Harold Dieterle

Find out what Harold Dieterle considers the cooking equivalent of going to the dentist.

on Apr 23, 2008

I mean, where to begin -- dessert. You know you gotta do it; it's like going to the dentist. It just sucks. I don't enjoy it. You just need to have a whole different mindset and it's challenging because you can't just do pastry as a Quickfire because you need recipes. It's like you can memorize one recipe, but everybody's nervous, you're under the gun, you can see them trying, they clearly have a couple of recipes that they've memorized and they're going over in their head the different amounts and proportions and it's like "Shit, I wish I wasn't nervous right now, 'cause I'm trying to remember this." It's tough, pastry's a science -- its not just like cooking when you just shoot from the hip and you taste something and it's just seasoning; you need to have your proportions right on, so right there, right from the get-go it's challenging. And then nobody there is really a pastry chef. That's why you hire pastry chefs, to do that type of stuff, 'cause we don't want to do it.


A chef dessert is something that you focus less on technique and more on ingredients, something similar to what Richard did. Bananas are really sexy, and he sold them. Bananas and avocado sound a little weird. I've never really had the combination, but if the banana's good and the avocado's good, it probably was a smart idea. He didn't do anything that was mind-boggling technique -- he focused on the ingredients. He made guacamole, he cut out some bananas. There's not a whole lot of pastry technique there but he sold it, so good for him. Everybody's focusing on making tarts -- that's great Spike made a souffle, and that shows you've got balls, but if it's not a really standout souffle, and you're passing it off to a pastry chef, it's gonna be tough.

I like Johnny a lot, he's been in the restaurant. We've gone out and had cocktails together on numerous occasions. I think he's a great guy. He does cutting edge pastries at a four star restaurant in Manhattan. He's highly decorated -- let's put it that way.