A £50,000 robotic chef can make your meals without any human intervention – as long as the ingredients are already cut up.
Moley Chef’s Table is a new kitchen appliance from Moley Robotics, a London company run by Russian entrepreneur Mark Oleynik.
At the company’s new showroom on Wigmore Street, due to open in the autumn, MailOnline got a taste of the machine’s creations, including a trendy vegan soup.
Consumers who have the funds can buy Chef’s Table for their homes, but it is also intended for airports, hospitals and even in restaurants to help out chefs.
It comes amid concerns of machines taking over human’s jobs, but according to the company, the gadget will make a cook’s life easier if they work long hours.
MailOnline was cooked lunch by Moley Chef’s Table the £50,000 robot that forms part of the company’s new London showroom in Wigmore Street
‘This can work 24/7 – no chef wants to cook a steak at 2am,’ Oleynik, who founded the company in 2015, told MailOnline.
Chef’s Table is not capable of ‘complicated’ dishes that involve fiddly preparation stages, such as sushi.
Instead, it’s for taking care of the more repetitive or boring aspects of cooking – such as soup that needs to be left to boil or risotto that needs constant stirring.
‘I’m not worried about replacing repetitive operations because no-one wants to do it,’ Oleynik said.
When MailOnline arrives at the Wiley St showroom, Chef’s Table already has the ingredients prepped around it, ready for it to pick up with its extendable arm.
A claw at the end of the arm clenches kitchen utensils and can hang them up when it’s done with them.
Users can input any recipes into an accompanying tablet that they want the robot to follow – as long as they only require a hob (Chef’s Table doesn’t have an oven).
A much bigger machine being built at the back of the showroom does have an oven, but it costs even more – between £250,000 and £300,000.
On the menu today is a simple cheese omelette, which it starts to cook with a tap on the tablet.
An accompanying tablet shows the steps that the robot has to follow. It displays a timeline of the preparation process, and what steps are coming up
First up, the robot cooks a simple cheese omelette, but it has a bit of trouble getting it out of the pan
The robot chef can make your meals without any human intervention – as long as the ingredients are already cut up
It takes a ladle of egg – cracked and pre-whisked by a human – and transports it to the pan, along with grated cheese, although it spills some over the hob.
The bot cooks the omelette around five minutes – although it has a bit of trouble getting it out of the pan.
It tastes good, but an omelette is pretty hard to screw up even for a robot, so next is something more challenging – a soup made from scratch.
Chef’s Table transports chopped carrots, onions and celery to the pan and carefully sautées them before adding sweet potato.
Next comes the coconut milk and vegetable stock, which, again, it spills onto the worktop – although I strongly suspect I would be making more mess if I were following the same recipe at home.
A claw at the end of the arm clenches kitchen utensils and can hang them up when it’s done with them
Messy: Moley Chef’s Table can cook a tasty soup but it does leave the worktop in a bit of a state
The sweet potato and coconut soup had few ingredients – onions, chilli, celery, sweet potato, vegetable stock and coconut milk – but tasted delicious
It takes about over half an hour for the ingredients to cook, interspersed by the occasional stir – but this is where the human user can make their exit and leave the contraption to do its work.
Oleynik said the appliance ‘doesn’t need any supervising’, so it can cook your meals while you sit on the sofa or hang out the laundry.
However, just like any conventional stove it’s best not to leave it running if you leave the house – especially if you have pets around.
After what was a torturous wait for a hungry reporter, the robot finally reached for the hand blender and transformed the pan’s contents into a delicious silky soup, which we ate with bread.
I have to admit a total cooking time of 42 minutes seemed a bit much, and if this was in a restaurant kitchen the head chef would probably shout at it to ‘hurry up’ with certain expletives.
I think the best setting for Chef’s Table will be airports; I can imagine tapping my card to pay for a quick robot-made meal before my departure, although I’d be careful to choose one of the quicker options to avoid missing my flight.
Although the sight of such a machine may still seem odd to a member of the public, Oleynik thinks we’ll soon get used to them.
‘In 10 years we will see a lot of these machines,’ he said. ‘It’s technology, not magic, like a dishwashing machine or something else.’
‘It will be a routine thing.’