Since its' earliest days World Expositions have been introducing people to new foods and ideas. After all potato chips, the hot dog and the ice cream cone were introduced at expos past. Its' not surprising that the Milan 2015 has introduced some new dishes and concepts too.
Rachel Dondadio covered it and wrote about it for The New York Times Food section yesterday, She was able to travel to this beautiful gem of a city and sample some of the foods offered. The expo itself is a strange mix of cuisine and sustainability. Vertical gardens vied with restaurants for attention and visitors. The US had one of the former with kale and other veggies sprouting at a dizzying angle and being watered with drip irrigation. With the Americans comes the James Beard American Restaurant which is located at the Seven Stars Galleria in the city. A dazzling array of chefs cook there, and the dishes are made by Mary Sue Millikin of L.A.'s Border Grill, Sarah Jenkins of New York's famed Porchetta and Paul Qui of Qui's in Austen Texas. The food is traditional American but not the usual barbecue and hot dogs. Every Thursday there is a Thanksgiving themed meal and there is an explanation of some American foods by Libby O'Connell of the History Channel. She tells of the history of the American diet, from the colonists' love of roast beaver tails (true!, they were rich in fat and protein - and I imagine crispy- the fore runner of pork rinds) to our passion for pizza - that came from GIs who had been stationed in Naples during the Second World war.
Mostly Expo 2015 is educational. The United Nations Pavilion Zero has a huge wall of monitors showing the changing prices of such foodstuffs as canola, papaya, beef and potatoes. The UK has a pavilion in the shape of a hive to give visitors a honeybee's view of the world. Not only can tourists eat ancient grains in a variety of forms like pasta and pizza they can also learn about them too. There's also music there too, from techno to hip hop.Women and food is also explored thanks to a series of lectures about diet and nutrition. Since the Expo is also about sustainability there are several exhibits catering to this. Not only are there the vertical gardens by both the US and Israel there are also programs featuring the African Milk Project and Italy's Food Repurposing Project This last is reusing extra food into dishes at schools and eliminating large amounts of food waste. If you can ' t make it to the expo, then go to the website , There are tons of recipes (in Italian) from every country on Earth and feature everything from grains to meats and fruits and veggies along with chocolate.
Milan's Expo 2015 is an interesting marriage of saving and feeding the planet. It combines old and new cuisines as well as methods for repurposing food. It is an exposition that will enlighten foodies and environmentalists alike.