What was your first job in a kitchen?
A prep cook for Restaurant Associates.
What is the first dish you ever mastered?
Hearty beef soup. I was able to get the recipe exactly how I wanted it while I was in culinary school. I really wanted to get it perfect because it was my mother's favorite. I wanted it to be perfect for her and she loved it!
What is your signature dish?
Filet Mignon with Mushroom Cream Sauce
Any stories of triumph from the kitchen? Disaster?
My greatest story of being a chef is when I was able to turn a bad experience into a great one for Morgan Freeman. I was working on the set for one of his movies recently, and he was really unhappy with the food I was bringing in from the company. He was talking about getting a new company in, so I decided to start making everything on my own from start to finish. The crew was huge, but the only way I knew how to make him happy was to take the task on myself. I found out some of his favorite types of food and the next day there was a complete difference. The crew was really pleased with my menu. Morgan Freeman was so thrilled he came out to meet me in person and told me how great the food was. It was really a shining moment in my career to have such a famous person give me a wonderful compliment.
Who was your first cooking inspiration?
My grandmother. We were always very close and spent a lot of time together. We would spend a lot of time in the kitchen cooking. She made me realize that food really brings people together and creates a lot of wonderful memories. The smells of her famous Irish soda bread are warmly missed. I aspire to give others fond memories over great food.
What's the one piece of advice you took away from Hell's Kitchen?
Pay attention to detail. It doesn't matter how great you think you are. Even the best can miss a detail and that one detail can make all the difference. Double- and triple-check everything you do. It will save you a lot of trouble and it will always be appreciated by those eating your food.
FOX Broadcasting Company - Chris Carrero - Hell's Kitchen on FOX - Official Site