The master of 'Top Chef' talks about what dudes eat and how to stay cool in the White House kitchen.
Interview by Ben Crair
Your new website, Food Republic, is aimed at men. I see recipes for blueberry lemonade and goat cheese and strawberry bruschetta. What's the deal?
Men have evolved from this caveman way. The kitchen is the new garage. When men step into the kitchen, it becomes gadget driven. Friends always ask me, "What's the best pot? What's the best pan? What's the best whisky?" With women, it's more like, "I want to cook this really good meal today. It's going to be healthy. It's going to be nutritious for my family."
What's the most high-tech gadget in your kitchen?
My stove. Normally, you people have 12,000 BTUs. I have 22,000 BTUs. I have a grill outside on my patio: it's like a restaurant stovetop. It's crazy, but I cook a lot in my kitchen. I do a lot of my test cooking in my kitchen. But when guys come up to the patio of my house and see it, they're like, "Where can I order that?" I'm like, "Dude, that's kind of expensive!"
When you were young, was it not cool to be a male chef?
In Ethiopia, where I was born, all the cooks are women. …