New York, NY –
As much as I enjoy interviewing culinary legends and top chefs, I also enjoy highlighting upcoming chefs that are on the rise in our generation. Chef Roger Mooking is no rookie, he is a third-generation chef based out of Canada, with three tv shows (Everyday Exotic, Heat Seekers, Man Fire Food), one cookbook (Everday Exotic: The Cookbook), and also a recording artist at Warner Bros. We interviewed not long after he returned from his latest adventure to Bangladesh, so I wasted no time as I knew jet-lag would settle in with him very soon. See our interview below.
Where do you credit your professional training and culinary knowledge?
I was born into a Trinidadian and West Indian household where the family business was food. I’m also half Chinese, so you can only imagine the mixed fusion of dishes I grew up eating like roti, pastelle, and dim sum. I then went on to attend George Brown College, where I gained a lot of professional training and worked at several different restaurants meanwhile.
How did you come about doing Heat Seekers with Chef Aaron Sanchez?
When I was taping my show, Everyday Exotic it got picked up by the Food Network. At the time they were looking for two chefs to do Heat Seekers, Chef Sanchez and I were then picked to work together. We went out for lunch and clicked ever sense.
While taping Heat Seekers, what is the hottest dish you’ve encountered that you thought maybe you couldn’t finish?
On a episode, we visited a restaurant in Tampa, FL where I tried this fire-roasted chili soup. It was literally broth, noodles, and grounded chilis. I had two spoonfuls of the soup and had to back away from it.
Being a traveling chef you have to try almost all types of food in your food expeditions, is there any food that you particularly love and dislike?
My comfort food is soup, I love soup particularly Vietnamese Fo. In terms of what I dislike I usually like all types of food, but if I had to choose one it would be cauliflower. Although when I visited a Seattle restaurant I had a cauliflower dish that I almost went back for seconds. Ha!
What do you enjoy most about your new show, Man Fire Food?
Grilling seems so natural and I enjoy doing it, as there are so many different ways to grill food. I love to explore the different cultures in the several countries I visit favoring Bangkok, Thailand where I recently visited.
What’s next for you?
There is so much that I have planned I’d have you here all day! As of recently, I just finished recording in the studio for my new album. I enjoy recording soulful music. In regards to food, you may see me at New York City Wine & Food Festival coming up soon.
After my interview with Chef Roger Mooking, he gave off the impression that he’s just a down-to-earth chef who enjoys life and passionate about the arts, both culinary and music. To find out more Chef Mooking and his latest projects follow him on Twitter @RogerMooking and visit his website, rogermooking.com
Photo Credits: cookingchanneltv.com