Colin Chillag, What Are You Eating?

Colin Chillag

The painter is currently showing his work in a group show at 5 and 6 Gallery in Scottsdale. He also has a solo exhibition planned for April at the same space.

What'd you eat for dinner last night? Last night for dinner, it was linguini with sauteed eggplant, spinach and artichoke hearts.

Favorite food: So many. This question takes me right down the road of indecision, overthinking, second-guessing, etc...I'm gonna just say Brussels sprouts.

Favorite dessert: I switched over to a vegan diet a while back, so a lot of former favorites are no longer on the menu. Trader Joe's has these dark chocolate-covered almonds with sea salt. Those are great.

Favorite local restaurant and meal to order there: I dont want to be one of these vegans who lets my own dietary restrictions become a pain in the ass for others, so when I go out to eat at a restaurant or at a friend's, I just do my best with what's on offer. I appreciate places like Green and Udupi Cafe in Tempe for their vegan menus. St. Francis and La Condesa in Phoenix are other favorites. La Condesa has an amazing salsa bar with something like a dozen different kinds. I usually order the veggie burrito and apply different salsa to each bite.

Favorite local bar and cocktail to order there: Gave up the booze. Horchata at La Condesa is great.

Favorite thing to cook at home: I have a garden in my backyard, so I like to work with whatever is available. One recurring dish is sweet potatoes in a coconut curry sauce. Have that over rice with cilantro and spinach or chard from the garden--really good. Also trying to master the roasted Brussels sprout, with olive oil, salt and pepper. Perfecting simple things like that is often what I focus on.

Favorite memory involving food: Hm. There are a lot. I grew up with a lot of great cooking on both sides of my family.

Recipe or food tip to share: After you remove them from the oven, cover your Brussels sprouts and let them sit for a few minutes before serving, like you would a piece of grilled meat. They should be slightly crispy and browned on the outside and moist and tender on the inside.

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