Suksant ‘Billy’ Chutinthratip, the Executive Chef at the new Meliá Chiang Mai, shares a recipe for a tasty Spanish dish with a Thai twist.
Meliá Chiang Mai’s Executive Chef Suksant Chutinthratip, aka Chef Billy, has taken charge of an F&B team set to place the urban hotel, slated to open in December, on Chiang Mai’s culinary map with two restaurants that pay homage to Spain’s famed gastronomy.
Chef Billy has been busy crafting menus for signature restaurant Mai Restaurant & Bar on the 21st floor, with spectacular vistas of Chiang Mai, and all-day-dining restaurant Laan Na Kitchen. Mai Restaurant & Bar will specialise in contemporary northern Thai dishes with Mediterranean influences, with chefs preparing each dish à la minute from an open kitchen. All-day-dining restaurant Laan Na Kitchen will offer authentic Mediterranean cuisine in a vibrant marketplace setting.
Equipped with 27 years of hospitality experience, Chef Billy joined Meliá Chiang Mai’s pre-opening team after working as the executive chef at Hotel Nikko Bangkok, Rayong Marriott Resort & Spa, and Courtyard by Marriott Bangkok. He was also an executive sous chef for SkyCity Auckland Entertainment, managing VIP and gaming restaurants, as well as Renaissance Ratchaprasong Bangkok Hotel.
Beginning his hospitality career in 1994 as a cook helper at The Ambassador Hotel and Convention Centre Bangkok’s Le Bistro, award-winning Chutinthratip climbed the career ladder at various properties including Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit, a Luxury Collection Hotel Bangkok, The Peninsula Bangkok, Lotus One in Dubai, Raffles Singapore, The Athenee Hotel, a Luxury Collection Hotel Bangkok, and Le Meridien Bangkok.
“Food is like fashion: If a recipe is good enough, it will last forever and if not, it will stay for a short time and then it’s gone,” says Chef Billy. Guided by this principle, Chef Billy’s recipe works straight from Spain’s original Serranito sandwich, “Serranito Bocadillo” – “as to not lose the quality nor authenticity of the cuisine” – with a distinct northern Thai twist. To be served at Laan Na Kitchen, Chef Billy invites Bangkok 101 readers to join him in cooking this quick, easy-to-make-at-home dish where local products can readily substitute imported ingredients. Yet he encourages readers to retain his all-time favourite element of Spanish cuisine, Jamón Serrano, that’s readily available at the supermarket. In a far cry to the likes of molecular gastronomy, Chef Billy’s “Serranito Bocadillo with Blistered Northern Thai Green Peppers” makes for the ultimate comfort food.
Recipe: Serranito Bocadillo with Blistered Northern Thai Green Peppers
Cuisine: Spanish with Northern Thai ingredients
Course: Sandwich, Tapas
- Crusty Viena Andaluza or mini baguette bread
- 2 Northern Thai green peppers (Prik Nuum)
- 2 thin slices of pork loin
- 3 thin slices of Jamón Serrano
- 4 slices of a juicy and ripe tomato
- 1 teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil
- A pinch of flor de sal
Alioli: for 1 cup
- 3 cloves of peeled garlic
- 1/4 cup of olive oil
- 3/4 cup of salad oil
- A pinch of salt
- 2 egg yolks
- Juice from 1/2 yellow lemon
1. Heat canola oil over high heat in a cast-iron skillet large enough to comfortably fit the peppers in a single layer. Heat until the oil is lightly smoking, then add the peppers. Cook the peppers without moving them for about 30 seconds, until blistered on their first side. Flip and shake the peppers and continue to cook, turning occasionally, until well blistered all over and tender-crisp; about 1 1/2 minutes in total. Drizzle with extra olive oil and sprinkle flor de sal to season them.
2. When the peppers are done, take them out of the skillet, lay them on a tray lined with a paper towel and set them aside.
3. Slice the bread in half and toast lightly. Butter the bread on both sides with the alioli.
4. Season the pork loin with flor de sal and freshly cracked black pepper. Fry in the oil until it’s cooked through and golden brown.
5. Place the peppers, pork loin, ham and tomatoes between the bread to assemble the bocadillo.
6. Serve with alioli on the side.
1. Peel and mince the garlic cloves.
2. Place the minced garlic into the mortar. Using the pestle, begin to pound the minced garlic until it is well-mashed.
3. Separate the egg yolk from the egg white.
4. Incorporate the egg yolk and salt into the bowl with the mashed garlic. Stir well. Discard the egg white.
5. Very slowly, and adding only a little bit at a time, begin to incorporate the oil while mixing the garlic, egg yolk, and oil constantly. This step requires patience! Be sure to go slowly so that the garlic and oil have a chance to blend well.
6. Once the mixture begins to thicken, incorporate the lemon juice.
7. The resulting texture should be a creamy, smooth mayonnaise. Tip: If you do not have a mortar and pestle or are pressed for time, combine all ingredients in a small- or medium-sized bowl, and let the hand mixer do the work. Keep the hand mixer steady and pressed to the bottom of the bowl at first, and then slowly let it come up to fluff the mixture as it thickens.
Meliá Chiang Mai, 46, 48 Charoenprathet Road, Chang Khlan, Mueang, Chiang Mai, 50100 Thailand. Phone: +66 52 090 699
Website:Meliá Chiang Mai
Email: [email protected]
Restaurant: This dish will be served at Meliá Chiang Mai’s all-day dining restaurant Laan Na Kitchen