Cook by Chef Volume 5:Chris Holland

As a special project, we asked five chefs working in the US to create new dishes using selected Japanese foods (see the link below). The food items used by the chefs are available for purchase in The Japan Media Store. (Price may change depending on the quantity and when you order.)

Chef/Owner of KANTINA in NY, Chris Holland is a three time “Chopped” champion. KANTINA offers his uniquely Asian twist on small plates, tacos, and more. He describes his dishes as half Asian style tacos and half Asian street food. 

Amazingly, Holland, who has been cooking Asian food for most of his career, has never been to Asia but has a lifelong love of the cuisine because he grew up in a large Asian community in Fort Lee, New Jersey. He said he was the only Caucasian kid among Asian kids “back then”, who ate everything at his Asian friends’ homes. 

The flavors of Asian food, he added, lend themselves well to tacos, which is why he wanted to devote his restaurant to them. “It’s something different,” he said. “I feel like we’re sort of changing the definition of a taco here.”

“People have come up with a million different ways to make sandwiches, but it seems tacos are still lagging behind. He wants to show people that he can do anything in a taco.”

Chef Holland used KARASUZANSHO HONEY, Bakasco, Matsuai Sauce (Naturally brewed soy sauce), Hyashi kyuemon kyuuemon awase dashi, and Moromi no Shizuku Seasoning salt. He said “The Japanese honey was amazing. I enjoy its fresh aroma and citrus taste. I would use it for cooking for sure. Also, I used Moromi no Shizuku Seasoning salt to sear the meat. It was fantastic. This seasoning is perfect for our menu. I had a lot of fun trying to create a menu using these products”. 

His dishes have a sophisticated taste and beautiful presentation that is culinary art. Growing up in an area with a large Asian population and tasting authentic Asian home cooking since childhood, his taste shines through. KANTINA, the restaurant by Chris Holland, is now open in Rockland County. If you ever find yourself outside of New York City, this place will be one of your favorites.

4 Depot Square
Sparkill, NY 10976

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