I'm back from working with high school journalism students at the Seattle University Journalism Summer Workshop. I worked with four students who wrote articles you'll see published throughout the summer in The News Tribune and on the TNT Diner blog.
Here's a chef question/answer feature written by Peninsula High School's Ian Clarke with Tacoma chef Matt Stickle.
By Ian Clarke
Executive Chef Matt Stickle has worked at the Bite Restaurant at Hotel Murano for six years and has been working in the food industry for the last 10. The last two restaurants he worked at were the Little Nell in Aspen, Colorado and Mission Grill in Sister Bay, Wisconsin.
We phoned him up recently to throw a few non sequiturs his way. Here's what he had to say.
What's the best food dare you've ever gotten or given?
I had my cooks try blood sausage. That's actually coagulated blood. For some of the older cooks, it was traditional and some of the others were grossed out by it, but chefs like to try everything.
Have you ever set a fire in the kitchen the required the fire department to be called?
I haven't set anything on fire, but at my birthday last year there were sparklers and a stack of doughnuts and the fire department had to be called.
What's the one food you'd never try?
Live octopus. You can still feel it moving around as it's going down.
What's the weirdest thing you've ever cooked?
Turducken. That's when you cook a duck and a turkey and a chicken. It was something they didn't teach in culinary school and we decided to make it just for fun.
What's your favorite comfort food?
Swedish pancakes. My favorite restaurant's in Wisconsin and they have Swedish pancakes there. [It was called] L. Johnsons. The guy was actually Swedish and he brought over Swedish servers in the summer. Also, the roof has grass and there's goats up there.
If you were on a desert Island, which three things would you never get sick of eating?
Probably apples, chocolate and salmon.
Ian Clark graduated this year from Peninsula High School. He plans to major in English at the University of Portland.
Where: 1320 Broadway Plaza, Tacoma
Info: 253-238-8000 or http://www.hotelmuranotacoma.com/hotel-murano-restaurant-bar/