Chef Eitan Bernath prepares the perfect recipe for pesto pasta with Oprah Daily

Are PB&J pancakes, cola braised breast tacos, or brown bourbon butter chocolate chip cookies make your mouth water? Now you can learn how to make these recipes (and many more!) In your own home, thanks to Eitan eats the world: new comfort classics to cook right nowthe debut cookbook by 20-year-old chef Eitan Bernath released in early May.

You’ve probably seen him preparing a storm on television or for his millions of followers on TikTok, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and beyond. As a food enthusiast who grew up developing recipes in the kitchen, some of which are featured in his new cookbook, Eitan came into prominence at an early age. After competing in Food Network’s first children’s episode Chopped at age 11, he later appeared in Guy Fieri’s show Guy’s grocery games. Today, Eitan serves as a culinary personality, entertainer and recipe developer, and also wears many additional hats: he is the CEO of Eitan Productions and the primary culinary collaborator for The Drew Barrymore show on CBS.

Watch Eitan cook the perfect seasonal recipe for lunch or dinner, radiator mint pesto with potatoes and peas, in the video above. So, she reads on to find out how he felt when his cookbook hit the shelves.

Eitan eats the world: new comfort classics to cook right now: a cookbook

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On the recipe she cooked for Oprah Daily:

It’s my mint cooler pesto with potatoes and peas. It’s a super simple pesto – it’s actually a very traditional type of pesto, it’s not that popular here in the US, but it contains potatoes and peas. It adds quite a bit of extras grit now. There is Yukon gold, there are frozen peas, and then this is just super classic pesto, except I used mint instead of basil. Pesto isn’t always made with basil. Mint makes it really super fresh and new.

In his cookbook, released in May:

I am truly honored to have the opportunity to write and publish a cookbook. I have always said to my parents: “One day I will write a cookbook”. Now, I didn’t know if it would be when I was 30, when I was 40, and I’m really grateful that it happened now that I’m 20. I describe food in Eitan eats the world as comfort food from all over the world.

My parents are both educators and have used food as a vehicle to introduce us to the world around us. With Eitan eats the world, my goal is to show people too, [that] these are the comfort foods that people eat all over the world. Of course, I’m not the expert on recipes that come from all over the world, and I try to be super aware that I never own them and be extremely clear. I share what I have learned because I am excited, but making sure I give credit where it is due.

On the types of recipes in his cookbook:

Many of the recipes are, I wouldn’t say, “American”, but very classic eaten here in the US, but with my fun twists on them. Then there are also a lot of them from all over the world. I have a lot of recipes in there: [food] from the Middle East, Asian cuisine, Indian cuisine and Mexican cuisine. You can expect to actually find some of your favorite comfort foods [that] you probably like to order at restaurants you never do at home. For example, General Tso’s chicken from scratch.

I describe comfort foods as recipes that give you comfort and that you enjoy cooking. Recipes you remember. [For] many of these recipes in the book, I share stories. There is something for everyone and my goal really is that wherever you are with your cooking skills, you can find recipes that you already feel comfortable with and then [can] keep building your confidence level.

My goal really is that wherever you are with your cooking skills, you can find recipes that you already feel comfortable with.

On his favorite career moments:

The highlight of his career was certainly being invited to the White House. I was invited twice in December, once for a creator event. They invited some creators to see the Christmas decorations. And then while I was there, someone from Jill Biden’s team actually invited me to the Hanukkah celebration that was the night after. I was truly honored, as a proud Jew, to be able to celebrate the holiday that I grew up celebrating and that my community has celebrated for thousands of years.

It was a very proud moment for me to be proud, loud and Jewish in the most powerful building in the world, celebrating with the president and vice president, the two most powerful people in the world. It was just a truly significant moment, which ended the year in a loud, proud and Jewish voice, even with these anti-Semitic attacks, we didn’t get discouraged. [from] be loud and proud of our traditions and everything. I think it was the most meaningful thing for me, knowing that the work I did got me where I was, standing there, celebrating.

On what he looks forward to in his new decade and the great personal changes:

Most of my career was when I was in school. Technically, I’m still a Columbia member and trying to get it to work part-time. I feel like I’ve always had this rush of how, I need to be successful before graduation so this can be my full time job. It happened. I’m in this place now where I’m really happy where I am. I strive to achieve more and always work on bigger and better projects.

My life has changed so much in the last couple of years, I can’t even imagine how it will change in 10. I know that everything I think will happen will be totally different. A year and a half ago I was living at my parents’ house in Jersey, working alone, shooting in their kitchen. I now live in Manhattan, run a large company in my apartment, and am publishing a cookbook.

My grandfather died of Covid in March 2020. It was a very busy time. It was a bit of my lowest low. I fell into a very deep depression. But then, soon after, my whole career started to explode. 2020 was both the worst and the best year of my life. I signed the cookbook deal a few months after his death. It was a very strange timing. He has always been my biggest supporter. It’s bittersweet that all of this happened because I wish she would see it. Even though he’s not here, the thing that made him so proud is to flourish and he’s doing so well, which is why I dedicated the book to him.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

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