Wednesday, March 9, 2016

experiment #60 - Cobaya Kamayan with Chef Dale Talde

Well that was different, and a lot of fun. For Experiment #60, we paid a visit to Chef Dale Talde, who opened Talde Miami Beach in the Thompson Hotel about a year ago (he also has the original Talde, plus Pork Slope, and Thistle Hill in Brooklyn, and a Talde Jersey City too). Talde, though an unabashed advocate of "inauthentic" Asian-American food, did something for our dinner that was close to his Filipino-American roots: a "kamayan" feast.

What does that mean? No utensils, no plates, the entire meal spread out on a long communal table over banana leaves, and everyone just sits down and digs in. (After washing their hands, of course). It was dark and loud as Chef Talde came out to talk up the meal, and we didn't catch enough to give a fully accurate recap here. But there was chicken adobo, lechon kawali (Filipino fried pork belly), whole roasted grouper with stewed tomatoes, grilled shrimp, lumpia, papaya salad, green beans in coconut curry, and lots more. For dessert: "5G Cookies" (so named because Chef Talde won $5,000 in a Top Chef Quickfire Challenge for them).

In addition to lots of napkins, Chef Talde also sent everyone home with a copy of his book: "Asian-American: Proudly Inauthentic Recipes from the Philippines to Brooklyn." A big thank you to Dale, to all of his team and partners at the restaurant for a really fun experience, and as always most of all, to our guinea pigs, whose interest and support make these events possible.

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