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Salty Creations by MEC3: interview with Chef Stefano Marinucci

A Sigep 2024 Mec3 ha scelto di rompere gli schemi e lo ha fatto presentando una novità assoluta:
Salty Creations, una linea di prodotti premium per realizzare il gelato salato!

Salty Creations by MEC3

A revolutionary idea developed in collaboration with the chef-gelato maker Stefano Marinucci, a well-known television personality on national RAI and SKY TV networks, and winner of numerous international awards. He defines himself as an ‘artist scientist’ because he loves experimenting with new techniques, applying them in the kitchen and in gelato making. We interviewed him to find out how this collaboration began and to discover the opportunities for professionals who choose to propose savoury gelato.  

When was the Salty Creations project born?
The Salty Creations project had been in the pipeline at Mec3 for quite some time, but its official birth dates back to 2022, and it’s the result of the intense work of the R&D department, which created the bases and the pesto’s for making savoury gelato. The combination of Mec3’s Know-how and my many years of experience as a chef and gelato maker has resulted in a complete recipe book, with many tasty combinations, which was presented at Sigep 2024 and met with immediate success . 

What possibilities are open to gelato makers, restaurants and bars proposing savoury gelato?
I would say there are countless possibilities! It’s an opportunity not to be missed, to increase the offer in the point of sale, starting from ingredients already present in the refrigerator: from an aperitif based on savoury roasted pepper gelato that can be combined with crispy nachos, to a poké bowl based on avocado gelato and grilled chicken, the flavour combinations are infinite and all very original.  

The gelato chef can suggest new taste experiences to the customers for on-the-spot consumption or to take home to share with friends. 

The combination sweet and savoury, such as a raspberry cheesecake with a red fruit crumble, is increasingly popular in Italy and abroad, and in Salty Creations it finds its maximum expression.  

How do you prepare savoury gelato? Is it complicated?
It is by no means complicated. To make a great gelato it’s important to use fresh raw materials, this is the key element to enhance the final taste. If I use buffalo mozzarella I will obtain a creamy buffalo mozzarella gelato. The base only serves to balance the ingredients that I already have in the restaurant or in the gelato parlour. Just mix the base with water and the characterizing paste, all cold, to obtain the finished product. And for a guaranteed scenic effect, I advise serving the gelato in the shape of the ingredient, which can be created by hand or using practical silicone moulds.  

Do you offer training to those who purchase it?
We are doing masterclasses with lessons dedicated to savoury gelato and on the job training with the one-to-one method at the restaurant and/or gelato parlour. After an initial moment of hesitation, demand is increasing all over Italy! 

Is there a particularly tasty recipe that you recommend?
For the summer I certainly recommend the cold Caprese, with tomato and mozzarella dressed up as gelato, or just one of the two, with two different consistencies but faithful to the flavour. 

The tuna sauce flavour is extremely popular, whilst the novelties that are triumphing are poké with avocado gelato to dress salads and pepper gelato with paprika for a gourmet aperitif.  

At Cibus Food Exhibition in Parma you showed up together with grissini Bibanesi: what response did you receive?
At Cibus, the crunchiness of the Bibanesi breadsticks was combined with the goodness of Parmesan cheese, salmon, and mortadella, all in the form of a gelato, and the appreciation was extremely high. The exhibition was an important occasion for the start of a culinary journey in Italy, to make itself known to the public and give visibility to this tasty product line.