“For the best dishes, for creations that you never forget, you don’t need more than 3 components.”
Johann Reisinger was photographed in his vegetable garden by Sylvan Müller. The photos come from the wonderful book “Leaf to Root”.
JOHANN REISINGER, MULTIPLE AWARD-WINNING TOP CHEF
“Reduce, reduce, reduce!” This is the most important cooking principle from top chef Johann Reisinger. “For the best dishes, for creations that you never forget, you don’t need more than 3 components. When you have 11 and more colourful and attractive ingredients on a plate, your taste buds will just become confused.“
Johann Reisinger is a radical chef. Radically natural. For him, this is not a trend, it’s a philosophy and for us, in turn, this is the reason why we at HERMANN really enjoy developing recipes with him. His recipes are simple, quick to prepare and have an incomparably good taste.
Johann Reisinger grew up on a farm in Styria. He has been familiar with the treasures of the garden since he was a child, and has always been enchanted by the flavours that nature has to offer. The roots of his holistic and regional cooking philosophy go back to his childhood: “My grandmother cooked everything and made wonderful things using very few ingredients.” This is why he became a multiple award-winning chef, to a passionate ambassador of a genuine “leaf to root” cuisine and learns tirelessly from nature every day.
Johann Reisinger is the essential figurehead of the new green cooking movement in Austria, and there is also a high demand for his knowledge internationally. He was accepted at the Slow Food university Università di Scienze Gastronomiche di Pollenzo, a private university for culinary sciences, as the first chef from a German-speaking country. His Schönbrunn seminars in Vienna, where 150 varieties of a vegetable are cooked, for example, are well-known well beyond the Austrian borders and are also visited by top chefs. Here, for example, you can learn how to prepare carrots “from head to toe” and countless other little tricks: The herb marinated with oil and apple balsam, the stalk pressed and mixed with yoghurt, the press residue dried and made into grissini and on top the braised carrot – the taste experience is stunning.
As well as using as much of each vegetable as possible, Johann Reisinger also has a cautious approach. Where did the vegetable grow? When was it harvested? What type is it? This is his advice to everyone who wants to cook: “First, become a gardener.” Because you have to understand where the vegetable comes from and how it grows. This is also why he owns a piece of land in his home of Auersbach in the south-east of Styria, where numerous culinary treasures flourish, such as galinsoga, goutweed, crosne, tree spinach, Chinese mallow, amaranth and a few more – plants which are ripped up as weeds in other gardens. Today, there are community gardens everywhere, where you can try it out at any time, or you can accompany the vegetable farmers on the field. However, residues from fertilisation and pesticides are often stored in the leaves or roots, which is why you should get to know your vegetable farmer very well.
Johann Reisinger’s vegetables are not just a taste sensation, however, they are pure vitality. We get up from the table, full of vitality and energy, which we at HERMANN experience every time the top chef introduces new recipes to us. This is usually eight to ten recipe ideas which we are allowed to taste on one occasion – nothing too small and yet not exhausting, but enjoyment with lots of surprises for our sense of taste.
Of course, Johann Reisinger’s recipes for HERMANN were also created following the 3-component principle. Here, the only things that come together are the things which belong together: Original and unadulterated elements are prepared in a natural way. The HERMANN recipe “Cheese sausage with turnip and cranberry compote” for example: The turnips are the pleasant companion to the base product of the nourishing cheese sausage, the fresh cranberry compote is the fresh connection. Or the “HERMANN barbecue sausages with pointed cabbage and pumpkin seed pesto”. This also consists of 3 elements and is a flavour combination that leaves behind a unique impression. But be careful! The right cooking times are important for success.
Plant-based nutrition will certainly become more and more important in the future. Here, numerous media reports which broach the issue of the health-promoting components of plant foods are very supportive. You certainly don’t have to give up meat completely, but with HERMANN, you have an actual alternative for the first time – and the right recipes from Johann Reisinger.
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