If you need more French cooking or fried chicken, Chef Ludo is your man!
Ok, I’m sure that over the holidays, we all stuffed ourselves silly with many different kinds of delicious cookies and candy and turkey and/or ham and mashed potatoes and pies and stuffing and rolls and lots of other yummy things. But that was over a month ago. By now, hopefully, your routine has returned to normal and you’re trying to be more responsible.
Which, of course, makes this a perfect time to talk about food! YAY!
I think I mentioned before, either here or on the now defunct (sad face) Popmatic Podcast, that I was a fan of Anthony Bourdain’s PBS series, The Mind of a Chef. Through The Mind of a Chef, I met David Chang, who led me to Christina Tosi who has since become my pastry guru. I met April Bloomfield who taught me how to make the devilish things called Scotch Eggs. And I met Gabrielle Hamilton, which led me to read her book Blood, Bones and Butter.
Season Five of The Mind of a Chef features Ludo Lefebvre. The first time I saw Chef Ludo was on ABC’s The Taste, and to be honest I wasn’t a fan. I didn’t watch it much, so maybe he was just having a bad day, but he always seemed like the grumpy, Gordan Ramsey wannabe. And his accent? Oh la la, you could hardly understand him. So needless to say, I wasn’t excited to see that he was the star of Season 5.
But I watched it anyway, because that’s what I do. And now I love Chef Ludo. Seriously.
In the very first episode, called LudoBird, we see this master French chef sitting in a KFC eating fried chicken – and raving about it.
And then he takes his French culinary techniques and applies them to great dishes like a French Burrito?
I love it. I’ve never seen such a well-trained chef love such low-brow foods. Usually they are food snobs who can’t be bothered for less than perfectly-cooked lobster and Wagu beef. Plus Ludo is funny. I can’t even imagine what he’s like to work in a kitchen with. I’m sure he still wants everything done right, but he doesn’t seem so crazy neurotic.
This season also contained my favorite Mind of a Chef episode that discussed the different between a chef’s intuition and his discipline. Chef Ludo’s take on it was that he likes to play with food, but he still has a solid base in classic French techniques that he learned through years of practice and discipline. Anyone who ever thinks artists are overnight successes needs to watch this episode and see how much time and painstaking work goes into that “immediate” fame.