This was Masterchef Monday with Maxime Willems

September 27, 2018

For the first edition of the autumn Eatmosphere chose to collaborate with Maxime Willems from Foodlab Proef, a collaboration that proved to be very fruitful in the past. Once again it was a culinary surprise that came out of the Mary Pop-in kitchen. "The choice to serve fast food was a challenge but also a wink. People associate fast food often with unhealthy food, not vegan and certainly not refined. We wanted to change that," says Maxime.


The menu seemed very conceptual and experimental but still very recognizable for people. Maxime: "Researching how we can bring something like fast food in a different way is also part of our job as a food lab." The classic pitta made way for a puffed and caramelized celeriac with light sauces, the milkshake contained fermented nut and rice milk (amazed) without sugar or cream. The ‘croquette’ was filled with delicious slow-cooked mushrooms instead of greasy meat. In each dish Maxime used a certain storage technique or so-called sidelines. The cannelloni contains fermented beets and elderflower capers. In the sauce that accompanied the ‘croquette’ there were roasted peels and coffee. The cauliflower was crispy freeze-dried, also an innovative technique for storing vegetables. All the way until the dessert: "The plums were pickled with shiso leaves and we made ice cream from them."


"For this Masterchef Monday, we also made a powder from the celeriac foliage, which we then sprinkled on the pita bread. a very simple technique but a real flavor bomb. We also made a sauce based on parures and peeled vegetables mixed with coffee grit, our alternative for a meat demi-glace."
In short, experimentation was key, with surprising flavors as a result.


In addition to their social and sustainable approach, there is also room for education at Eatmosphere. "Eatmosphere gives us room to experiment, something that is essential in the search for solutions to the problem of waste."

If people would gain more knowledge on storage techniques, they would also waste less and realize that this can also be economically advantageous, says Foodlab Proef. "For example, when you use a technique such as fermentation, you also discover new flavors that are giving a new twist to your dish and you get a renewed appreciation for the product. See it like a toolbox: the more tools you have, the more things you can create and the more variation you get in your taste palette. As a food lab, we of course stimulate creativity and curiosity and we encourage experiment!"


Every first Tuesday of each month Eatmosphere has a Funky Fermenting workshop, where you learn to apply these storage techniques to prevent food waste.


Check out the video we made below!



Menu Maxime Willems x Mary Pop-in - Masterchef Monday 17th of September


  • Limoncello of saved zeste from Royal blood oranges

  • Cannelloni / pickled beetroot / vegan cheese Pa’lais / kimchi powder

  • Pulled mushroom ‘rillette croquette’ / vegan demi-glace sauce with coffee rest

  • Mac and Cheeze: freeze-dried cauliflower / vegan cheese / bay leaf

  • Kebab with celeriac / pickled vegetables / mustard leaf from our garden / celeriac leaves powder

  • Amazake milkshake / sorbet cured prunes with shiso / vegan cream infused with prune seed



Recipe fermented elderberries






- Water

- Salt

- Unripe elderberries






- Jar

- Cheese cloth



How to



Put the elderberries  in a glass jar and fill with salted water (30g per liter). Make sure everything stays well below (use a weight for this if necessary). Cover the pot with a cheesecloth and let it ferment for two weeks at room temperature. Afterwards store in the fridge to stop the fermentation process.






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