Evolve Grilling Series: One to Watch: Chef Imrun Texeira

With 15+ years of experience, Chef Imrun Texeira has worked in some of the world’s best and most influential restaurants, including 3 Michelin Starred Noma in Copenhagen. Most recently Imrun received the 2023 Leader Award of Excellence from Restaurants Canada. This award recognizes that in the development and progression of his career, he has set a new standard of excellence for his leadership, creativity, and ambition. He has also been named as a recipient of the Top 30-Under-30 Award for hospitality leaders in Canada and as a rising talent in North America by The Art of Plating. Imrun was a semi-finalist on the Food Network’s Top Chef Canada Season 8 and a finalist on the Food Network’s Chopped Canada Season 3. Chef Texeira was also nominated for the Premier’s Awards: Most Successful Recent Graduate in 2016, which celebrates Ontario’s outstanding college graduates. Chef Imrun is inspired by the flavours of his South Asian and East African roots. He showcases seasonal Canadian produce and meticulously sources spices to create his interpretation of New Canadian Cuisine. Texeira continues to contribute to the Canadian food scene by advocating for better work conditions and mental health support for those in hospitality as an Ambassador for The Burnt Chef Project. He also shares his love and knowledge of food by working with kids of all ages and teaching them about Hospitality & Tourism Pathways.

BBQ Dry Aged Duck Crown

Dry Aged Duck Crown (A duck “crown” describes a whole bone-in duck breast without the legs attached.) cooked and smoked over charcoal, glazed with a spiced puree of lacto-fermented Ontario blueberries topped with spruce tips and wild garlic mustard flowers.

Chef Imrun has spent years working in a wide range of different styles of kitchens in Canada and beyond from vegan and Mexican Restaurants to French and Michelin Star establishments. Each of these kitchens utilized different types of grills and BBQs, and it really helped curate his love for grilling. He loves cooking over an open fire, even to the extent that he’ll fire up his charcoal BBQ in the middle of the winter. There is something special about firing up the grill and indulging in the smoky, charred flavours of a perfectly cooked BBQ feast. So, whether you’re a seasoned grill master or just starting your grilling journey, these five essential tips from Chef Imrun will help you elevate your BBQ game.

  1. Always preheat and clean your grill. Before you start cooking, preheat your grill for about 10-15 minutes. This ensures that the grill grates are hot enough to sear the food properly. Additionally, make sure to clean the grill grates thoroughly before cooking to remove any leftover residue from previous sessions.
  2. Oiling the grill grates prior to cooking is key. To prevent sticking, lightly oil the grill grates before placing the food on them. Use a high-heat oil like canola or vegetable oil and apply it using a brush or folded paper towel. This helps create a non-stick surface.
  3. Use direct and indirect heat zones when cooking. Create different heat zones on your grill. Direct heat is ideal for searing and cooking thinner cuts of meat quickly. Indirect heat is suitable for thicker cuts and delicate foods. By utilizing both zones, you can achieve the perfect balance of searing and gentle cooking.
  4. Flip and rotate food properly. To achieve even cooking and attractive grill marks, resist the temptation to flip your food too frequently. Allow it to cook for a significant amount of time on one side before flipping it. When rotating the food, use tongs or a spatula instead of piercing it with a fork, as this helps retain the moisture.
  5. Rest the meat before serving. Once your meat is cooked to the desired doneness, remove it from the grill and let it rest for a few minutes before serving, resulting in a more tender and flavourful final product.

Remember, grilling is an art that requires practice and experimentation, so don’t be afraid to explore new flavors and techniques.

Happy grilling season!





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