Payton Curry on Mom's Chicken Soup and "Yo Yo" Dinners

Categories: What Mom Made

curry.jpg
​Executive Chef Payton Curry of The Original Caffe Boa on Mill
Ave. and Caffe Boa Bistro is best known for championing the farm-to-table
dining philosophy in Arizona.

What is the best dish your mother ever made?

My mother makes the world's greatest chicken noodle soup. It's something that I crave when I go home and the overall execution of this dish is what makes it so special. My mother is a trained professional in the kitchen whether she wants to admit it or not. From fabricating the chicken to making the stock to start the soup, not cutting corners or taking shortcuts is key.

What is the worst dish your mother ever made?

Liver and onions as a kid. I couldn't stand the taste of the cows' liver and it smelled even worse. Like alot of things in life I learn from my mistakes and others as well. So to this day, yes I still make Liver and Onions, however the execution is a little different. Liver needs Madiera!!!!

Tell us your earliest memory of going out to eat with your family.

(learn all about it after the jump!) 

Sitting in the dining room at the Cape Cod room in the Drake Hotel Chicago wearing a three piece suit, a tie that I learned to tie myself and for the first time in my life my shoes matched my belt. I was 10 or so, eating Matzo bread and crushing Tawny port with my chocolate lava cake, when chocolate lava cakes were stretching the culinary boundaries of the late 80's.

How has your mother influenced you as a cook?

My mother taught me to be patient in the kitchen and also to be assertive when I needed to be. My mother taught me that eating dinner is a family gig and it's time for a family to get together and chat over some bad ass dinner. I grew up in a very tight family where everyone helped out and some nights were "yo-yo" dinners -- "you're on your own". I always liked these nights because we were forced to cook out of our fridge. No going to the store for this or that, it was make the best out of what's on hand. That
forces you to get creative or starve I guess.

What is one thing you do differently than your mom, when it comes to
food?

I pick it apart. When I see a menu I constantly try and image a dish by the way that it is described on a menu. I cannot go out to eat without over analyzing the entire establishment. The menus, the uniforms, the hostess, etc. This is what I do for a living whereas that's what my mom does for lunch or dinner.

What is your mom*s favorite dish?

Hot food, pizza, pizza and more pizza. As far as sweets go, she will pick
apart any creme brulee that's out there on the market and she is also a
sucker for fresh raspberries and Zabalione


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