Anthony Bourdain, the man who opened the door to culinary curiosity, passes away at the age of 61.
It seems fitting that a man who spent most of his life trying to get people from different regions, different cultures, different worlds altogether, would be mourned by the whole world as one. Anthony Bourdain, the celebrity chef, the ‘rock star’ of the culinary world and a staunch supporter of the #MeToo movement passed away on June 8 at the age of 61, of an apparent suicide, leaving behind a legacy that few could ever hope to.
The activist was found dead in his hotel room in Strasbourg, France, where it is believed he was filming an episode for his ground-breaking and award-winning CNN series Parts Unknown.
The show allowed viewers to join the dining tables of people from diverse regions, taking them on culinary adventures they’d never imagined possible; all through a screen.
Through the simple act of partaking and revelling in a relatively unknown meal, he pushed people to look beyond what they were used to and what was comfortable. A fondly remembered episode was when he took then-president Obama to a small restaurant in Hanoi, Vietnam, and had him indulge in Vietnamese cuisine while they each cracked open a bottle of local beer.
Before he became an onscreen storyteller, Bourdain was the author of the bestselling book Kitchen Confidential, which put his bad-boy image front and centre as he navigated through an unforgiving culinary industry.
Chefs, actors, social activists, people from all walks of life are coming together to pay their respects to the roguish man who transformed food into something that was life-changing, and we thought that there was no better way to honour him than by sharing a classic recipe of his for you to prepare and dig into with your loved ones, or even strangers.
Stunned and saddened by the loss of Anthony Bourdain. He brought the world into our homes and inspired so many people to explore cultures and cities through their food. Remember that help is a phone call away US:1-800-273-TALK UK: 116 123— Gordon Ramsay (@GordonRamsay) June 8, 2018
Heartbroken to hear about Tony Bourdain’s death. Unbearable for his family and girlfriend. Am going off twitter for a while— Nigella Lawson (@Nigella_Lawson) June 8, 2018
We’ve picked a classic comfort meal for this, something soothing: Bourdain’s very own mac & cheese.
Yield: Serves 8, Time: 25 minutes cooking
1 pound (453 gms) dry elbow macaroni
5 tablespoons unsalted butter
5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4.5 cups whole milk
2 teaspoons mustard powder
2 teaspoons ground cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
8 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated
4 ounces Gruyère cheese, grated
5 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, grated
3 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, cubed
4 ounces cooked and thinly sliced ham, julienned (optional)
2 teaspoons salt, or more to taste freshly ground white pepper to taste (optional)
Preheat the oven to 375˚ F.
In a large, heavy-bottom pot, bring salted water to a boil and add the elbow macaroni. Cook according to the package instructions until just al dente, then drain and set aside.
Make sure you have both a whisk and a wooden spoon nearby, and something to rest them on. You will be switching back and forth between the two utensils as you first make a roux and then build on that to make a béchamel.
In the still-hot macaroni pot, heat the butter over medium-high heat until it foams and subsides. Whisk in the flour, then switch to a wooden spoon and stir steadily over medium-high heat until the mixture begins to turn a nutty golden brown, about 2 minutes. Do not let the mixture scorch. Whisk in the milk and bring the mixture just to a boil, stirring with the wooden spoon and making sure to scrape each part of the surface of the pan so that hunks of flour or milk do not stick. Reduce to a simmer and continue to cook and stir until the mixture is slightly thicker than heavy cream.
Whisk in the mustard powder, cayenne, and Worcestershire, then add half the Parmigiano-Reggiano (you’ll sprinkle the rest over the top) and the rest of the cheeses and, if using, the ham, and stir until the cheeses have melted completely. Stir in the cooked macaroni and mix well. Remove from the heat and stir in the salt and optional pepper.
Transfer the mixture to a glass or ceramic casserole, top with the remaining Parmigiano, and bake in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes, until the top is golden brown and the mixture is bubbling slightly.
Serve hot, or refrigerate and gently reheat the whole thing, or in portions as needed.
Recipe from Appetites by Anthony Bourdain (https://www.splendidtable.org/recipes/anthony-bourdains-macaroni-and-cheese)