Andrew Zimmern, star of Bizarre Foods and owner of AZ Canteen, took part in the 2014 Pebble Beach Food & Wine culinary festival. For his cooking demo inside the Jenn-Air Culinary Pavilion at The Inn at Spanish Bay, he prepared veal tongue tonnato and a French farmhouse-style sanguinette (“breakfast sausage made with blood and thickened with bread”). Here are 10 of my favorite fun facts and quotes from Andrew Zimmern.
1. Use safflower oil as an emulsifier when making olive oil at home. Add olive oil at the end, so olive oil flavor isn’t so pronounced.
2. Zimmern ran his finger through the tonnato sauce and said, “You see what I did with my finger? I tasted my food before I served it to you. This is a radical idea in food.”
3. Zimmern joked, “You should be photographing all of your food, especially in fancy restaurants with a no photograph policy.”
4. “There is nothing like a big pitcher of ice cold blood to get you going in the morning.”
5. “That’s what we’re looking for with food, symphonic flavors.”
6. Zimmern estimated that he owns “700 knives.”
7. On “Bizarre Foods,” Zimmern said, “The stories we do are based on my curiosities.”
8. What are the most bizarre foods he’s encountered? Zimmern said, “The most bizarre foods are always the Dr. Seuss animals I didn’t know existed before we went there,” including Surinamese species that staff taxonomists couldn’t identify.
9. Yes, “Bizarre Foods” have taxonomists on hand. As Zimmern said, “I don’t want to eat a spotted owl.”
10. “Different bloods have vastly different flavors.”