Updated: Jan 27, 2020
Remember the kids series ‘The Suite Life Of Zack & Cody’, Australian Chef Jed Gerrard enjoyed almost a similar childhood. His grandparents owned a beautiful boutique hotel in New Zealand where he lived between the ages of 7 and 12. This was his first exposure to cooking, that too in a commercial kitchen which planted the dream of becoming a chef in his mind. From selecting meats to plucking fresh ingredients from the local farms and then going on the handling steaks, he started his journey as a chef rather young. He then got himself a degree and moved on to working at the three-hatted Bilson’s Restaurant by Tony Bilson who is considered the ‘Godfather of Australian cuisine’, Michelin-starred restaurants in Europe and Alexandre Bourdas’ Sa Que Na in Honfleur (France). He then decided to come back home Western Australia in 2015 to work for COMO The Treasury’s fine dining restaurant Wildflower.
Gerrard explains, “Australia is a cultural melting pot, everyone here has migrated from some other part of the world. That influences the food that everyone eats and the food chefs present.” Today, Australian chefs have travelled the world and returned home with recipes and techniques that they design taking original recipes and recreating them using the local ingredients that are only available in Australia. Another key point about the local ingredients in this country is the varied climatic conditions, which means that a fruit that grows in the west in winter, might not be available in the north.
Western Australia where Chef Gerrard hails from, used to be the inhabited by an Aboriginal colony of Nunga Tribe. According to their tribal calendar, the region gets six different climatic cycles. And thanks to the hot summers and cool winters, the area gets beautiful tomatoes, finger lines, desert limes and their star ingredients wattleseed that is hand-collected by the women from Nunga tribe.
Chef Jed Gerrard was in India for a special dinner hosted by Sommelier Nikhil Agarwal of All Things Nice.
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