Describe an early food experience that has influenced the way you think about food and/or cooking.
I have loved food from a very young age -- there are some very embarrassing home videos of me eating bowls and bowls of pumpkin as a toddler. I think the greatest influence was my mother, who allowed me in the kitchen to help her cook. I loved it when my folks went out for dinner, since that meant that I could cook for my brother and me. I would spend hours creating a menu for us out of whatever I could find in the kitchen.
What's your least favorite kitchen task?
Anything that involves cleaning or peeling things. And shelling pistachios is the worst. I must say I find doing the dishes quite therapeutic.
Your favorite kitchen tool?
My ice cream maker without a doubt -- it's the most fulfilling relationship I have!
What is your greatest kitchen disaster?
I was doing my compulsory military service in South Africa, where I worked as a chef. I was on lunch duty one day attempting to make mashed potatoes and managed to boil about 100 kilos of potatoes into a wet powder. I was in so much trouble that day!
Meringue photo by Mark Weinberg, naan photo by Carey Nershi, ice cream photo by Food52