Nat is the Executive Director at Flux Factory. He's also a co-founder of Silent Barn's Bushwick location, and is an audio collagist who published improvisations for many years at WFMU.
Flux Iron Chef allowed me to live out one of my childhood dreams: to star in a competitive cooking show broadcast for the whole world to see.
Four fellow Flux Master Chefs – Stephanie “You’re out of your element” Avery, Nick “I’ll have my cake and eat yours too” Cregor, Theodoros “The After Burner” Zafeiropoulos, Georgia “This takes the cake” Muenster – and I (Aliya “Beyond Consumption” Bonar) put our culinary skills to the test last Saturday when we reenacted the Japanese competitive cooking show, “Iron Chef” in the Flux Kitchen Stadium.
With exactly one hour of cooking time, our challenge was to prepare dishes that best articulated the flavors of the secret ingredient – raisins – selected randomly out of a (mixing) bowl just before the start of the competition. We would be judged based on presentation, originality, taste, and fluxiness. You can watch the full video of the event here and the awards ceremony here, both narrated by Jason Eppink, and the event trailer here, edited by Constantin Hartenstein.
The final spread of dishes included: banana-raisin cream pie topped with candied ginger and a raisin reduction, almond cookies with feta and citrus soaked raisins, raisin chutney with plantain chips, raisin omlette-ettes, homemade flatbread with bean-quiona-raisin spread and topped with sauteed onions, a traditional Greek moussaka – in miniature form.
I love cooking and I love cooking for a crowd so this was totally fun for me – not to mention I won with my savory almond cookie and citrus raisins. But beyond just being the center of attention, I loved this event which represented so much of what Flux is about for me. While slamming a teapot on a bag of almonds to crush them, I thought of how Fluxers make incredibly high quality products with the most pedestrian of ingredients and tools. As we seamlessly danced between each other, the stove, refrigerator, and tight real estate of the stove top (with only one small fire, one burn, and a couple bumps!) I was reminded of how we as Fluxers work together and have the collective awareness to look out for each other, making sure each individual has the space to flourish inside of the larger context. When presenting our incredible array of dishes (from multiple countries and covering multiple courses) to the judges, the diversity of points of view encompassed by Flux, and how we all take the same resources and create entirely different products, was evident.