Q & A with Chef Norman Van Aken

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It’s time for another episode of #kitchenparty , our weekly live-streaming food series by http://bakespace.com and co-hosted by+Babette Pepaj  of BakeSpace.com, +Rene Lynch  (Los Angeles Times) and +Jeff Houck (Tampa Tribune) – where we chat with the culinary world’s most innovative movers and shakers live on Google Hangouts. If you’re watching the show live, feel free to leave a comment and we might ask it on the show.

Joining us this week is Chef Norman Van Aken and his son Justin Van Aken, authors of “My Key West Kitchen.” Norman has been described as ‘legendary, visionary and protean’. He is known as “,” a celebration of Latin, Caribbean, Asian, African and American flavors. He is also known internationally for introducing the concept of “Fusion” to the culinary world.

Want to join our live shows? Tune in every Thursday at 8pm eastern/5pm pacific for a new episode. Check out our full schedule at BakeSpaceTV.

A little about Chef Van Aken: He is the only Floridian inducted into the prestigious James Beard list of “Who’s Who in American Food and Beverage.” His restaurant “NORMAN’S” was nominated as a finalist for the James Beard Foundation’s “Best Restaurant in America”. He has been a James Beard Foundation semi-finalist for “Best Chef in America”. He is the Chef and Director of Restaurants at The Miami Culinary Institute/Tuyo as well as the Chef and Co-Owner of “NORMAN’S at the Ritz-Carlton, Grande Lakes, Orlando”. In 2006, he was honored as one of the “Founders of the New American Cuisine,” alongside Alice Waters, Paul Prudhomme, and Mark Miller at Spain’s International Summit of Gastronomy ‘Madrid Fusión’ event.

Chef Van Aken has published five cookbooks: Feast of Sunlight 1988, The Exotic Fruit Book 1995, Norman’s New World Cuisine 1997, New World Kitchen 2003 and My Key West Kitchen 2012, (with Justin Van Aken).  His next book is a memoir. It is titled, “No Experience Necessary” and will be out in the Fall of 2013 with Taylor Trade Publishing.

His radio show, “A Word on Food” appears twice a week on PBS WLRN 91.3. To learn more about the chef, please visit: http://www.normanvanaken.com/

In this episode we discuss thoughts on publishing a cookbook, what fusion and new world cuisine are and my favorite… what and our favorite… ‘what does Anthony Bourdain text at 4am?’

If you want to see past episodes, check out http://youtube.com/bakespacetv and subscribe to our channel!


Hi! I’m Babette, the Founder of BakeSpace.com. You can also find me on BAKESPACE.COM and on Twitter @BAKESPACE.

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