At a glorious sunset gathering of legendary chefs this weekend at the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, we asked super chef Marcus Samuelsson of Red Rooster fame to hold forth on a few questions. Dressed in a fabulous array of mixed patterns, and with his glamorous wife Maya at his side, he described how his passion for food and cooking is so intimately linked to family, friends, and memory.
Last meal on earth? My wife’s chicken stew. It brings me back to family and my roots in Ethiopia.
Favorite gadget? Nothing beats a cast iron skillet, with its smells and the patina of meals created in the past. It can be infused with your family’s history and DNA. No Teflon pan in the world can do that.
Favorite ingredient right now? I know this is an odd answer, but I’d have to say: my community and the people I work with at Red Rooster. I am enjoying this moment so much in our growth. They are the secret ingredient.
What you’ll be sipping this summer? A beer cocktail, made with some fresh lime and chiles.
This story originally appeared on InStyle