I have been running two restaurants for almost 6 months now. Being executive chef and owner to two takes up a lot of time, and it is important for me to take my off days off to maintain some sort of balance with work days that are more than 12 hours straight. That has always been a mantra of mine, “I want to be the best chef I can be while still maintaining balance in my life.”
That being said creating dishes, doing tests and making menus doesn’t leave much time to actually cook for people and that is what I miss. I would like to find an outlet where I could directly cook for 12 covers a night. In this fantasy the room would be perfect, the plates, flatware and glassware all perfect, everything held to an impossible standard just for 12 people.
THAT being said, I am still a young and learning chef and I have many years to get to that point in my career and put Saskatoon or Saskatchewan on the map.
The first picture is Kyle and I at Travis’ wedding in Napa it was so good to see him! Lately I have just been so grateful to have all of the cooks that I love to cook with still be a part of my life 10 years after we all first met. Bryan was just here helping us open our second restaurant Primal. We couldn’t have even opened a second restaurant if Scotty and Cristelle hadn’t moved here to help build the empire. Travis will be opening a restaurant soon in downtown San Francisco and I hope to be there to support him. We will also have to go see Bryan when his new place opens up as well. I am just so glad to know all of these people. My chef life would not be the same without them. I just really love all you guys.
After the third year of composting we are working through the different ways to get take care of the bones. We used to just straight up compost them but they would take a long time to break down, they would be stinky and they would attract animals. As of now after we strain the stocks we put the bones on sheet trays and dry them out and then save them to burn. Ideally we would get a hammer mill and make blood and bone meal but for now we make ash and add it to the compost.
The actual act of burning the bones is a very good excuse for a good fire even in the winter. It feels really good and is a great way to reset and recharge.
Iceland was the perfect vacation for me, we work so hard that we like to play hard. It is all cool lava rainforest moss, with mystical hot water springs. The last picture is of the Blue Lagoon and once we went there I basically just spent the rest of the time in the peaceful milky blue hot water. It was the most peaceful experience of my life sitting on a lava rock in the lagoon with creamy white silica mud all over me. It was dead silent with natures elements all around you from sun to foggy wind and rain but you are safe and warm in the silent lagoon. With all of the fog you feel as if you are alone except for the occasional bird call. We stayed in one of the 25 rooms at the lagoon site because I wanted to have as much of that time as possible. We ate some mushrooms and floated in the private lagoon all day and watched the sun set it was magic.
The hot dogs are the best in Iceland and everything in the pubs is wool, leather and fur, it is very surreal like another planet. I balled out and bought a lot of sheep skin and wool and the whole time I was there I slept of a bed of Icelandic sheep skins draped in wool. Oh yeah and we tried to have a picnic and lay on the moss covered lava but the wind was whipping so fast that we retreated back to the hot lagoon.
Oil burns happen in a kitchen sometimes. Man up and get back to work.