BENGALURU: Popular international Israeli chef Roy Soffer visited India for the first time. The best known dishes of the chef who started his culinary journey in 1994 are Fish Tagine, Sweet yam with cashew-nuts, Chocolate Fantasy. In an interview with CE, he talks about his favourite ingredients and how he got to cook for the first man who landed on moon. Excerpts:
What’s your most favourite ingredient to work with?
Raw fishes are my favourite ingredients
If not chef, what would have been your alternate career option?
I have high regards for architects. I would have chosen that path.
Do you also cook at home? If no, why?
I do cook on Fridays for family gatherings whenever I am in my hometown. Rest of the time, my schedule does not allow me to cook at home.
Do you give cooking tips to your mother and/or wife? How do they react?
My first and most important cooking inspiration is my mother. I have learned our traditional dishes from her. Hence, I don’t interfere when she cooks. In case, she likes any of my dish, then I share the recipe with her.
What are your hobbies, apart from cooking?
Music and driving
Do you watch cooking shows/reality shows? If yes, which shows and contestants are your favourites?
I don’t watch TV until there is a football match airing.
What’s your family’s most favourite dish that you
If it were your last day on earth, where and what would you love to eat?
That would be fresh sea urchin. The place has to be Sushi Yasuda, NYC.
What’s been your worst/funniest kitchen incident?
Once I was making special 20 kg bread and I completely forgot to add salt in the mixture. It turned out awful and the entire process had to start from the scratch again.
Any famous personalities you’d like to cook for? Why them? What would you cook for them?
Yes, I was fortunate to do that. I was invited to cook for Neil Armstrong, the first astronaut on the moon. It was a multi-course dinner and I was honoured to hear that he relished a fish course that I had prepared with wild mushroom tea.