Chef Homaro Cantu: Connect With the Innovative Chef

[ 0 ] May 31, 2011 |

Homaro Cantu

Homaro Cantu

genConnect interviews Homaro Cantu, executive chef and owner of Moto restaurant, a molecular gastronomer and  food inventor

If you didn’t know Chef Homaro Cantu and watched him in action, you probably wouldn’t know what he was doing. Cantu, as executive chef and owner of Moto restaurant in Chicago, is a cross breed of world-renowned chef and inventor. Taking his passion for food, molecular gastronomy and mechanical innovation, Cantu creates ingenious dishes that are as delicious as they are smart, creative and fun.

In an interview with, Cantu told us that he examines life’s most universal problems to find ways to solve them. “I’m always in the kitchen thinking to myself, ‘I wish I had a device that did this or did that,'” Cantu said. “‘I’m asking: What are the problems?'”

One is the obesity crisis. “We’ll never give up the demand for sugar, we’ll keep wanting orange juice and soda; so I try to figure out how we are going to reinvent those foods.”

Among his many notable creations is “flavor tripping” miracle berries. These organic berries when added to anything edible can make them more palatable. Hence, water can taste like soda – minus the unhealthy sugar that leads to weight gain, diabetes and other health issues. Tree branches, grasses and more of nature’s edible creations can taste decent – giving hope that these berries could cure world hunger. Watch Chef Cantu explain the berries at TEDx with Ben Roche,  executive pastry chef of Moto and director of R&D at Cantu Designs firm. Cantu is also working on a metal straw that when stuck into fruit will puree its insides, turning the fruit into a ready-to-drink smoothie.

Recycable oven that cooks food at your table The polymer over is an energy-saving, recyclable dome that’s safe to touch and cooks your food at your table.

You can watch Chef Cantu  and Chef Roche on the Planet Green’s “Future Food.” Cantu is also finishing his book The Miracle Fruit Diet Cookbook and expanding his company Cantu Designs. While his restaurant Moto has a laboratory, Cantu is seeking to create an “innovation hub” – connecting industrial designers, chefs and inventors with the goal of solving big and small problems.

1. What inspired you to become a chef?
I was 12 years old when I got my first job at a fast-food restaurant called Caesar Chicken. At the time, I was also sweeping floors at my father’s factory which developed high-tech parts for Lockheed Martin. I watched and learned between the cooking and the machinery. Everything I saw as a youth, I absorbed.

2. How does food connect us?
I think food can connect us. It can also be a disconnect. People who dine at Moto are kind of disconnected with food in that it’s not a survivor tool. Here it’s an entertainment tool.

3. What did you cook to impress the person who is your now wife?
My wife was a guest chef at Charlie Trotters. We cooked together for the first. I worked so many hours. She cooked for me a red wine risotto.

4. What do you enjoy to eat after a long day?
Granola Bar.
Quick, easy and don’t have to feel guilty eating it.

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Category: Food & Wine, Lifestyle, Views on the News

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About Homaro Cantu: Homaro Cantu is the Executive Chef of Moto Restaurant, and Chairman and Founder of Cantu Designs. Chef Cantu is an internationally recognized chef and leader in the field of postmodern cuisine and an inventor of [...]
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