Hello Gila! Can you tell us in a few words where your passion for cooking comes from?
Cooking has always fascinated me, first for its convivial character. More than cooking, I like to receive, to please my loved ones by cooking them good dishes. I imagine it comes from my origins. Franco-Iranian, I have very frank memories of my first trip to Iran, at the age of 10, where we ate, very many, in family, on carpets. The last time I went there, three or four years ago, we ate at the table but always with this incredible sense of hospitality, dozens of dishes on the table, a crazy generosity. It is above all, this generosity and this conviviality that I like in the kitchen.
What place does cooking play in your daily life today?
She is omnipresent. When I'm not cooking, I try new restaurants and when I'm not eating, I talk about cooking with my friends, I brainstorm, I read recipe books... I have dozens of notes on my phone with all the inspirations I come across, taste, my ideas. Cooking nourishes me much more than "physiologically". It feeds my imagination, my creativity...
Tell us about your inspirations. What stimulates your creativity in the kitchen?
Taste, taste, taste! I spend a lot of time in restaurants. It's very inspiring to discover the cuisine of others. A condiment, a texture, an association... It always gives a thousand ideas. Travel too, of course. Flavors from elsewhere, spices, smells, colors. The kitchen that does not look like ours. Iran obviously inspires me a lot. I like to add a touch of my origins to my dishes: saffron, pistachio, spices...
Can you tell us about the importance of the choice of utensils in your kitchen?
I don't think you need a thousand utensils to be a good cook. On the other hand, you need some essential GOODS. And obviously the knife is the base! Without a good knife , cooking can quickly become a real hassle.
You are a journalist who moves a lot in France. Do you have any favorite addresses to share with us?
I have been to Marseille a lot this year. For work and for pleasure. It is a very inspiring city for food. L'Epicerie l'Idéal and more generally the district of Noailles is a favorite.
I like the skilful mix between different cultures that reigns there. Still in Marseille, I loved Livingston . And of course the Tuba Club with the wonderful chef Sylvain Roucayrol who masters fish and seafood dishes to perfection.
I also like very simple places where the setting and the product are the stars. I never miss an opportunity to go to the "Huîtres de Trousse Chemise" when I'm on Ile de Ré: a few picnic tables, directly at the oyster farmer, who opens oysters and a bottle of wine for you , facing the marshes. This place is magical.
You have a restaurant project that you are about to launch: can you tell us more?
I have been a television journalist for 10 years, knowing full well that one day I will leave everything for the kitchen. I would love to open my own restaurant and it's planned for 2023. But while waiting to find the perfect place, I launched Goût: a service that offers both cooking and tableware for private events, for individuals or brands. Meals at the table or in the form of a buffet, with floral decoration, crockery (great passion for pretty crockery): in short, I try to organize the perfect gourmet moment, always with this generosity and conviviality that I love so much in the kitchen.
Gila's Instagram account: https://www.instagram.com/gigi_nzri/
Goût's Instagram account: https://www.instagram.com/gout.paris/
Do you have a secret cooking tip to share with our community?
It's not really a secret but for me, the basis in cooking is the choice of ingredients and seasoning, spices, herbs. Even the simplest dish, if it is composed of ingredients, in season, of quality and if it is well seasoned, it will necessarily taste great! Take a simple tomato sauce, for example, if the tomatoes are in season and come from a super producer, they will have a sweeter, more intense taste. And your homemade tomato sauce will necessarily be delicious.