February 11, 2015

Meet Clayton from ‘Chefs Run Wild’

Meet Clayton from ‘Chefs Run Wild’ Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

The ‘Meet….’ series gives you a glimpse into the inner workings of some of my all time fave peeps and cheffing superheroes. I ask the same ten questions and you get their heartfelt responses.

Clayton, Lyndon, ChadYou may remember I introduced you to Clayton’s twin brother Chad & best friend Lyndon via this series a few months back? I came across these awesome lads in 2011 via their YouTube Channel “Without Borders”. These guys are 3 chefs from Canada who crossed the globe to Southeast Asia, they ate, cooked and drank their way through a bunch of countries and filmed their foodie adventures along the way.

This epic online travel series featured the fellas chowing down on Cow penis soup, Tamilok which is a 2 foot long worm, small fried baby sparrow, 5 year old cobra and even food dressed with pig’s blood #gag …. But most defo a sight to behold.

How long have you been cooking / a chef?
I began cooking at a deli and outside catering outlet when I was 14 or 15 years old (I’m 36 now), my old man ran the kitchen there. I was a bit of a troubled kid and I think he hired me to keep an eye on me and teach me some discipline. When I didn’t feel like working anymore, or he got angry with me, I would tell him I was taking out the bins and then just leave out the back door. He always hired me back though. The owner must have hated him for it. He taught me all the basic skills of being a chef and the importance of seasoning and presentation. He gave me a lot of responsibility as a young cook. After the deli, I worked in other restaurants around the city until moving to Calgary Canada where I began my apprenticeship.

Meet Clayton from ‘Chefs Run Wild’ Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

 Where are some of the coolest places you’ve worked? Destination jobs etc.
During my apprenticeship one of my instructors told me that being a chef was a ticket to work anywhere in the world. My new goal from that day forward was to work in every country that I could. I did work visas in Australia, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and New Zealand. I always worked in good restaurants and learned as much as I could. Once I turned 30 yrs old, I was no longer able to get work visas because of age restrictions. I was not ready to stop traveling just yet. This is when my brother Chad Klyne and friend Lyndon Wiebe decided to spend 8 months in Asia learning as much as we could about local Asian cuisine. We convinced locals of very popular street stalls to show us their dishes. We documented this process through video. Without Borders AKA Chefs Run Wild was born www.withoutborderschefs.com

Meet Clayton from ‘Chefs Run Wild’ Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

What’s your signature dish?
I’m not a fan of this question, so I’m going to change it to What are some of my favourite ingredients?
Some of my favourite ingredients are fresh lime juice, cumin, fish sauce, rhubarb, pork, lime leaves, roast garlic, celeriac, soft shell crab, pommello, coconut, and green papaya. Hey wait, that sounds like it would make a pretty good signature dish!

Meet Clayton from ‘Chefs Run Wild’ Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

What was your worst kitchen disaster? Worst cut, burn etc. What happened?
During a busy service on one of my first days in a restaurant kitchen, I went to cut something on one of the other chefs chopping boards. I missed and cut his hand instead. He was pretty cool about it (less his 5 minute tirade). He ended up getting a few stitches.

If you were stranded on a desert island and could only bring three things, what would they be and why?
A sharp utility knife, my surfboard, and a Kardashian. The knife would have a wide blade which could double as a mirror for my Kardashian.

Meet Clayton from ‘Chefs Run Wild’ Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

When you just want to make something simple, quick, and delicious, what do you prepare?
Pork shoulder roast, parsnips, sweet potato, roast potato and quartered onions still attached to the core. Throw it in all a roasting dish and in the oven on low heat in the afternoon and eat in the evening after whenever you feel hungry. I’d use a packet gravy mix with the pan drippings for sauce. It’s simple and only takes 5 minutes to prepare.

If you were to invite a famous person to your house for a meal (any meal) — who would it be, what would you prepare, and why?
Andre 3000 from Outkast. He seems like he would be pretty cool and an “eat whats put in front of you” kind of guy.

I would brine some chicken for a few hours with fish sauce, oyster sauce, garlic, coriander and a few other goodies then coat it in a rice flower mixture and deep fry it in oil with a few Pandanus leaves (Bangkok street style). This would be a little bit different then Southern fried chicken he’d be used to. I serve it the traditional way with rice and sweet chilli dipping sauce. I might even go a bit western and serve a compressed watermelon salad with Persian feta. No, never mind that, that’s too hipster.

Meet Clayton from ‘Chefs Run Wild’ Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

What is your fave breakfast?
Salmon Benedict with avocado on nice toast, fresh squeezed orange juice and a flat white near a sunny beach after a surf. Australians do the best breakfast hands down.

Do you do the cooking at home?
I do like to cook at home but only if I am in the kitchen alone. If I am with my girlfriend (also a chef) I become “very bossy and opinionated.”…. so I am told. I would rather have someone else cook for me though, it always seems to taste better.

Meet Clayton from ‘Chefs Run Wild’ Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

If you could have any superpower, what would it be and why?
Elasticity would be a good one. I could sit on the couch watching TV and stretch my arms around the corner for a beer. My friends would be so jealous of me.

Meet Clayton from ‘Chefs Run Wild’ Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

Like many great internet buddies, we’ve sort of become supporters of each other’s escapades over the years. Now this isn’t a first for the fellas, but last month at the Hollywood TASTE AWARDS (The highest awards for the Lifestyle Entertainment Industry) Clayton and crew won Best Travel Series on the Web … again! I am stoked as hell and couldn’t be prouder to see them listed on the Taste Awards Hall of Fame. #BOOM

Be sure to connect with Clayton & the lads from Without Borders by visiting the Without Borders website ~ Facebook Page ~ Pinterest ~ Flickr

I’d love to know, if you were to invite a famous person to your house for a meal (any meal) — who would it be, what would you prepare?

Don’t Forget…

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shenANNAgans is Anna Johnston, a 30 - something Aussie gal with an unwavering passion for the Hospitality industry. I love the quirky and unusual, designing events, travelling far and wide and eating food from all around the world. I am coffee blooded, a craft beer enthusiast, wine drinking yogi who enjoys writing about her adventures.

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Singapore Food Courts & Gardens by the Bay - July 26, 2015 Reply

[…] in Australia, but are independent businesses who sell their own “brand”. Almost every cook has a specialty dish or two that they prepare everyday, many of which have reached a level of […]

Hannah - February 19, 2015 Reply

I would invite Sir David Attenborough. But i have no idea what I’d cook. My immediate response is scones and tea but that’s so boring (but delicious) and Sir Attenborough is not boring…

Maybe an amazing Spanish inspired tapas meal…. Mmmmm tapas.

    Anna - February 19, 2015 Reply

    Scones and tea…. we should take him on a trip to Mudgee and visit all the best scone and tea places along the way. Ha! 🙂
    I say the Spanish inspired tapas, you can practice and feed me. Yeasss!

Pamela @ Brooklyn Farm Girl - February 18, 2015 Reply

That was a great read! Loved his answer for the “signature dish” question. Thanks for sharing!

    Anna - February 18, 2015 Reply

    Cheers Pamela! And yes, agreed, I’d love to eat the meal he creates using those ingredients. 🙂

Denise Browning@From Brazil To You - February 18, 2015 Reply

Great interview! These chefs have a quite interesting life. I’d love to watch their travel series… I don’t see airing on American TV/Cable though. Where can I watch it?

Susan - February 17, 2015 Reply

Another great Without Borders interview, its nice to meet the lads as individuals. Do like the ingredients he listed as his favourites too.

    Anna - February 18, 2015 Reply

    Yeah it is, its totes cool to ‘meet’ the chefs and learn about their individual journeys. 🙂

cityhippyfarmgirl - February 17, 2015 Reply

No signature dish but hell yes to all those ingredients he just listed as favourites.
Loved this post Anna and Clayton.

    Anna - February 17, 2015 Reply

    Glad you enjoyed Brydie, Clayton sounds like he could whip up some pretty amazing dishes. If only he lived closer. 🙂

Bam's Kitchen - February 17, 2015 Reply

Great interview Anna! Loads of fun with a really interesting guy. I have never heard of this episode until now and have to try to find it. Having some fun ingredients instead of a signature dish is a classic and perfect answer as this is how most chefs think. We all have certain ingredients that we love using in recipes. I think that this also changes from year to year and from season to season. Sharing, of course!

    Anna - February 17, 2015 Reply

    Yeah, doesnt Clayton sound like a fun and interesting chef. 🙂
    I will change that question to reflect the fun ingredients rather than signature dish. You are right, as a chef, I pretty well always have the same ingredients in my fridge and often fall back to the dishes that include them. Thanks for sharing the love. You are amazing. Have a brilliant week BAM! Hugs! xo

Sophie - February 17, 2015 Reply

What a cool post this was! Thank you for sharing it with us all! x

    Anna - February 17, 2015 Reply

    Pleasure Sophie! Glad you enjoyed. 🙂

Sue Slaght - February 17, 2015 Reply

A sharp utility knife, my surfboard, and a Kardashian. Oh my goodness I almost spewed my morning coffee. Not only a chef but such an interesting person.

    Anna - February 17, 2015 Reply

    Haha… I know right Sue, Clayton seems to have a wicked sense of humour, my only question is… Which Kardashian is he taking to the Island?!

Norma Chang - February 16, 2015 Reply

Great interview bet you had lots of fun doing it, love Clayton’s sense of humor, What a wonderful and understanding Dad he had. Did he cook something for you?

    Anna - February 17, 2015 Reply

    I haven’t actually met Clayton in person, Norma. We are internet buddies. Every other year we talk of meeting, maybe 2015 will be that year. 🙂 But when I do meet Chad & Clayton, I will ask that they cook something weird, something they learnt on their Asian adventures. 🙂

Krista - February 16, 2015 Reply

How fantastic to have a Dad that kept helping, teaching, forgiving, and taking him back no matter what. 🙂 Such a great investment in a great person.

    Anna - February 16, 2015 Reply

    Yes, it’s lovely to hear that from a really young age Clayton was encouraged to stick with it, I bet that comes through in his kitchens now. 🙂

Raymund - February 16, 2015 Reply

Nice interview a good read 🙂
Love that stranded in an island answer

    Anna - February 16, 2015 Reply

    Thanks Raymund! And yes, Clayton made me giggle with that answer also. Wonder which Kardashian he’d take?! 🙂

Pooja - February 16, 2015 Reply

Indeed a good interview touching personal, professional and dreams of Clayton. Its good to imagine Reeds from fantastic four as a chef. I am sure it would be lot easier in the Kitchen with elasticity.

    Anna - February 16, 2015 Reply

    I am so pleased you enjoyed the interview with Clayton, he sounds like he’d be a lot of fun to work with. Ha… That’s brill, yep, Reed from Fantastic Four as a Chef is amazing, can totes picture that. 🙂
    Elasticity would have saved a bunch of kitchen burns, adding to my superpower wish list too. 🙂

Gourmet Getaways - February 15, 2015 Reply

What a fun and interesting interview. It’s great to learn a little bit about people in the food world. Thanks, Anna!!

Julie & Alesah
Gourmet Getaways xx

    Anna - February 16, 2015 Reply

    Good you enjoyed the interview Julie & Alesah. 🙂

Rachel (Rachel's Kitchen NZ) - February 14, 2015 Reply

I have been keeping a bit of an eye on these guys since you introduced us last year – love this interview and love what three things Clayton would take to a desert island!

    Anna - February 16, 2015 Reply

    That is brilliant Rachel, some of their videos are a bit hard to watch, how they stomach some of the food they eat is amazing to me. But, I am sure they will be stoked to hear you have been following their adventures. 🙂

My Inner Chick - February 14, 2015 Reply

I LOVED reading this, looking at the fabulous photos. What is he holding, a LIZARD? The rabbit and the bird. Adorable.
Brilliant interview, Anna.

—-FUNNY answer: “A sharp utility knife, my surfboard, and a Kardashian”

Skip the Kardahian, dude! haaa.

xxxx Kiss from MN.

    Anna - February 16, 2015 Reply

    Yep, pretty sure it is a lizard, they have a couple of vids about lizard cooking, including making a lizard soup, lizard lapp/larp, a dish made with raw lizard blood and fresh herbs like mint with fresh lime juice. They have recipes if you want them. 🙂

    Glad you enjoyed the interview, Kim!

    And yes, I’m totes with you on the Kardashian, but maybe a Ryan Gosling or Robert Downey Jr would come in handy!

    Hugs and loves right back at chya from the Berra.

Jordan mcnsomething - February 13, 2015 Reply

i worked with clayton once he’s a real awsome guy. I love all the things he teached me. Just the passion for food and how to just like, love it, yaknow?? A really good surfer too. Just an all round nice guy. Yea realy awsome guy aye.



    Anna - February 16, 2015 Reply

    That’s awesome Jordan, lucky you having the opportunity to work with Clayton. It makes such a huge difference working with people who are passionate and love what they do, that mentality is infectious, you can’t help but love it too. 🙂

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella - February 13, 2015 Reply

Funny interview! He sounds like he has a real personality! But just a Kardashian? They’re quite different including Rob!

    Anna - February 16, 2015 Reply

    Yep, reckon he is a bit cheeky, would be fun to work in his kitchen too. 🙂
    Ha, I will follow up on the Kardashian, seems everyone is intrigued by that.

Kris Johnston - February 13, 2015 Reply

Cool read. Love reading about people that have stayed in the industry and have a real passion for it.

I was talking to my wife about this last night. Trying to plan a menu for 12 people.

But, if I could just cook for another person, I would make a chamula spice lamb fillets with fried polenta. I don’t like the taste of lamb. But i think it is one pretty looking dish.

    Anna - February 13, 2015 Reply

    You’d serve lamb? Mind BLOWN!!!! I do rate the Polenta tho, peeps dont seem to use it much these days, you should bring it back. 🙂

    Why you planning a dinner menu for 12 people?

    And yes, Clayton is amaze, its lovely to hear stories from people who are doing exactly what they love. Reckon it would show with his food too.

Mabel Kwong - February 13, 2015 Reply

What a great interview with Clayton, Anna. I love how he has managed to turn his passion into a living. Work hard, work harder, and dreams to come true!

That is such an interesting question at the end, I had to think about it. But I think I’d invite dancing violinist Lindsey Stirling over for dinner (I’m going to her show in Melbourne this week!!!). She really, really likes eating cereal, so I might cook a dinner where there is cereal served with each course. Now, that will be a big challenge. Maybe stir-fried egg noodles with a side of cornflakes, how about that 😀

    Anna - February 13, 2015 Reply

    Totally Miss Mabel, it is impressive to meet someone who is following their bliss and living every day to the max. 🙂
    Ha, that is brilliant, reckon you’d have a market in dishes featuring cereal. I remember working with a Balinese bloke years ago, he would make these incredible spicy omelets and sprinkle cornflakes on top for the texture, it was amazing. Its a thing. 🙂
    You should totes invite her over for dinner when you see her next week, mention the cereal themed planned eating, bet she says yes. LOL!

Tandy | Lavender and Lime - February 12, 2015 Reply

Great interview and I’m having salmon benedict with avo for breakfast this weekend 🙂

    Anna - February 12, 2015 Reply

    Are you hitting up the beach for a cheeky surf before breakkie too? Lol! 🙂 Glad you enjoyed the interview and enjoy your salmon benny. #yarm

Clayton Klyne - February 12, 2015 Reply

Hey Anna, thanks for the interview and all the comments, it was a lot of fun!

    Anna - February 12, 2015 Reply

    Thank you! You guys are seriously inspirational, the pleasure was all mine. Keep being awesome! 🙂

Alice - February 12, 2015 Reply

Hey Anna, the taste awards are a seriously cool event. Big congrats to these Wild Chefs on their achievement and I love the choice of famous diner and the meal! Hmm, I’d be totally at a loss, whether to invite famous chefs & Gastronom, like Heston Bluementhal and Rick Stein, or Nigella Lawson etc, & cook my heart out! Or a favourite group of comedians like Steve Carrell, Wallace Shawn & Will Ferrel and be entertained…lol, what the heck, I’d invite them all and treat them to the best Sunday roast I could make!!! 😉

    Anna - February 12, 2015 Reply

    Hey Al! Yeah they are, I think it would be awesome to be involved with event managing that gig, heck…. it’d be pretty great to be up for an award too. 🙂
    Invite em all girl and make a night of it for sure, who doesn’t love a Sunday roast?! #yarm

Maureen | Orgasmic Chef - February 11, 2015 Reply

I’d invite the Dalai Lama and we’d have the biggest veggo meal I could prepare. I’d cook everything just to make sure I got something he enjoyed. 🙂

What a great interview!

    Anna - February 12, 2015 Reply

    The Dalai Lama came to my work a few years ago and the chefs prepared him a giant slab of meat. Word is … what seemed a massive faux pas on the Clubs behalf was actually just what this man needed and wanted. When the waiter tried to remove his plate, he informed the staff member that he has an iron deficiency and doctors actually recommended including meat in his diet. Sooooo…. dont feel you have to prepare only vegetarian foods for Tenzin Gyatso. 🙂 #funfacts

Tim | UrbanDuniya - February 11, 2015 Reply

Interesting story – I’ll need to check these guys out! Thanks for sharing – interesting as always 🙂

    Anna - February 12, 2015 Reply

    Thanks Tim! Be sure to check the descriptions before watching tho, many of their videos are pretty gruesome, not for the faint hearted. Spiders and blood and lots of eeeewwwwh moments. Let me know how you go! 🙂

Hotly Spiced - February 11, 2015 Reply

Given the disasters I’ve seen on MKR, I would want to be like the Texan and just cook what I know. There’s nothing wrong with serving corn on the cob when it’s done to perfection. That’s what I’d aim for – food I can cook well that’s not necessarily tricky. It’s great Clayton found his life’s passion at such a young age xx

    Anna - February 12, 2015 Reply

    MKR is doing my head in, waaaaay too much drama and emotion for my liking, all those tears…. Gah! It seems the contestants are missing the point, start with the basic cookery methods, nail that first, then work on creating masterpieces. Stop crying too! Far out. :/
    Agreed, it is really amazing to meet people who find their passion at a young age and love it all these years down the track. These lads inspire me to be great.

hassan - February 11, 2015 Reply


    Anna - February 12, 2015 Reply

    Glad you enjoyed! Check out their YouTube Channel, soooo cool! 🙂

Lizzy (Good Things) - February 11, 2015 Reply

Oh, if I was to invite a famous person to my house? Crap, I don’t know, there are so many I’d like to invite over…. um, George Clooney, James Gandolfini (no wait, he died), the stars from the Hobbit (especially Martin, Richard, Benedict and James), oh and Billy Connolly! What would I cook? We’d have a BBQ… casual and relaxed.

    Anna - February 12, 2015 Reply

    Hahaha! What an interesting bunch of folk you’d invite for dinner, Liz. Please pretty please, can I come to the George Clooney dinner …. please? I’ll bring wine, beer, spirits and snags. 🙂
    James Gandolfini, oooh yeah, just starting my yearly Sopranos fest. I think living him would of been an awesome dinner companion, would you throw in an Italian feel to your barbie for him?

Lizzy (Good Things) - February 11, 2015 Reply


    Anna - February 12, 2015 Reply

    They really are…. But in a fabulous way! 🙂

Mandy - February 11, 2015 Reply

Brilliant interview Anna. Sounds like Clayton would have everyone in high spirits and laughing all day. Wonderful.
Have a beautiful day dear.
🙂 Mandy xoxoxo

    Anna - February 12, 2015 Reply

    Thanks Mandy! 🙂
    Yep, Clayton seems like a total character, reckon he’d make his kitchens a really fun place to be, imagine all the interesting and fun foods he’d have your working with?!
    Wishing you a wonderful weekend my sweet friend. Love and hugs headed your way. xox

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