Chef Fox has taste for vegetarians

Jeremy Fox has accomplished the rare feat of creating decadent vegetarian creations that even meat eaters crave.

by: Richard Leong: Reuters | 30 Jul 2008

Fox, 31, is the executive chef at Ubuntu Restaurant & Yoga Studio in Napa Valley, a wine-growing region in northern California. His wife Deanie is the pastry chef at Ubuntu, an African word that translates to "humanity toward others."

Fox's cuisine seems to match that lofty aspiration. He has been praised in the media for his creativity and naughty sensuality and has been described as one of the best new US chefs of the year.

Fox, born in Cleveland, Ohio, spoke about what is like being a carnivore making vegetarian cuisine.

Q: What inspired you to become a chef?
A: "I always wanted to own a restaurant. My grandparents, mother's parents, had a pizza restaurant in Chattanooga, Tennessee for many years. I always like eating at restaurants. It was always a treat."

Q: As a meat eater, do you feel you bring a different approach to vegetarian cooking?
A: "It gives me a different perspective because I do eat meat and have cooked a lot with meat. I've done a lot of charcuterie. My experiment with meat is that I use the entire animal – bone, skin, organs. I may see some parts of the vegetables that you may throw away, and do something with them."

Q: What parts of vegetables do you feel are under used?
A: "I think more like the by-products of vegetables like carrot greens, which make a nice puree sauce."

Q: What is your signature dish?
A: "Cauliflower In a Cast Iron Pot. It opens up people's eyes to an under-appreciated vegetable. It's a decadent display of the cauliflower, the spices, the brown butter sauce."

Q: Any tips to add more zing to vegetables?
A: "Roasting vegetables definitely creates a lot of flavours. Salt and vinegar make everything taste good."

Q: What do you make for yourself if you eat alone?
A: "A steak – medium rare."

- None


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