#CookingAMA

I was invited to host a feed of the cooking week ask me anything on amafeeds. Feel free to drop in and fire off a question. As I have nothing in particular to sell, I took the ask me anything format to heart and will answer anything you think you may want to know about my life (provided I don’t feel it is too personal). Most of the questions so far are about my vocation but a few are more about life. All the questions so far are interesting and many have caused me to ponder and even reestablish some first principles. 

The Bread Was Vital.

FA Bread Basket, Taipei, 2014.

In late 1997, not long after Hong Kong was formally handed over (back?) to China from the British, Andy Chworowsky, Dale Willetts, and I, began meeting in secret. As colleagues, we met through a shared frustration at work, and a dream of a better way to succeed. We met to envision, invent, and discuss, opening our own place: Fat Angelo’s Italian Restaurant.  Continue reading

Making a show.

Hey friends, City Super’s wonderful culture club Executive Chef Charmaine has invited me to help out with a few cooking classes coming Christmas week.

1. On December 20th I will do a “Christmas Family Roast” of inverted turducken (Chiduckee?), along with twice baked potatoes and glazed winter veggies.

2. On December 22, I will make “A Very Vegan Christmas” featuring a Portobello Wellington, along with Quinoa Pilaf in a Baby Pumpkin, and Winter Berry Trifle.

Please feel free to sign up so that you can criticise my inept culinary skills first hand.

Hohoho.

In Practice

Gather ’round children and heed my words. While you play with your sous vide, hydrocolloids, emulsions and foams; serving wagyu, caviar, foie gras, and truffles, you may gain a Michelin star, media fame, a cook book, a tv show or even a celebrity chef boxing match. If your life goes that way and stays that way, I hope you get all you can of fame glory and all that you deem good in the world. However, if you are like most, the best you can expect is a fleeting brush with recognition for your style, skill, talent, Je nes sais qua, and personal point of view. Regardless, and just in case, I suggest you keep your basic knife skills well honed. Happy Holidays.

A Simple Solution

20140516-160215.jpgOne thing I can say without a doubt. I have traveled extensively and cooked in kitchens all over the world. From five star mega hotels to simple little fast food shops, I have had my hands in the mix, as it were.

Almost everywhere I have cooked, and with every level of chef from highly trained gourmet, to short order cook, I have noticed one habit, that I have always found disgusting, and have tried to dissuade them from. Cleaning plate rims with a kitchen towel.

Continue reading

Toast

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One of the qualities, that many chefs, at least chefs like me, have to develop is one of improvisation. Chef’s often find themselves in situations that develop a strong, life-hacking, skill set. Another quality, perhaps more particular to your chef at large, is that I like to break fast with some form of bread, usually toasted. Continue reading