Round two with Jay Leandro, chef at Pub 17 on Welton Street

What's always lurking in your refrigerator? Some kind of curry paste and also way too much Greek yogurt, courtesy of my wife and daughter.

Favorite dish on your menu: The lamb burger with sweet pickle tzatziki, arugula and garam masala.

Biggest menu bomb: The chorizo arancini on the happy-hour menu. They're so good, but they don't sell at all.

Weirdest customer request: A server come back to the kitchen to let us know that one of her customers wanted her burger cooked medium-rare, but she didn't want the burger to have any pink inside.

Weirdest thing you've ever eaten: When I'm back east fishing for striped bass at night, the bait of choice is usually a live eel. I remember one night we weren't catching anything, but we had a nice fire going, so we decided to eat the eels. I guess it's not that weird to eat eel, but the whole setting might be weird to some people. Nonetheless, eel over an open fire? That's good stuff.

What's the best food- or kitchen-related gift you've been given? My Le Creuset Dutch oven has to be the best kitchen gift I ever got. I cook everything in this pot, and it keeps getting better with age. I imagine it'll last forever.

What was the last cookbook you bought, and what recipes are you cooking from it? The Best Ever Indian Cookbook, by Mridula Baljekar. I like to cook a lot of Indian food at home since it's so different from the food we make at the restaurant -- I love the spices and different flavor combinations. I've made the chicken tikka masala and the naan bread, and both are great. I'm always looking for a new recipe for tikka masala, but I haven't found the perfect one yet...or maybe it's just me.

Best recipe tip for a home cook: Cooking is not the same as baking. When you're following a recipe, don't feel like you have to follow it exactly, and never trust a cookbook that says 155 degrees is medium-rare; it's not.

Location Info

Pub 17

1750 Welton St., Denver, CO

Category: Restaurant

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