<br/>Photo: Coolio Studio / Madame Butterfly serving her Honey-Mustard-Flavored <i>Haacke-n Das</i> Ice Cream 
Madame Butterfly serving her Honey-Mustard-Flavored Haacke-n Das Ice Cream
Photo: Coolio Studio


Authentic Recipes from the Homeless Museum


I consider it an honor to prepare and serve food to our visitors at the Homeless Museum. I have often compared the artistry of HoMu food and the decorum of the Museum's Café, named after the great late Belgian artist Marcel Broodthaers, to the rituals of the venerable tea ceremony of my home country.

As the executive chef and hostess of the Café Broodthaers, I am the medium that must transform simple yet handpicked ingredients into dishes that will transport strangers to places they have never been. This undertaking is not without risks: I have seen some visitors be slightly mystified by our offerings and recoil from tasting them. Whenever this happens, my years of training at one of the world's most rigorous geisha academies are put to the test: It takes all kinds of coaxing and persuasive affirmation on my part to guarantee that no guest leaves HoMu with an empty stomach.

Preparing food for strangers is an extremely personal and intimate undertaking. A professional cook's responsibilities are enormous and results depend largely on his or her ability to concentrate and work from within. To get myself into the right mindset, I have made it a habit to precede this demanding task by a meditation cycle that includes washing rituals, breathing exercises, and chanting. After finishing this cleansing routine, I apply only a thin layer of Bintsuke Abura and Shiro-Nuri and put on a simple black workday kimono. Once ready, I head into Café Broodthaers, perfectly poised to face the empty kitchen counter and prepare our assortment of idiosyncratic culinary creations with a clear mind (and clean hands). Should you decide to re-create my recipes at home, I strongly advise you to follow my example and develop your own personal cleansing ritual before heading into the kitchen. It will make a considerable difference both to you and the people you intend to delight with the results of your efforts.

Every food item you will find at HoMu has been painstakingly developed and refined in countless time-consuming tests. In keeping with my commitment to offer our visitors nothing but the best, I have tirelessly experimented with wild yeasts, benevolent molds, and free radicals. I assiduously worked with fermentation, crystallization through heat and cold, distillation, curing, and grinding until I was satisfied with the results. Now, for the first time, you can enjoy the benefits of my work by re-creating all these original recipes in the safety of your own home.


Madame Butterfly