Made for Gaggenau

Food and Time: Fermenting


13 September 2016

This year, Gaggenau turns 333 years old. From its origins as a small iron foundry in Germany’s Black Forest, Gaggenau has always prized slow and considered product design and development. The brand’s contemporary products – design-led, highly engineered domestic appliances – are the result of 333 years of hard earned experience and expertise.

To mark the brand’s anniversary, Gaggenau and Disegno partnered on a project that would celebrate the working method for which Gaggenau has become known: elegant product design, borne out of meticulous process and deliberation.

The result was Food and Time, a project examining how the relationship between duration and food culture. From the length of the growing process, through to deliberation about when to harvest and choices as to preparation, everything that we eat is shaped by time. A food’s colour, shape, texture and structure may all fundamentally change over time. During those transformations, what remains?

To create the project, Disegno and Gaggenau turned to Arabeschi di Latte, an Italian food design studio founded by Francesca Sarti in 2001. Sarti responded with a series of five recipes that reveal the intricate and beautiful ways in which duration shapes the dishes that we eat, as well as the way that we prepare and think about food.

None of the ideas that Sarti developed represent fixed, immutable recipes, but rather they prioritise the processes involved in their creation. The Food and Time recipes will adapt as time moves on, but they still pay homage to where they have come from. All five are living entities that stand in tribute to the impact of time upon the creative process.

Food and Time is a tribute to the creative approach that Gaggenau has fostered from its inception. Gaggenau’s products are not disposable objects or the result of quick, reactionary thinking. Instead, they are the product of 333 years of history and ongoing processes of experimentation, innovation and progression.

Sarti responded to this with a project that shows this same ethos to be alive within wider food culture. Working with the photographer Michael Bodiam, she created five recipes that examine food processes to which the passage of time is essential. Accompanied by still-life images and GIFs shot by Bodiam, Sarti’s recipes encourage us to reflect on the depth of the connection between food and time.

Below, Sarti shares her recipe for apple wine sgroppino.


Fermentation can start very quickly, as well as go on for years. It is a process in which certain ingredients react with each other and by transforming themselves add a new taste dimension to food and drinks.

In the following recipe honey and sugar react with yeast and start transforming into alcohol. It’s based around the idea of mead, which is one of the oldest fermented drinks – in fact, it’s ancient and was produced long before the advent of Christ.

I like that the drink has a dual relationship with time. Not only is the recipe very old, but the fermentation process can last anywhere from a few days to a couple of months. During this process the texture of the drink actually changes. Early on, for instance, bubbles start to rise to the surface. Even if you don’t taste these changes, you can see them happening.

For the imagery, we placed the ingredients in a large glass decanter, normally used for oil, and placed it against a grey background to exaggerate the light and shadow. The drama which ensues is symbolic of the centuries-old tradition of mead-making.

Apple Wine

7l water

500g soft brown sugar
500g white sugar

4 apples cut into wedges

1 lemon cut into cubes with the peel

1/2 tsp dried yeast

A handful of raisins


Bring the water with both of the sugars to the boil. A soon as the sugars have melted, take off the heat.

– Add the cubed lemon and the apple wedges. Let the mixture cool to room temperature and add the yeast.

– Take a wide necked glass bottle, put in a handful of raisins and then add the liquid together with the lemons and apples.

– Put the bottle in a cool place and drink when the raisins rise to the surface after about three days.

Apple Wine Sgroppino

1 scoop of apple sorbet

1 tbsp of very cold vodka

Well chilled apple wine

1 lemon wedge


Take a large wine glass and place the sorbet scoop into it.

– Pour over the vodka and top up with apple wine and an apple wedge.