Rafaela, is working with sugar cane and coconut molasses from Pedra Branca (CE), her hometown.
The product developed at the laboratory is expected to bring benefits to the city’s community. “We want to bring social impact to Pedra Branca, a traditional place in the manufacture of cane molasses. Sugar mills are now decadent due to the severe drought faced by the region over the past 10 years. We aim now is retaking the culture of local production”, says Thiago.