Archive of ‘Chef Speak’ category

Chef Speak: 8 Questions With Masterchef Mike Li Wei

Greater Kailash’s prized Sichuan restaurant Hao Shi Nian Niann (stands for Here’s To A Good Life) with it’s all black interiors is one of the most elegant Chinese eateries in the vicinity and the man responsible for bringing to Delhi the authentic tastes of far east Asia is Chef Mike Li Wei. GourmetItUp had the privilege of talking to the great master chef himself and the tete a tete that ensued has been reproduced for our readers:

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Chef Mike Li Wei of Hao Shi Nian Niann is excitable when we discuss Sichuan cuisine. He attaches a sensibility to his food and is a paragon of his kind. Hao Shi Nian Niann offers stellar dishes with effortless ease and it’s all because of him. The chef de cuisine isn’t the least bit nervous as he prepares to answer all my inquisitive questions.

What was the first dish you ever perfected as a chef?

“It wasn’t so much a dish. It was a special sauce. It’s extremely versatile and can be paired with any meat of your choice, chicken, fish, you name it. You actually have to taste it to know what i’m talking about.”

How much/How drastically do you have to change authentic Sichuan cuisine to meet the Indian palate?

“I think authentic Sichuan cuisine is still very oily and very spicy for the Indian palate so i tone down some of my dishes. The traditional favourites are still left untouched of course”

How was Hao Shi Nian Niann born?

“I was back home in Sichuan when i got a call from Jagjit and Kartar Singh telling me ‘Chef, we want to open a restaurant for you so you have to come back’. That was how Hao Shi Nian Niann was born.”

What was your most memorable dinner at Hao Shi Nian Niann?

“It was my birthday and my team got me a cake with my face on it (he laughs) It was extremely special.”

What do you cook for yourself when you’re at home?

“When at home,  we cook a traditional spicy Sichuan pork dish that’s native to the province and is cooked by all families”

What is your favourite Indian dish?

“Oh, I have so many. There’s Black Dal, Tandoori Chicken with Butter Nan, Rogan Ghosh.”

Where do you see yourself in the next five years?

“Hopefully taking Hao Shi Nian Nian to more cities and expanding but that really depends on the boss”

Can you share a star recipe with our readers?

“Here’s the recipe for my famous Double Cooked Pork:

PORK BELLY                           1000 gm
SPRING ONION                        100 gm
SALT                                             10 gm
GINGER GARLIC                         40 gm
COOKING WINE                           20 ml
CHICKEN POWDER                     20 gm
CAPSICUM                                   60  gm
RED PEPPER                               60  gm
WHITE PEPPER                              4  gm
SESAME OIL                                   20 ml
VEGETABLE OIL                          200 gm
CORNFLOWER                              50 gm
ONION                                         100 gm
PI XIAN CHILLY PASTE                  50 gm
TONG CHUAN BLACK BEAN        50 gm
HISION SAUCE                               50 gm
BABY LEEKS                                  100 gm                                                        CABBAGE                                      100 gm

METHOD:

METHOD
1) Blanch the Pork Belly till cooked.
2) Cut the pork belly into slices.
3) Cut all the vegetable into slices.
4) Heat oil in wok then add sliced pork belly and add hoisin sauce stir fryand put pixan chilly paste.
5) Add all the other vegetables and cook together till cooked.
6) Then add the seasonings.
7) And add the black beans at the end and then serve.”

Click Here To View Our GourmetItUp Experience at Hao Shi Nian Niann