Recipes for Success: French celeb chef Yann Bernard Lejard talks edible artwork, classes realized
MANAMA: It’s exhausting to consider that somebody might be equally gifted as a chef and as an artist. However French celeb chef Yann Bernard Lejard proves it’s attainable.
Lejard, the director of culinary, meals and beverage at The Ritz-Carlton Bahrain not solely creates eye-catching shows for his meals, however he additionally decorates his plates with edible artworks. Sure, edible work.
Lejard’s summary artwork is usually in comparison with the that of Pablo Picasso and Jackson Pollock, amongst others. His cooking profession first took off in his homeland has to this point taken him to greater than 20 international locations, together with Singapore, China, Mexico, the Netherlands, India, the US, Eire, and Spain. He has labored at Michelin-starred eating places and a slew of luxurious lodges. He was additionally a finalist for the distinguished Swiss Taittinger Culinary Grand Prix in 2003.
“I began from the worst restaurant you possibly can think about within the south of France, the place they put the fish straight within the deep fryer for the vacationers, and went on to the most effective eating places in Europe,” he tells Arab Information.
Regardless of his success as a chef, nonetheless, Lejard turned pissed off that he had needed to sideline his love of artwork for the sake of his cooking profession.
“I used to be not blissful,” he says. “Regardless that I like meals — it’s my ardour to grasp the substances, the sauce, the authenticity — I understood that, for me, cooking was not sufficient. My life was not this. My life was extra. I used to be in search of a solution, as a result of it was very boring.”
That boredom was alleviated by his transfer to the Center East. His first cease was Saudi Arabia, as the chief chef for the award-winning Glow restaurant the place he turned the primary chef within the Kingdom to be ranked by the UK meals publication FOUR Journal.
“After I first arrived in Saudi Arabia, I modified my mind-set,” he says. “I discovered some sort of peace within the Center East. I felt that I needed to attempt to erase all I had realized.”
He continues: “I used to be guided by a method of labor, so I made a decision to take away every thing. It was a protracted course of, however I began to search out pleasure in working. I discovered a objective. The Center East opened me to totally different cultures.”
He moved to Bahrain in 2014. “I discovered the place I used to be actually in search of. Ritz-Carlton is a model that I actually affiliate with. I really feel very dedicated and really loyal,” he explains.
Right here, Lejard affords some culinary recommendation and discusses the significance of resilience.
Q: While you began out, what was the commonest mistake you made?
A: Not listening. And I used to be in some excellent locations the place I ought to have listened, as a result of I used to be in entrance of essential professionals. In lots of eating places, I’d work one, two or three days after which transfer to a different one, as a result of I used to be not pleased with the best way they labored. However, it was in my head. It took so a few years for me to search out my conception of cooking. I have to have very robust, skilled individuals round me to have the ability to work. I’m all the time eager about alternative ways to do issues. I need to do what different persons are not doing.
Q: What’s your prime tip for beginner cooks?
A: Be resilient. By no means quit.
Q: What’s the key to a profitable restaurant?
A: An important factor is that it’s a must to contact the emotion. You want visitors to really feel good — to really feel comfy. They should really feel real care.
Q: What’s your go-to dish if it’s a must to prepare dinner one thing rapidly?
A: I’ve a really strict food regimen. I’m practically vegetarian. So I’d say tomato with olive oil, soy sauce and coriander.
Q: What’s essentially the most troublesome dish for you to get proper?
A: Simplicity is troublesome. In each dish there’s a trick. In each dish there’s a particular approach to do it and there are the love and feelings that you simply put into it. Everybody can have the identical recipe, however not everybody may have the identical finish consequence. I can’t make ratatouille like my grandmother. It’s the meals that brings heat to your coronary heart and reminds you of your childhood.
Q: As a boss, are you a disciplinarian? Or are you fairly laid again?
A: I understood, after a few years, that alone you might be nothing. You want individuals round you. I attempt as a lot as I can to not play with the feelings of the individuals round me. Even when I do it generally, I see that I made a mistake. I wish to have a quiet working ambiance the place everyone has respect for one another.
Q: While you exit to eat, do you end up critiquing the meals?
A: Completely not. I’m very cool once I’m not working. (Clearly), I don’t need to be dissatisfied. However I don’t like to evaluate.
Q: What request or conduct by prospects most frustrates you?
It’s all concerning the feelings. One thing I do not like is that if somebody hurts my feelings. I’m very delicate, however I’m engaged on it. Earlier than, I used to care quite a bit concerning the suggestions on the standard and errors. In cooking it’s a must to be extraordinarily constant. While you’re cooking with ardour, you set part of you into it. A mistake can occur, and this may harm my emotions and my feelings. Now, I simply transfer ahead.