What can we learn from the contents of celebrity chef and culinary instructor Dana Slatkin's fridge?
We can learn that she’s got some pretty awesome things in the works! “It’s loads of leftovers!” says Dana Slatkin, peering into her fridge. “I’ve been test-driving recipes for my menu at Violet. In my fridge right now there are a few bites of the winners and lots of misfires. But even those are pretty tasty!”
Los Angeles, meet Violet. Violet, meet Los Angeles.
On October 19th, LA is in for a mighty big treat with the arrival of Violet, a bistro, bar and cooking school from the celebrity chef, blogger and cookbook author. (Dana has done stints with Bouley in NYC and L’Orangerie here in LA, but is perhaps best known as the founder of the Beverly Hills Farmers Market.) With Rochelle Huppin on board as Violet’s Viking School & Shop Director, Dana has signed up an impressive roster of chefs to teach classes at what will no doubt become an LA hotspot: Nancy Silverton, Margarita and Walter Manzke, Susan Feniger, Josiah Citrin, Sherry Yard and many others. “Our GM spent the past decade with the Jon and Vinny’s group and Hillstone, and just a couple of weeks ago, we hired our Executive Chef, a local boy who helmed the kitchens at Tartine and Tallula, and worked with Thomas Keller at Bouchon,” says Dana.
Located in a “1938 Spanish charmer” at 1121 Glendon Avenue in Westwood Village, Dana has been remodeling the space (a new roof, stairs and balcony, all-new finishes, you name it) with our client, designer Wendy Haworth, whose creative vision help put Gracias Madre and Felix, among others, on the map. “We just chose the marble for the island and counters—you’re going to swoon!” says Dana.
To tide us over—think of it as an amuse-bouche—we’ve asked Dana to give us a little peek into her home kitchen… what she keeps on hand, favorite sources and she’s also sharing her recipe for a dark chocolate honey soufflé. It’s a mouth-watering tease for all that’s to come when Violet opens in just a few short weeks. Follow along @thevioletla!
What the Chef Wants
SD: What are a few of your must haves or staples… things you can’t live without?
DS: I couldn’t cook without Baleine sea salt, Maille mustard, capers, real unsalted organic butter and leftover wine.
SD: Where do you like to do most of your grocery shopping, and why?
DS: I’ve been shopping at Gelson’s for years. They were very supportive of my cooking school, Beverly Hills Farmgirl, for over a decade, and there’s a family vibe there that’s hard to replicate. I’m on hugging terms with all the managers! Also, they’re one of the few places I can find sea algae oil, my favorite cooking oil.
SD: Tell us about your fridge. Whatcha got?
DS: A very old Sub Zero! I’m living in a rental right now.
SD: Well, a classic is a classic—and heck, it’s testament to Sub Zero’s longevity! But were you to design your ultimate home kitchen, what would be your dream fridge?
Violet’s Dark Chocolate Honey Soufflé
All images courtesy of Aliza Sokolow