703 Tarpon Bay Road , Sanibel Island , Florida, 33957 Directions
Call Ahead Seating Available - (239) 395- CRAB / Open Daily for Dinner
703 Tarpon Bay Road , Sanibel Island , Florida, 33957 Directions
Call Ahead Seating Available - (239) 395- CRAB / Open Daily for Dinner

In the News: In the Kitchen: Teh Peng of The Timbers on Sanibel

In the Kitchen: Teh Peng of The Timbers on Sanibel

A fried whole red snapper is a thing of beauty, both in presentation and in taste, and it’s a specialty of Chef Teh Peng’s at The Timbers Restaurant and Fish Market on Sanibel. Chef Teh, who lives in Cape Coral, has been working at The Timbers for eight years, and sees the staff there as his family, a substitute for his large family in Singapore andMalaysia, where he visits once a year.

Inspirations: Mother Nature

Favorite cuisine to eat: I have no favorite as far as cuisine. They are all different and I love authentic ethnic cooking.

Favorite dish from your childhood: My mom’s sambal

What was the first dish you mastered: Duck egg fried rice

Celebrity (living or dead) you’d love to have dinner with: Matt Asen

If I weren’t in this business, I’d be: An archaeologist

Things you can’t get through the day without: Sunshine and positive thinking

Favorite quick meal: Fresh molasses bread with butter, peanut butter, and honey

Cooking gods: James Beard award winner Susan Regis and Lydia Shire from Boston

If you had your own cooking show, what would you call it: Fish Kitchen

Guilty food pleasure: Foie gras and cheeses

Food aversion you can’t get over: Chewing on rubbery snake in Vietnam

Favorite dish on your menu and why: Char grilled grouper with garlic butter, our best seller, always fresh and never have a complaint

What was your biggest cooking disaster: My rice cooker failed. My sushi rice turned out raw and mossy at the same time, and my customer was waiting.

Favorite SWFL restaurant other than your own: Matzaluna Italian Kitchen or Mad Hatter on Sanibel

What would be your last meal? Fried whole red snapper

Oddest/most interesting thing in your home fridge right now: Sambal, a chili paste made with dried shrimp, chili flakes, lemongrass, shrimp paste, shallot, garlic, and galangal

What are your plans for dinner tonight: Bring some fish tips from work and cook a pot of fish porridge

Dream vacation: Three months in France and three months in Southeast Asia so I can eat and eat and eat.

Oddest thing you’ve eaten (and did you enjoy it): Giant isopod, brought in by Nick, our local fishmonger. Myself, Matt, and some of our regular customers tried it for the first time three years ago. It was delicious, sweeter than crab meat. But we were unable to get it again after that.

Age: 53

Birthplace: Malacca, Malaysia

Culinary training: School of hard knocks. I started working at a French-Americanrestaurant in Singapore in 1979, when I was 19. I traveled and learned by working with chefs from different cultures and backgrounds.

Former gigs: Pebble Beach, Calif., Biba in Boston, Bistro 41 and Blue Pepper in Fort Myers.

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