Chef, Author and Radio Host Linda Gassenheimer: Interview, Part II

We're continuing our interview with chef, author and radio personality, Linda Gassenheimer. Part I of the interview can be found here.

Clean Plate Charlie: A lot of recipes are difficult to follow. Not yours. What's your secret to making a recipe easy for everyday people to follow?

Linda Gassenheimer: I think the point here is that because I have french technical training I know what I can cut and what I can't cut to make the flavors work. You can't just write a recipe without understanding what makes it work, what's the theory behind it. Also the fact that I taught for many years. I had a cooking school in London, so that's an advantage for me. 

Do you find that because of all the cooking shows on television, there's more interest in food and cooking?

I'm finding that since the economy has changed, I'm getting more emails from people asking technical style questions. People want to know. They want they learn. I'm pleased that everyone is getting back into cooking. I talked to people on Food Network and they say ten and eleven year olds are watching. You know, food is a universal language. Everyone enjoys eating.

Do you find people are turning to restaurants for entertainment as well as food?

A lot of the restaurants are turning dinner into entertainment.  A lot of chefs say that if the restaurant isnt lively enough they can't get people in the doors.Then again, many people call into my show saying restaurants are too noisy. 

What food trends should we look out for in 2011?

I think that a major trend is that people want to have healthful foods. Not diet food, but food that's grown properly without a lot of pesticides. They want clean foods. More and more restaurants are working with healthful foods. I think that 1500 Degrees at The Eden Roc is a good example of farm to table cuisine. I think that people are going to be asking for high value casual dining, less white tablecloth. I dont think the restaurants where you only go on your anniversary can survive anymore. 

Burgers are really hot right now. How long that will last, I have no idea. I think that goes along with the fact that people love a good steak but now they can afford a burger.

Stay tuned to Clean Plate Charlie for a delicious recipe that Linda shared with us, coming soon. 

Follow Clean Plate Charlie on Twitter: @CleanPlateBPB.

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Laine Doss is the food and spirits editor for Miami New Times, covering the restaurant and bar scene in South Florida. She has been featured on Cooking Channel’s Eat Street and Food Network’s Great Food Truck Race. Doss won an Alternative Weekly award for her feature on what it’s like to wait tables. In a previous life, she appeared off-Broadway and shook many a cocktail as a bartender at venues in South Florida and New York City. When she’s not writing, you can find Doss running some marathon then celebrating at the nearest watering hole.
Contact: Laine Doss