What do you get when you put 7 executive chefs from 5-star hotels with 43 talented culinary students? Uhrenholt Young Chefs. I recently attended the Uhrenholt Young Chefs (UYC) Fundraising Dinner at Berjaya University Collage of Hospitality where 6-7 students were put under the wings of each executive chef to create canapés and a 5-course menu based on seafood and cheese, Asian style.
Mentoring the students were Chef Antoine of Le Meridien, Chef Rajesh of Sheraton Imperial, Chef Martin of Ritz Carlton, Chef Sabri of Royal Chulan Hotel, Chef Andrea of Renaissance Hotel, Chef Rudolph of Shangri La and Chef Nikolaj, corporate chef of Uhrenholt Food Service. I missed out in the canapés created by Chef Rajesh and Chef Martin but Yen told me they were pretty good.
Dinner started with the steamed prawn roll with otak-otak filling and chilled custard flower with crabmeat and galangal fish floss by Chef Sabri and team. The otak otak prawn roll was tasty, as was the chilled custard flower with crabmeat but I thought the fish floss tasted a bit bland. That said, lovely presentation.
The second course was the Asian broth with Pacific halibut, Vannamei shrimps, shredded young coconut and diced vegetables by Chef Antoine and team. The soup was mildly spicy and tangy – similar to tom yam – and poured over the raw halibut and shrimp. I enjoyed the toasted mantou bread topped with basil, tomatoes and cheese. A pity it was just a tiny slice. The salad of julienned papaya, cucumber and toasted peanuts was Chef Antoine’s version of the Thai papaya salad. Simple, yet delicious.
I wasn’t a fan of the Cinnamon Sautéed Bee Hoon on Fondue, Buah Keras and Prawn Terrine with Dry Longan Reduction by Chef Andrea and team. The vermicelli was too hard and chewy to enjoy and took the attention away from the prawn terrine and fondue. Also, the candlenut and dried longan’s sweetness didn’t quite go with the rest of the ingredients. But that’s just my personal opinion.
Our fourth course was the Asian-style Slow Braised Angus Beef Cheek with Bleu Cheese Macadamia Crust, Kumara Mash and Eryngii Mushrooms by Chef Rudolph and team. The beef was fork tender and crusted with bleu cheese and macadamia nuts, giving it a slightly pungent flavour. Delicious when eaten the five spice flavoured beef jus reduction. The sweet potato mash was a nice change from the usual baked or mashed potato.
I found the cheese canapé, a pastry spoon filled with five types of cheese a tad strong as all the cheeses had rather bold flavours. But I did enjoy the sweet cream cheese tofu in Gula Melaka consommé with sea coconut, sesame two ways and passion fruit curd by Chef Nikolaj and team. This was an interesting combination of textures and flavours which worked well.
A round of applause for the chefs and students, for making dinner a pleasant affair. This is a good platform for young chefs to learn and grow from the experience. Thank you Chef Nikolaj, for extending the invitation to me.
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Berjaya University College of Hospitality
Level 14 (East),
Berjaya Times Square,
1 Jalan Imbi,
55100 Kuala Lumpur.
Contact: 603-2687 7073