OSCAR DAYAS: “THE CHEF HAS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF GIVING VOICE TO THE PRODUCER”

You have passed through different restaurants throughout your profession, what can you highlight about these experiences?

I received some advice during my training that I took to the letter: “Do not spend too much time in the same restaurant in your beginnings, no two kitchens are the same, look for yours” and I can say that each kitchen has given me that, an experience more to be the newbie I am.

Your passage through LÚ Cocina y Alma makes you discover your kitchen….

As the creative that I am, every idea I had or concept that I acquired sought to integrate it into each creation and it was not until I reached LÚ when I understood the concept “less is more”.

In that search for “my kitchen”, I met the great Juan Luis Fernández and I decide that, after directing kitchens during the last four years, it is time to return to the origins, listen more and speak a little less.

I went back to the origins, yes, but not only at the formative level, but culinary (low heat, sauces, respect for the product) and I discover that the new kitchen is the way we have to reinterpret the classics (both recipes and methods) from the hand of the vanguard. That way I want to convey my creativity through food.

It is the third time you introduce yourself to S.Pellegrino Young Chef …

I met the contest in its first edition when I was an assistant to my friend and partner Juan Santiago Fuentes. It is the third time that I introduce myself to S.Pellegrino Young Chef and all three times I have been fortunate to qualify for my regional final. The first was a dream come true and I went to enjoy the experience as a child. The second time I qualified, in the third edition, I could not go for personal reasons and this third time I go for all. I will enjoy because cooking in what I believe I always enjoy, but I want a place in the grand finale of Milan and I go for it.

This year I assume it with maturity, all that can be had with 28 years (laughs), and relying on my plate at 200 %. I am prepared to take on the challenge!

What do you intend to represent with your elaboration?

I am looking for responsibility. We as a chef have the opportunity and, I repeat, the responsibility of giving voice to the producer. In this case, I pay tribute to the producer and the tradition of my island, to transhumance, a practice that is being lost in the Canary archipelago. I seek to do it through the feeding of cattle (sheep). In turn, we have the obligation to respect the product and bet on its sustainability, so I use the whole animal (meat, interiors, brains, bones, wool, milk, cheese and butter).

The dish is defined in 3 steps: maternal feeding (beletén and millo with red wine and gofio, which was food of the shepherds); coast food (nori seaweed, millo, foie and Flor de Guía cheese, the best cheese in the world); and summit feeding (sheep ala royale, sheep demiglace, perigordine sauce, fermented applesauce, roasted sweet potato with sheep’s maté, fresh sprouts, millet and borage air). Millo (corn) is always present, since it is the only food in the form of feed that they take without being grass.

In short, the flavors and surroundings of the Canary Islands on the plate …

I am a Canary and I love my land and I want to use it as a flag. Local product and all my love.

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