Monthly Industry Insights
Hear from industry leaders about their guilty pleasures, the oddest thing in their refrigerator, their inspirations and take on new trends. Learn more about the people behind the foods and dishes you know and love - and others you SHOULD know and love. We've asked all of questions and have the answers for you here.
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Interview with Chef Elliott Farmer
Chef Elliott Farmer is performing a culinary demonstration Thursday, October 12th at 3PM at the 2017 Florida Restaurant & Lodging Show.
1. What made you want to become a chef?
I actually never intended on becoming a chef. Truth of the matter is, I hated cooking when I was little...LOL It was a household chore. As a teenager, I worked as a busboy in a hotel's restaurant. I was responsible for preparing the food for happy hour. I then was trained to become a sous chef by three amazing chefs of that time. After people started paying me to cook for them, I began to love cooking...LOL and still do!
2. Your a chef, a cookbook author, a speaker and a radio host. How do you juggle it all?
It's definitely a challenge at times, but I would not change a thing. You have to surround yourself with people who help make you better; bring out the very best in you. That's what I do. I depend on my team to help keep me on track. I absolute love my chef life! To be able to bring fine cuisine in the homes of my fans/followers and the like in whatever capacity is truly an honor and privilege for me. I don't take it lightly. The Lord God Almighty continues to favor me to do all of them with ease.
3. Can you tell us a little about your charity, Feeding America's Hungry Children?
There are billions of children in America that go hungry every single day. I was once one of those children. I know first hand what it feels like to be hungry as a child in America. People helped me along the way as a child to get food to eat and I am blessed to be in a position to give back. Feeding America's Hungry Children is just one of the organizations that are helping with the fight to stop child hunger in America.
4. What is the newest culinary trend you see emerging that you're using yourself?
I've noticed that people are getting back to eating healthy with farm to table recipes. Being from the South, I understand that southern cuisine can more than not be prepared in not so healthy fashions I am constantly creating ways to cook those traditional southern meals in a healthier way. One way is to use fresh produce, herbs and spices. Exchange fat with olive oil and/or fresh herbs. Just the other day I cooked some fresh cabbage without ham hocks, smoked turkey or any other meat. My guest could not believe that they had eaten vegan cabbage...LOL It still had that traditional southern look and flavor!
5. What's the strangest thing we would find in your refrigerator?
LOL...well what may be strange to you is a staple for me...LOL I would have to say chitterlings...hog guts...LOL They are good boiled, fried and laid to the side...LOL. The stranger thing is that I don't even eat pork anymore.
6. If you could eat anywhere in the world, where would that be?
That's easy... It would have to be anywhere in the Caribbean Islands. I absolutely LOVE Caribbean food.
7. Which talent would you most like to have that you don’t possess?
I would like to be a fashion designer. Sure I can create a little bit, but to be a fashion designer is a whole different ballgame. Plus, I love to dress nice. Truth be told, I once was a model in my earlier years... LOL
8. Is there one comfort food that you're secretly obsessed with having at home?
YES!!!!! LOL I hate to still admit it, but its wings! I ABSOLUTELY LOVE WINGS! I don't care how you prepare them, I just love wings. So much so until at one point I could tell you every wing spot in the Metro-Atlanta area because I had been to them all...LOL
9. What’s your favorite meal to cook for friends?
Shrimp and grits or my chicken and waffles.
10. Who was your mentor or role model as you were becoming a chef?
Chefs James Gussie, Mattie Gussie and Mama Gussie (Chattanooga, TN) who trained me to be a sous chef at the Sheraton Gateway Hotel and Chef Emeril Lagasse.
11. If you could cook for and dine with anyone, who would that be?
Former President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama.
12. What can attendees expect from your session at the 2017 Florida Restaurant & Lodging Show?
Not only will they receive the "Chef Elliott's Experience", but they will see/taste how to make my Signature shrimp and grits that I am known for.
13. What can your fans expect from you next?
I am currently working on my next cookbook, reopening my restaurant and making more television appearances.
Visit Elliott Farmer online HERE
. Like him on Facebook HERE
and follow him on Twitter HERE
More about Chef Farmer:
Having grown up in a home over-filled with love and family, in the inner city of Atlanta, GA, Chef Elliott Farmer has always felt most at home in the kitchen. For him, it has always been a place that represented passion, creative freedom and family. It was a must if he wanted to eat, and eat good. That is when his love affair with food started and has since developed into a lifestyle.
During his formative years, he was introduced to cooking by his aunt and was instinctively trained by three chefs, simultaneously, to develop his style, technique and natural preparation of Southern cuisine. He developed his signature style by modeling his “old-school” upbringing with his semi-formal training to create flavorful, hearty and comforting food with an infusion of multiple cultures -- a designation that earned him his credibility in the culinary industry. He has grown a beloved fan base of chefs, cooks and foodies through sharing his food creations via his cookbooks (Entertaining Solutions and Soulstice Recipes), his online radio show (Chef Elliott’s Entertaining Solutions) and as a Food Network contestant on Cutthroat Kitchen for two seasons. He was recently selected as a High-profile Chef for an Atlanta-based, television series on Food Network, the pilot production launches this Fall.
Reflecting on his accomplishments, he considers himself blessed to have worked alongside some of this generation’s most well respected chefs, as well as his appearances and participation in Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, The Country Living Fair, Atlanta, Georgia, Taste of the Runway NYC, Atlantic City’s Wine and Food Festival, Definitely Divorcing movie taping and Real Housewives of Atlanta show taping.
Chef Elliott has the pleasure of being an ambassador for luxury spirit brand Martell Cognac and his charitable partner, Feeding America’s Hungry Children. In the midst of his rising fame, he continues to provide culinary consultancy for various brands and restaurants nationwide. He also offers personal chef placement and craft services for movie, television and theater productions, and is privileged to call himself personal chef to his celebrity friends and professional athletes.
Though Chef Elliott tours and travels all around the world, he never ceases to engage in opportunities to help others. He is also a retired registered nurse, practicing ordained minister, recognized gospel vocalist and is in the process of completing his PhD in Industrial/Organizational Psychology. He resides in Atlanta, Georgia.
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