Pastry Chef: Chef Sopheak

Pastry Chef: Chef Sopheak
CCA: member
Almost 8 years in Park Hyatt Hotel
3 years in Blue Pumpkin
Presently with Shinta Mani Resort

Specialties of the House
Big Fat Chocolate
Chocolate gives energy to the body and makes you happy not sad.

Is being a Chef your dream job?
Yes, I’ve been dreaming of it since I started in the hotel industry.

Who is the chef that influences you the
Chef Novson, who influenced me becoming a pastry chef, from the basic to advance cooking.

What are your thoughts on the local food scene? Is it growing? And your thoughts on Cambodian Food as a whole?
Local food scene for me is very interesting nowadays. Indeed it is growing, and, actually, it depends on the creativity of the chef using local products and make it internationally presentable. My thoughts about Cambodian Food as a whole is I am proud to receive comments/feedback about the taste and promoting our traditional dishes, and I want to show the world our specialties.

What are the qualities that a chef should have?
Attitude towards work and co workers

Product knowledge Techniques on cooking

Willingness to learn new things

What is your No. 1 rule in the kitchen or restaurant?
My number 1 rule is of course having a good hygiene, clean with good quality.

What is your favorite Cambodian dessert?
My favorite dessert is Banana Sago with coconut milk, is just little sweet and feels like the real taste of Cambodia sweet delicacies.
All of us have our bad days, what comfort food normally cheers you up? For me lemon curd, makes me calm and happy. A food that cheers me up during bad or sad days.

How do you handle stress/pressure in the kitchen?
I normally separate my personal issues out from my work, getting myself together before I enter the kitchen door, meet and greet my colleagues and as much as possible to get the positive energy flow the entire kitchen. And if I have one from the team is feeling down or having a bad day, I start talking to them and give them a sort of advices and motivate them on what they do and divert their bad moods to good mood.

Do you post your food creation into social media? What social media do you use?
Yes I do post my food in social media,
I show my creativeness on plating and I
post it mostly in Instagram, sometimes
only on Facebook.
Instagram: @chefsopheak
Facebook: Sopheak Mey
Facebook: Shinta Mani Angkor

Any advice you can give to our readers, to our aspiring young chefs?
Keep learning, observe new things, open to learn more from others, and challenge to create new things.

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