Celebrity chef, restaurateur and author Marcus Samuelsson has joined ABC’s cooking competition show The Taste as its newest mentor.
Chef Samuelsson joins chef and television personality Anthony Bourdain, British food star Nigella Lawson and chef and author Ludo Lefebvre as they begin production on the show’s second season.
The Taste is an exhilarating two-hour cooking competition program that puts 16 culinary competitors — from professional chefs to home cooks alike — into a pressure cooker of a kitchen where one blind spoonful of their culinary creations are served to four of the world’s most notable chefs and food experts to determine who stays and who is eliminated from the competition.
“Marcus is a world-renowned chef with an infectious passion for food,” said Executive Producer Chris Coelen. “He’s a perfect fit to work with and compete against Anthony, Nigella and Ludo on Season Two of The Taste.”“I am thrilled to be joining The Taste,” said Chef Samuelsson. “I’m looking forward to working alongside such an esteemed group of culinary figures and discovering new talents.”
"For as long as I can remember, I've had Africa on my mind." Award-winning chef Marcus Samuelsson may be best known for his innovative take on Scandinavian cuisine at New York's Restaurant Aquavit, but his story begins thousands of miles away, in Africa. Born in Ethiopia and raised in Sweden by adoptive parents, his life transcends national boundaries, and his individual approach to cuisine is a global yet personal one that draws freely from many ethnic and cultural influences.
In The Soul of a New Cuisine, Marcus returns to the land of his birth to explore the continent's rich diversity of cultures and cuisines through recipes and stories from his travels in Africa. Stunning color images by award-winning photographer Gediyon Kifle bring the breadth of the African experience to life, from fishermen at sunset off the coast of Zanzibar to French baguettes loaded onto a bicycle in Senegal.
Marcus shares more than 200 enticing recipes, including his own African-inspired creations and traditional dishes from all parts of Africa. You can delight in spicy stews and Barbequed Snapper from West Africa and the familiar Mediterranean flavors of dishes like Moroccan Lemon-Olive Chicken, or make your way east and south for the irresistible taste combinations of dishes such as Curried Trout with Coconut-Chili Sauce from Kenya and Apple-Squash Fritters from South Africa's Cape Malay. Using ingredients that are readily available in American markets, the recipes are doable as well as delicious.
Of course, one of the keys to authentic African cooking is the use of spice blends and rubs, which elevate simple cooking techniques to an excitingly varied and intense level. Marcus includes his favorites here, with blends that go from sweet to spicy and feature everything from hot chili peppers and peppermint leaves to sesame seeds and ginger.
As he says, Africa is "a state of mind that I hope this book will help you tap into wherever you are." By cooking with a handful of this and a pinch of that, trying new foods and enjoying old ones in a new way, and lingering over meals with family and friends, you will bring the free, relaxed spirit of African cooking to your table and discover for yourself the soul of a "new" cuisine.