Top San Antonio Chefs Sound Off on What They're Cooking at Home While They Shelter in Place

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Married Chefs Damien Watel and Lisa Astorga Watel are mixing it up with DIY sushi.
  • Married Chefs Damien Watel and Lisa Astorga Watel are mixing it up with DIY sushi.










Keeping meals fresh and interesting during quarantine hasn't exactly been easy for most of us. When forced to eat at home more than usual, it's easy to cycle through your entire cooking repertoire in no time at all.

To help remedy that situation, we polled some of San Antonio's best-known chefs to ask what they’re cooking while staying socially distant and gathered some of their answers here.

Maybe something will spark your creativity.

Ernie Bradley — Kuriya at Cherrity Bar
“At home, we cook with limited space. We are really into seafood boils right now, [they’re] quick, easy, and fun. One pot makes it an easy clean up as well.”

Mike Nguyen — The Noodle Tree
“The most recent [dish] I have been cooking a lot is a Vietnamese breakfast dish called bo ne (bo means “cow/beef,” while ne means “to dodge”). It’s beef ribeye sliced thinly and cooked on a cast iron sizzle platter with an egg, sausage, pate, and a baguette.”

Damien Watel — Bistr09
“Quarantine cooking makes you become creative. After your family gets tired of the same old dishes you make, they’re delighted with new ideas. Yesterday we made our own sushi.”

Rebel Mariposa spreads the gospel of fresh spices and simplicity. - JOSH HUSKIN
  • Josh Huskin
  • Rebel Mariposa spreads the gospel of fresh spices and simplicity.
Rebel Mariposa — La Botanica
"I find I have actually had more time to experiment, and since I’ve had more rest, I am motivated to create again. I have always been a fan of delicious and simple meals. You don't have to cook for four hours to have an amazing meal, sometimes just adding a fresh spice instead of a dried one or a fancy salt can create a new and enjoyable sensation!”

Tim McDiarmid — The Good Kind, Tim the Girl catering
“If you have kids, have some fun cooking competitions at home! Work with what you have. Fried rice [is] my go to. I could live on it. And I want all the greens in it, so it’s fun to play with.”

Rudy Martinez — formerly of Dorrego’s
“The foods my mom would make when I was a kid: arroz con pollo, or paella, risotto being my favorite. Food is personal, and there are many things we can make … but nothing replaces the childhood favorites that our family made, simple as they may be.”

Marsha and Luis Morales tag-team dinnertime responsibilities while socially distancing. - COURTESY HUMBLE HOUSE FOODS
  • Courtesy Humble House Foods
  • Marsha and Luis Morales tag-team dinnertime responsibilities while socially distancing.
Marsha Millegan Morales — Co-Owner Humble House Foods, Say Town Tacos
“Mostly we're cooking one-pot-wonders at home. Not for any other reason than it saves time. I've found that if I have several separate ingredients cooked in advance — broccoli, quinoa, bacon, stuff like that — [my partner] Luis can come in and have a full-blown fancy dinner ready in 10 minutes. Works out for both of us!"

So many restaurants, so little time. Find out the latest San Antonio dining news with our Flavor Friday Newsletter.

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