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The Interview: Chef Rob Zack

The Interview: Chef Rob Zack


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Chef Rob Zack recently experienced a homecoming of sorts. Nearly 20 years ago, he began his career as sous chef at Aspen, Colo.’s famed Hotel Jerome, before moving on to become head chef at some of the state’s most notable restaurants, including EightK and Pacifica. In 2012, the chef returned to the hotel as executive chef. Both the hotel and restaurant were completely overhauled last year, the restaurant was given a new name, Prospect, and Zack was given the opportunity to build a new menu, which he filled with updated classics as well as old family recipes like his grandfather’s meatballs.

The Daily Meal: What was your first restaurant industry job?
Rob Zack: Dishwashing at 16 years old in a chain restaurant/diner called Baker's Square, outside of Cleveland. The kitchen had a 12-inch flattop and the volume was huge. I remember loving the energy and even back then I loved the work. I used to volunteer for the crazy shifts... baking pies overnight during the holidays.

When you first walk into a restaurant, what do you look for as signs that it’s well-run, that it’ll be a good experience, etc.?
I've both opened and closed restaurants over my 20-year career. It’s amazing how much you learn from a restaurant's failure: it’s almost instinctual, but I can tell in the first 10 minutes how a restaurant is doing. From a service perspective, it starts at the door. Does someone greet me? Is the initial interaction friendly and efficient? If I have to wait, do they offer a drink? From a food/menu perspective... is there a varied selection that fits what the restaurant is trying to be? Is the menu priced properly? If the restaurant has opened recently and the prices seem low compared to the image of the restaurant, it’s usually a sign of high food cost. As the restaurant evolves, they figure this out and suddenly the next time you go in the prices are much different... it really hurts the image. I think to a certain extent, you are what you are when you open... changing little things is natural and necessary, but you must stay true to how you initially branded the restaurant. These kind of mistakes are common. As much as I like to cook, the financial aspects to running a restaurant can really make or break you and need to be addressed early and often.

Is there anything you absolutely hate cooking?
Honestly... no. I love the variety/creativity that the culinary profession provides.

If one chef from history could prepare one dish for you, what would it be?
Fernand Point. He trained a generation of French chefs and is considered to be the father of modern French cuisine. The chefs he trained are considered icons today. To do what he did during tumultuous times in France is truly amazing.

Although they are not chefs, I would also have loved to have cooked with my grandparents. Now that I am a chef, I appreciate what they did and taught me about food... all without even knowing the value of their skills at the time. I would love to not only have them prepare one dish, but work side by side with them in preparing the dish.

What do you consider to be your biggest success as a chef?
I hope that my best days are ahead of me, but right now I would have to say becoming executive chef of the Hotel Jerome. This place is a part of me... I have spent so much time here over my career and to be back as the head chef is a special moment.

What do you consider to be your biggest failure as a chef?
Closing a restaurant that I was a partner in. Although I learned a tremendous amount from the experience and would not be who I am today, it was very disappointing.

What is the most transcendental dining experience you’ve ever had?
Lespinasse in the late '90s when Grey Kunz was the chef. We had just done a James Beard dinner and dined with my parents and the whole Hotel Jerome crew. It was really my first dining experience at that level and a very special experience

Are there any foods you will never eat?
Bugs... will never try… at least intentionally.

Is there a story that, in your opinion, sums up how interesting the restaurant industry can be?
The beauty of this business is that you never know what the day is going to bring. The interaction among chefs leads to an endless amount of creativity. I've spent more time with my cooks over the years... they become like family, working crazy hours and holidays. The scary part is that I'm now working with some of my cooks’ kids who have gotten into the business! This aspect is fascinating to me... cooking seems to be in the genes. The other aspect of this industry that I love is the ability to create such emotional ties to food. My mother recently asked me to try to recreate my grandfather's chicken. She had the basics of the recipe... chicken, red wine, vegetables, herbs. The method for the recipe was unclear. He was always constantly checking on the chicken, doing something, but I could never figure out exactly what. As I began experimenting and the smells began to fill the room, it all came back to me... I could picture my grandfather making the chicken and I remembered eating it as a child. The power of food and the memories connected to it has always been what drives me. As for the chicken, I was finally able to figure out the method... it was all instinct.


Chatting With the Latest 'Next Iron Chef: Super Chef' Exile

Host Alton Brown reavealing the Secret Ingredient "Peanut" Showdown to Rival-Chef Robert Irvine and Rival-Chef Michael Chiarello for their head-to-head battle in Episode 2 as seen on Food Network Next Iron Chef Season 4.

Photo by: Edward Chen/Creel Films ©2011, Television Food Network, G.P.

Edward Chen/Creel Films, 2011, Television Food Network, G.P.

The fourth season of The Next Iron Chef: Super Chefs is in full swing with 10 new chefs fighting it out for a grand prize that so many would-be chefs covet: joining the ranks of Iron Chefs Marc Forgione, Bobby Flay, Masaharu Morimoto, Cat Cora, Jose Garces and Michael Symon. Each chef will try to pull out all their tricks to stay in the competition but, ultimately, one chef must go home each week. Every Monday, FN Dish brings you exclusive exit interviews with the latest Super Chef to get the boot.

This week, Robert Irvine won the judges over with his hotburg, but still found himself battling it out with Michael Chiarello in a sudden-death challenge.

FN Dish: The creation of the hotburg (hot dog and burger in one) was a complete success. Are you using that great concept somewhere else now?

RI: I have not used nor am I currently using the hotburg in any area. It was a great creation for a spur-of-the-moment challenge.

FN Dish: The deconstructed fish taco, however, was not a success and led you to the sudden-death challenge with Michael. After watching Spike and Marcus battle it out the week before, what were you thinking?

RI: The deconstructed taco was an awesome invention, too. There were problems beyond my control, like going last, which put me in the bottom two.

FN Dish: It looks like you used mascarpone cheese instead of tahini for your hummus. Did you do that on purpose? Tell us why you did that.

RI: I was making humus without chickpeas or tahini as they were unavailable and the secret ingredient was peanuts. I used mascarpone on purpose, as I thought that was a good substitute.

FN Dish: If anyone knows how to work under the pressure of a clock, it's you. What are some additional lessons you've taken away from this experience?

RI: The lessons that I took away from the competition are really simple: Always remain true to yourself, have fun and every day is an adventure. Food is also like wine: Everyone has a different opinion. One man's meat is another man's poison.


Anthony Bourdain's mother speaks out about his tragic death

"Suicide is something more common than I ever thought. So many people came talking to me, saying my grandmother, mother, father, sister [died by suicide]," said Chris. "But nobody ever wants to talk about it. It’s the elephant in the damn room. Everybody has suicide in their life somewhere."

Although Chris said he thinks Anthony wouldn't have liked being "the poster boy for suicide prevention," he acknowledges the importance of discussing mental illness now in order to remove the stigma surrounding it. He also said he believes that certain cultures place a lot of guilt on those who knew the deceased.

"We [as a society] spread shame of 'we could have done something, we have failed'," Chris said. According to Chris, if people practice the very same open-mindedness his brother applied to everyday interactions with individuals from all walks of life, we could make progress.

Chris also said this month isn't about mourning Anthony: It's about celebrating him. Anthony's dear friends, fellow chefs Eric Ripert and José Andrés, will toast their comrade on his birthday, June 25, and have asked the world to do the same by posting photos and videos using the hashtag #BourdainDay.

During June, fans of the iconic chef from around the world can also plan a trip to New Jersey to toast to Anthony at his favorite home-state haunts, from Hiram's in Fort Lee to Dock's Oyster House in Atlantic City, as part of the official Anthony Bourdain Food Trail. You can sit at tables where Anthony once dined, eating clams, hot dogs and cheesesteaks, while sipping on a beer — all in memory of the celebrated chef.


Zach Bush, M.D. On GMO’s, Glyphosate & Healing The Gut

The good news? If you lose the stress — hormonal, dietary, environmental, and psychological — you remove the root cause of illness.

This is but one of many fascinating ideas proffered by Zach Bush, MD — in my opinion one of the most compelling medical minds currently working to improve our understanding of human health.

The founder and current director of M Clinic in Virginia, Dr. Bush was President of his medical school class at the University of Colorado Health and later became Chief Resident for the department of Internal Medicine at the University of Virginia. Among the few physicians in the nation that is triple board certified, he completed training and certification in Internal Medicine, Endocrinology and Metabolism, as well as in Hospice and Palliative care. Dr. Bush has published peer-reviewed articles and book chapters in the areas of infectious disease, endocrinology, and cancer. Through his practice and unique methodology, he has seen significant clinical improvements in patients with everything from Leaky Gut Syndrome, Gluten Intolerance, Autism, Type 2 Diabetes, Autoimmune conditions such as Crohn’s Disease, and Irritable Bowel Syndrome.


Why did Mary Berry leave The Great British Baking Show?

According to Mary herself, she walked away from the tent of bakers out of "loyalty" to the BBC. "It was the BBC&rsquos program, it grew there," she told RadioTimes.com . "So I decided to stay with the BBC, with Mel and Sue."

What's more, it sounds like Mary wasn't formally asked to continue on Bake Off when the series moved from BBC to Channel 4.

"Well, I avoided being asked. It was suggested what would happen if I did go to Channel 4 what I would get, the advantages. But I didn&rsquot ever have a meeting with them," she revealed. "I&rsquod made up my mind. To me it&rsquos an honor to be on the BBC. I was brought up on it."

Of course, Mary had no problem finding other ways to keep busy after departing The Great British Baking Show. She went on to appear in several British TV shows, including Loose Women, Strictly Come Dancing, and This Morning. She also got to host her very own mini-series, Classic Mary Berry, and the TV series Mary Berry's Quick Cooking. What's even cooler, she's becoming a dame in Britain after appearing on the Queen's birthday honors list.

In short, Mary is still thriving even after saying goodbye to all those soggy bottoms four years ago.


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How To Make Grilled Cheese

The combination of different cheeses on top of a good, crusty sourdough takes this classic to a new level. Gruyere is a Swiss cheese that is milder and sweeter than the pungent Swiss commonly sold at American supermarkets – and it melts better. Check the deli counter at the supermarket or a gourmet food store to find Gruyere, but Swiss cheese will also work in a pinch.

Ingredients:

  • 2 slices sourdough bread
  • 1 slice gruyere
  • 1 slice Parmesan
  • 1 slice yellow cheddar
  • 1 slice white cheddar
  • Softened unsalted butter, for brushing
  • Olive oil

Gather your bread, cheese, butter, and oil. Heat a frying pan or griddle over medium-high heat and drizzle with olive oil. Spread one side of each slice of bread with softened butter and place on a heated griddle with the butter side down. Stack one slice each of gruyere, parmesan, white cheddar, and yellow cheddar on one of the slices of bread. Move the bread around as it cooks until it’s golden brown.

Place the other slice of bread on top of the cheese, toasted side up. Brush the top of the sandwich with butter then flip the sandwich and butter the top of the sandwich again, continuing to move the sandwich around the griddle. Check the bread as it cooks and take the sandwich off the griddle when the bread is dark golden brown. Brush the top once again with a little butter and serve.


The Cannabis Candy So Chic, I Broke My No-Pot Rule

I stopped smoking pot at 20. Maybe it was the difference between East Coast and West Coast buds in the early 2000s (I grew up in Seattle and went to college in Pennsylvania), but, like it is for many people, one very terrorizing, hyper-paranoid night in college led to a vow of cannabis celibacy that lasted more than a decade. No THC anything. Not even the now highly popular CBD—just no. But then, this January, I found myself with a luxurious box of Lord Jones CBD gumdrops sitting on my desk thanks to a special gift from celeb-favorite kundalini teacher Guru Jagat.

I love chewy candies (Gushers, soft licorice, fruit leathers), and the nine sparkling, sugar-coated drops inside this box were so bouncy and delicate, in citrusy yellow and strawberry red, that I could almost feel them sitting on my tongue just by looking at them. Or staring at them, rather. Of course, I know CBD is meant for an innocuous body high, not a head high, but it wasn’t the chemistry that finally convinced me to cave that night at home—it was totally just the box. The nearly-Hermès orange, the royal seal logo with gold leaf, the board so thick you could use the empty packaging to store jewelry… In other words, I am so, so shallow. But sometimes the cover does tell you about the book inside, which, in this case, was a deliciously fruity, marshmallow-y candy with a peaceful little buzz that lulled me into a chill-ass, less-anxiety-tinged evening and a much better sleep than I usually know. Also, it didn’t hurt that I had been seeing Lord Jones everywhere—they did a huge collaboration with Icelandic cult band Sigur Rós, and their CBD lotion has been touted by celebs like Mandy Moore and Olivia Wilde. (Like I said: shallow.)

The next morning I wondered if I had experienced a luxury placebo effect, or if these candies were actually super f*cking good. Fortunately, I was already headed out to L.A., so I asked the co-founders, Cindy Capobianco and Robert Rosenheck, for a meeting. I met the couple—New York City transplants who both have illustrious careers in the creative and fashion worlds on both coasts—at their Laurel Canyon home. Multicolored boxes of their famous THC (available in California only) and CBD candies were scattered across the coffee table, dappled sunlight poured in through their lush trees, and I finally got to ask them what I’ve been dying to know: Why are you so smart? Here’s what they said.

What was the lightning-bolt moment to create Lord Jones?

Rob: “When we moved to California, we immediately became medical marijuana patients. It was an underground subculture, and trying an edible was a little like Russian roulette. You might have this incredible experience, but you might have this nightmare experience. A typical edible was a giant cookie or a brownie in a plastic bag with a staple it wasn’t labeled. You didn’t know what the potency was, you didn’t know what the ingredients were. A week later, you go back to get the same cookie, but it is completely different because the cannabis is different. We realized there was a huge opportunity to normalize cannabis, to elevate the category, to standardize it, to make something that people could rely on. We wanted to appeal to the Whole Foods shopper or Equinox member. Or Coveteur reader. There was nobody speaking to that person.”

There must be a lot of complex stuff happening behind the scenes to start a cannabis company:

Rob: “Starting any business is difficult, but when you layer on the fact that cannabis is federally illegal, it makes for adventure. Cannabis is labor-intensive, capital-intensive, and requires a high level of expertise. It’s the most complex business we’ve ever been involved in. We spent over two years researching the industry, learning about the cannabis plant, understanding the laws. There were three tenets of the brand that we set out to accomplish. First, we wanted to elevate the category by creating a best-in-class brand, which meant we wanted beautiful packaging and identity, an elevated brand experience. Second, we wanted to have best-in-class products—product formulations and ingredients, including the non-cannabis ingredients. The third tenet was cannabis superiority. We wanted to make products that made you feel good that were designed to elicit a specific effect and that were consistent every time you used them.”

Cindy: “There are so many different expectations people come to a cannabis experience with, so we wanted to keep that in mind as we were developing the brand. Some people want to get high others want to get well some are in pain they’re anxious they hate to fly they want to transition off of prescription medication and onto plant-based medicine. We wanted Lord Jones to speak to all of them. ”

Rob: “We wanted to make candy that we could sell if it didn’t have cannabis. We wanted to make really delicious adult confections. We’ve worked with a group of talented, classically trained candy chefs to develop the foodie part of our formulas. They taught us how to make candy, and we would work with them in the kitchen developing our recipes. For the first eight months of the company, we made all the candy.”

How did the lotion come about?

Rob: “I had a rock-climbing accident and have chronic pain in my ankle. I discovered topicals by accident. I tried it on my ankle and became an instant believer. That’s how it happens. Something works. We designed our lotion formula for pain relief, but we didn’t realize at all the many ways it can provide relief.”

Cindy: “It seems like every day we hear from a patient or a customer who tells us about how it has helped their migraines or menstrual pain or skin conditions or cuticle health. And of course, it’s fantastic to use it on your feet before you go out for the night in heels.”

What makes the lotion different than other CBD lotions?

Cindy: “We wanted to make sure that people knew exactly how much CBD they were using. Our bottle dispenses exactly one milliliter of lotion with every pump. Every milliliter of lotion contains two milligrams of CBD. There’s also a proprietary natural cooling agent that lets you know where you put it, but it also starts to bring blood flow to the area. Then, obviously, the CBD starts to take effect. People are always shocked at how quickly they feel relief. The lotion has high absorption and a beautiful hand feel. The most common question we get is ‘Will it make me high?’ No. Our CBD topical will not get you high, but it will help you relax [and] provide pain relief and aid to skin conditions.”

Is there a story behind the Lord Jones image?

Rob: “We set out to elevate the common weed. Jones is the name of the common man—there can be no ‘Lord Jones.’ So we decided to make cannabis for royalty and name it Lord Jones. We brought it to all the dispensaries, and they thought we were nuts.”

Cindy: “They said, ‘You should give up right now. You can go do something else, guys.’”

You were both in creative industries before this. Can you give me your backstory?

Cindy: “I started as a magazine editor at Allure, Vogue, and the launch of American Marie Claire. I ran Todd Oldham’s showroom and then went on to become the head of PR for Donna Karan, Banana Republic, and GAP. After leaving GAP, I started a public relations agency. Rob had a creative agency, and in 2008 we had the opportunity to produce an Oscar party at Prince’s house. We were sitting at Shabbat dinner with my kids and Rob, and the phone rings, and it’s a client who said, ‘Can you meet me at Prince’s house in 20 minutes ?’ I was like, ‘Yeah, definitely.’ And then I was sitting at Prince’s house at his kitchen table. He said, ‘I want to produce this party.’ I called Rob, and we started working. In 48 hours , we had created this amazing production. Stevie Wonder was performing with Prince and Doug E. Fresh and John Legend.”

Rob: “It was an incredible, magical night. We looked at each other and said, ‘We should merge our businesses.’”

Cindy: “And that’s what we did. Through our agency, we worked for Fortune 500 companies and start-ups.We were regularly in and out of food facilities and learned a lot about food manufacturing. So a lot of our previous work turned out to be training for Lord Jones.”

When you moved to L.A., did it inspire Lord Jones in a way that never would have happened in New York?

Rob: “For sure. Laurel Canyon [is] a special place. We have deer, coyotes, and hippies in the middle of a city. Laurel Canyon gave birth to Lord Jones.”

You just didn’t feel that in New York?

Rob: “New York was our home. We met in New York, and we lived there together, but I was determined to move us out west. I find L.A. to be a much more collaborative place than New York. People are always looking for the next big thing here. At the studios, executives are mindful that the guy pushing the broom might be writing the next big screenplay that wins an Oscar. That whole mind-set, I didn’t find in New York.”

What’s your next big launch?

Cindy: “We’re about to release a tincture. It’s a whole new category. Some of our customers have asked, ‘Do you have a sugar-free option? Vegan? Gluten-free? Raw?’ We wanted to make a product that delivers CBD in a clean, everyday format. We think the tincture will be a big hit.”

And it really is medicine:

Rob: “The cannabis plant contains unique compounds called cannabinoids. And our bodies have an endocannabinoid system that makes use of these cannabinoids. Endocannabinoids are made by our bodies, and Phytocannabinoids are made by plants. The two most famous cannabinoids are THC and CBD. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is what gets you high. Cannabidiol, CBD, is the one that’s associated with all these medicinal benefits.”

Cindy: “We operated a non-profit collective called Hollywood Hills Wellness for several years prior to the passage of Proposition 64. Through the collective, we learned a tremendous amount from our patients. We treated people with cancer, AIDS, autoimmune disease, and chronic pain. We also provided cannabis to people who could not take opioids for pain relief and were post-operative or post-accident. We set out to create a great brand and wound up becoming caregivers. To this day, it’s the most rewarding part of our job. It’s a blessing to go to work each day with a great sense of purpose."


Yates Hundred Gives Bears Edge

The university student held the Bears’ innings together on a competitive day at Edgbaston.

Warwickshire made two changes from last week’s crushing innings defeat in Durham. South Africa international Pieter Malan made his debut, while England pace bowler Olly Stone returned after being rested.

Seamer Josh Tongue made his first appearance of the season for Worcestershire.

Joe Leach’s decision to bowl first was rewarded when he forced his counterpart Will Rhodes to nick behind for 10.

But Malan and Yates rallied the Bears. The South African looked confident off the back foot, punishing the bowlers with a pull shot whenever possible. Meanwhile, Yates played multiple gorgeous drives down the ground, which was a trademark of his spectacular century against Essex two weeks ago.

They reached lunch on 95-1, but on the fifth ball after the break Malan, on 32, left an inswinger from Ed Barnard that crashed into his stumps. Sam Hain was dismissed in a similarly disappointing way, being bowled round his legs for eight by Brett D’Oliveira. The leg-spinner bowled excellently to stifle Warwickshire’s scoring throughout.

This fall in the scoring rate as well as the wickets of Malan, Hain, and Matt Lamb – who Leach dismissed caught behind for 11 – reflected a much-improved bowling performance after lunch. Aside from Leach, Worcestershire’s seamers failed to find any consistent length in the morning.

The final half-hour of the afternoon session saw Yates and Michael Burgess move the score steadily along to put pressure back on the bowlers, which they continued after tea in a passage that saw Yates reach his hundred.

In contrast to the morning, almost every run Yates scored in the afternoon session was played off his legs, as the Warwickshire academy product showed class and composure beyond his years. He was eventually caught behind off D’Oliveira.

Credit must also go to Burgess (65*), who scored his first half-century and helped to relieve pressure with numerous eye-catching shots.

Bresnan (20) and Stone (0) were dismissed shortly before the close of an intriguing day that Warwickshire will feel marginally happier about.

‘It was good fun to bat, I felt in rhythm,’ Yates told the media at close. ‘That Essex innings gave me belief.’

‘It was good fun to bat, I felt in rhythm,’

The 21-year-old is not exempt from the deadlines facing all students at the moment. He has an essay due next week on why gorillas beat their chests.

‘I’m about halfway through! But I’ll do a bit tomorrow or maybe Saturday. I didn’t do anything on it last night though.’


Recipes to Celebrate Black History Month

THESE INFLUENTIAL Black chefs shared their stories and recipes in The Wall Street Journal’s Slow Food Fast column. Here they discuss what the recipes mean to them, their larger cultural and historical resonance, and how they reflect their individual approaches to cooking.

Mashama Bailey of the Grey and the Grey Market in Savannah, Ga., shared her method for making beans and rice, a dish that’s particularly special to her because it’s one her grandmother loved:

“I’ve never sought out restaurant chefs for guidance. When I cook, I keep grabbing at parts of a story that I want to know more about. I keep peeling back the layers. As I get older I find that I crave the foods familiar to me, like these black beans. I gravitate toward what feels stable and consistent with what my body craves. I believe you have to grab on to the foods that got you interested in cooking in the first place.

My grandmother liked this to come out really hot. And if anything, this dish is more important to me now than before because she’s been gone that much longer. It reminds me of all the funny stories she used to tell.”

Nina Compton of Compère Lapin and Bywater American Bistro in New Orleans connected her recipe for roast chicken thighs with jerk corn and lime to her native St. Lucia as well as the city where she now lives and cooks:

“A lot of the food here [in New Orleans] is similar to the Caribbean food I grew up with—the spices, the stews, the one pot cooking. As a chef I’m constantly learning, and the only way to move forward is to know my background and to know what took place before me and where I live.

We’re doing a dinner series for Black History month at Compère Lapin that’s really fun. Because no one is traveling right now, I’m doing the series with local chefs that I’ve always admired, and that’s great. Ms. Linda Green did the kick-off dinner. And we’ll do a dinner that features Caribbean dishes that people might not know about—dishes that go beyond jerk chicken.

With this recipe, I’d swap cauliflower in for the corn because it’s winter now. But considering times have changed, this is relevant. It’s simple and speaks to the comfort we want. And it speaks to my Caribbean background.”

SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS

Share your experience with these recipes—did you make any adaptations? How did you serve them? Join the conversation below.

Kwame Onwuachi, formerly of Kith/Kin in Washington, D.C., situated his spiced rib-eye with charred-tomato sauce and crisp potatoes in the context of his childhood years spent in Nigeria and his evolution as a chef:

“The pandemic has allowed some to step back and focus on other things besides a restaurant, and I’ve enjoyed the freedom. I just finished writing another cookbook. I’m doing more media. I’ll be a judge on Top Chef.

This kind of cooking is more important to me now than ever. It is the food I crave. It reminds me of being a kid in Nigeria. It’s everybody food, which is the food I like. There’s a suya [spice blend] recipe in my book. It’ll go on everything: meat, chicken, shrimp. It’s an important seasoning.”

Edouardo Jordan of Salare and JuneBaby in Seattle pointed to the convergence of Italian, Southern American and African influences in his recipe for meatballs with polenta and Parmesan brodo:

“The Italian way of cooking is related to the Southern way. Both are seasonal and honor traditions. This recipe reminds me of where Salare was and at the time where it was headed. Currently Salare’s menu is focusing on the African diaspora, and it’s comforting to do that right now. We’ve explored how African migration may have worked into Italian cuisine—cooking with fruit and spices. Wherever there’s migration, there’s an influence. It’s been eye opening.

This isn’t an old news recipe, it’s a foundation recipe and a bit of a journey dish. It speaks to my story from the start of Salare to the journey I’m taking now. I still want to eat these meatballs. Spices let you take down the salt while adding nuance. That’s where the Berbere spice comes in with these.”

—Edited from interviews by Kitty Greenwald

To explore and search through all our recipes, check out the new WSJ Recipes page.

More in Food & Drink

  • Netflix’s ‘High on the Hog’ Centers Black Cooks in the Story of American Food May 21, 2021
  • Stuffing Grape Leaves: A Recipe to Soothe Any Stressed-Out Cook May 12, 2021
  • The Digital Farmers’ Market: New Shortcuts to the Freshest Food May 7, 2021
  • Why This Vegan Cauliflower Recipe Is Perfect for Everyone April 30, 2021
  • Rice Krispies Treats Remixed: Pro Tips and Recipes April 29, 2021

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Watch the video: Brothers Breaking Bread - Chef Rob Interview (December 2022).