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I am a Food & Travel Blogger for withtrevor.com based in Abu Dhabi, UAE where I document my food and travel experiences in the world.

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Chef Malith's Piñacolada
InFood

1-on-1 with Chef Malith

Chef Malith has an extremely interesting personality, and an equally interesting story to how he rose to his position today.. From the experience in the past and counting, interviews with chefs are just a revelation of how much more life is actually about. It’s not just about good food and delicate touches of garnishes on a plate. Learning about different stories are an eye-opener to how life should be more appreciated! I can’t help but stress on the fact that talking with someone who creates good food from a bag of simple ingredients. Chef Malith takes a role as the Head Pastry Chef of Nassima Royal Hotel. I managed to pull him out of the kitchen for a quick chat…

A glass of water is fine…

Chef Malith (Credits to Nassima Royal Hotel)

Chef Malith (Credits to Nassima Royal Hotel)

His career in the culinary industry boosted in Sri Lanka. From then on, he kept climbing the ladder with a strong belief that each experience only added to his set of skills. With experiences in various hotels of the industry, Chef Malith has been through the many conditions of banquets, á la carte, various outlets, all day dining, etc. – rest assured, he is extremely seasoned! Of course, with ‘steps’, I mean the whole hierarchy of climbing from a commis to a chef de partie to a head chef. Taking care of pastry of the hotel is no easy task. Well I can’t really say much about it (since I’m more of the Hot Kitchen kinda person), however, Chef Malith goes on to explain that his responsibilities extend to anything and everything pastry-related in the hotel. That’s quite enormous isn’t it! Overseeing every single pastry item in the hotel boils down to what you would order for dessert (in the lobby, for example). And you know it’s a plate being signed off by Chef Malith

To do this, well, its a bit easier to put down in words that all pastry items come off from one kitchen (which is generally very cold, I’ve been in one, so I know for a fact). And then every plate would get distributed into every venue of the hotel (where needed). (Even Bread, by the way.). He goes on to explain that the environment in a Pastry Kitchen is very different from a Hot Kitchen. This is usually filled with screaming and abusing and pot throwing and pan flying (well it’s not that crazy, but you get the idea). However, the Pastry Kitchen (or Cold Kitchen) is all about peace and serenity. Think about it like a vacation in Seychelles. (Nah! I’m kidding – It’s not extremely peaceful). It’s a very good environment to focus and concentrate. An environment that Pastry Chefs require when it comes to designing a cake, or how to make a plate look even better. It’s more or less…serene…in a way. A place where you need patience. (If anyone knows what I’m talking about, I think the best comparison is walking into a chiller in a Hot Kitchen – one that’s usually filled with cheese and pasta, or even the walk-in Freezer, where you’re mind automatically programs itself for a few minutes in the North Pole).

The Cliché Question…

Chef Malith talks enormous lengths on how important it is to be creative. And it’s much more than just knowing how to design a flower from fondant. But if he had to pick out something, he enjoys to creative side of pastry – in the form of designing cakes, creating a showpiece, etc. Moreover, he stresses on this fact with an example I thought was wonderful! Think of your birthday, and you place an order for a cake. For him, it would be his 100th cake in preparation, but for you its something special. So he pushes himself to make that cake special for you! Yes, it could be just a cake, but to him it is something that he wants to spend his time, creativity and passion into it – and that is quite exactly how we artists live…Expressing true passion through every day

Asking the question to a pastry chef was intriguing. I’d usually get responses along the lines of Salmon or a Risotto or simple but good home cooked food! However, Chef Malith’s response to this question was “Creating a Centerpiece (Cake) that would outline his important events in life”. I personally think this is an answer that is so passionate to his line of work. Imagine a hypothetical last day on Earth, and he would be driven to create a cake with his life story. Beautiful isn’t it?

A Specialty…

Chef Malith took me by surprise by plating out a desert that was simply apt for a showcase! Not to be eaten at all. He calls it a “Piñacolada” it involves a slice of pineapple on the base, with a scoop of chocolate ice cream, with a touch of gold flake.

Chef Malith's Piñacolada

Chef Malith’s Piñacolada

 

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