Chef Olivier Bellin Creates Gourmet Excellence for New Ready Meal Concept in Cans
Last October, we hosted a media event in Paris with our longstanding customer William Saurin to highlight the quality that canned gourmet ready meals can deliver to consumers. The event was held at Ferrandi Paris – the French School of Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management, and featured renowned 2-star Michelin chef Olivier Bellin. The menu, designed and crafted by chef Bellin, combined the finest ingredients with high-quality taste for a truly outstanding result. After enjoying the live demonstration, guests were sent home with a canned version of their meal, which featured lids that can be opened and re-closed for effortless portion control.
Following the media event, we caught up with chef Bellin and asked him to describe his creation and experience with canned ready meals.
Q: Tell us about your background as a chef.
A: After training with Joël Robuchon and Jacques Thorel, I returned to my home in the village of Plomodiern to work as a chef at my family’s restaurant, L'Auberge des Glazicks. The restaurant was awarded its first Michelin star in 2005 and its second in 2010. I became its owner in 2014. I aim to bring a high degree of technique and character into each dish and want to represent the flavors of the region.
Q: What meals did you prepare for the event and why did you choose them?
A: I planned two new recipes which included a regional specialty using buckwheat, typical of Brittany, and a cereal and quinoa, which pair well with the carrot juice and ginger. It’s really tasty with a lot of flavor. The second dish was a pot-au-feu, which we usually think of as being greasy. But not here. I included some white beans from the area as well as lemon. I wanted to create something healthy and representative of the region.
Q: How was your experience working with William Saurin and Crown?
A: It’s been a really interesting experience and pushed me outside of my comfort zone. Collaborating with the engineers and experts at William Saurin and Crown made me understand that you could create great recipes to be packaged in metal cans. The cans have a modern shape, so they look interesting on the shelf. The fact that they are also 100 percent recyclable is a significant plus – since, as we know, that is what today’s consumers really want: environmentally friendly packaging. I believe that Crown addresses these consumer expectations. It was a truly rewarding experience. By combining my skills with the expertise of the people at William Saurin and the technical knowledge at Crown, the end result is a gourmet canned ready meal that people will really enjoy eating.
Q: What are your thoughts on having gourmet meals in cans?
A: Metal is a natural choice for packaging high-quality foods such as canned ready meals, which are made completely naturally, without additives or preservatives. Metal packaging locks in the freshness of ingredients and their nutritional properties and gives the gourmet product inside a corresponding premium look and feel. It’s a no brainer that canned foods offer tremendous value and convenience for consumers. The standard of canned food is high continues to be a reliable choice for delicious and nutritious meals made at home.