Paul W. Smith, WJRWhat does one of the nation’s top chefs serve for Super Bowl Sunday? Paul W. Smith interviews Luciano DelSignore about his Super Bowl plans. WJR, February 1, 2019.

Transcript of the interview

Paul W Smith: Two degrees – feels like six below. And it’s great to always say “hi” to our friend, Luciano Del Signore. You know him from some of the great restaurants, like Bacco. A great restaurant. Bigalora. I think, Arbor Brewing, his newest. And there is another one he’s working on in Birmingham I don’t know if he’s talking about it now, or not, but like many chefs before him, he had a love affair with food that came at an early age and from a family tradition. And he has helped so many other people. There’s a story about him in today’s paper. In fact, a James Beard Award semifinalist, Chef James Rigatto, calls Luciano one of his mentors. Luciano. Good morning and welcome back to the show.

Luciano DelSignore: Good morning, Paul W. How are you?

Paul W Smith: I am excellent. So good of you to share your expertise with young chefs. I know they look up to you, they respect you, and and anyone who eats any of your food at any of your restaurants, looks up to you and respects you.

Luciano DelSignore: You’re only as good as the talent surrounded by you. And I’m so excited to see this resurgence of Detroit jumping deeper into the food scene. We’ve always had great chefs around Detroit, but it seems like the last five to 10 years have really generated a lot of talented people, and it’s fantastic for the whole community.

Paul W Smith: You are celebrating a birthday. I don’t, I can’t, remember which day it is.

Luciano DelSignore: My birthday is always around Super Bowl. Sometimes it falls on Super Bowl, but, yes, thank you very much.

Paul W Smith: Well, when is it?

Luciano DelSignore: My birthday is Monday.

Paul W Smith: OK. Monday, all right. I just I knew it was near Super Bowl, you’re absolutely right. What is Luciano DelSignore, one of the famous chefs, doing for Super Bowl and what can you recommend for us or help us.

Luciano DelSignore: Well, for Super Bowl, for me, I love to have foods readily accessible. This year I’ve decided to go more to a Mexican theme. So with the addition, of I always like to have a pot of chili on the stove, and I usually make one vegan chili with a vegetarian style with a lot of sweet potatoes and beans and carrots as I’ve always got a vegan in in the house or two, including my lovely daughter Caprice, and now Coco. And then I make one regular chili, but instead of using traditional beef, I usually use chicken just to keep it a little bit lighter, and I like to use chicken thighs in it. And then, roasted wings. I don’t think you could do a Super Bowl without having some sort of wings in the house, and instead of frying them I always like to put some sort of a marinade on them, and roast them in a hot oven until they they get really crispy and crunchy and delicious. So this year I’m going to do them with some crushed garlic, some harrisa spice blend, rosemary, olive oil, salt, pepper and just roast them really hard. If you choose to have them Buffalo style, you can still toss them in the Buffalo sauce, which is a hot sauce and butter and and give it that heat and that blue cheese dressing, but for me I like them just plain.

Paul W Smith: Is is my mouth the only one watering right now? It is 8:50 in the morning — Buffalo chicken wings. Any thing that somebody would want to do this weekend that you’re suggesting that they have to start working on now, or are most of these things you can get done in the next couple of days.

Luciano DelSignore: Well, I think you can do a little prep today before. It’s always good to have your mise en place; your kitchen ready everything set. You know, for my Mexican theme, I going to have some braised meats for tacos. I’m going to definitely get those done on Saturday, and you know I’ll do, and then everything, the a la minute, the grilled vegetables and and the grilled skirt steaks, we can just say for Sunday. And, just a lot of quick snack foods: chips, make great salsa, make a great guacamole. It’s always a crowd favorite. My secret ingredient for guacamole — and I keep it so simple — is just ripe avocados, lime juice, salt, pepper, minced onions, cilantro — and you always have to add a little bit of cumin to it. That’s the secret ingredient.

Paul W Smith: I think you taught us if you leave the pit in the guacamole, it won’t turn brown.

Luciano DelSignore: That is correct. Leave some of the pits in the bowl from the guacamole, and there’s an enzyme in the pit that keeps it from turning brown.

Paul W Smith: All right, but make a big chunk, so people don’t eat that by mistake. And we just got word too, the Food and Drug Administration is saying you do need to wash avocados before eating them, even though you don’t eat the skin. You should wash them before you cut them. Just a little word to the wise there.

Luciano DelSignore: I think you should wash all fruits and vegetables.

Paul W Smith: Yeah, that makes good sense.

Luciano DelSignore: Yes.

Paul W Smith: Last minute tip?

Luciano DelSignore: I think just have your food ready before your guests arrive. Put everything out. Make it easy. Make it fun — and let’s have a great Super Bowl, Paul.

Paul W Smith: All right. And a great birthday, Luciano DelSignore.

Luciano DelSignore: Thank you, Paul.

Paul W Smith: God bless you. Thank you for your help. Every year we do appreciate it. 8:51, WJR.