March 2020 Chef of the Month-Kryssie Tinsay

Photo Credit: @steven_suarez_media

We’re bringing in the month of March with our creative Chef of the Month, Kryssie Tinsay. Born in the Philippines, Kryssie then moved to Orange County, California at the age of 15. From there, she has worked tirelessly to perfect her craft, and her positive attitude and determination has led her to where she is today. She now works at the Hilton Orange County in Costa Mesa, does popup dinners and has a side business selling delicious Filipino-inspired delicacies such as cookies, breads, cakes and more! Learn more about Chef Kryssie below and shop her look!


1. Where were you born?

I was born and raised in Iloilo City, Philippines and moved to Orange County, California at age 15.

2. Where do you work and where are you based?

I currently work at the Hilton Orange County in Costa Mesa, California, and I also do popup dinners and have a side business making cookies, breads, cakes, etc.

3. What is your favorite kitchen tool in creating your masterpieces/dishes?

My favorite kitchen tools are my Chef’s knife and my honing steel. Chef’s knives are so versatile and the steel helps keep its edge.

4. What is your sharpest sense out of all the 5 senses?

It would definitely be my sense of taste and fortunately, it hasn’t failed me so far. I have made and served some dishes I made without testing them first, and it has been well-received.

5. What advice would you offer for aspiring chefs?

It’s not all glitz and glamour like you see on TV! You HAVE to start from the bottom, put in your work and learn from as many chefs as you can.

6. What is one culinary tip every chef should know and perfect?

Knife cuts! Learn your knife cuts. You’d be surprised at how many cooks cannot tell the difference between a small, medium or large dice.

7. What does good food mean to you?

It means a well thought-out, well-seasoned and well-cooked dish. You can tell if a chef has put effort in their dish by the way it’s conceptualized, seasoned, and presented. Good food to me also means it’s well balanced with contrast in texture. It should also delight and make you feel happy as you’re eating.

8. What features are important to you when selecting your chef outfit?

Comfort and breathability! I don’t like to feel constricted,  and I also like a short sleeve jacket when I’m moving around in the kitchen.

9. Favorite ingredient to work with?

I have two ingredients I love to work with and that’s Ube (purple yam) and pork belly! I don’t even need to explain pork belly, but Ube is an Asian ingredient used in desserts. I’m always finding ways to incorporate Ube into my baked goods.

10. Favorite City to dine out in?

New York City. NYC is probably one of the best cities to dine out in. There are just so many options…you can literally eat out every day of the week for the whole year and you would still not be able to eat at every restaurant in the city.

11. Best Dish you have ever made?

I made Lechon Porchetta for a NYE popup dinner I hosted last year, and it was the best Lechon Porchetta I have ever made. I seasoned the pork with salt, pepper, lemongrass, garlic, ginger and kaffir lime leaves, rolled, tied and sous-vide for 24 hours. I then took it out of the bag after it cooled the next day, and roasted it until the skin was crispy. The meat was so flavorful and moist, and it had crispiest skin ever. It was just perfection.

12. What you like to eat most often on your days off?

Korean BBQ. It’s simple, straight forward and good!

13. Person you would most like to cook for?

Anthony Bourdain. He was such an icon in the Culinary Industry. I’d want to sit down, eat Lechon Porchetta with him and just talk about all the things he’s eaten at all the places he’s visited.

14. What made you decide to become a chef?

I’ve always loved to cook and to eat. For me, cooking is such a hands-on experience and it’s very gratifying to conceptualize a dish from start to finish and have it come out exactly how you have in mind. Cooking is such a never-ending process and that’s why it’ll always be interesting. There’s always something new to learn every day.

Connect with our March 2020 Chef of the Month

Instagram: @chefkryssie.eats

Website: Kitchen 1726


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