No one particular person is my inspiration for cooking. I get inspired by traveling and eating at restaurants that have foods I've never tried, and I also get inspired by farmers markets.
I've never been one to follow blogs but since being on the show and meeting Beth Kirby, I have loved her blog "local milk". Her recipes and food photography are stunning and inspiring.
If there is a duck or lamb dish on a menu you can almost guarantee that will be what I'm ordering! They are also my favorite go-to dishes to cook for company as well. My least favorite dish to eat, and I'm embarrassed to say, is sea urchin. I know all foodies love it but I have not acquired a taste for it... and believe me I've given it a lot of tries.
My favorite dish to cook is my sea bass en croute with chive buerre blanc. It has a wow factor just looking at all the layers but once you taste it you immediately fall in love with the dish. My least favorite dish to cook would be any dessert. I "sample" it the whole time I'm cooking and then once it’s done I eat at least 2 servings. So long story short when I make desserts I eat so much I make myself sick.
I find so many boring salads at potlucks so why not start of a meal with a bang! I bring the most divine blue cheese pecan bread with a strawberry and spinach salad with cider vinaigrette. It's a crowd pleaser every time!
My favorite type of cuisine to cook would be French. It's easy to disguise if something goes wrong. Just make a great sauce or add more butter! My least favorite cuisine....hmm... I truly haven't found a cuisine I don't like yet.
My most inspiring food trip was to South Africa. I explored the country for one month trying meats and seafood I’ve never even heard of with techniques I was dying to learn. From the vegetables to their wine region, all were insanely beautiful and delicious. My next trip I would LOVE to go on for inspiration is Japan. The way the flavors are so intense and mixed so delicately with such great quality proteins is an art form in itself that I want to master.
“Save the Last Dance for Me” by Michael Buble, “Feeling Good” by Michael Buble, “Breaking Dishes” by Rihanna
There were two main reasons for being on MasterChef. One was that I loved to cook for others, but I wanted confirmation that it was what I should make a career out of, I needed that validity. Secondly, it would create job opportunities that I couldn't create for myself as a chef.
My mom’s lasagna. I’ve never had one that even compare to hers...the world stops turning while you eat it...it's that good!
Necessary, Savored, Rejuvenating