In 1949, nearly a year after New Orleans’ WDSU-TV went live for the first time, Lena Richard, an African American Creole chef and entrepreneur, brought her freshly prepared dishes to a family-style kitchen TV set and took to the screen to film her self-titled cooking show—the first of its kind for an African American. Continue reading Meet Lena Richard, the Celebrity Chef Who Broke Barriers in the Jim Crow South
MY FIRST RESTAURANT, Momofuku Noodle Bar, had an open kitchen. This wasn’t by choice—I didn’t have enough money or space to put it farther away from the diners. But cooking in front of my customers changed the way I look at food. In the early years, around 2004, we were improvising new recipes every day, and I could instantly tell what was working and what wasn’t by watching people eat. A great dish hits you like a Whip-It: There’s momentary elation, a brief ripple of pure pleasure in the spacetime continuum. That’s what I was chasing, that split second when someone tastes something so delicious that their conversation suddenly derails and they blurt out something guttural like they stubbed their toe.