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Wednesday, November 9, 2016

11/07/2016 - Chef Peter Pahk on a Life in Food; John Susman, FishTales

Slow Living Welcomes friends from near and far to talk food, Thanksgiving ideas and all about fish and seafood.  First we talk to Chef Peter Pahk in Seattle with Hilton Worldwide about his illustrious career and get some tips for Thanksgiving with a difference.  Then John Susman, Seafood aficionado from Australia about his new book, The Australian Fish and Seafood Cookbook, sustainability, and his life in the world of fish.  

Peter Pahk
Executive Chef
Hilton Seattle Airport and Conference Centre

An O'ahu native who spent a stellar 30-year career leading culinary teams at world-class resort hotels, country clubs and five-star restaurants across the United States and the Big Island of Hawaii, which has always inspired his cuisine to be filled with the spirit of aloha. Chef Pahk credits his mom with mentoring him in the kitchen at the tender age of six. Growing up in the Aina Haina area on Oahu, Chef Pahk shares that his mother would visit the butcher to see what might be available from the "back door". She would come home with ox tail, tongue or tripe, long before these proteins became in-vogue delicacies, and together, they'd slow cook them, make stews, and stretch their meager budget. Learning the basics of slow food and flavors, while not something he appreciated much then, has become something Chef Pahk now recognizes as fundamental to who he has become as an executive chef and culinary professional.

His formal education took place at Syracuse University and at the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) in Hyde Park, New York. Upon graduating from the CIA, Chef Pahk embarked upon his career with the Ritz Carlton Hotel Company in 1983. While there, he established an impressive following for his Asian-influenced California cuisine as Executive Chef at the Ritz Carlton - Atlanta and Marina Del Rey. He traveled extensively abroad to Hong Kong, Bali, Singapore, Korea, Australia and Mexico as a member of The Ritz Carlton Hotel Company’s opening team. Domestically, he helped open hotels in Hawaii, Laguna Niguel, Pasadena, St. Louis, Philadelphia, Aspen, Kansas City, and New Orleans.
In 1993, Chef Pahk was named “America’s 2000,” an award given to outstanding chefs in North America. In 1994, he was honored with an invitation to cook the New Year’s Eve Dinner for members of the James Beard Foundation in New York.
Since that time he has worked as Executive Chef at Silverado Resort in Napa Valley, Kingsmill Resort and Spa in the heart of Williamsburg, VA and The Mauna Kea Beach Hotel on the beautiful big island of Hawaii.
He now works as Executive Chef with Hilton Worldwide at their Seattle Airport Hotel and Convention Centre.  He continues his role as Culinary Professor and mentor with the Woosong University in Korea.

Chef Pahk is a member of the American Culinary Federation, the James Beard Foundation, Chef’s Collaborative, Slow Foods Napa Valley, Board Member of the Resort Food Executive Committee founded by Herman Rusch (an elite membership of 35 nationwide independent resort Executive Chefs), Board Member of the Mustard Festival, Napa Valley, Chairperson for Share Our Strength Napa Valley, Charter Member of the Local First, a division of BALLE, devoted to supporting local businesses, and a professional member and spokesperson for Common Vision, an organization devoted to making sustainable oceans a reality through The Seafood Watch Program and The Monterey Bay Aquarium.


John Susman

With over 22 years experience in the seafood industry, and countless awards and acknowledgments, John grew up in the coastal town of Victor Harbour in South Australia, in an extended family of manic fishermen, dairy farmers and horticulturalists. So from the start, his love of good produce was innate. During his years, completing a Bachelor of Arts (Commerce) and his post graduate studies, John ventured into restaurants at a crucial stage in the evolution of the industry. Cutting his teeth alongside the likes of the now legendary Cheung Liew, Tim Pak Poy, Christine Manfield, Phillip Searle and Margie Harris, this formative time in the Australian restaurant scene established within him, a thorough knowledge and passion for what it takes to prepare, cook and present great food. John’s knack for developing bonds with some of the most influential people in food, from gun producers, to high calibre chefs has seen him work around the world, from J.Lelande in Paris, to Japan and the Americas.

Back in Australia, he set up the legendary Flying Squid Bothers, an integrated scallop fishing business which became Australia’s first water to plate operation. Consistently regarded as a foremost authority on seafood, not only in Australia, but globally, John is a regular judge in consumer and industry awards and regularly appears on television, radio and print media to lend his expertise and views on sustainability and seafood. In 2004, John was admitted in to the Fairfax Australian Food Industry Hall of Fame, for his services to the Australian food industry. To add further insult to injury, Delicious Magazine also awarded him Outstanding Providore of the Year in 2012. To put it plainly, nobody quite knows seafood like John Susman. Thank god.

Australian Fish and Seafood Cookbook
The ultimate kitchen companion
John Susman, Anthony Huckstep, Sarah Swan and Stephen Hodges

The definitive guide to cooking great fish.
Written by the most respected authorities on seafood in the country, this landmark publication contains all you need to know about selecting and preparing over 60 types of fish and seafood, including catching methods, notes on sustainability, flavour profiles and cooking guidelines.

More than 130 recipes showcase the delicious potential of the vast array of seafood available, and clear step-by-step photography illustrating the key techniques takes all the guesswork out of cooking seafood at home.

Accompanied throughout by striking imagery, this important book is as beautiful as it is informative, and will become the benchmark reference for anyone interested in cooking and eating fish and seafood.

'The bible for seafood. The only book you'll ever need on the topic.' Neil Perry

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