What fun we had with Chef Matsuhisa Nobu at his own restaurant Nobu at the Nobu Hotel in the City of Dreams last week. Chef Nobu visited Manila and I was invited to an exclusive Japanese lunch with him.
The lunch featured some of the Nobu specialties, including the black cod miso. This also happens to be my favourite Nobu specially dish.
COOKING LESSON WITH NOBU
I’d met him several times before. In fact, we have common friends in Tokyo. But this time I just could not pass up the chance to have a delicious lunch as well as to actually watch him in action.
Yes, the famous Chef Nobu Matsuhisa was going to demonstrate how to create some of the iconic dishes served at his Nobu restaurants around the world.
SIMPLE & EASY JAPANESE FOOD
Many great chefs create truly delicious Japanese food. But personally, I believe that the genius of Nobu lies in the fact that he makes everything so simply, and yet also so simply delicious.
For example, he began the demonstration with a dry miso salad. This dish consists basically of five or six ingredients including a lettuce green found in almost every country. So it can be replicated anywhere.
He was so relaxed while demonstrating this dish. But within minutes, we had a perfectly plated dry miso salad in front of us.
CHEF NOBU GIVES ME A SUSHI MAKING LESSON
Then he created a set of sushi. Everyone loves sushi, of course, and it looks deceptively simple to make. After all, sushi is really just sliced fish, with rice, a little vinegar, and some soy sauce. Or so I thought.
Our famous chef certainly made it seem that way.
CHEF NOBU TEACHES ME HOW TO MAKE SUSHI
But then he called out for a participant to help him make sushi. I immediately raised my hand. Of course I wanted to try making sushi with the famous Chef Nobu. In fact, I would be able to learn how to make sushi from the great master himself. Who wouldn’t to do so?
This was when I realised how much harder it is to make sushi than to eat it. Chef Nobu made it seem so easy, but my sushi certainly did not turn out the same way as his.
HOW TO MAKE GOOD SUSHI
In fact, Chef Nobu teased me afterwards: “I think I’ll give you my sushi to eat. But I don’t think I want to eat yours.”
He was right. I was holding a lopsided sushi in my hand. Even I did not want to eat my own sushi.
But guess what? In the end, I decided to eat it anyway. It was delicious. I may not have created a proper sushi in visual terms, but the fish and rice combination were perfect. In fact, it had just the right amount of wasabi and soy sauce. I was really pleased.
So I just may have a sushi career in the future, after all. When I’m done with living a Travelife, that is.