Grilled Chicken Salad by Chef Raphael King’ori Ndaiga, H&S Chef Of The Month
H&S Chef Of The Month
Interview With H&S Magazine
Who Is Raphael King’ori Ndaiga?
I have been in the hospitality industry for about 25 years, having started at our family restaurant, where I got the initial deep dive in this industry. I took a short course at Kenya Utalii College for food service techniques and later worked at The Carnivore as a waiter where I had so much fun interacting with guests. A little later I decided to take a Food Production Course at Utalii College and after that I got an opportunity to travel to the US for an internship program where I got to interact with people from all over the world and got training on working in a multicultural environment. After that I went to the UK and worked in a 5-Star golf resort and later worked in a British run Cruise Ship where I got invaluable experience working in a high volume environment. I Later worked with Artcaffe as head chef before exiting and starting my social media presence sharing recipes and basically teaching people how to cook as a way to encourage home cooking which would make people appreciate food. When more people appreciate good food, then more people will demand good food when they eat out, which will make the industry standards grow.
Type Of Cuisine?
All/any! I believe cooking, like any art, is about skill and understanding, and if you have the basic training in cooking you can do anything with some practice. With my training and experience, I can follow a recipe and execute it.
What Inspired You To Become A Chef?
From the time I was young, I was interested in cooking and enjoyed well cooked meals. As a family we were also exposed to eating out and good food, as my dad worked at the Carnivore restaurant, making it a natural path for me to follow in my pursuit to follow my passion in cooking
What Is The Biggest Challenge You Have Faced In The Culinary Industry?
I honestly can’t think of any!
What’s Your Biggest Achievement In The Culinary Industry?
Over the years I have managed to work and travel all over the world, is what comes to my mind first. My biggest achievement, though, is yet to be achieved, I want to be the one that makes an impact in the industry by encouraging the young ones to get into this profession for their passion. I also want to see more people appreciating food, which means more people will demand for better and the industry will improve for the better.
When It comes To Cooking, What Is More Important To You, The Technique, The Ingredients Or The Creativity?
I think the technique because this forms the basics in cooking and no matter the ingredients it’s the technique that will make the meal tasty which is more important to me.
Recipe Of The Week: Grilled Chicken Salad
• 1 large onion
• 3 medium-sized tomatoes
• 2 Carrots
• Rocket lettuce
• Iceberg lettuce
• 2 bell peppers; 1 red, 1 green
The Grilled Chicken
• 2x chicken breast fillet
• Salt to taste
• Pepper to taste
• Dash of oil
• Oregano to taste
The Salad Dressing (Vinaigrette)
• 2 parts olive oil
• 1 part Apple Cider Vinegar
• 1 Tbsp chopped parsley
• 2 Tbsp finely chopped onions
• Salt to taste
• Pepper to taste
Preparation: The Salad
Wash all the vegetables thoroughly. In a serving bowl, using your hands, roughly tear the lettuce leaves and mix the 2 types, then add them to the bowl. Next, using a peeler, peel out layers of carrots and add them on top of the lettuce. Cut your bell peppers in rings, and place them in the salad bowl. Next, cut your onions in rings and add them to your bell peppers. Cut your tomatoes in bite size cubes and place them in the bowl. Place your salad bowl in the fridge to cool.
Preparation: The Grilled Chicken
In the meantime, season your chicken breast pieces with salt and pepper sparingly, drizzle some oil then add sprinkle some oregano, on both sides. Preheat your grill at 200 C. Grill your chicken pieces on each side for about 2 minutes each. It should have a nice light golden brown colour on both sides, making your chicken is juicy and not dry.
Preparation: The Salad Dressing
To a jar add some finely chopped onions, parsley, salt & pepper, 1 part vinegar & 2 parts oil. Close the jar and shake it to combine all. Taste and adjust seasoning.
Preparation: Assembling The Salad
To assemble the salad, cut the chicken into chunky cubes after it is slightly cooled. Remove the cold salad from the fridge, place chicken pieces on top of the salad, pour the dressing just before serving.