Posted on March 1, 2020
A Bite of Delight
Hailing from the Midwest, Chef Brooke Mallory, brings years of expertise and creativity to the kitchen. Mallory began her journey in the culinary industry working at a seafood restaurant in Northern Michigan. It was during this time that she decided to pursue a career in the culinary arts and enrolled in the Great Lakes Culinary Institute.
Mallory has joined Burlock Coast at The Ritz-Carlton, Fort Lauderdale, working once again under the direction of Paula DaSilva who is the property’s Executive Chef. Mallory works with the culinary team to create inventive, refined farm-to-table cuisine with a focus on local seafood. A self-described “drink nerd” and cocktail enthusiast, she finds there is beauty and charm in the art of mixology. In fact, in the past, Mallory has jumped behind the bar from time-to-time to concoct her own creative libations to pair with some of her delectable dishes
At what age did you start cooking?
I started cooking at the ripe age of 13. My first job was in a bakery. Once I turned 14 I moved down the street to a lunch/dinner spot. By the time I was 16 they had me in charge of lunch and by 18 I was running the whole kitchen.
Did you always want to become a chef?
I would be lying if I said yes lol. I was good in school and did well but after high school I was trying to play softball in college. That plan didn’t work out so I took a year off, stayed cooking during the summer and during the winter I was a snowboard instructor. It wasn’t until my parents sat me down and said I needed to go to culinary school. So I enrolled in a local program and haven’t looked back sense!
Is there something in particular that inspired you to become a chef?
Cooking comes very natural to me. Growing up my parents especially my mother was always in the kitchen. She would bake up a storm on the weekends and my dad would be doing something outside on the grill. We always had a garden, we canned our vegetables to last through the winters up north. My family is that classic definition of hunter/gatherer lol. My dad is always hunting and fishing so we had an endless supply of meats. I think just seeing the joy on my family’s face when we cooked everything from scratch is what ignited my passion.
What would you say is the best dish you ever cooked?
Oh goodness, this is a hard one. I would say my best dish would be any pasta dishes I make. I love being able to make something out of nothing. Making fresh pasta, you can already taste the love that has been put into it, and the dish just develops from there.
Has Miami inspired your cooking in any way?
Miami does play into my inspiration when I am creating dishes. There is so much diversity throughout the city the possibilities are endless. When I think about Miami I think fresh, vibrant, and colorful and I base a lot off of those three keys. We are fortunate enough to live in an area that has fresh beautiful produce all year long, and being right on the water we have amazing seafood.
Any projects in the works?
The biggest project in the works would be preparing for Cochon 555 taking place in Miami on March 22nd, I am super excited about being asked to participate!