#ccc2013 @goldmedalplates Chefs from Canada will meet in Kelowna from February 7-9, 2013 to compete in the Gold Medal Plates Canadian Culinary Championships. I sent them some questions prior to the challenge. Here are the answers from Chef Milton Rebello from the Sakatchewan Radison in Regina.
Where did you first learn to cook?
At home…I was inspired by my mother’s cooking
What was in your elementary school lunch kit?
Homemade Indian flat breads (paratha) stuffed with potatoes and cauliflower tempered with mustard. And rice crepes (dosa) with coconut chutney
Did you attend culinary school – if so, where?
Graduated from Institute of Hotel Management, Mumbai, India. Johnson and Wales University, Miami, FL
Journeyman Red Seal and Certified Chef De Cuisine from N.A.I.T. in Edmonton, AB.
Where has been your favourite place to work to date and why?
My present position at the Radisson Plaza Hotel Saskatchewan in Regina, SK- I have great team mates, great support and trust from the executive team and owners. It is great to work with local farmers and locally grown ingredients. I love the work and personal time balance.
Who in the industry taught you the most?
I have learned best practices from all the chefs I have worked with…one that I respect the most is Chef Michael Brown
What is your favourite ethnic cuisine?
Mangalorean Cuisine (southern coast of India)
What ingredient(s) can’t you live without?
Ginger and Chili
What are the most essential tools for cooking?
Sharp knife, rolling pin and a passion to cook
Ingredient you can’t get enough of?
Ingredient that will never touch your lips?
FORCE FED goose foie gras and shark fin
What is your most prized possession?
What basic recipe/s do you advise for cooking novices to learn as a starting point?
Learn the basics and perfect the mother sauces ….everything after comes easy
What’s your go-to comfort food?
Fresh seafood, seared,seasoned with little bit of salt and pepper….finished with a dash of lemon juice
What’s your favourite cocktail?
Not for me…
Do you have a guilty pleasure?
What’s your definition of a perfect meal?
Simple food with the right company
What do you always have on hand for last minute entertaining at home?
How do you unwind after service?
Loud music on my drive home
If you weren’t a chef what career would you have pursued?
A food critic…lol
What would you eat at your last meal?
My ma’s pork vindaloo with rice cakes
Who are your dream dinner companions?
My childhood buddies
What do you do in your off time?
Movies, music, gardening
Where do you eat in your city when you are not working?
Michi Japanese Restaurant and Sushi Bar
What is the dish/dishes your restaurant is known for?
We are known for our ‘local ingredients’ inspired menu. Rack of lamb being the favourite
What dish will you be cooking for Gold Medal Plates?
Still working on perfecting the dish we won at the regionals
Why did you choose the particular wine/beer pairing for the dish?
Pinot Noir by See Ya Later Ranch complements best with our lamb
Who have you brought with you to assist?
Tyler Koloski from Regina and Han Lin will join us from Kelowna
For the black box competition are there any strategies that you will employ to succeed?
We do have a strategy….all or nothing
What challenges do you have to face as your travel to another destination to cook?
The biggest challenge is sourcing the ingredients.
Who do you see as the toughest competitor this year?
Each of the competitors has their own style…for now I am not concerned with who will be a threat, instead I will stick to our plan and have fun along the way.