Smell of friend bologna brings back memories
Jeff Henderson is the author and executive chef of Café Bellagio in Las Vegas. He wrote his autobiography Cooked: From The Streets To The Stove, From Cocaine to Foie Gras (Harper Collins), he grew up in the inner-city streets of San Diego, spent nine years in prison for dealing drugs, while there he became fascinated with cooking and decided to pursue a career as a chef when released, in 2000 he was the first African-American to be named Chef de Cuisine at Las Vegas’ Caesars Palace Hotel, actor Will Smith and Columbia Pictures have optioned Henderson’s book.
Q: What is your fondest memory from your family kitchen?
A: Getting treats from my grandmother’s cookie jar.
Q: What kitchen aromas bring back fond memories?
A: The smell of fried bologna sandwiches.
Q: What is your favourite food to cook?
A: Maple braised beef short ribs.
Q: What kitchen gadget can’t you live without?
A: My magic spoon.
Q: What rituals from your background involving food do you partake in?
A: Christmas dinner with my family.
Q: Is there a cultural dish that you prepare that ties into a holiday?
A: On Christmas I prepare the desserts and pastries my grandmother made when I was young.