Kitchenesia met Chef Henry Bloem at Chef Expo. The chairman of Indonesia Chef Association (ICA) told us about the organization and sustainability cooking.
Kitchenesia.com - The fifty-one-year-old Henry Alexie Bloem reached his 30 years of culinary career this year. Not only an experienced and skilled chef, Chef Henry Bloem is also a sought-after international advisor for restaurants and hotels specializing in Indonesian cuisine.
Throughout his career, The Bali-origin chef has shown a strong determination in preserving original flavors of Indonesian cuisine. The Harley-Davidson enthusiast is also in the pursuit of giving traditional Indonesian cuisine the platform it so rightly deserves.
To achieve his dream, he bravely explores Indonesian original spices and learns the history behind every traditional dish.
Despite his prominent career, Chef Henry still manages to keep himself occupied as a chairman of Indonesian Chef Association (ICA). It is a non-profit NGO with chefs throughout Indonesian, whose mission is to develop two main objectives in Indonesian cuisine industry: its traditional food and human resources.
On Monday, October 14th, Chef Henry Bloem shared the mission of ICA and his thoughts on food industry. Despite his rough and worn-out biker look, the big chef heartily shared a joke or two throughout the interview. And of course, some of his words were inserted with purposely pun and dad jokes.
Could you tell us about the history of ICA and how does it work?
Prior to ICA establishment, every province in Indonesia has their own chef association. Then in 2003, board members of chef organizations in Java and Bali gathered in Semarang to discuss national-scale organization to support all professional cooks across this country. Then four years after, ICA established on January 25, 2007.
As a non-profit organization, all ICA’s activities are backed up by supporting vendors. Our primary vision is to promote Indonesian food industry: its traditional cuisine and chefs. We implement our missions by holding an annual chef expo and training. We also have our ambassadors who work overseas so that they can promote Indonesian food while working.
The Minister of Tourism (Arief Yahya) pointed Soto as Indonesia’s national food. Do you agree with this decision?