Flavor blooms as Chef Takashi Yagihashi delights senses for Macy’s Culinary Council event

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“Cooking is supposed to be fun, especially cooking at the home,” chef Takashi Yagihashi said before he prepared a trio of his favorite recipes during a cooking demo as part of Macy’s Culinary Council at Macy’s Downtown Minneapolis.

The seats were all full and others were forced to stand along the edges. Additional people continued pouring in as passersby caught on to Takashi’s joyful enthusiasm of food.

Attendees at the demo were treated to three dishes from his cookbook, Takashi’s Noodles. Chef Takashi prepared tofu steak with Japanese mushrooms, shrimp shumai, and chicken tatsuta-age. Guests also were able to enjoy a glass of his yuzu ginger lemonade.

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“Food should be easy to cook, simple and quick,” he said. “You don’t want to spend all of your time in the kitchen.”

And simple, quick food can be delicious, as Chef Takashi demonstrated by creating three crowd-pleasing dishes in just one hour.

As the crowd tasted each of the dishes, he fielded questions, offered ingredient substitutions where necessary and shared some ideas.

“I always learn something from the audience,” he said. “Sometimes they ask questions that give me a fresh idea.”

Some were surprised to learn one of Takashi’s favorite foods is a Chicago hotdog. At home, he often prepares pasta, as it’s what his children love. The James Beard Award-winning chef encouraged all to visit Slurping Turtle, his restaurant in Chicago.

“If you taste something you have never tasted, you enjoy it hopefully,” he said.

For more on Takashi Yagihashi, his food and the other chefs on the Macy’s Culinary Council, visit macys.com/culinarycouncil. Keep up on their events by following @CulinaryCouncil on Twitter.

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