Episode006 - Palates in Pursuit with Chef Hector Gonzalez

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What happens when you make food your calling, your profession, your muse?

Our Edible Stories kicks off a 5-part mini-series entitled Palates in Pursuit: tales of inspiration and influence in the food industry. I chat with 5 young professionals as they discuss the people, the ideas, and the flavors that craft their unique food passions.

Chef Hector Gonzalez starts off the series sharing stories from culinary influence and inspiration and quirky childhood memories of trips to Mexico.

As a child of immigrants, Chef Hector also explores whether we are defined by our culinary heritage or if we continue to reshape our palates in a way that celebrates past and present.

Chef Hectors must-have pantry items: Knorr chicken bouillon, butter and white wine. In the kitchen there must be a Vitamix, a good cutting board and heavy bottom pots.

Hector’s culinary inspirations: Marco Pierre White, Enrique Olivera, Alain Passard and many more

Follow Hector on Instagram: @hecgonzal

Project 658 (catering)
658 catering exists to provide hand-made, local cuisine and exceptional service for your Charlotte event. The amazing thing: it also creates a pathway for someone’s life to be changed! Every 658 Catering order is part of our “1 to 1” feeding program. Each meal purchased sponsors a meal in the Project 658 outreach-feeding program. A meal purchased is a meal provided. That allows a person to sit in our center, enjoy a healthy meal, find a friend and find Hope. One more thing, you are also providing for 658 Culinary School students to learn advanced job skills that will give them greater life sustainability.

Chef Hector making bagels at Project 658.

Chef Hector making bagels at Project 658.

LaCa Project
The gallery's mission is to use this unique combination of settings to create a gateway for connecting contemporary Latin American artists with the increasingly diversifying arts scene of Charlotte, as well as to provide a location in the Southeast region of the United States for art collectors to develop and foster an appreciation for the visually striking narrative of contemporary Latin American art.

BASAL Coffee

LaCa Project: Latin American Contemporary Art The setting for today’s episode.

LaCa Project: Latin American Contemporary Art
The setting for today’s episode.

Burlap tapestry that hung behind the episode interview “Tramas” by Eduardo Cardozo

Burlap tapestry that hung behind the episode interview
“Tramas” by Eduardo Cardozo

Hector’s Pescado Zarandeado

I like to marinate a butterflied fish like bronzino with white wine and minced garlic .
I grill it skin side down first and may finish it in the oven until just cooked.

To accompany that I like to make an herb rice with parsley, taragon and dill. To do that I boil a long grained rice such as I do pasta until the grains are cooked through. I mince the herbs ahead of time and toss them into the steaming hot rice and fluff a little butter and seasoning.

Also with that I make a salsa tatemada. Charred onion, tomato and Serrano and I mash it leaving it chunky adding cilantro to finish.

All that I like to see with either tostadas or good quality tortillas.