Experimental Food Society

stefan gates snackbox

October 26th, 2011

I went to the Experimental Food Society Spectacular Exhibition, in Brick Lane, at the weekend. There were some very interesting things on show, but I was slightly disappointed that more than half the exhibition was devoted to food art and cakes – it struck me that there wasn’t much difference in these exhibits to the cakes of Jane Asher from 30 years ago.

stefan gates

There were, however, some odd and amusing things of note. Stefan Gates, famously a naked blond child on the cover of Houses of the Holy (by Led Zeppelin) and now a well known food writer and presenter, demonstrated his weird Snackbox. I confess to liking the look of the


curried mealworms on yogurt with bee vomit (honey),

cochineal bugs

cochineal bugs with marshmallows and cola bottles and

gold an silver sausages

the pure gold and silver-wrapped sausages in clapshot. People were quite lucky that Stefan hadn’t included snot and toenails, as per his book Gastronaut!

organic clothing

I thought that the organic clothing, Emily Crane’s Cultivated Couture, was an outstanding idea – I assume that in an emergency one could eat one’s clothes, but it’s also occurred to me that the couture might breed in the wardrobe!

sharon baker hands

Sharon Baker casts parts of the body and then bakes them.

second hands

including casting her own body, eaten at the Thames festival – sadly not exhibited here.

baby food

There was some interesting baby food, including black pudding and anchovies – I believe the significance being that a baby indirectly eats the same as its mother. Odd, it reminded me that I didn’t like baby food as a child – in particular, apple purée.

acmd biscuits 1

I liked the hand panted, edible biscuits by ACMD Productions,

acmd biscuits 3

the idea being that, over the course of the day,

acmd biscuits 2

the biscuits would all join together

acmd biscuits 4

to make a single piece. I was reminded slightly, of my art biscuits at the Art Car Boot Fair in June.

camel milk chocolate

Camel milk chocolate tasted surprisingly normal.

al nassma

The chocolate is the first of its kind, produced by Al Nassma and coming from Dubai.

camel milk

As if one camel product wasn’t enough, we found the

ice cream van

Ginger Comfort Emporium’s ice cream van, selling camel milk and camel milk ice cream!

camel milk ice cream

The roast banana and rum flavour, was deliciously creamy and reminded me of baked spiced banana.

More info on camel milk ice cream.

BBC Radio 4 Food Programme, on Future Food (BBC iPlayer), 13th November 2011.

About Mad Dog

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6 Responses to Experimental Food Society

  1. Some great stuff there, especially the anchovy baby food. Much as they love their little fishies here in Spain, to my knowledge they never feed them to their babies. I am also fan of baked, or even barbequed banana (I recently blogged about barbequing fruit). Strangely enough, I used to know Stefan, when I lived in London. Lovely chap. Have you seen his TV series, Cooking in the Danger Zone? Amazing stuff.

  2. ceciliag says:

    WoW! what an amazing day and that Stefan has such a weird sense of humour.. interesting baby food too.. nothing made me feel hungry though! c

    • Mad Dog says:

      You should read his book!
      I have to confess to liking bugs… but that aside, the camel milk ice cream was some of the best ice cream I’ve ever had 😉

  3. Aha – this is the event you told me about! Well, depsite the over abundance of cakes and baked goods, it does look as though there were quite a few weird and wonderful things to look at/taste. I´d have given them all a go, especially the ice cream!

  4. Kim says:

    Wow, I would totally freak out if I had to eat this! :S

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