Chef Curtis Stone on healthy cooking and eating

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Curtis Stone, as the Take Home Chef on your hit TLC series, now in its second season, you ambush people in the grocery store and follow them home to help them prepare dinner. What’s the most surprising thing you learned from going into other people’s homes?
People don’t have much confidence in the kitchen.

What’s the biggest thing you would change about most people’s kitchens?

The kitchen should be a place you are proud of and want to spend time. Make it nice and surround yourself with beautiful food, natural light, and good music.

Do you have any New Year’s breast that is skinned and packaged in a way that it absorbs juice. You get to see the lifestyle of the animal and that makes you feel real respect for the product.

You have two nephews. How can we get kids to eat healthier?

I never try and force them to eat fruit. Instead, chop up an apple and leave it in bowl. Sooner or later, their little hands will grab a piece and start munching.

What would you prepare if you had friends to dinner?

It is nice to be able to share food and have a nice smell in your home when they arrive. I make a big focaccia bread. When the guests arrive, they can smell something coming out of oven.

If you had to lose one sense — taste, smell, touch, sight, and hearing — which would you choose?

Sound. I could never go without smell or taste, so it would have to be sound.

Any early food memories?

My mom used to roast chicken and whenever I walk into a home and smell chicken roasting, it is such a nice memory. You always hear people saying ‘my mom makes the best spaghetti and meatballs,’ but the truth is she doesn’t. What was so amazing was the love she put into it.