Everyone knows that the best parties always end in the kitchen. With our series, Kitchen Party, we’re sitting down with Feast On Chefs to get to know them, and the local foods that inspire them, a little better.
What’s your favourite seasonal ingredient?
Lemon basil. It’s fresh lemony smell and citrus taste reminds of my first job in the restaurant industry. It was in Colombia, I was 17, the place: a magnificent steak house where one of its signature salsas had fresh tomatoes and this citric herb. The whole place was always impregnated with its aroma.
What is your drink of choice?
Espresso. Since the moment I wake up, usually around 5:00 am to the moment I go to bed, around 1:00 am I have somewhere around 10 to 12 shots every day. It is not the caffeine that keeps me coming back for more, it is just the flavor and intensity of my own custom made blend with rich caramel notes and the right bitterness for my palate.
Most underrated ingredient?
Beets. They are so easy to grow, always available and really affordable. Cooked, raw, pickled, fried, pulverized etc. They add earthy flavor to dark rich sauces and on their own, can be the most delicate ingredient on a plate. When properly cooked, their vibrant color can bring life to anything.
What’s your favourite restaurant?
I haven’t found it, I am still looking. Of course, my favorite restaurant is Bistro 67′, just as a side note. Dining out for me is a challenge. I am hard to please. From my experiences I can say that there is not a perfect place. We are building it at the CFF at Durham College and we are steering in the right direction. I love simple and fresh food. A restaurant with a real charcoal grill will certainly attract my attention.
Off-duty, what are you most likely to be cooking at home?
Beans. In any form. They are filling, satisfying, nutritious and versatile. I usually make a big batch that I can then finish in multiple ways. Add some kale or spinach and you have a meal. Cook a sausage, add some beans, and you have another meal. You can go on and on.
Fill in the blank: “If I entered a competitive eating contest, I’d definitely win if the item was _______”
Spicy chick peas. I use canned chick peas that I either bake or deep fry. I toss them with olive oil, salt and a secret mix of dried chillies. They are not extremely spicy but they have for sure some fire. They make a great snack