Gordon Ramsay On His Ultimate Cooking Tips And His Fellow Celeb Chefs - Exclusive Interview

If ever there were an icon in the culinary world that could go by one name — like his "dear friend" Adele (his words, not ours) — it's Gordon Ramsay. Unlike his friendly neighborhood arch-rival, Bobby Flay, his name is not yet plastered on one of Hollywood's pebbled heavenly orbs. The 17 Michelin stars he has accrued across his career, however, sing for themselves.

Ramsay doesn't pander in products much; he's got his own culinary empire to promote, filled with risottos, Beef Wellingtons, and Yorkshire puddings. Despite that, soon, when you turn on your TV for your go-to Gordon fix — "Master Chef"? "Hell's Kitchen"? "Next Level Chef"? There's plenty to choose from — you'll get more than you bargained for. Stick around for the commercial break to see the culinary legend munching on a Triscuit or two. In an exclusive interview with Tasting Table, Ramsay did his best to dust off the crackers from where they've been hiding in your cabinet and turn them into the keys to a crave-worthy canapé. He also went down the scrambled egg rabbit hole, got into the weeds with what makes a really great steak, and leveled with us about his relationships with fellow celeb chefs.

Gordon Ramsay's ultimate Triscuit and tuna combo

Hi, Gordon. Good morning.

Good morning. I love the name, by the way — Tasting Table — because it's something we do on a daily basis, sit down at the table and taste. Love that name.

Thank you very much! Tuna salad is a very popular topic for Triscuits. How would you do an elevated tuna salad to pair with the cracker?

That's a good question. First of all, get some ahi tuna and lightly sear it. From there, I would get a beautiful quail egg [and] lightly poach them. I'd have this amazing, beautiful, fresh tapenade spread over that wholesomely delicious Triscuit biscuit, topped with a slice of seared tuna, and then a tiny little slice of French green bean salad with a quail egg that is runny in the middle. That would be the ultimate Triscuit niçoise for me.

We've just come off the back of the Super Bowl, as you know. I did a roasted beet hummus late Saturday night — slow roasted them and whipped this into a delicious hummus, topped with almost a goat cheese mousse on top of my biscuits over the weekend there. I like the idea [of] the elevated tuna niçoise though.

Why is a quail egg important for an elevated tuna salad?

First of all, they're a pain in the ass to peel. Anything that's difficult to get a hold of is worth enjoying and eating 10 times more. It fits beautifully. The dimensions of the biscuit are these amazing little snacks — canapés — and they're sort of two-bite wonders. And quail egg cut in half sits beautifully. Providing that yolk is runny, aesthetically, it's good enough to sit on the front cover of a foodie magazine.

Gordon Ramsay gets honest about cheese

You mentioned goat cheese with your hummus, and obviously, cheese is also a go-to pairing with Triscuits. What's one underrated hard cheese and one underrated soft cheese more people should be eating?

In terms of hard cheese, there's something quite unique about a nice mature cheddar. I made a fresh bowl of minestrone soup the other day, and I had all these vegetables. I've got three daughters; they go vegan, they go vegetarian, they eat fish, they eat meat, but three or four times a week, they're eating pure vegetables. I made this amazing minestrone soup the other day and grated this extra mature, beautiful cheddar, sprinkled that out on top of my Triscuit biscuits, and grilled them. We grew up with toast and cheese. You guys had grilled cheese, but we have toast and cheese in the U.K. These crackers with the melted cheese sat on top of my minestrone soup. I felt like a pig in s***.

And a soft cheese?

I'm setting the goat cheese aside. I would go ... God, I've spent a lot of time in the Mediterranean. There's something quite unique about feta. Across the pandemic, as you know, feta became this instant viral hit because everyone was roasting it with tomatoes. 

When you blitz and puree feta ... and I was very naughty; I grated fresh truffle on feta and sat it on top of a Triscuit biscuit when we were looking at the development in partnership early on. I took this relationship with Triscuit very seriously. I put my chefs to the test, and I elevate these canapés. How do we get into this Premier League of canapés with this peaceful biscuit? Whip feta, [add] freshly grated truffle, sat on a biscuit. I'm telling you, it's like you've just come out of a five-star restaurant.

Gordon Ramsay reveals his favorite Super Bowl run-ins

Let's go back to the Super Bowl, which you mentioned. We saw you in some snaps with Jay-Z and Blue Ivy. Adele, whose concert you recently attended, was there, and also Paul McCartney. Who was your most enjoyable celeb run-in, and what Super Bowl story will you be telling six years from now?

Oh, it's a tough one. Listen, they're all dear friends, all amazing foodies. I was nervous when Adele was coming over and we're looking at each other. I was [like], "Congratulations." I was thinking, "If she hands me that mic and asks me to sing the verse, I am so screwed." It was "[Hello]." I was desperately begging her not to hand me the mic, so when I held her hand and we kissed and we said hello — in between verse[s] — how cool is that for her to get her timing right and not hand me the mic? Sometimes they put the mic in front of you and say, "Finish it off." Thank God she didn't say that.

So I'd say Adele and Jay-Z. Jay-Z, field-side at the Super Bowl. Adele, because she's been to the restaurant on multiple occasions and enjoys good food.

What are Adele's favorites?

She chooses from the menu, so depending what it is ... I can't remember exactly what it is, but every time she comes, [there's] a different menu, and she enjoys good food, good company, and breaking bread.

How Gordon Ramsay turns scrambled eggs into dinner

We just got treated to the first episode of Season 2 of "Next Level Chef." Let's talk some strategy. We've gone a little bit over quail eggs, but if you were a contestant tasked with an egg dish, how would you make a good dish working from the top floor? What easy pantry items would you use to knock out an egg dish from the basement?

If I was on the top floor, I'd have to do the state-of-the-art, beautiful scrambled eggs, sat on a slice of toasted brioche with some beautiful, roasted porcini. That was what ... I perfected scrambled eggs in Paris working with Guy Savoy. I couldn't quite believe that they were serving soft scrambled eggs with white truffle for dinner. Scrambled eggs was something we always grew up having with breakfast, but it was a stop-start process, allowing the eggs to cook naturally and then a teaspoon of crème fraîche to stop them from overcooking. Grating white truffles in them was a dream, which I could not believe. Prior to the white truffle going in, we'd finish it with a little teaspoon of uni butter, and that gave that level of sweetness. I'd do that from the top floor.

If I was in the basement and it was my eggs ... God, that's a tough one, isn't it? Down there, there's not much. But I would do a deviled egg. I'd do a boiled egg, take the eggs out, chop them, mix them with beautiful anchovies, capers, and a little bit of smoked paprika, then pipe them back into the eggs and do this beautiful array of deviled eggs from the basement. Because all devils live in the basement, and sometimes they come back to bite you on the ass.

Gordon Ramsay's grilled cheese secrets

What about the same exercise, but with grilled cheese? I know that in Britain you do toast and cheese. 

My perfect grilled cheese would be two slices of sourdough bread. I would get them briefly done, drizzled [with a] touch of olive oil. I would get some braised short rib and spread the braised short rib over one side. Then I would get an amazing cheese I lived on in France when I was living in the mountains called comté. It's this beautiful Savoie, rich cheese. Sandwich that, and then grill it — braised short rib and melted comté. Beautiful. Done.

How do you elevate grilled cheese on the bottom floor?

Well, there's no equipment in there, so I'd be struggling. But I've been on my ass many times, so I love that fight back, coming back from zero to hero. Grilled cheese on the bottom floor — I would elevate this. First of all, I'd get some beautiful onions — which is always down in the basement — caramelize them [and] deglaze them in a touch of sherry vinegar. [I'd] spread that on my white bread, and I'd get the most amazing mature cheddar, finely grate it, sandwich that. Caramelized onions and grilled cheese — I'd put that in a panini press and caramelize it in a panini press with the grilled onions and a melt-y cheese inside.

Gordon Ramsay shares steak red flags

Let's move on to your Hell's Kitchen restaurants. You have a couple opening. Your restaurant empire depends on your chefs being able to cook perfect steaks. What are the biggest errors a new chef makes when learning to make your filet mignon?

The rookie mistake that everyone makes is they cook the steaks ice-cold. They take them straight out of the refrigerator and they put them into the pan. A steak needs to rest. It needs to rest before you cook, it needs to tenderize, it needs to be seasoned, and it needs to be rubbed either in a beautiful dry rub or lightly drizzled with a touch of olive oil. Get the steak up to room temperature.

The other issue they make is they put the butter in too early. Start off with a beautiful oil — peanut oil or rapeseed oil — then put the butter in at the end to baste it. But the importance of cooking a great steak is letting it rest. That is absolutely crucial.

You walk into a steakhouse and order a steak. Before tasting it, what are the red flags that signal to you that the meat isn't going to be spectacular?

Walk into the steakhouse and look at the steak immediately. I can tell by the way it sits and how long it's been cooked for. The most important thing is the sear: A great steak with the right kind of marbling needs to be seared beautifully. I can tell you from a mile away whether or not that's been seared properly. If there's white fat that is exposed that hasn't been rendered or it's been over-seared underneath, it'll be gray on the bottom and overcooked. I can tell you how a steak's cooked without touching it.

Which of the Ramsays watches Vanderpump Rules?

Martha Stewart, who's been on your judging panel in "MasterChef Junior," recently opened The Bedford next to you. You've had notoriously contentious bump-ins with Bobby Flay, who's also your neighbor in LA. Have you done competitor research at Martha Stewart's place, and do you have a similar rivalry?

I love Martha. I saw her Sunday afternoon at the Super Bowl. I was sat in Chris Bianco's Pizzeria in Arizona on Saturday night with some friends, and Paul Rudd was behind me — I was talking to him and this guy came up and put his hands on my shoulder. I turned around and it was Bobby Flay, Uncle Bobby. We were sat in the same restaurant. We shared a pizza [and] had a good catch-up.

Listen, I love competition, and that's what makes this culinary world spin at a thousand miles an hour. I'm always checking out the competition. But Chris' pizzeria — they say it's the best in America and one of the best pizzas in the world, and I can absolutely vouch for that. It was brilliant. He was there, had a good catch-up with him. I loved his story on Netflix on "Chef's Table." He is the real deal.

You and Lisa Vanderpump have hung out together. Lisa Vanderpump ate at Hell's Kitchen during Season 19. What does she think of the competition, and what do you think of "Real Housewives," if you've ever watched it?

Lisa's a great lady — incredibly entrepreneurial. The wine has gone down exceptionally well. She's feisty; she's determined; she hustles. It's so good to see another Brit so successful. When we've sat and had a drink and broken bread ... She's a powerhouse female.

This "Housewives" thing — every time my wife flies or jumps on a plane somewhere, she's always watching that show. I don't know much about that. I haven't got time to watch that show, to be honest. I'm too busy making TV as opposed to watching it, but my wife loves it.

Gordon Ramsay has a genius Saint Patty's day suggestion

You've recently opened a restaurant in D.C. You're prepping to open another restaurant outside of Chicago. Back when you opened your first restaurant in New York, you told a journalist at The New Yorker that you wished you could do liver, kidneys, and black pudding in this country. Are there dishes you still wish you could put on the menu that people in the U.S. won't eat?

Things have changed since 2005, 18 years ago. It was a long time in the food world, as you well know. I think I'll be hung upside down by a vegetarian if I put liver and onions and bacon on my menu. We revamped back in 2010 when we were developing the steakhouse in Vegas. I brought to the U.S. Filet of Beef Wellington for the first time, and that has become a phenomenon. No, I need to move with the time — and the Wellington proves that.

Finally, St. Patrick's Day is coming up in March. Can you give us a good potato-based dish to cook that might not be on an American's radar?

I would go for the most amazing, loaded baked potato finished with a gratinated topped mac and cheese ... beautifully done with scallions, chili, back into the potato, and then a dollop of mac and cheese on top of that, finished with the most amazing crumbs in the oven. A loaded baked potato with mac and cheese is a double hit.

Catch Gordon Ramsay in Triscuit's "Unapologetically Wholesome" content that will air nationally across TV and will continue to roll out across digital and paid social channels. Additionally, the content will be amplified through various activations on Ramsay's TikTok, including him reviewing interesting recipes involving Triscuit in the duet style that he's known for — follow @GordonGram for campaign content. For more information, visit Triscuit.com and follow Triscuit on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.  

This interview has been edited for clarity.