United States Chef
Bert Sackman Profile
I enjoy cooking and hosting dinner parties for 6 to 20. Some time ago, I prepared a manuscript describing my dinner party experiences, called "Fifty-Two Dinner Parties."
More recently, I have been developing a concept of operating a fantasy restaurant. One, under development, is called "Fat Choy - My Fantasy Chinese Restaurant." When I complete "Fat Choy," I plan to do another called "Californio - My Fantasy Southwestern Restaurant."
I have been researching how Chinese food has morphed from 19th century Cantonese food into American-Chinese restaurant dishes which has since evolved into the modern Chinese food we experience in America today. In "Fat Choy," I explore how certain traditional American-Chinese dishes were developed. Then, I play with these recipes to produce modern interpretations. For example, twice-cooked pork morphs into roasted pork timbale with fried rice and Sichuan sauce. Or shredded pork in Peking sauce evolves into Salisbury Pork on Potato Pancake with Sweet Bean Sauce.
"Californio" explores my fascination with southwestern cuisine, particularly as the Mexican influence merged with Chinese and Japanese influences in California. In "Californio," I will explore how certain traditional Southwestern foods originated and then I explore how they can be morphed into newer or more modern riffs on the theme. By way of example, I exaamine the origin of chicken fried steak and then present newer variations on the dish.
My grandmother was a professional cook in Catskill Mountain hotels. I learned how to cook by studying Jacque Pepin's "La Methode" and "La Technique." As I became more proficient, I was able to do short stages in Chinese restaurant kitchens in Los Angeles. I became friends with Roland Gibert, who owned Tulipe and and was part owner of 72 Market Street. Tulipe was my favorite restaurant and I can't recall how many times I ate Roland's Squab Stuffed with Sweetbreads. He and his partner, Maurice Piguet, had one helluva restaurant and I miss it.
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