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Anita Lo Podcasts

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16 of The Best Podcast Episodes for Anita Lo. A collection of podcasts episodes with or about Anita Lo, often where they are interviewed.

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16 of The Best Podcast Episodes for Anita Lo. A collection of podcasts episodes with or about Anita Lo, often where they are interviewed.

Updated daily with the latest episodes

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It Was Just Simple | with Anita Lo

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Chef Anita Lo is very good at doing hard things. She’s held a Michelin Star and a 3-star review from The NY Times. She was the first female guest chef to cook for a State Dinner at the White House. She won Iron Chef. In this episode, Anita’s stories of food rewind to the very foundation on which her greatness is built: a simple yet unbounded love of the identity, provenance, and potential of food.  Her best meals are deliciously uncomplicated and wonderfully executed, and her stories remind of the meditative way food deepens our connection to life. 

Jul 16 2019 · 46mins
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Chef Anita Lo - Modest and Masterful

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Anita Lo isn’t just one of most acclaimed women chefs in America  — from competing on Top Chef Masters, to winning Iron Chef America, to cooking In The White House for the Chinese President and The Obama’s, and even maintaining her restaurant’s Michelin star for a whopping nine years! She’s also one of the most modest. Anita joins chef and author Rozanne Gold to talk cooking, restauranting, and Anita's books.

In this episode:

  • How love of literature and French morphed into a world of resturant kitchens for Anita
  • Why Anita writes in her new book that  cooking for one person —yourself — can be an act of self love
  • How travel and appreciation of all cuisines led to her own trend-setting signature style and even an award winning restaurant
  • And how Anita’s positive can do attitude has kept her moving forward, in the face of everything from recipe fails to a disasterous restaurant fire

See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Jun 25 2019 · 47mins
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Anita Lo Cooks for One

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Anita Lo (@AnitaLoNYC) is a Michelin-rated New York chef, former contestant on Top Chef Masters, and author of Solo: A Modern Cookbook for a Party of One.

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Mar 19 2019 · 53mins
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Solo | Anita Lo

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Solo

By Anita Lo

Intro:                  Welcome to the Cookery by the Book podcast with Suzy Chase. She's just a home cook in New York City sitting at her dining room table talking to cookbook authors.

Anita Lo:                  Hi. My name is Anita Lo, and I am the author of Solo: A Modern Cookbook for a Party of One.

Suzy Chase:                  Eater named Solo the 2018 Cookbook of the Year. That is fantastic. Congratulations.

Anita Lo:                  Thank you so much.

Suzy Chase:                  "I've been dumped almost as many times as I've been in relationships, and I can count those on less than two hands." Most people wouldn't kick off a cookbook with such a personal confession. What does this book and dining alone mean to you?

Anita Lo:                  Well, I was hoping that it would make people feel less alone. I was hoping to try to remove some of the stigma around eating by yourself, because it is a fact of life, and cooking for yourself, for that matter. Yeah.

Suzy Chase:                  It is. I always feel funny about going to a restaurant alone, but then I think no one's looking at you, no one cares.

Anita Lo:                  Yeah, I mean especially in New York City, at least, and even when I'm traveling. I mean, a lot of times, you're traveling by yourself for work or whatever, and you have to eat alone. That's just a fact of life, so yeah. It could be funny. It's just there's a lot of comedy skits around eating by yourself. I think I remember watching SNL back in the early days, and there was some sort of skit about a lonely person coming to a restaurant and the hostess yelling out, "A party of one, a party of one," so that's why I included that in my book.

Suzy Chase:                  You say food is culture and identity. Where did you get the inspiration for these recipes?

Anita Lo:                  A lot of it's my travel. A lot of it is how I grew up, so it's just some of the stuff that I love to eat, so it ... yeah, that have become part of my identity.

Suzy Chase:                  You also like the meals to always be balanced. What does that really mean?

Anita Lo:                  Balance, for me, means to always include a vegetable, a little bit of starch, some protein. It means to have that sort of balance. I think there's sort of the weekly balance of having different flavors, not always eating the same thing. I think it is also sort of a general balance of eating healthy things and eating things that you feel like you just crave. Yeah, and I think balance of flavors is very important. Just for deliciousness, I think things need a certain amount of salt for ... and that is subjective, sort of acid to fat, et cetera, balance of textures, crunch to smooth, et cetera.

Suzy Chase:                  After 17 years, you closed our West Village neighborhood favorite Michelin-starred restaurant, Annisa, and not for the reasons most of us thought, so tell us why.

Anita Lo:                  It's certainly been getting harder to run a small business and especially a restaurant, a high-end restaurant, in New York City. Yeah, and I'm totally for the minimum wage increase, but they increased it kind of suddenly. That was very difficult because I think the public wasn't ready to pay for what it costs to give people that kind of a raise. That was one. Then I had some real estate tax issues there.

                                    One of the other bigger reasons was that it's just impossible to find cooks these days. It's just there is a big labor shortage around the country and especially in New York City. Even with the $15 minimum wage, it's impossible to live in New York City on that wage, and so a lot of people are fleeing to places where it's easier to live, and including chefs. Yeah, and then I had a knee replacement that wasn't that successful. I had to have two follow-up surgeries, and it's been difficult to be on my feet, but yeah. There's a lot of reasons. I mean I miss it, for sure, but I don't regret it.

Suzy Chase:                  Talk a little bit about what waste has to do with Solo.

Anita Lo:                  Well, I think it's difficult to cook just for one person without wasting ingredients because we have this problem where everything is packed for a family of four even here in New York City. I think that is starting to change, but you have to buy a lot of product at once, and so I was trying to write this ... I don't like to waste food. It just goes against my DNA. It bothers me. It's just I find it disrespectful to the food and to the environment and to humanity and all that sort of stuff. I have tried to make a cookbook that helps you to cut down on waste.

Suzy Chase:                  Each recipe has a little story, a little pleasantry or quip at the beginning of it, for example, your Pan-Roasted Veal Chop With Mushrooms and Oysters, and you used to serve this at Annisa. How did you find this particular recipe?

Anita Lo:                  I was just looking online for inspiration. I think I was looking for old and really ancient recipes written in like Old English about some veal and oyster dish from way, way back when, and I was like, "Oh, my God. Yes, of course, that totally makes sense."

Suzy Chase:                  Your upbringing is so interesting to me. Your mother is Malaysian. Your father, who was from Shanghai, passed away when you were three, and your mom went on to marry a white American. While you were growing up, you had nannies, and your favorite was Hungarian. What culinary influences did she have on you?

Anita Lo:                  Oh, God. I love her cooking. One of my favorite things growing up was Chicken Paprikash, which is like this creamy-

Suzy Chase:                  What's that?

Anita Lo:                  It's a stew. It's this creamy stew with a lot of paprika, onions, parsley, and a good amount of sour cream. It's sort of thickened, and it's served with either dumplings, which when she made dumplings, it was special. You can eat it with rice or you can eat it with egg noodles. Love it.

Suzy Chase:                  Those evenings when you're hanging around at your house alone, what do you cook for yourself?

Anita Lo:                  There's an eggplant frittata that ... it's a version of a Filipino dish that's in my book, but I make that for myself every once in a while. I often make my mother's steamed fish. This book is somewhat reflective of what I eat when I'm by myself.

Suzy Chase:                  I'm always intrigued by the choice of illustrations, photos, or no images at all. Why did you choose illustrations, which are darling, by the way, and who did those?

Anita Lo:                  Julia Rothman, who is amazing and is all over the place these days. I was 100% behind this choice, but it was my editor's, Lexy Bloom's idea. I was like, "Oh, my God. Of course." The fact that it's a drawing makes it a little bit more approachable. It's not like it's some perfect thing that you have to make. I think it gives the reader options just to make it and put it on the plate than some of them.

Suzy Chase:                  The other night, I made your recipe for Broccoli Stem Slaw on page 164. Describe how this flavor profile is similar to the good old-fashioned Green Goddess dressing that we all grew up with in the Midwest.

Anita Lo:                  It's an old-fashioned dressing with a lot of tarragon, anchovy, garlic, lemon, bunch of other herbs, and then ... a green Ranch dressing with anchovy, right?

Suzy Chase:                  Yeah, and garlic.

Anita Lo:                  Right. Yeah, well, I think Ranch dressing had powdered garlic or something. Maybe it was a powdered onion.

Suzy Chase:                  Yes. You mentioned, in the book, something about how that fake garlic that kind of sticks with you for hours ...

Anita Lo:                  Oh, God. I hate that. Yeah, the jarred ... Oh, God. Ew. I guess I can't ... Oh, God. Yeah, I just ... Oh, sorry. The memory of it renders me speechless.

Suzy Chase:                  Describe the Broccoli Stem Slaw.

Anita Lo:                  Julienned or shredded broccoli stems, and you just take it and you mix it with some mashed avocado with lemon, garlic, anchovy, tarragon. It's rich and then it's crunchy and but it's also sort of healthy. Yeah, and it uses up the other half of your avocado, and it uses up those stems from your broccoli that a lot of people just throw away.

Suzy Chase:                  Now for my segment called My Last Meal. What would you have for your last supper?

Anita Lo:                  I think it would probably have to be some sort of Japanese omakase, but I'm a big fishy head, and I love to go get, yeah, just a really long, never-ending omakase with all my favorite different types of fish and shellfish.

Suzy Chase:                  Before I wrap this interview up, as a 23-year West Village resident, may I ask, and I'm sure you hear this all the time, if you're pondering another restaurant in the West Village?

Anita Lo:                  I am not. Yeah, I mean especially not now. I'm not ruling it out, but yeah, I don't ... I would love to open another restaurant, perhaps in another country, and as-

Suzy Chase:                  Oh, really?

Anita Lo:                  Yeah. I mean I'm never going to move, by any means, but I would like to ... I'm hoping to get some sort of long-term consulting gig, yeah, preferably somewhere I'd like to visit. Yeah, I can't really. Because of my knee, I can't be on my feet all the time. I don't think that precludes me from opening a restaurant, but I think it's not wise for me to try to work in it all the time. Yeah, I'm hoping to do that, but I'm ... I run these culinary tours with the Tour de Forks, and I ... which I really love, and I hope to continue to do that. I don't necessarily always work with owing a restaurant, especially in New York today.

Suzy Chase:                  Since we're neighbors, I also have to ask another neighborhood question. What's your favorite restaurant these days, favorite butcher, and where do you get your groceries?

Anita Lo:                  Oh, God. It's so upsetting now that Gourmet Garage is gone. I just-

Suzy Chase:                  They were gross, though.

Anita Lo:                  They weren't that gross, and they were right there. Yeah. I mean no grocery store is great, but what ... I mean what was gross about it? What did you think that was gross about it?

Suzy Chase:                  Well-

Anita Lo:                  I mean you certainly don't buy fish there, by any means. You don't buy ...

Suzy Chase:                  No. I bought chicken there one time, and I had to bring it back three times because they kept giving me this stinky, slimy ... but you know what? In a pinch, it was fine.

Anita Lo:                  Really?

Suzy Chase:                  If you needed mushrooms, if you needed beer, if you need lunch sushi, you could go there.

Anita Lo:                  Wow. Yeah, I never at any of the prepared foods.

Suzy Chase:                  What did you get there?

Anita Lo:                  Vegetables, olive oil, dairy. It was just, well, because that was the closest one to my house, and then it closed. Now I either have to go to Gristedes or I have to go to Citarella, which is just ridiculously expensive. Yeah, or then sometimes I go over to Brooklyn Fare, but that's pretty far.

Suzy Chase:                  Yeah.

Anita Lo:                  Let me think. Yeah, I don't really have a favorite grocery store, but I do, I go to Citarella ... fish. It's interesting because, after all these years buying wholesale prices, buying ingredients at wholesale prices, I just ... seeing these fish prices are like, "Oh, my God."

Suzy Chase:                  Ouch.

Anita Lo:                  Yeah. Yeah, I think I'm slowly getting used to it. I like Dickson's Farmstand Meats in Chelsea Market for meat or high-end meat. I go to Florence Prime Meat for things like dry-aged steak, or I really love their Italian sausages there. They'll order stuff for me if I want something like fresh pork belly or whatever that you're not going to be able to buy in a grocery store. I ride my bike to Chinatown. I will buy things at Buon Italia in Chelsea Market as well as the Manhattan Fruit Market in the basement there, but yeah.

Suzy Chase:                  What's your favorite restaurant in the neighborhood these days?

Anita Lo:                  For sushi, I love Kosaka. I love that for high-end sushi. I love Via Carota, of course.

Suzy Chase:                  Of course.

Anita Lo:                  Yeah. I love Taim. I love Mustache. Oh, I love Hao Noodle and Tea, Ramen-Ya, Ramen-Ya, whatever, on West Fourth for ramen, or I love Empellon's soft tacos. Yeah, there's a lot of great food in the west village.

Suzy Chase:                  Where can we find you on the web and social media?

Anita Lo:                  Www.chefanitalo.com. I'm not on Facebook, but I'm on Instagram, and I am on Twitter @AnitoLoNYC.

Suzy Chase:                  Who says eating along should be lonely? I can't thank you enough, Anita Lo, for coming on Cookery by the Book podcast.

Anita Lo:                  Thanks for having me.

Outro:                  Follow Suzy Chase on Instagram @cookerybythebook and subscribe at cookerybythebook.com or in Apple Podcasts. Thanks for listening to Cookery by the Book podcast, the only podcast devoted to cookbooks since 2015.

Feb 25 2019 ·
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Special Sauce: Chef Anita Lo on Cooking for Michelle Obama [1/2]

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This week on Special Sauce with the terrific chef and fine writer Anita Lo. Anita had Annisa, a great restaurant in Greenwich Village, for 16 years before closing it in 2017. She was part of the first wave of women chef-restaurateurs in New York. Anita was also the first woman who cooked a State dinner for the Obamas at the White House. Finally, she is the author of the recently published elegant and pithy cookbook, Solo: A Modern Cookbook for a Party of One This week's episode focuses on Anita's cooking experiences at other people's restaurants, sexism in the restaurant biz, and cooking at the White House.

With politics being front and center these days I had to ask Anita about cooking a state dinner for the Obamas and President Xi of China. I asked if she got to hang with the President and First Lady. "Yeah it was awesome. We got a picture with them. I shook their hands. It was sort of like a wedding line. The Obamas and the Xis were there, and then we all walked through and shook their hands and took a pictures and went out the other door."

Anita really cut her teeth in the restaurant biz in New York in the nineties in the kitchen of the first incarnation of Bouley, chef David Bouley's influential Tribeca restaurant. I asked Anita if she felt that she was a victim of the rampant sexism there that pervaded so many fine dining establishments at that time. She calmly replied, "Certainly, on some level, but at the same time, my mother had been a doctor and there were very, very few female doctors at the time when she became a doctor. I think she was the only female doctor in her hospital, or at least in her hospital wing. That was my role model, so I knew you just had to endure..."I did get some sort of nasty banter that was meant to make you not feel welcome...Yeah, we still have a long way to go, certainly (in that regard)."

I asked Anita if being a women chef-restaurateur makes it harder to find investors. She nodded her head and said, "I just think we're wired culturally to support men and to see men as leaders and see men as the money makers, and that leaves a lot of smart, talented women behind...Well, at least we're talking about it, and just because we've had a me too moment doesn't mean that bad things still aren't happening. Look what's happening in our government."

Anita has a unique perspective on these kinds of issues born of both sweet and bitter experiences. And that is what makes her Special sauce episodes required listening.

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The full transcript for this episode can be found over here at Serious Eats: https://www.seriouseats.com/2019/01/special-sauce-anita-lo-1-2.html

Jan 25 2019 · 26mins
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Episode 36: Meet Anita Lo

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On the latest episode of Inside Julia’s Kitchen, host Todd Schulkin speaks with Anita Lo, the former chef-owner of the Michelin-starred Annisa in NYC, and author of the recently published Solo: A Modern Cookbook for a Party of One. Todd and Anita discuss the joys and challenges of running a chef-owned restaurant and why cooking for just yourself is a good thing. As always, Anita shares her Julia Moment.

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Dec 07 2018 · 40mins
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31: Anita Lo

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The chef and cookbook author Anita Lo occupies a very special place in the hearts of many in the New York City restaurant world—chefs, journalists, civilians who merely dine at restaurants (that is, most people). Lo is a supreme talent, having run one of the city’s top restaurants—Annisa—for 17 years. She’s also a mentor to many in the industry. A leading light and an example of how to do things the right way. Stories of this journey, as well as some pretty cool recipes, are detailed in her new cookbook—Solo: A Modern Cookbook for a Party of One—disguised as a personal history. It's memoir light. During our interview at Books Are Magic, we talk about some of the recent controversies in the world of food, and her take on “the boys” and how there’s a clear double standard when it comes to business opportunities, etc. Lo also talks about the joy of cooking for one.

Later we get to talk with Matt Startwell, managing partner at legendary New York City cookbook store Kitchen Arts & Letters. We tackle a number of fun topics: the shop's famous customers, like James Beard and Julia Child; the most requested books; books he thinks need to be published; and a rundown of the big books from the busy holiday season. Have you picked up a cookbook today?

This episode is sponsored by Joule by ChefSteps.

Dec 04 2018 · 50mins
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Episode 360: Solo, by Anita Lo

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This week, Cathy is joined in the studio by chef Anita Lo to discuss her latest cookbook, Solo: A Modern Cookbook For A Party of One. They discuss Anita's approach to cooking throughout her career as a chef, with her restaurant, Anissa, and her first cookbook, Cooking Without Borders. Anita shares her thoughts on how all American food is really a fusion cuisine, but that there could be more recognition of and sensitivity towards great immigrant cuisines in the US. Also, they discuss some of Anita's favorite go-to recipes for cooking for one, one of her favorite condiments, Lao Gan Ma, and some tips on holiday cooking for a small crowd.

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Dec 02 2018 · 29mins
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Anita Lo

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Michelin-starred chef Anita Lo hasn’t always been lucky in love … but the fruit of her solitude is sweet. On this week’s podcast, she joins Clay and Megan for a spirited discussion of Solo: A Modern Cookbook for a Party of One, a personal and playful collection of repasts for the unattached. Lo proves to be an unforgettable guest, serving up stories of an only-in-New-York dating disaster and an only-in-Mongolia dining experience, and children’s editor Vicky Smith signs on for continuing coverage of the Best Books of 2018.
Nov 20 2018 · 51mins
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Episode 59: A Spotlight on Anita Lo

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Tonight we are spotlighting the Michelin-starred Chef Anita Lo! We'll be talking about everything--from her storied career, her experiences as an Asian female Chef, her new cookbook "SOLO: A Modern Cookbook for a Party of One", to what's next.

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Nov 14 2018 · 39mins
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