TASTE OF CULTURES
What’s one thing – ingredient or otherwise – you could not cook without?
INTERNATIONAL cultures were celebrated all over the globe late last month as part of World Day for Cultural Diversity.
With Australia being a melting pot of nationalities, it’s no surprise that most of our restaurants have rich cultural diversity.
The Southern Gazette takes you into the kitchens at Crown Perth to meet the multicultural chefs behind some of the complex’s best eateries. The Merrywell: AMERICAN-born head chef Ryan Ebbs brings more than 10 years of experience to The Merrywell kitchen.
“I have a really multicultural group here at The Merrywell, so it’s fun creating new dishes because there’s always a twist or ingredient from another culture we can incorporate,” he said.
“Since moving to Australia I’ve uncovered even more flavours and it's been great to create food here.” Silks: PAT Cheong is a renowned master of Cantonese cuisine and brings more than 30 years of experience to Crown Perth’s Chinese restaurant Silks.
“Whether I’m in the kitchen at Silks or at home, one of my major inspirations is Cantonese cuisine,” Cheong said.
“I learnt the most about cooking in Hong Kong, so I enjoy using my traditional regional recipes and ingredients.” Nobu: A VETERAN of Nobu Matsuhisa’s empire with more than 25 years of culinary experience, sushi master Noriyoshi Teruya boasts impressive knife skills and flawless food presentation at the helm of the sushi bar.
“When I’m cooking I definitely draw inspiration from Japan because it’s where I was born, but I’ve also lived in the US and Italy so I like to draw inspiration from there too,” Teruya said.
What are some signature flavours you use?
Ebbs: I really wouldn’t say I have one, I just try to make tasty, honest and fun dishes people will enjoy. I’m always trying to step out of my comfort zone and create something familiar but new.
Cheong: In Cantonese cuisine, it’s all about letting the freshest and finest ingredients shine as the hero of the dish. That’s why I like to use oyster sauce, fresh ginger, spring onion and coriander to complement the meat.
Teruya: I love fresh fish with soy sauce and olive oil – it’s simple and the flavours go really well together. Ebbs: Love. Cheong: Quality is my philosophy, so I cook only with the best WA produce available. It’s a joy to cook with and a delight to taste.
Teruya: Being a sushi chef, definitely a sharp Japanese knife!
What made you become a chef?
Ebbs: Food. I just love food. The kitchen world suits me perfectly because there’s always something new to learn and there’s no way you can get bored. I love that.
Cheong: My mum. When I was little I loved being in the kitchen and watching mum cook for our family. I think that’s when I started to fall in love with cooking.
Teruya: As far back as I can remember I have loved to eat, and when I was a kid I would always watch the original Japanese Iron Chef – I’d say this is where my passion started to grow.
Crown chefs Pat Cheong of Silks, Ryan Ebbs of The Merrywell and Noriyoshi Teruya of Nobu.