One-on-One with Curtis Stone
He's a no-nonsense mentor on All-Star America and a bona fide beach fanatic, as he shows off every week on Beach Eats USA (Wednesdays at 10:30|9:30c), but did you know that Curtis Stone also keeps hordes of hot sauces on hand and has been known to relax to Jack Johnson tunes? Recently FN Dish checked in with Curtis to find out the little-known details about this Australian-born chef, from his last-supper must-have to his favorite person to cook for. Read on below for his answers.
Curtis Stone: My wife, Linds. She is my best bud, so it’s always nice after a hectic day, or hectic week, to just take a beat, pour ourselves a wine and cook, eat and talk about everything. She is an adventurous eater so she keeps me on my toes.
What’s the most-surprising thing we’d find in your fridge?
CS: Pickles upon pickles, and loads of hot sauces.
What music do you like to listen to in the kitchen?
CS: Music makes the kitchen a happy place. At home, I’m a bit of a Jack Johnson chiller, but at Maude, when we’re getting fired up for service, I like a bit of punk rock like U.K. band Sex Pistols.
If you weren’t in food, what career would you have liked to try?
CS: I have a green thumb, so I’d love to be a gardener.
CS: London. I spent 10 years there working for Marco Pierre White, and London is where I really fell in love with the fine-dining experience. I would save up all my pennies so I could spend them on exquisite dinners in London and all over Europe.
CS: White truffles! They totally move you. I have an instinctual attraction to them. From the very first time I smelt them, I was like, “Oh my god, what do we have here?” I was working in one of Marco’s restaurants and I can remember the truffle man coming in, opening the box, and that was it; I was completely drawn in.
Is there one dish that you always order out and never make at home?
CS: I don’t make a huge amount of Thai food at home, so that’s one cuisine I do pick up after a busy day. Thai is great comfort food for me — even better with a cold beer to mellow out the spices.
It's a regular Tuesday night. What are you having for dinner?
CS: A super-quick but seriously tasty and comforting penne dish with sausage and broccoli rabe or kale — it just depends on what’s in the garden or the fridge. I can’t help but go back for more (and more) of this dish, as I’m a sucker for all of the delicious ingredients … the silky tomato sauce, sweet Italian sausages and sprinkling of Pecorino cheese. It’s a true a la minute meal; it takes just minutes to make and should be enjoyed as soon as it comes together. My little guy, Hudson, loves it!
CS: I really hate to be a fence sitter, but I’m 50/50. I love savory egg brunch dishes, but I’m very happy to follow up savory with a pastry, crepes, or a little homemade muffin or madeleine.
CS: Chocolate. I’m a self-confessed chocoholic, and I’ll eat it any which way — by the block, in a cake or cookie, I’ll basically drink chocolate sauce, or nail a chocolate croissant in the morning with my coffee. … It certainly brings out the best and worst in me.
Catch Curtis on Beach Eats USA every Wednesday at 10:30|9:30c.