I may be a mom (or a tita as Pinoys like to say), but I’m kind of updated on the terms people use nowadays. For example, the term “I’m Him!” or “You is Him” means that the person being referred to is a dominant figure in their field. And in the culinary arts, you can use the same term for the chef we will feature today: Chef Him Uy De Baron.
He has been hailed as one of the biggest names in the culinary world. Why, you ask? Well, that’s one of the many things you’ll learn about Chef Him in this blog. Keep reading to learn more about this fantastic chef who is part of The Bailiwick Academy!
Who is Chef Him Uy De Baron?
Did you know that Chef Him Uy De Baron has been a chef for over TWENTY YEARS? He started in 2001 and hasn’t slowed down at all. That makes it hard for me to list his many accomplishments, but let’s put some of the more notable ones.
- Chef Him graduated with a Le Cordon Bleu Diplome de Cuisine from Le Cordon Bleu Sydney Culinary Arts Institute.
- He was an executive chef of a catering company called Chef Cuisine.
- Because of his kitchen prowess, he has gone into consulting for companies such as Rustan’s and ABS-CBN.
- He has had multiple restaurants, all with different cuisines, such as Nomama (Japanese), I Am Kim (Korean), Ping-Pong Diplomacy (Chinese/American), and Cocina Peruvia (Peruvian).
- Speaking of ABS-CBN, Chef Him and his team were in charge of the multimedia conglomerate’s food and beverage division.
- Chef Him has been featured countless times in different major media publications such as Philippine Star and Esquire.
Aside from those, he is seen as influential in and out of the industry. For example, he was tapped back in 2014 by a friend to support people in Tacloban after Typhoon Haiyan.
Chef Him also collaborated with Family Mart back in 2015 to make healthy, low-calorie, and vitamin-packed dishes; with Slappy Cakes back in 2016 where he created DIY skillets where diners can choose their meat, sauce and carbs of choice; and recently with Beyond Meat, an L.A.-based brand that makes plant-based meat alternatives for those seeking such options.
See how accomplished he is?
Chef Him: Thankful For Food
Chef Him admits that he wouldn’t be where he is now if it wasn’t for food. You see, years ago, he didn’t know what to do with his life. That was until he encountered food, at least. In fact, he now associates food with plenty of milestones in his life.
For example, according to this Filipino food blog, Chef Him’s love for cooking delicious food was influenced by his mom. He grew up with his mom manning the kitchen, especially for special occasions. He credits those memories as having influenced his own cooking.
And as a chef, you can bet that he has plenty more unforgettable memories, and that’s all because of food.
What is his cooking style?
As mentioned earlier, Chef Him can make delicious dishes, whether Filipino, Thai, Japanese, Korean, Peruvian, or even street-style hawker fare. You can describe Chef Him as a cooking chameleon.
And it’s not just that he’s great with different cuisines. Chef Him is also known for creating vibrant flavors and his meticulous attention to detail just to make sumptuous meals. And if you’re wondering about how he developed his unique cooking style, he credits it to his curiosity back when he was still a child.
Every time he ate something, he would always wonder about the ingredients in the food. He would then attempt to replicate it when cooking. And, of course, the more he tasted as he grew older, the more his palate became sensitive–and the more attempts he made to put delicious tastes together.
That’s why even if he has learned to make different cuisines, Chef Him is not necessarily striving for authenticity. For Him, what’s more important is to borrow and combine different techniques and flavors of different cuisines that work well. For example, he has already tried developing a ramen recipe that wasn’t traditional at all: think of it as getting the best of Southeast Asian flavors and textures and mixing it in with Japanese fundamentals.
His various restaurants are also examples of this philosophy that he has.
Chef Him During The Pandemic: Heartbroken
Despite all the successes Chef Him had, one major setback he experienced was back in 2020. He had been contacted by ABS-CBN, and Chef Him had been gearing for big things to start the year. Sadly, the COVID-19 pandemic hit, which also meant a long lockdown in the country.
That meant all that they were planning had to be stopped. And pretty soon, he and his team lost their job running the food scene in ABS-CBN.
How Him Bounced Back
Chef Him is a lot of things, but he is not one to sit on laurels and mope. One of the things he believes in is to always adapt to the times. And he realized that people were getting tired of always cooking the same thing or ordering out during the pandemic.
So Chef Him thought to teach his recipes to people looking for more enjoyment out of their food. And The Bailiwick Academy became one of his avenues to teach people how to make flavorful dishes!
How is Chef Him Uy De Baron as a teacher?
Joining TBA isn’t exactly Chef Him’s first foray into teaching. After returning from Australia in 2001, he started teaching at a culinary school and appeared in other schools. He calls himself an accidental teacher, but in this field, he finds fulfillment by nurturing students and sharing what he knows. Chef Him actually feels mightily rewarded when he sees his students using what he has taught.
Now, one impression of Chef Him the first time you see him is that he’s a very strict taskmaster.
But you’d be surprised how much fun he is to be with–check out this behind-the-scenes video during a recent shoot of one of his lessons.
One thing you can be sure about Chef Him is that if there’s anything he’s serious about, it’s developing the skills of his students–and making sure that he has recipes that will really tickle your taste buds. He’s a really hands-on instructor, too!
And based on some testimonies from his students at TBA, he’s been very successful. Check out what Adam had to say:
And so does Marilyn!
In other words, those who go under Chef Him’s tutelage can be sure that they will really level up their cooking skills.
What’s next for Chef Him Uy De Baron?
Chef Him always believes in new opportunities in the food and beverage industry. That’s why he’s always looking for new ways to spread his culinary skill. Chef Him is a risk-taker too.
As he said in an interview with Esquire:
“If I think of putting everything in a business perspective, I might not have opened the restaurants I have opened. For me, if I feel that it is a really great idea, I go, ‘screw it, lets do it!’ “
You never know, you might hear of him opening a new restaurant soon!
Oh, and of course, new Chef Him classes are already lined up at The Bailiwick Academy! Just wait for us to release them. In the meantime, check out his classes that are already available:
Celebration Trays – great for leveling up your party fare.
Taste of Thai – experience one of the most popular cuisines in the world from the comfort of your home.
Flavors of India – taste a whole new palette of flavors and textures and demystify Indian cooking.
Dampa Seafood Feast – enjoy delicious seafood bursting with flavors that is Chef Him’s signature touch!
Hawker-Style Specials – have a different kind of street food experience with Singapore’s flavors.
Make sure to sign up at The Bailiwick Academy to access Chef Him’s delicious recipes today!
I’m going to leave you with what Chef Him thinks is important to truly become a great chef. The first is skill. You can’t become a great chef overnight–you really have to practice constantly and have the determination to have skill.
The second is to develop your taste. You can go to school to become a great chef, but taste is not something you can learn. It’s personal, something accumulated through the years.
And as a person becomes more experienced in cooking, they have to go from simply enjoying the taste of food to actually understanding how it was created. By honing their technique and experimenting with ingredients, a chef can develop a unique and personal style that sets them apart in the culinary world.
Such powerful and inspiring thoughts, agree?
Make sure to enroll in Chef Him Uy De Baron’s classes to get more nuggets of wisdom like these!
Keep coming back to The Bailiwick Academy blog for more kitchen tips, tricks, and much more!