Galicia…the secret from Northern Spain

Playa de las Catedrales Galicia/ we made a bread inspired by these amazing rocks ( you will see below this article in the food presentation )

My love for spain is huge and every part of spain is loveable to me and dear for each uniqueness contained in the different culinary traditions, and for its unique qualities in nature and what each part of spain specialises in producing.

Above all of course I love the people and as mentioned many times before I have never encountered such a passionate and forward thinking country as well as active and pulsating food movement in my life.

Spain no doubt is a very important culinary force in the world in regards of Producers, Companies, Restaurant specialists, Restaurants, Conferences and Chefs. It is aw inspiring. I have a very special love also for all the small producers across spain.

In particular I want to talk about Galicia for also many reasons. For me the potential of Galicia is huge.

Relatively still unknown to the masses for what tremendous culinary treasures truly lies within this region, is an exiting prospect for me.  To be involved with many different culinary sectores is a big challenge and opportunity inorder to open the future possibilities.

I have very special relationships with people from the hart from Galicia as well.

Javier Ollero, Ni Lenette, Pepe Solla in London 2012

I feel as if  I am the adopted chef by the Nove group ( by Pepe Solla  from Solla Restaurant and Javier Olleros from Culler de Pau) on mission to support the awareness of the culinary culture in Galicia .

I have never been so warmly and openly received and it is really important for me to develop future projects and dialogues as well as investigations together.

Without doubt Galicia deserves its place amongst all the other great regions in Spain to be recognised for its esence of greatness world wide.

As a Japanese specialist chef I always felt isolated having to work here in london so far from the pacific and Japan.

Japanese Kaiseki Cuisine in essence is about working with your natural environment  and all focus is on the seasos. If this environment changes you need to adapt.

It is not right in my opinion to fly things from japan to cook in london. To some degree this is impossible to avoid completely however it should be minimised.

This initial issue was what brought me to Spain in the first place and I have been travelling and researching 2 years in all the different areas of spain to find products and every element that is usually important in keiseki cuisine japan. My findings were that there is huge potential but also a lot of work involved.

The work is to set up specific productions and resources to customise the techniques and to develop them to be suitable for kyoto cuisine.

It can not be kyoto kaiseki it will become something new however it will be based on ancient traditional principles to not loose the essential essence of Kyoto in spirit. That is important.

Products from the uk which are all good have never lent themselves easily to the japanese cuisine I am developing due to plancton and earth constitutions as well as climate and water issues.

On my first visit to Galicia I saw it straight away. The flavours the food blew me away. They have so many incredible small producers all creating incredible products all of which have inspired me tremendously.

I therefor am involved with many parties as my personal research and needs are not just for my self but is a collaboration that is beneficial to many everyone that are involved. This will of course take some time and small steps at a time.

I am currently initiating several projects with Galicia that are and have become particularly close to my hart since visiting this incredible natural countryside.

The land is so rich and produces incredible vegetables, galicia of course is famously known for it’s fish and seafood as well as wine, meat and cheeses amongst many other unique culinary treasures.

I am initiating a new platform of discussions involving relevant research partys and scientists hopefully from Japan and Galicia in conjunction with the young generation of fishery’s of Galicia supported by Galician university’s and  research, inorder to develop and contribute new and inspiring visions for Galicia’s fishing industry’s future.
I also would like to talk about a very important agricultural preservation project of old traditional Galician methods and preserving ancient galician master seeds for the future of Galicia.
Both subjects I am seeing from a Japanese point of view as it is compatible principals and very helpful for both industries in particular.
There is also a need to encourage the small producers all across Galicia to preserve and practice there traditions and production methods of food for the future generations to come.
Here is a small event that we were part of which symbolises the first initial steps to build awareness and new projects with Galicia. I was working with Ana and Theresa from Taste of Spain who will collaborate with NOVE group Galicia myself in creating some very interesting pop up sessions in London.
The idea is to invite a different chef each time and to create an intimate evening presenting the different unique styles of the chefs and the Galician culinary treasure products. I sometime will collaborate and create a special evening that is inspired by japanese kyoto principles but with one of the Galician Chefs with Galician products as well. Eventually this can lead to also other chefs that are interested to join these collaborations.
Nove group Galicia, the young generation of Michelin Chefs from Galica.
The first beginning of dialogue between Galician producers here in the uk.
This is a small report of the event : Galicia…the secret from Northern Spain
I was invited as a Speaker together with Ana Gomez and Theresa Holmes from Flavours of Spain http://www.flavoursofspain.co.uk/
My contribution to the conversation which was a congregation of Galician food producers, was my perspective as a chef and particularly my story of being a japanese chef and my affinity with the galician seafood, fish, wine and vegetables amongst other things.
I spoke of the Nove group and the need to collaborate on many levels in order to widen the awareness of the culinary treasures of Galicia by working together.
There are more humans then ever on the planet and therefor the competition to be acknowledged is harder then ever. Appearing as a small individual chef or producer is going to drown therefor unity, projects, collaborations need to be supported and created inorder to open the doors effectively.
I would say that Pepe Solla is perhaps the most international actieve galician chef and it would be great to support this activity showcasing the NOVE group here in london in collaboration with many other Galician and other persons, chefs and businesses inorder to get collectively exited about Galicia.
Most of the food was provided by the producers wanting the potential buyers to taste there products to give only a small sample taste of Galicia.
Ana and Theresa could not cook anything at the event as there was no kitchen however we managed to put a few simple things together fot his event. Ana Gomez and Theresa Holmes from Flavours of Spain put the additional food offer together and I helped to do what ever was needed. We had a great day together and are exited about tall he future projects that lay ahead of us in collaboration of many people.

Ana’s Homemade Nori Bread
This is Ana’s traditional Squid Empanada with a black ink sauce and the thinnest pastry! This was so delicious!
Squid ink bread also Homemede and super thin inspired by the  rocks from Playa de las Catedrales Galicia (see picture at beginning of this article)
The squid ink  crispy bread was also good with the cheeses drizzled with very fruity olive oil

Black squid ink bread with sea spaghetti quail egg black Hawaiian sea salt and a very nice olive oil
The star of the night of course Galician PULPO. The potatoes were cooked in the pulpo water and bay leave and onion with incredible olive oil and El Pimenton from Galicia
This is monkfish liver with sea spagetti and galician chive Cerviche style with the amazing olive oil.
All the participants were very sweet asking always exactly what was in each thing before trying. I cant wait to do another event with a kitchen and more fresh products from Galicia also showing some Japanese Kaiseki dishes made with Galician products.

Galician golden sponge cake with freeze dried raspberry’s


Ana Gomez, me and Theresa Holmes exited what the future collaborations holds.
We are so passionate we do this because we love it and we share this passion with many people that is the most exiting part!

This event was only the beginning and we are looking forward to doing things with the Nove group and with a Kitchen this time to celebrate the great food of Galicia.

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