Inspiration: Behind the Scenes - Vital ingredients

Widely regarded as one of the world's greatest authorities on Oriental cooking, Ken Hom talks to Jeremy King about his corporate menu.

RSVP Something smells good Ken. Where are you at the moment and what have you been cooking recently?

Ken Hom I'm in Bangkok at the Basil Restaurant in the Sheraton Hotel, where I have launched a new food and drink promotion. In February I organised a Chinese New Year banquet in aid of the tsunami children, which attracted famous chefs including Jean-Christophe Novelli and Tom Aikens. I was also in London spending time on the stand of the Oriental Restaurants Group, of which I am chef consultant in the UK, at International Confex. I couldn't pass up the opportunity to cook a classic stir-fry.

RSVP What is next on your corporate menu?

Hom I'm off to Barbados to work at the Sandy Lane Hotel before returning for some more corporate events in Bangkok. I will also be hosting showcase events at restaurants in the Oriental Restaurants Group. I feel one needs to travel to learn what is happening with the cuisine in different countries.

I am learning all the time.

RSVP You regularly travel around the world. Which countries offer the best food?

Hom Every country offers something amazing and it is always very important to use each country's indigenous ingredients. It's no good going to Barbados and trying to cook French cuisine.

RSVP You recently judged a pancake competition at the Pacific Oriental restaurant. How did it go?

Hom It was great. High-profile chefs competed to roll the fastest pancake.

I was very impressed with the standard of pancake rolling and Nancy Lam was a worthy winner.

RSVP How do event organisers get to see you action?

Hom Ken Hom Oriental Restaurant Group has a dedicated in-house events team. I undertake a limited number of corporate events each year, but interested organisers can call the events department on (020) 7256 3437.

Alternatively, they can email


RSVP approves ...

- Simon Millington Associates is unveiling a collection of bespoke table centres on its Eccentric English Garden stand at this year's RSVP 05 show. Stand No.K22

- New event management company Beyond Certainty is establishing itself in the corporate market, and it's even rumoured that company founder Haralambos Stavrou is the cousin of a certain world-famous Greek singer.

- Exclusive Events is going for a relaxed angle with its Get into Bed with Exclusive Events UK stand at RSVP 05. Staff in pyjamas will be giving away a slipper to everyone who makes an enquiry. Stand No. H42.

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