Vet­eran chef serves up his stir-fried life story

On a visit to Hong Kong, ‘all of a sud­den I was no longer an alien’, says celebrity Chi­nese mas­ter of cui­sine

China Daily (Canada) - - EXPATS -

in the UK

in­te­grat­ing var­i­ous eth­nic mi­nori­ties. When I go around this coun­try, I’m con­vinced that they’ve done a bet­ter job at it.”

Hom lived in the US dur­ing a par­tic­u­larly di­vi­sive and dif­fi­cult time for a Chi­nese- face warm­ing with the mem­ory. “All of a sud­den I was no longer an alien, which is a sen­sa­tion I had never ex­pe­ri­enced. There was this kind of resur­gence in pride I had, of not only be­ing Chi­nese but be­ing Can­tonese. It’s that kind of feel­ing, Oh my God, I’m home! Even though we were in Chi­na­town in the States, we were a small is­land in a sea of non-Chi­nese.”

Hom said that, pro­fes­sion­ally, he has been happy to see not only Chi­nese food but the work of chefs fall in­creas­ingly un­der the spot­light in the UK.

“Cook­ing was not re­ally a de­sir­able ca­reer when I started out. Now, you can’t turn TV chefs off; you’re in­un­dated. It’s glam­orous now. And you see this shift that young peo­ple want to be­come chefs, which was un­heard of,” he said.

“The up­shot of the whole thing is that the Bri­tish peo­ple have be­come more so­phis­ti­cated about Chi­nese food.”

And he said Brits are now de­mand­ing more au­then­tic Chi­nese food and mov­ing away from the sweet-and-sour stereo­type.

“More and more in­gre­di­ents are avail­able. If you go to some of the em­po­ri­ums here, they are in­cred­i­ble,” he said. “So, the op­por­tu­ni­ties are enor­mous. Peo­ple are still hun­gry for it, and ready to take Chi­nese food to the next level.”


Af­ter decades in the kitchen, top chef Ken Hom is ready to share his story. Ken Hom,

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