Kyle Bowman, a development Chef based in Newcastle and working for Sodexo Live! at St. James’ Park, the home of Newcastle United FC, recently embarked on an enlightening journey through Norway, renowned for its rich whitefish resources.
Accompanying him were esteemed chef partner Michel Roux and Nikita Pathakji, the winner of MasterChef The Professionals.
Kyle, along with a group of talented emerging chefs from the UK, ventured into the rugged and unforgiving landscapes of northern Norway, exploring its breathtaking winter vistas. Their expedition led them through magnificent fjords and towering mountains, eventually reaching Tromsø, Honningsvåg, and Skarsvåg, the world’s northernmost fishing village. There, they immersed themselves in the vibrant fishing communities that have been the lifeblood of the country for countless generations.
“It was so great to see the culture and food on offer in Norway, especially when it comes to sustainability, as it’s a major thought when working on developing menus. The quality of the fish in Norway is amazing, so it was great to get stuck in and see the whole process from sea to production.”Kyle comments on his experience
Kyle secured his place on this once-in-a-lifetime experience, organised by the Norwegian Seafood Council, by winning 2022 Sodexo Chef of the Year, with his take on the dish Tom Kha Gai; a Thai coconut soup served in biodegradable bowls, chorizo battered Norwegian cod, bravas fritas, mojo verde, and mashed fava beans.
“The beauty of this particular trip was that we were finally able to take competition winners, who missed out due to Covid travel restrictions, to Norway – and it really did blow their minds. I’ve had the pleasure of visiting Norway before, so for me this trip was great for reconnecting with the Norwegian fishermen and enjoying dishes like the Skrei Mølje – made with beautiful white and flaky steamed seasonal Norwegian cod, with lashings of roe and liver, boiled potatoes and chopped onion. The chefs have come home brimming with ideas to take back to their kitchens thanks to their experience trying such amazing produce.”Michel Roux, Seafood from Norway’s long term chef partner
At Sodexo Live!, Newcastle United FC’s venue partner, sourcing responsible and sustainable ingredients and promoting local and sustainable businesses is paramount – in fact it’s ingrained in their objectives.
Kyle’s visit to Norway’s clear, cold waters gave a deep dive into Norway’s responsible fisheries management and quality measures. Educational talks showcased Norway’s world-leading responsible fisheries management practices, clearly demonstrating the importance of quality, responsibly sourced seafood from catch to market.
“It was a pleasure to welcome Kyle to Norway and illustrate first-hand why origin matters when it comes to responsible sourcing. Being able to demonstrate Norway’s pioneering stock management and wild fishing processes is always a real eye opener for those that haven’t visited our fishing communities before, and the group were able to enjoy cooking and tasting our fresh seafood right at source, from our seasonal cod to haddock, salmon and red king crab. In the words of our chef partner, Michel Roux, “the proof is always in the eating!”Victoria Braathen, UK Director for the Norwegian Seafood Council
More information about responsibly caught seafood and recipe inspiration using Seafood from Norway can be found at www.seafoodfromnorway.co.uk.