Technician by day but trusted food critic by night, meet Hesham Baeshen.
Hesham Saleh Baeshen came into the food industry purely by chance. A Sharqawi, born and bred, Baeshen works as a supply technician, but he started posting his recipes online about two years ago and the overwhelming response has led him to becoming one of Sharqiya’s most trusted food bloggers, critics and consultants.
Baeshen has been cooking since he was 9 years old – he started with sandwiches and steaks along with simple breakfast dishes and very recently moved on to cooking everything from burgers to traditional dishes.
Baeshen’s favorite food to eat and cook is shawerma, followed by fried chicken and burgers. He even hopes to one day open a restaurant that sells fried chicken. “It’s all about the marinade,” he said. “You don’t need a secret recipe. Just marinate it so that it becomes juicy inside, takes less time to become well done and looks amazing on the outside.” We asked for his opinion on the recent booming burger trend as well and he laughed, “You know, we are Arabs. We like bread and meat – this kind of food goes well with us!”
Baeshen currently provides restaurants with consultation on everything from the quality and doneness of their food to their presentation. He also critiques restaurants on his Instagram account, marking them on their service, atmosphere and food quality.
Here’s the type of advice he gives that applies to even home cooking: Spend the extra riyals on good quality cheese to give your dish that special kick. Also, a burger needs at least 30 percent fat – it may not be as healthy but a burger with only 10 percent fat is NOT tasty at all.
Baeshen doesn’t just present images of his dishes to his followers, he dives deep into their history and cultural relevance. Also, there’s no such thing as “no” in his kitchen. He experiments and tastes everything and that’s what makes him credible as both a cook and a critic.
Favorite Ingredients: Worcestershire sauce, garlic and Parmesan cheese.
Inspiring Chefs: Osama Al Sayed and Samar Ayyub