Best meal I ever ate:
So many . . . it's like choosing the proverbial favorite kid; I can't!
My current drink of choice:
Hendricks Martini, up, twist.
I really wish I could:
live nearer to fried clams--or any clams, for that matter.
My "Go-to" dinner party dish:
It so depends upon who's coming. Out of towners: Gumbo, Baked Shrimp/Oysters, Mosca's style, Crawfish Etouffee. Picky eaters: Braised Shortribs, Osso Buco, Eggplant Parmesan when there's a vegetarian in the group. But probably the most consistent dish in my dinner party repertoire is some kind of risotto (guests stir!), which I serve with grilled shrimp, roast pork loin, roast chicken or duck, grilled steak or lamb chops. Everybody, even kids, seems to love risotto.
My favorite comfort food:
Tie: really good lasagna or spaghetti carbonara
My top 5 favorite restaurants:
Herbsaint, August, Coquette, Cochon, Kim Son. Outside NOLA: Vetri, Lupa, Topolobampo, Cafe Spiaggia, Primo (Rockland, ME)
My most tattered cookbooks:
I learned to cook with The Silver Palate Cookbook(s), Paul Prudhomme's Louisiana Kitchen, Greene on Greens, Martha Stewart's Quick Cook, and the homey Talk About Good!; I still go back to them. Nearly as tattered: Lynne Rossetto Kasper's The Splendid Table, Richard and Rima Colin's The New Orleans Cookbook, Rick Bayless's Authentic Mexican and Mexican Kitchen, Madhur Jaffrey's Invitation to Indian Cooking, Julia Child's The Way to Cook, Mark Bittman's Fish, Sarah Leah Chase's The Open House Cookbook, Rose Levy Beranbaum's The Cake Bible.