Two questions, many answers No. 5

Posted 6/12/20

Brown Sugar Fudge, perfect for beginners - from America’s Test Kitchen’s Cook’s Illustrated’s 2010 Holiday Issue.

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Two questions, many answers No. 5

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Welcome, Gentle Reader, to week five of my chef role models.

This week three chefs were kind enough to play along and answer my two pandemic food-related questions.

Our first guest is Chef David Burke. He has 20 restaurants, two cookbooks, and numerous awards, including a James Beard award.

Question: When it’s going to be a while before you make a grocery run, what’s your favorite pantry meal?

Answer: “Cold cereal w/hot sautéed fruit and milk.”

Question: What’s your best food-related activity suggestion for staving off familial boredom and the resulting mayhem?

Answer: “I make savory pancakes to be creative. Like meatloaf and mushroom. Chicken and blue cheese. Salmon.”

Our second contributor is one of the first chefs I met when I began food writing. Chef Jason Cunningham is the executive chef of the Washington Duke Inn and Gold Club. And he sets the chef bar pretty darn high.

Chef Jason’s favorite pantry meal: “When I dig into the pantry I’m looking for comfort and sustenance. We keep a good supply of dried beans on hand my mother-in-law’s Spanish lentils are definitely a go-to for us. These are rich and protein-packed with pork sausage and chunks of potatoes and carrots.”

Kitchen boredom buster: “My best suggestion to engage kids in mealtime has been to involve them. Whether it is making a pizza or having them peel potatoes. I’m pretty certain that the kids’ favorite activity has been roasting their own hot dogs over the fire pit and following up with s’mores. That or laughing at their dad as he curses at the wet firewood trying to get the fire started…”

The Kid and I are huge fans of this week’s final chef.

Chef Julia Collin Davison is a TV star for food nerds. She appears in the PBS cooking shows “America’s Test Kitchen” and “Cook’s Country.”

Chef Julia’s pantry meal: “My favorite pantry-friendly meal is pasta topped with a fried egg, garlicky bread crumbs, and some sort of grated cheese. The breadcrumbs (which help me use up old bread ends) are key here. Also, if I have some greens (spinach, arugula, chard) or tomatoes, I toss them in too.”

Family kitchen activity: “My daughter (she’s 11) and I make a lot of quick breads, such as pumpkin bread, banana bread, and lemon-poppy seed tea cake. They’re easy (and easy to clean up) and everyone loves nibbling on them throughout the day. “

Thanks for your time.

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