>> Michelin star chef Massimo Bottura usually charges €250 a head to eat at his restaurant but his latest customers don't pay a thing at a soup kitchen for Milan's poor and hungry. The idea came to Bottura in 2015 when he fed the poor using leftovers from eateries at the cities International Expo.
>> Bread crumbs, some over ripe tomato, brown bananas. There are just opportunities for us to show what we can do with our creativity.>> With the support of Church Charity foundation, Caritas Ambrosiana, and the help of artists, private businesses, and fellow chefs he made permanent at the soup kitchen on the outskirts of Milan, the Refettorio Ambrosiano.
People in difficulty are invited to dine five days a week. The food is sourced from unsold supermarket stock. And unlike other soup kitchens, guests don't queue up, and everyone is served at the table. The Italian chef says it's a way to help restore people's confidence.>> That this is something very revolutionary.
Rebuilding the dignity of the people, cooking amazing food and sitting them around the table, it's something very special.>> Bottura insists it's a cultural project, not a charity. The room is full of art and design, and the chefs are challenged to be creative with their ingredients. The Refettorio has not only helped disadvantaged people, it has also inspired volunteers and chefs.
> Every guest I met, and I've met around 700 people since I started, has left me something positive, something that's made me grow. I don't know whether I've done a good job as a volunteer, I only know they've done a good job with me.>> Now, Bottura has published a book of recipes invented by the famous chefs who have cooked at the Soup Kitchen.
All proceeds will fund similar facilities around the world and help set up new ones.