Nikkei cuisine, Maki Sushi and Cocktail Master Class for Westminster Kingsway Chef Students and Professional Chefs at top London restaurant, Chotto Matte

A group of lucky Westminster Kingsway College chef students have participated in a master class and competition of sushi cuisine at London restaurant, Chotto Matte in an event organised by The Chefs’ Forum. The Chefs’ Forum held one of its quarterly London events at this exciting restaurant in partnership with Westminster Kingsway College to showcase students’ skills to top London chefs and to forge valuable links between the College and employers.

Keita Sato Head Sushi ChefChotto Matte (meaning ‘wait a minute’ in Japanese) is the brainchild of restaurant guru Kurt Zdesar, who helped launch Nobu and founded the popular Dim Sum chain Ping Pong. Kurt travelled through Peru with Chotto Matte’s Executive Chef, Jordan Sclare, to gain inspiration for the Japanese/Peruvian fusion menu which has gone down a storm with London’s restaurant scene.

The College chef students attended two events at the restaurant – a Maki master class taught by Head Sushi Chef Keita Sato at Chotto Matte and then the sushi competition and forum held at the main Chefs’ Forum event on Monday the 16th February. The students got to grips with Nikkei cuisine under Executive Chef Jordan Sclare and Head Chef Michael Paul.  They then prepared canapés and demonstrated their new culinary skills to an audience of over seventy chefs and potential employers from across the capital.

Michael Paul demoHead Chef Michael Paul is an ex-student of Westminster Kingsway College and he found The Chefs’ Forum event very valuable indeed.  He commented: “Having attended Westminster Kingsway, it has been amazing to hand my knowledge and skills on to the next generation of young chefs at this fantastic College, it was great to host my old lecturers at Chotto Matte too.  I have very much enjoyed working with the students and based on their outstanding performance in my kitchen, I would happily take them all on!

The select group of six students who attended the Sushi master class also took part in a live Maki Roll competition in front of the professional chefs.  This type of sushi is made by wrapping up a variety of ingredients in rice and crispy nori seaweed. Some of the most common ingredients for maki sushi include salmon, tuna and avocado. Chotto Matte also blow torch the sushi to finish it off!

West King students with Michael, Paul and Keita SatoJessica Vakos, professional chef student at Westminster Kingsway College was awarded the first prize in the Maki competition winning a fantastic Global Oriental knife set as a prize. The set, worth £300 was kindly donated by this market-leading knife supplier was chosen as something that the student can take on into industry with them to remember their time at Chotto Matte.

Alexandra Jones, Programme Manager of Professional Chef Diploma Courses at Westminster Kingsway College organised and coordinated nine students, participation in the event, she commented: “The students have really enjoyed working with Jordan, Michael and the team at Chotto Matte. They have gained new knowledge and techniques in Nikkei cuisine and sushi that aren’t taught in College.  It is curriculum enrichment opportunities like this that will make our students industry ready. We will continue to work with The Chefs’ Forum going forward to offer our students the chance to learn from the very best in the business”.

Jordan Sclare Exec ChefChotto Matte’s Executive Chef, Jordan Sclare commented: “We have thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of this event.  It was great to see the students engage in what we do here – It is highly rewarding to inspire young people and I was very impressed with the standard of their work and level of professionalism. I am very much looking forward to the next Chefs’ Forum event.”

Westminster Kingsway College champions world food in its catering curriculum. Recently, the College co-organised a two week festival of Korean food and ‘K-Cuisine Workshops’ with the Korean Cultural Centre UK.

Photography by:
© 2014 John Arandhara-Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.
© 2014 Tor Pearce. All Rights Reserved.