I grew up in rural Ontario, surrounded by farms and beautiful produce. My mom was a firm believer in heading to the St. Jacobs Farmers’ Market every weekend to pick up the freshest produce possible. She insisted on eating local seasonal ingredients, and now I like to apply the same concept when designing menu items.
The arc of her restaurant’s growth has been based on a theory of simplicity that she studied at the school. “I learned some amazing things from Neil and Bryan [veteran SCS instructors and former Rundles and The Old Prune chefs Baxter and Steele, respectively], and I always start with those fundamentals and building blocks…”
After his first year at the Stratford Chefs School, Tom Giannakopoulos (Class of 2017) said “I now know what I don’t know.”
Tom had cooking experience gained through his family’s restaurants in Stratford, the city in which he grew up. “From the time I was 13 years old, I’ve been working in restaurants,” Giannakopoulos says, adding that attending the School was a natural progression from what he’d already been doing.
From the Stratford Chefs School, Tim Otsuki’s culinary career has taken him around the world, evolving with each dish and each cuisine, from Hong Kong, to the Caribbean to Toronto, and back to Stratford; Chef Otsuki is eager to share the cross cultural fusion of freely adapted recipes from his own experiences at his restaurant The Common, where the motto is: Eat Without Borders.
Help support our Canadian food industry while enjoying this delicious recipe, from our Open Kitchen to yours.