Richard Blais Takes A Controversial Side On The Cheesy Seafood Debate - Exclusive

The more Richard Blais has evolved as a chef, the more he doesn't mind breaking a few toffee-nosed seafood traditions. Let's shatter a few with him, shall we? Consider, for example, the idea that seafood should be seasoned solely with salt and pepper. Don't be so grim, Jim — Blais isn't. "I remember when I was a little bit more straight out of all of these classic French kitchens, I was ... probably a little stuck-up," the "Next Level Chef" host admitted to Tasting Table in a recent exclusive interview. "I looked at a lot of spice blends, like, 'I don't want to do — I'm a salt-and-pepper guy.'" Cajun blackening spices and Moroccan seafood spices have since stolen Blais's heart.

Even more antagonistic — to those trained at places like Le Cordon Bleu, at least — is the celebrity chef's take on adding cheese to seafood pasta. Do it, says Blais. "Hot take ... don't be afraid to add cheese to your seafood pasta items," the chef proclaimed. "If it makes it delicious and gives it a little bit more salinity and sweet-salty cheese flavor, go for it." Take a deep breath. We're not done starting Twitter-worthy culinary scandals yet.

Richard Blais takes a stand on more hotly-debated culinary traditions

Think of Richard Blais as a culinary yes-man. He's yes to spices on fish, yes to cheese and pasta, and — while he told Tasting Table his younger self might be flipping his lid — all for shrimp cocktails. The culinary legend reflected, "This is one of those things that, five years ago, I would have been like, 'Oh, I don't ever want to have a shrimp cocktail on the menu. I love shrimp cocktails!"

The only thing Blais might say "no" to are hot lobster rolls. Turns out, the chef prefers his cold when push comes to shove. "This will get me kicked out of New England probably," Blais quipped."I'm a cold lobster roll guy — hot bread, cold lobster." To make a lobster roll à la Blais, steam your lobster, chop it, chill it, and add mayo to it before putting it on a hot bun. While we're on the subject of mayo, here's another controversial culinary opinion the celebrity chef copped to. "First of all, I love mayonnaise so much that I had a shirt that said 'I love mayonnaise' on it," he confessed to Tasting Table. "I love Miracle Whip in salad dressing, which I know is a big debate."