In the kitchen with Hiroki Sato

By Liao Fangzhou Source:Global Times Published: 2014-8-24 15:23:01

Since Hiroki Sato became the chef of the Consul General of Japan in Shanghai earlier this year, his workplace has been the kitchen at the Consul General's residence, a decades-old mansion on Huaihai Road Middle.

Sato comes from Japan's third largest island, Kyushu, and developed an interest in cooking when he was still a child. He started his career as a Chinese-cuisine chef at a major resort hotel in Japan's southernmost prefecture, Okinawa, and then moved on to a hotel in Kyoto before being chosen to work for the consulate.

These days he prepares both Japanese and Chinese dishes for the Consul General and the guests. "It depends on where our guests come from. I make Chinese food for Japanese diners, and Japanese food for Chinese ones," Sato told the Global Times.

He said making Japanese food for Chinese guests can be difficult because Japanese and Chinese people have different palates and preferences when it comes to taste. "For example, Japanese people tend to appreciate sour tastes, but few Chinese like them," Sato said. "I often go to Chinese-run Japanese restaurants to taste the local differences and contemplate the adaptations I should make."

Given ongoing concerns about food security in China, Sato is cautious when choosing ingredients. He sticks to Japanese-brand sauces and buys imported food, including fresh fish from Ehime prefecture and Nagasaki.

Sato's most popular dish with guests is tempura - seafood or vegetables that have been battered and deep-fried. The Consul General, Masahiro Kohara, enjoys his noodle dishes, says Sato, particularly those made with udon and soba.

Hiroki Sato, chef of the Consul General of Japan in Shanghai, at his kitchen

Photo: Yang Hui/GT


Posted in: Society, Metro Shanghai

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