The Elements of Eating

Design and food: two subjects that inspire an almost religious fervour, especially when the home kitchen has become the immersive, experiential platform where food creation, dining and design harmoniously meld to create an ideal multi-sensory experience.

Caesarstone’s new design inspiration book - "A Material Menu: Designs for the Culinary Aesthetic" is an exploration of the connections between materials, aesthetics and design, including eight conceptual recipes based on the four elements of earth, air, fire and ice.

Salty Lemonade; Photographer: Tom Mannion

Inspired by 'The Restaurant' by Caesarstone & Tom Dixon that was presented at Milan’s Salone del Mobile 2016, Francesca Sarti - head of Italian food design studio Arabeschi di Latte - took the idea much further, devising a series of ‘elemental’ recipes for this book, executed as visually striking ensembles that are as pleasurable to look at as to prepare and eat. The unusual images of food ingredients and utensils, exquisitely styled using Caesarstone work surfaces, captured in arresting photographs are intended to delight and – ultimately – to inspire.

Air Element at 'The Restaurant' by Caesarstone and Tom Dixon, Milan Design Week 2016; Photographer: Peer Lindgreen

"Once I’d seen Tom’s designs, I started researching a series of ‘edible sculptures’ where the structure and visual texture of the food would be as important as the taste", says Sarti. "It’s an exercise in materiality, luminosity and texture. The four elements allowed us to create distinctive smells, tastes and visual experiences within each room", adds Dixon.

Egg Tower; Photographer: Tom Mannion

The book gave Sarti the chance to develop the Milan menu and work on eight new recipes, to represent the elements that would not only delight and provoke the taste, buds but tantalise the eyes and echo Caesarstone’s work surfaces in a way that would further explore the boundaries between food and design.

Testaroli; Photographer: Tom Mannion

"When you remove the barrier of a plate and present each ensemble on the material that inspired it, the fundamental relationship between the natural surfaces and food is inextricable", says Sarti. "It’s about all of the senses coming into play: The sonic snap of a crisp pancake; the visual delight of slicing into a blackened cake and discovering its pure, white heart; teasing the taste buds with alternating sweet and salt flavours; the fluffy, sticky texture of meringue – each recipe is a story for the body and the soul".

Torteau Formager; Photographer: Tom Mannion

"What we’ve created is a book of ‘elemental ensembles’ that explore the natural relationship between the food that we eat and the places that it comes from", concludes Eli Feiglin, Caesarstone’s Vice President of Marketing. "It was exciting for us to create and, I hope, inspiring for anyone who reads it".

Enjoy and bon appetite.

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