5 Cooking Lessons Learned from Chef Marcus Samuelsson

Thanks to Macy’s Culinary Council Top Chef Master’s Season 2 Winner Marcus Samuelsson just shared some cool recipes for Superbowl Sunday. As an homage to the teams and the host city, New Orleans, Chef Marcus Samuelsson prepared crab cakes with chipotle mayo, dirty rice and fried “yard bird” better known as fried chicken.

I’ll start with a few Instagram photos before I get to the “5 Cooking Lessons Learned from Chef Marcus Samuelsson.”

Instagram Photos from the Macy’s Culinary Council Event

Here’s Chef Marcus Samuelsson working with a young chef who’s a member of an Atlanta cooking club.


The amazing crab cake with chipotle mayo and citrus salad.


He greeted guest and signed books.


I learned a lot about his approach to cooking when he answered audience questions.


top chef masters, marcus samuelsson, macy's culinary council

5 Cooking Lessons Learned from Chef Marcus Samuelsson

  1. Write a family cook book. Samuelsson suggested it’s an excellent way to pass on traditions and preserve your family’s history. Considering how I am not the best cook, maybe I need to interrogate/interview my Mother, sisters, cousin and even my husband to get their recipes.
  2. Don’t be dismayed by “poor man’s meals.” He said some of the best recipes came from poor people who had to be inventive with their leftovers.
  3. Piggy backing on the leftovers topic – Samuelsson shared how Americans waste about 30% of their food. We throw away leftovers, buy in bulk then wonder why it spoils and make portions that are too large. How can your family reduce the amount of food you waste?
  4. Don’t be ashamed to order a cheaper cut of meat. Use the the fat for flavoring rice, a side dish or to make gravy.
  5. The yin and the yang of genetically modified foods. I really appreciated Samuelsson’s  response when an audience member asked him how he felt about them. Samuelsson acknowledged that we shouldn’t put our health in danger with artificially produced foods, but in certain areas of the world where food is scarce and limited – there could be a use for it.

Disclosure: I’m a member of the Be Everywhere Society and was

compensated for my time to write this story. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

About Joyce Brewer

Creator & Host of Mommy Talk Show. Emmy award-winning TV journalist.Wife & Mommy; Mom Blogger; Social Media Coach; Long Island, New York transplant living in Atlanta, GA. Follow Joyce on Twitter @MommyTalkShow Author of Use What You Know: A Business Idea Guide for Moms featuring interviews with mompreneurs who created businesses using their skills & backgrounds.

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  1. Americans do waste an incredible amount of food – and money! – by not being aware of our actual consumption as well as by poor food storage practices. The more organized your pantry and fridge, the less often foods will spoil before you’ve ‘remembered’ you have them!

  2. Looks like a really neat event! Love his answer about genetically modified food. In some countries, that’s the only way they can eat. That’s kind of sad, though. I know we waste food, but since we’re on a very limited budget, we’ve gotten a lot more careful.

  3. Sounds like a great event! I need to write a family cookbook! What a great idea!

  4. I have a growing cook book of my own that I plan to save in hopes my kids can’t live without my cooking (haha).

  5. I seriously love Chef Marcus, we watch him on Chopped all the time. Those are such great ideas. I just posted about using leftovers for lunch, perfect timing. Thanks for sharing about your experience!

  6. I keep begging my mom to make a cookbook so I can keep her recipes going once she isn’t able to do them herself!

  7. Great recap, I love that you included his 5 cooking tips! It was a great event, I’m glad I was able to attend.

  8. Sounds like a great event indeed! I’ve seen Chef Marcus on Chopped before, I need to ask for private cooking lessons the way I cook…LOL! Great post!

  9. I have seen Chef Marcus on various television shows and he seems to have a nice personality. I like the idea of a family cookbook and will put that into place at our house.

  10. Thanks for sharing. Very nice. Simple is better on the pocketbook and the digetive tract.

  11. Chef Marcus has some great suggestions! I like the idea of creating family cook books, that’s a great gift for the holidays!

  12. Wow!! Looks and sounds like it was an awesome event — I would love to meet him in person!

  13. I definitely try to buy only what I need for the week to reduce waste. I used to throw soooo much away! Now that I live near a grocery store, I don’t have to buy in bulk. I can just go back when I need something. I also have a meal planner calendar on the fridge.

  14. Great tips! My husband and I are def trying to be more conscious about NOT wasting food, or cooking too much that there are too many leftovers. Thanks for sharing!

  15. I love Chef Samuelson. He had some great ideas, and I really like the idea of making a family cookbook. I’ve been trying to create something similar to that with my blog. All of our favorite recipes will eventually be put into a photo book with the recipe, and passed down to my kids when they move out on their own.

  16. Sounds like a fun event. I like his answer regarding the genetically modified foods. I wish it were labeled though so we could make an informed decision.

    I need to learn how to better use leftovers. As I’m usually cooking for 1 or 2 I often have leftovers.

  17. I love the five tips! We don’t throw away leftovers in this house. Well, we never really have left overs. LOL! This looks like it was a fantastic event.

  18. That crab cake dish looks AMAZING!! I think I’ll try the family cookbook. That is something I definitely want to do with my family, so I’ll just start now and continue

  19. I love the family cookbook idea. My deceased paternal grandmother made a coconut cake that was so moist and delicious. The recipe kinda died with her, so we’ll never have it again. Her cornbread stuffing lives on in my dad though, so I think i will get him to write it down.

  20. I’m still able to enjoy my grandmother’s buttermilk biscuits because of an old recipe book her church put together decades before she passed away. I’m so grateful I found it while we were cleaning out her things. I definitely agree it’s essential to put together a family recipe book!