I think about food a lot. I often wake up in the middle of the night with a new way of treating an ingredient planted in my mind, a fleeting remnant of a culinary dreamscape beyond anything my waking mind could ever imagine. When I’m in traffic (which can happen a lot when LA is home base), I’ll run through different ingredient permutations, mixing and matching components until I arrive at the perfect dish – conceptually, anyway. I daydream about using food to communicate, to entertain and ultimately to move people. The way that Picasso’s “Guernica” stirs my soul and Stravinsky’s “Rite of Spring” kindles my passion – that is what I want my food to do for others.
I am extremely compassionate and idealistic. I believe that we (the universal “we”) will move past most of our problems when we learn to respect all living things. These feelings come from very deep within my being and inform every aspect of my life. As a result, my cuisine is plant-based. Other, more traditional chefs, have asked me why I would choose to cook such a limiting cuisine. You know what? I feel like my creative freedom began when I decided to utilize only plant-based ingredients. I can’t really explain it – you’ll just have to trust me. Perhaps it’s because this is what I was meant to do.
Today, I am painting mostly in broad strokes – but indulge me for just a moment, because I am enamored by the subtleties and intricacies of the world of food. For example, I love that fruits and vegetables are seasonal. Corn that’s so sweet and juicy that you can turn it into custard without adding any other ingredients. It’s only that way a few months out of the year, but during those months – oh, the possibilities! And as the days get shorter and autumn takes hold, I count down the days until chestnuts are available – no, seriously, I do. They actually have them year-round at the Asian market – but when they’re not at their peak, they’re just not the same. Heirloom tomatoes, fiddlehead ferns, morel mushrooms, porcini mushrooms, figs – I could go on and on (and on and on…).
Anyway, this blog is an attempt to share my passion for food. For some reason, people want to know where my ideas come from. A word of warning – it may not always be as exciting or as interesting as you think. Or maybe it’ll surprise you (it certainly surprises me sometimes). Whatever the case, I’m starting this blog so that I can invite you all along for some of the ride. I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I do.
Finally, I’d like to share some exciting news. We’re currently working on opening a new restaurant in the “Hollywood area”. We will be slowing down operations at Madeleine Bistro for the summer to facilitate the expansion plans. Summer hours will be as follows:
Friday: Dinner 5:00pm-9:30pm
Saturday & Sunday: Brunch 10:00am-3:00pm, Dinner 5:00pm-9:30pm
We’re are gonna spice things up, however. All menus will be changing weekly. The dinner menu will feature a 5-course Chef’s Tasting Menu that I will utilize as a vehicle for testing ideas for the new restaurant. There will also be a Vegan Indulgence Menu. A what, you ask? It is essentially a guilty pleasures menu. This week we will highlight the wonderful cuisine of Ronald McDonald – Bigger Macks, “Egg” Mack-Muffin, Fries and Shakes (including our take on the iconic Shamrock Shake), etc. We also have a weekly Home Delivery “Box” available for Monday delivery. For more info, check out the Madeleine Bistro Facebook page.
So there it is – I have entered the world of blogging.
See you next time,
Wednesday, July 7, 2010