匠心独具的先吃为敬:以酒入馔,香而不醉的完美点睛结合 The perfect match: beyond the world of familiar flavours

[编辑 Editor 吕大人   英译 Translator 刘大人   摄影 Photographer 黄大人   资料 Sub-editor 郑大人]

Chef Foo Chee Xiang
Current: Executive Chef, Brazzo Group
Previous: Souper Tang, Lavender, Moet Bistro, Groceries Schelf Gastro
Born in Johor Bahru, Johor

随性而严谨,是他在厨房里的标准态度,以油、盐、酱、醋、糖入菜的滋味,早已无法拘束从未接受过正统厨艺培训的执行总厨 Chef Xiang Foo。天赋、自信,天马行空的创意,没有制式的设限,年轻却不乏历练,向来以做菜为兴趣的他当初其实并没有以此为未来事业必走的轨迹使命,反而是因从事了多种与厨房毫无关联的行业后,某次机缘巧合结识了一班热爱美食佳酿的伯乐,一拍即合下而有了今日巧施「以酒入馔」的舞台。

Creating new flavour combinations is at the core of being a chef, and it’s what “he” enjoys most! Nowadays, our palates have evolved to eat much more adventurously than before, with unexpected ingredient combinations becoming the new norm which presents chefs with exciting new challenges and a whole world of creative opportunities.

While there are great culinary schools for aspiring chefs, one need not graduate from a culinary school to become a chef, but it certainly speeds up the process. We’ve decided to inspire you further with one such talented chef who has made it without any professional culinary qualification. Meet Executive Chef Xiang Foo who aspires to stay on top of the culinary game and see how unexpected ingredients can infuse magic and “spirits” into our food!

Chef Xiang Foo 口中所说的酒,并非一般大厨所爱用的红酒或啤酒,而是在橡木桶中以大麦等谷物酿制而成的威士忌与琴酒。Brazzo Group 旗下的各家餐馆里 ,美食与佳酿向来是绝配,身为总厨自是不想辜负饕客们想要尝鲜的愿望,发挥创意将两者完美结合,即是 Chef Xiang Foo 近期实现让常见食材拥有「意料之外」的惊喜滋味。

By “spirits”, we are referring to our favourite dram made from fermented grain mash and typically aged in charred white oak casks, both as a drink and a cooking ingredient. As far as we’re concerned, wine isn’t the only drink capable of being the perfect match for food, and whisky is gaining in popularity as the ideal partner for a range of dishes, from light starters to desserts. We would go as far to guess that over 90% of whisky is consumed without food, without even the thought of food. For Chef Xiang Foo though, the culinary possibilities of whisky are intriguing, not just as a welcome addition to the finished table but as an ingredient. Food and whisky, when paired properly, are nothing short of fabulous. The many character descriptions vary from light to full-bodied; from a touch of sweetness and fruit to more sophisticated and bold with strong peat, earthy and smoky notes.

先让滋味最亲民的豆腐们粉墨登场吧!一冷一热的豆腐,看似平平无奇的外观,藏匿诀窍的必是其滋味。品尝之前竟有一股酒香扑鼻而来,「建议从白豆腐开始食用,才能细细品味师傅藏入食材中的独特威士忌酒气。」

If we thought tofu was bland, this recipe has convinced us otherwise. Being not much of a whisky drinker at all which some of us find somewhat unpalatable in liquid form, Chef Xiang Foo managed to get rid of the alcohol and what’s left is a rich, woodsy flavour that’s perfect for seasoning up this delectable Whisky-infused Oat & Bean appetiser.

而这一道在中式料理中常见的手拍黄瓜,以 Gin 琴酒入味中西合璧后,原本清脆爽口的日本黄瓜,有了微苦后渐渐回甘的神奇滋味。「以香料酿制的 Gin 一般搭配了柠檬、苏打后即可中和苦味,这腌制了一夜的黄瓜脆度不减,亮点当然是寄居于此的琴酒味。」

People love the idea of Gin and cucumber with a dash of tonic, and this innovative recipe mixes that idea up with lemon and spices, making this refreshing Floral Cucumber the perfect summer pickling dish and the headliner for a change, not the Gin!

这一道看似毫无杀伤力的酸甜小点,亲和力十足的外表让人冷不防忘了其浓烈滋味。「威士忌里的酒精成份全数被撤离,主厨只留下威士忌里那股迷人香气,并将之注入以氮气打出的轻绵奶油泡沫中,尔后以蓝莓干与薄荷中和味道,舌尖可微微感受威士忌与果干融合后的异香。」

Chef Xiang Foo also shares with us his thoughts on Scottish sweets, along with a recipe for a superb cream enlivened with whisky and topped with berries and mint which went down a treat, if we do say so ourselves and the lightness were welcome after a rather heavy meal just awhile ago at Brazzo Restaurant & Lounge.

除了创意无限的酒香料理,Chef Xiang Foo 亦为 Brazzo Group 旗下的各家餐馆打造了不少好滋味,据悉识途老马到了这儿,了若指掌的餐谱早已化有形於无形,今日若不试试自行打通厨艺任督二脉的执行总厨手艺,大人怎会放过自己?延伸阅读:一种无人能挑拨的亲密关系:胃里的地老天荒 

To elevate our overall gastronomic experience, Brazzo Group of restaurants also offers a selection of premium wines and liquors to accompany our meals as we can request for Chef Xiang Foo’s recommendation on the right tipple to go with our dishes, so as to bring out the flavours of the food served.

So, whether you’re in need of comfort and consolation, or if you’re celebrating, forget the red or white selection at dinner for once. It’s all about the brown now!

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