I was thrilled to have met and interviewed the chefs during the opening night, but getting passes to watch them cook and eat their creations was another exhilarating experience all together.
No, I didn’t get to taste ALL the food, but I was happy that I got to at least sample the steak Ian Curley prepared on stage! 🙂
Chef Ian Curley is based in Melbourne, Australia and he has 3 kitchens to supervise. The Executive Chef of The European Group, he has these tips for cooking steaks:
1. Start with quality meat. And to obtain the best cuts, get to know your butcher.
2. Always cook your steaks at room temperature. When it’s cold, the meat shrinks.
3. The rest time for steaks is in 50% ratio of the cooking time. If it takes 30mins to cook, then the rest time is 15mins.
And use all parts of the cow. Let not the animal die in vain.
Yes, Chef Ian is a frank, down to earth and no-nonsense chef. But he’s very friendly too, and most accommodating to our requests for pictures and questions. I really do like him! 🙂
His method of cooking adheres to the “simplicity is key” philosophy. He marinates his meats, sear them quickly on each sides, roast them for a while in the oven and he serves hearty portions.
A slap of good old mustard, some mushrooms and greens for the sides and it’s ready to be served. Obviously one shouldn’t expect pretty plating from Chef Ian. Oh no, that’s not going to happen.
On stage : Chef Ian Curley from The European, Melbourne, Australia and Chef Lucas Glanville from mezza9, Grand Hyatt Singapore.
Another reason why I like Chef Ian? He’s a big fan of bone marrow. And his steaks are perfectly medium rare. *Burps*
Moving on, Chef Dani Garcia’s sessions were mind-blowing and eye-popping.
His was more of REALLY modern cooking techniques. For one of his demos, he deconstructs a tomato, then he reconstruct the tomato.
BELOW: Chef Dani Garcia from Calima Restaurante, Marbella , Spain. (right)
He starts with whisking the tomatoes and some vegetables.
Dip it in nitrogen.
Then coated with colouring.
Such a crimson hue! It’s amazing.
So gorgeous! The audience was in astonishment at the sight of this. My mouth was literally wide open throughout the session!
Chef Dani continued with another of his sweet appetisers (yes, it’s not a dessert) made using spun sugar, then shaped to resemblance the silkworm.
Because he wants to recreate the memory of his childhood in Spain. Apparently in Spain, it’s natural for the young kids to keep silkworms in a shoe box.
And his dish, once done, is also served to the guest in a shoebox, with leaves and all!
It looked like candy floss.
Here’s an aperitif dish he demonstrated. It was like a dumpling but he sure went through a lot of trouble to make it!
The end result after it’s baked.
Almost similar but not quite was Chef Andre. He loves his lime (a particular lime called leedms or something) and with this particular one, he uses and disects every part of the lime only to put in back together again.
The lemon takes 3 months to preserve prior to being taken apart to make this creation.
Then Chef Dani took the stage again with Chef Andre to create another dish, which if my memory serves me right is a sort of pork skin.
Oh, happy that I managed to meet Chef Andre in person. 🙂
Chef Paco Roncero from La Terraza del Casino, Madrid, Spain decided to showcase an Asian influenced dish. Here he throws in a customer experience session, giving the diner the option of making his/her own ramen.
It’s amazing, piping your own ramen fresh from a SYRINGE. The burning question is, how did the soft mush in the syringe “cooks and solidifies” so soon upon touching the broth? Even if the broth is smoking hot (which it wasn’t) ?
The above was just a beginning. Now Chef Paco prepares the meat and vegetables from scratch.
All done, he puts it all together in a bowl. Last was the ramen.
Added into the soup with a SYRINGE.
We were all too astonished from the theatrics of the whole session to ask any questions.
Chef explained that the broth is boiled from chicken, pork, bacon, seaweed, shitake and with mirin and soy sauce added. Yes, it does sounds exceptionally tasty. Same goes for the pork belly, which was marinated in salt, sugar, clove, 5 spice powder, mix of sesame oil and soy sauce before slow cooked at 65c for 48 hours, resulting in a buttery texture and an orgasmic mouthfeel.
This ramen dish was not your usual ramen for sure!
I managed a picture with both Chef Paco and Chef Dani during lunch. 🙂
Chef Paco Roncero from La Terraza del Casino, Madrid, Spain and Chef Dani Garcia from Calima Restaurante, Marbella , Spain.
There were in total 8 sessions, but I’m sharing about 6 here. These are the really intriguing ones.
Here’s Chef Chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino, Restaurant & Bar Malabar, Lime Peru.
He was vexed that most people he met during the opening night doesn’t seem to be familiar with Peruvian cuisine nor are they familiar with Peruvian classic dish; the ceviche.
Thus during the demonstration, Chef Peru was very keen to show as many Peruvian dishes as he could. He started off by showing us the base for all the dishes, the leche de tigre.
Leche de tigre, or tiger’s milk, is the Peruvian term for the citrus-based marinade that cures the seafood in a ceviche. Also known as leche de pantera, this leftover fish runoff usually contains lime juice, sliced onion, chiles, salt, and pepper — along with a bit of fish juice.
With the leche de tigre as the base, Chef Pedro created 4 classic Peruvian dishes.
Marco Pierre White is a world-renowned British restauranteur, rock-star celebrity chef, the brand ambassador for Knorr, author and TV host.
He demonstrated a few steak recipes finished off with (what else?) Knorr based sauces.
The Citibank Gastronomic Jam Session was actually a 2 days affair but unfortunately I could only attend for a day as I was on another media trip with Firefly Airlines at that time.
For a concise version of the Citibank Gastronomic Jam Session you can watch the official video.
Oh, I’m actually in it. See if you could spot me? 🙂
Another photo with Chef Lino Sauro from Gattopardo, Boutique Hotel Fort Canning, Singapore.
All in all it was a very very eye-opening experience. I’m definitely going to attend the World Gourmet Summit 2013 and this time, I’ll be sure to book myself a seat or 2 of the series of celebrity chefs’ dinners. 🙂
Related post: Opening night of the World Gourmet Summit 2012: World Gourmet Summit 2012 – Singapore!