THE NORDIC WAVES-SCANDINAVIAN CHEFS: GUSTAV OTTERBERG
(Gustav Otterberg has left Leijontornet in June 2010, now with ekstedt)
(SWEDISH) Den nordiska vågen” kallas den grupp kockar från Skandinavien, framförallt från Sverige, Danmark och Norge, som under de senaste åren förknippats med det nya nordiska köket. Åtta ledande kockar kommer härmed att presenteras i en serie på tre delar.
The Nordic Waves is the term I used to describe this group of chefs from all of Scandinavia, mainly from Sweden, Denmark and Norway. These chefs known for 3-4 years at international level have particularly been at the forefront over the past two years due to the recognition of New Nordic Cuisine and the emphasis on a cuisine close to nature and the local products. All this, without relying on the status attained by the restaurant Noma and Chef René Redzepi. But beyond fashions and trends of the moment, I discovered a high concentration of young chefs, innovative, creative, open to the world and all dedicated to their garden! To present the eight (8) chefs selected I decided to divide them into three little groups, not by country but by affinity.
This second block of Scandinavian chefs presents two young chefs that are very original, creative and in perfect synergy with the New Nordic Cuisine Manifesto: Torsten Schmidt (Malling&Schmidt) and Gustav Otterberg (Leijontornet).
Gustav Otterberg is born in Växjö (Sweden) in 1982, he is a young chef! But he quickly revealed his talent by his culinary style and philosophy. Because he uses only local products and likes to pick them himself, Otterberg is the perfect Swedish disciple of René Redzepi (Noma). We find at Leijontornet (in the nice Victory Hotel) an original cuisine inspired only seasonal produce and nature, so no tomato in January! They recently opened a bistro-style restaurant Djuret, it has a very interesting menu built around a single animal being used in full (from nose to tail). He is a creative chef live in complete harmony with the environment. A chef to follow!
Q+A WITH GUSTAV OTTERBERG (www.leijontornet.se ):
1-(Scoffier) How do you explain the philosophy behind your cuisine and what is it main characteristics?
GOtterberg- My philosophy is based on cooking natural food. When I create, i want everything on the plate to feel harmonious and to give the main ingredient in the course the right context where it should benefit in real life. This philosophy based on Swedish ecological produce enables me to build the New Nordic Cuisine.
2-(Scoffier) Do you have a particular foods (or produces) that you often use in your recipes?
GOtterberg- I love to create courses on shellfish which we have extremely high quality of in Sweden because of the cold water. Otherwise, i enjoy beef and veal from the local farm “Upplandsbonden” and fowl from “Hagby Gård”, and of course all the herbs, which I pick myself in nature.
3-(Scoffier) Do you have a mentor (chefs or anybody else) that inspires you in your cuisine?
GOtterberg- The Nature inspires me, but René (Redzepi) at Noma also inspires me.
4-(Scoffier) Do you have a particular flavour or taste from your childhood that is again memorable?
GOtterberg- Newly fried mushrooms and fresh berries are the two flavours that I remember the most from my childhood. I also loved to sit in the forest and just eat things around me such as wood sorell, polypody and wild berries.
5-(Scoffier) Is there any elements from your cuisine that is typical from the Sweden?
GOtterberg- Smoking, conserving and salting is typical Swedish.
6-(Scoffier) People say that you are part of the New Nordic Cuisine manifesto initiated by Claus Meyer and Rene Redzepi (Noma). Are you as strict (just local produces) that Rene Redzepi in your recipes?
GOtterberg- Yes, I am as devoted as he is!
7-(Scoffier) I know that the chef Pascal Barbot (L’Astrance) take a lot of time choosing and picking his produces at the market. Do you spend as much of time to choose and pick your produces? It’s important for you?
GOtterberg- Yes, I spend a lot of time selecting and picking produce. For example, in season, I spend 1-4 hours per day just picking wild herbs.
8-(Scoffier) Do you use some elements from molecular gastronomy or from other new technology in cooking techniques?
GOtterberg- No, I work only with natural techniques.
9-(Scoffier) What is the importance of wine pairings in your menu at Leijontornet? And, is there a typical Swedish alcohol?
GOtterberg- It is very important at Leijontornet to match the right wine to the right food but never the other way around. The typical Swedish alcohol is Akvavit.
10-(Scoffier) Can you give us a detailed recipe (signature dish) that is characterized the cuisine of Gustav Otterberg?
GOtterberg- See the recipe: Mackerel And Raw Shrimps From Captain Mikael On The Ship “Kennedy Of Björkö”
11-(Scoffier) What is your goal (ambitions) as a chef or for the restaurant? Do you think about write a book, make a television show?
GOtterberg- My goal is to do what I love the most and that is to create culinary highlights from natural Swedish produce and to constantly be better in what I love.
RECIPE: Mackerel And Raw Shrimps From Captain Mikael On The Ship “Kennedy Of Björkö”
INGREDIENT & PROGRESSION RECIPE
-4 filets of mackerel (the back part)
-1 dl vinegar
-3 dl water
-1 finely chopped yellow onion
-1 finely chopped carrot
-2 tbsp dill seeds
1. Cut the back of the mackerel in five parts and gently salt them. Leave for one hour. Heat the brine and make sure it holds at 42 degrees C in its core. Cool off and leave for 24 hours.
-16 large shrimps
-Shrimp salt: 100gr coarse salt and 3 boiled shrimps
1. Roast the shrimps for 10 minutes at 250 Celsius. Mix with the coarse salt. Dry at 90 Celsius until it feels dry enough to mix again.
2. Peel the raw shrimps. Let them reach room temperature. Salt with the shrimp salts.
-200 gr gooseberries
-50 gr sugar
1. Put the gooseberries and the sugar in a pot. Pour on enough water to cover the berries. Let it start to boil and take it off the stove. Leave for ten minutes. Pour off the water and mix the berries to a purée. Mix the purée with tea to make it thick and taste with a salt.
Emulsion of horseradish and butter:
-4 eggs (boiled for 4 minutes)
-¼ dl horseradish juice
-4 dl browned butter
1. Mix the egg and the horseradish juice. Then mix in the butter, a little at a time and taste with lemon and salt.
Cucumber in dill water:
-1 finely diced cucumber
-100 gr of dill
-2 dl water
1. Mix dill, water and salt. Sieve and put the cucumber in.
-Sea pea, buds and flowers
-Common wood sorrel
Serve (see the picture)
-Ekstedt/Chef Gustav Otterberg
www.leijontornet.se 12×8 (Re-open March 2011, new concept)
www.djuret.se (Animal in Swedish)
www.thecollectorshotels.se/en/victory/about-the-hotel/ (Victory Hotel)
1. Guidebook.se, March 2010, http://www.guidebook.se/?p=771
1. In the Forest with Gustav Otterberg (Mushroom picking), September 2009 (5 parts), http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WX6xDSuAixo&feature=related
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