Feb 28, 2014

Soup’s on! Taryn Wa, owner and executive chef for Savoury Chef, Vancouver’s award-winning gourmet catering company, is spilling the beans on the drool-worthy Mediterranean Meze recipes she presented on the Urban Fare Cooking Stage last Wednesday at the BC Home + Garden Show. Before she does, let’s take a closer look at this local epicurean whose foodie following has grown to epic proportions. 

The lowdown: Taryn’s mother and grandmother instilled a love of food in Taryn from an early age. Earning her Red Seal from the Northwest Culinary Academy of Vancouver, Taryn’s natural talent and drive for perfection won her a scholarship from the renowned Les Dames D’Escoffier and a ticket to the 2005 British Columbia Chef’s Association “Hot! Competition Live,” where she took home gold.

Claim to fame: After launching her career at award-winning Bistro Pastis, Taryn went took the TV world by storm as sous chef on the second season of Channel M’s Fusion Fare. From there, Taryn followed her passion for entertaining and bespoke menu creation as a private chef before launching Savoury Chef, one of the most successful culinary suppliers in the city.

THE RECIPES: What Taryn’s Cooking

Grilled Meatballs
Yield: 4-6 servings
  • 225 g ground lamb
  • 225 g ground beef
  • 1 small onion, grated
  • 125 mL toasted panko or breadcrumbs
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1/4 bunch parsley, chopped
  • 5 mL cumin
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or grated on a microplane
  • kosher salt and pepper to taste
  • olive oil
In a mixing bowl, combine all ingredients except for the olive oil. Let rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes for mixture and flavours to come together, making them easier to shape.

Shape into meatballs, then flatten slightly with your hand to make a patty. Drizzle with olive oil and grill for approximately 4 minutes on each side or until cooked all the way through (if using a grill pan, these can be grilled just to mark and then finished in the oven).

Serve with grilled flatbread and cacik (yogurt and cucumber dip)

*Kofte can also be cooked in a frying pan.
*Kofte can be shaped and frozen in a single layer, then transferred to an airtight bag/container. They can be kept in the freezer for up to one month. Defrost in the fridge before cooking.

Chopped CucumberYogurt and Cucumber Dip
Yield: 300mL
  • 250 mL thick Mediterranean style plain yogurt
  • 1/2 cucumber, finely chopped (leave the peel on)
  • 1 clove garlic, grated on a microplane or finely minced
  • 2.5 mL lemon zest, grated on a microplane
  • 1/4 of the juice of a lemon
  • 5 mL fresh mint, finely chopped
  • 1 pinch sumac
  • salt and pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients together in a mixing bowl. Adjust seasoning to taste. Spoon into a serving bowl. Finish with a drizzle of olive oil and garnish with another pinch of sumac or paprika, and serve with grilled flatbread.

Braised Green Beans
Yield: 4-6 Servings
  • 100 mL extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 454 g green beans, trimmed *may be cut in half if long
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped *may substitute 1 cup canned plum tomatoes, chopped (with juices)
  • 5 mL salt
  • 15 mL sugar
  • pepper to taste
  • water as needed
In a large frying pan over medium heat, sweat onions and garlic in olive oil until translucent. Add green beans, tomatoes, salt, sugar and pepper.

Reduce heat to low, cover and cook for approximately 45 minutes. Check periodically and add water if all of the liquid in the pan has evaporated. At around 40 minutes, the beans should be very tender and liquid should be evaporated.

Thanks Chef Taryn for helping with our dinner plans! 
For more from Savoury Chef Taryn Wa, check out