TORONTO, August 30, 2023 – Mississauga’s Wallace Wong, Michelin trained chef and former Chopped Canada winner, is proving he’s a cut above the rest as he stars in his own episode on the esteemed series MasterClass. The episode is called Knife Skills and airs on September 5th, as the chef shares his remarkable expertise with the world on the original MasterClass membership-based series G.O.A.T. (The Greatest of All). The series features several experts from different fields offering tips to masting a certain skill.
The new opportunity comes hot off Chef Wong establishing a Guinness World Record in February for the most cucumbers sliced while blindfolded—166 slices in 30 seconds! Now there’s some knife skills.
If you recognize his name, that’s because Wallace Wong has appeared on numerous top TV shows including Fridge Wars (winner), Top Chef Canada (finalist), Chopped Canada (winner) and Bake it Possible (Top 10 Finalist).Chef Wong has also worked at some of the most respected Michelin star restaurants around the world, including NOMA in Denmark, Alinea in Chicago, and he helped open Momofuku Shoto in Toronto under David Chang. “While I was in culinary school in college, I would do pop-up restaurants to raise money and during my school holidays I would apply to work at Michelin star restaurants to gain experience.”
Although he is riding high on his success right now, Chef Wong never takes anything for granted. “I am a cancer survivor—16 years cancer free,” he admits. “Having cancer changed everything. You find out how fragile life is. I try not to sweat the small stuff. I know the value of life as a gift, and I try to live life to the fullest.”
Six Pack Chef
Chef Wallace Wong is known as “The Six Pack Chef”. Diagnosed as clinically obese, Wong became an International Fitness Competitor and represented Canada on some of the most prestigious bodybuilding stages in the world, all while working as a professional chef. He became a highly inspirational and motivational fitness personality and chef.
“My ice breaker is that I am a chef who also competes as a national level bodybuilder, thus the name Six Pack Chef. My three pillars are: Eat Good, Look Good and Live Great. As an entrepreneur, all these things guide me, and I authentically share my knowledge through social media. After my battle with cancer I made a promise to myself to do something good for someone every day. That could be opening the door, complimenting someone on their hairstyle, or just helping someone in need. It’s so easy to say thank you.”
The Six Pack Chef is also a media sensation on TikTok. He currently has more than 1.8 million followers on the popular app with more than 2K additional followers a day with one video that went viral and has over 146 million views and is the Second Most Viewed Video on TikTok in all of Canada.
“I feel I have found my niche with my cutting and knife skill videos,” he says. “Setting the Guinness World Record really put my name on the map and I’m proud to have accomplished this. People ask me how I cut blindfolded. It’s a skill that once you learn, it becomes second nature.”
Chef Wong shares three important knife skills and tips:
“When it comes to knife skills, the first thing you need to do is to choose the proper knife,” says Chef Wong. “There’s no such thing as one size, or one knife fits all. Like a glass of wine, the one that is best is the one you like to drink. Same with a knife; the one that feels right is best for you. While I have a plethora of knives, you only need two, a chef’s knife and a pairing or utility knife. Basically one big knife and one small knife. People overcomplicate things. If what you are cutting is big or thick, use the big knife. If it’s smaller, use the small knife.”
The second skill the chef will be teaching is ‘the claw technique’. “I will be teaching the claw technique to show people how to cut safely and with precision,” he adds. “If you are right-handed, you form your left hand to make a claw with fingers curled under. Only your knuckles are against the knife blade as the right hand holds the knife to chop. The third thing that is important is to use a sharp knife. A sharp knife is a safe knife. Human error happens when we try to force the cutting instead of letting the knife do the work.”
Like most lessons, Chef Wong will start with the basics. “This includes setting up your cutting board, so it is secure and stable using a wet mat or wet paper towel underneath. The area needs to be clean and free from obstacles. Only the food you are cutting should be on the board with a scrap bowl off to the side.”
The Six Pack Chef offers “On The Line” Interactive Cooking Classes offering participants a live, real-time virtual cooking class experience. Preregistration is required and participants receive a downloadable package with the recipe, grocery list of ingredients and equipment needed so the class can cook along with the chef virtually on ZOOM. Chef Wong also does guest appearances, event demonstrations, dinner and pop-up events. The Six Pack Chef has also written How to Survive a Diet, with over 50 pages of tips and tricks and over 24 multi-purpose sauces and spice blend recipes. The downloadable guide is available through his website.
Ironically, the successful chef says he didn’t want to be a chef! “My family didn’t want me to be a chef and I never wanted to be a chef,” he says. “I had cooked a bit during high school and entered a competition, but when I went to business school, I found that I missed cooking. There was a culinary school on campus, so I stopped by for a visit and the next term I was registered. I love what I do. I know it sounds morbid, but I sometimes think about what it will be like when I die and hope that I have made a difference in people’s lives. I hope to touch people’s lives in a special way. I hope to continue to do good and live life to the fullest. I always have the end destination in my GPS. I may take the wrong term from time to time, but the end goal is always in mind.”
For more information visit sixpackchef.com
by Laurie Wallace-Lynch