04 Nov 2011, Posted by admin in EAT + DRINK, 3 Comments
There is a saying in the newspaper business… the more famous the chef, the less likely you are to get an honest answer.
Full Disclosure: I completely made that up. But in my experience, when I’m dealing with the little guy (candy makers, picklers and the like) I tend to get gushing responses in all of five minutes. The more famous the chef, the more time it often takes to get there (and if a publicist is in the room, good luck getting anywhere with all the wink, wink, winking going on). Hence the reason I tend to stick to the little guy. But hey, it’s understandable, as chefs have a lot more riding on what goes in print interviews and on television than most incognito artisans selling $3 jars of sauerkraut (namely, whether customers will want to pony up $200 a head for dinner ever again).
And so I loved the honest responses I got for this celebrity chef home entertaining piece that runs in Sunday’s Los Angeles Times Magazine — the idea being, what do chefs cook up on Friday night when friends are coming over at the last minute after a long workweek? I got a good chuckle during each interview. In sum:
Rick Bayless laughed and said he’s pretty tired of Mexican food by the end of the week (I would be, too), Thomas Keller admitted he doesn’t cook much at home (Right… he’s got the French Laundry fridge at his disposal) and Michael Cimarusti clarified that he has a pretty sweet deal at work with access to the best seafood, so why would he settle for retail quality seafood (he grills steaks when friends come over). Nancy Silverton, always the perfectionist, couldn’t settle on one dish (and I believe at some point in our conversation, I called her “my dear” (?) — well there is an instinctual loveliness about her) and Suzanne Goin admitted that her three young kids have driven her to actually (gasp!) keep meat at the ready in her home freezer (and now we can all forever feel guilt-free for doing the same). Supreme sushi chef Nobu Matsuhisa? He must have mentioned how healthy brown rice is, as opposed to sticky white sushi rice, a dozen times. “I’m not getting any younger,” he chuckled.
Yeah, sounds like most of us trying to figure out what to cook for dinner. Here’s the story (scroll down for the intro text… then get the quotes from each chef by clicking on their names on the left, but you knew that already, right?)…. along with their five recipes to go along with the chatterbox fun.