Food: Cooking it my way
Inspired by his travels in Japan and a lifelong love of cooking, Cambridge’s Moz Khudairi quit a high-flying corporate career to launch his own street food enterprise: called Oreno, Japanese for ‘my’, it showcases his take on classic kushiyaki - marinated meat and/or veg speared on bamboo sticks, cooked on a charcoal grill, served on a bed of salad with a side of sticky rice, and washed down with a beer or cocktail.
“After resigning my job and deciding I wanted to cook for a living, I knew that I wanted to offer the same food culture as I experienced in Japan,” says Moz, who, with a degree in biological science, had spent eight years with a dental equipment company. “What grasped me was the pride people take in what they do.
"The care and attention was evident in everything.”
Hailing from the Middle East, Moz moved to the UK with his family aged 5 and says his childhood was strongly flavoured by food. Learning from his mum, who’d spend days preparing for sumptuous family feasts, he was always interested in cooking, broadening his culinary horizons still further when university took him to London.
Making its official debut at this month’s Mill Road Winter Fair, Oreno will offer Moz’s own-recipe kushiyaki. Marinated in a yakitori tare, the skewers are, he says, quick to cook but time-consuming to prepare; the effort is worth it, though, resulting in a succulent and flavour-filled snack.
The core menu will include skewers of chicken and spring onion; beef, pork and spring onion; bacon-wrapped asparagus; and oyster mushrooms and caramelised sweet potato, all served with salad, rice and optional-extra sauces, such as wasabi or sweet miso mayonnaise. Form an orderly queue, people.
Oreno will be at Mill Road Winter Fair, Cambridge, on December 7, pitched on St Barnabas’ Road from 10.30am to 4.30pm. A regular pitch has yet to be announced - keep an eye on oreno.co.uk and follow @orenouk on Instagram and Facebook.
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More by this authorAlice Ryan