The Macy’s Culinary Council held an event at Dadeland Mall in Miami where well-known Chef Marcus Samuelsson showcased his skills and taught us each a whole lot. Chef Marcus Samuelsson has been seen by many of us on shows like The Taste, Chopped, Top Chef Masters and more. He is very well respected by his peers and foodies across the globe who look forward to dining at his restaurant Red Rooster in Harlem, NY.
What I know is that he is a very down to Earth guy. He’s casual. He’s normal. He’s like the rest of us. Before the cooking demonstration the Chef took a few minutes to sit with my daughter and I as we asked him all sorts of questions about cooking and eating. Interesting enough, when my daughter asked him what was his favorite cuisine, he said Japanese – particularly Sushi. What he enjoys most about this delicacy is that he doesn’t know how to cook/make it well. That way when he dines on sushi he’s never thinking of how will he recreate this, what ingredients are in here…he’s just enjoying a fabulous dish.
During the demonstration I was in awe when he excitedly invited my daughter – aspiring chef and travel blogger (TheKidTraveler.com) to come up and help him. She was thrilled. I was thrilled. For the next 15 minutes Isabella was Chef Samuelsson’s sous chef, helping him sample food and warm tortillas. They made Garden Tacos with Salmon that were incredible. He made a salsa verde with peppers, tomatillios, avocados and more that I was so impressed to see my daughter devour. He continued on with the demonstration by making Peanut Noodles and Lime Curry Chicken with Coconut Rice. All the dishes were flavorful and simple to prepare.
Learning from Chef Samuelsson
I learned so much. There are three things that really hit home.
- Stop feeding traditional leftovers. The leftover baked chicken breasts don’t taste as well the next day. Use the leftover dish as the base of the next meal. Check out some ideas on leftover recipes for turkey that I have shared.
- It’s healthy to go meatless – twice a week. Chef Samuelsson explained that twice a week he goes meatless. He finds his overall health improving by sticking to vegetarian options those days.
- Undercook your veggies. The crunch, flavor and texture of just undercooked veggies – think carrots, broccoli, cauliflower – hold more power in a dish than the bland alternative. Plus, the less you cook the veggies the more nutrients that remain
Chef Sameulsson’s Memoir, Yes Chef!
Chef has recently published a memoir Yes Chef! I have already begun reading it, and it’s great. You learn the real story of his up bringing and how he go to where he is now. Let me tell you, it wasn’t easy. He has overcome so much. You can purchase the Yes, Chef on Amazon. I’ve read that it’s him reading the audio book and it makes the book even more awesome. Check it out and let me know.