Chef Andrew Zimmern may be a pro in the kitchen, but he reveals what inspires him to keep going.
"By being out in the world and talking to people every day. It’s the only way. No one ever got inspired sitting on their couch," the 61-year-old exclusively tells OK! while talking about the inaugural Nassau Paradise Island Wine & Food Festival, presented by the iconic Bahamian resort, Atlantis Paradise Island, taking place on March 15-19.
The TV personality also loves to follow chefs "that toil in anonymity for the love of the crafts. I am in awe of their skill set and commitment," he says, adding that he still has "millions" of dishes left to cook. "Where do I start, the world of food is endless."
Zimmern also shares some tips and tricks when getting ready for a dinner party — even if you don't know your way around the kitchen. "Hang out with people that [know how to cook]," he quips. "Cook two dishes every week — two recipes that you have never cooked before. I still do it, and I still keep learning."
"I always tell them to roast something big and outsource as much as you can to friends," he says of how to prepare for a shindig. "Make it easy on yourself until cooking for a group is actually easy for you … it’s a tough assignment."
The food critic has been in the industry for a long time, but he's still in awe that "moms approach me in the supermarket and tell me their kids eat spinach because I ate fermented fish heads. Best legacy ever," he states.
In the meantime, Zimmern is gearing up to head to the Nassau Paradise Island Wine and Food Festival next month, where he will be surrounded by other top chefs, master sommeliers, mixologists, and notable TV personalities, including Tony Abou-Ganim, Duff Goldman, Alex Guarnaschelli, JJ Johnson, José Andrés, and more for five days.
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"I am thrilled to be cooking a demo, doing a dinner for 150 attendees and participating in a Taste of Paradise walk around event at Atlantis’ Royal Deck. It should be a great weekend. I am also going to be a roving reporter for Extra that weekend so I get to keep my journalism skills sharp as well," he says. "I think being back amongst the Bahamian people. I love the people, so I am thrilled to be a part of the inaugural Nassau Paradise Island Wine & Food Festival."
"I love cooking with my friends and being of service to the guests. I love practicing the art of hospitality and entertaining the attendees," he adds. "I am going to be ‘in conversation’ with my friend the legendary José Andrés. That should be a blast."
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