Category Archives: Dining In

My Day with Bobby Flay

By Luc Cea-Sanson

Summer is grilling season.   During Spring break I met the Grill Master himself, Chef Bobby Flay, on the set of a video series of cooking demonstrations he appears in for Hellmann’s mayonnaise, a product made by my mom’s company, Unilever.  The series is part of Hellmann’s Real Food Project to help families cook and eat better.  I’m in the videos, too! There are new ones (and a sweepstakes and coupons) all summer long at

I love to cook… any style, anything. Bobby’s a great “burger guy” and he gave me a few tips:

The first is to make a well by pressing your thumb into the burger.  This will contain the juices as the burger expands when it cooks. The second tip is to only flip the burger once and third is don’t press the burger down or the juices will run out.

Hanging out on set and appearing in a video with Bobby Flay, I mean, that’s cool!  I can’t believe how much crew, lighting, props and cameras there are on set.  So much goes into the making of a two-minute video – and that’s only a short list!  While on set I had the chance to speak with the grillmeister.

Luc Cea-Sanson: If you could eat any food everyday, what would it be?

Bobby Flay: A cheeseburger and vanilla ice cream.

LCS: Why did  you want to work with Hellmann’s on the Real Food Project?

BF: Hellmann’s has been a part of my life since I was a kid.  I think it’s a fantastic product and it’s also good for you – it’s made with eggs, oil and vinegar.

LCS: When did you start cooking?

BF: My first memories of cooking were when I was six and made devilled eggs with my mom and Hellmann’s!

LCS: What is one important cooking tip you could give someone?

BF: Not to be intimidated.  A lot of times, people over-think it and all it takes is some common sense.  Also, when you’re grilling or sautéing something, the best advice I could give is leave it alone, let the grill or the pan do its job.


Plateau Reaches New Heights

One of the specialties of coastal regions in France, such as Normandy, are shellfish platters called plateaux de fruit de mer. Oysters, stone crabs, escargot and assorted coquillages whose names don’t have any translation. Luc was eager to try. The look on his face when he did is priceless.
Escargohhhh!!!!Luc on the taste of snails: Interesting texture, very chewy. Too chewy to finish.
Tastes like sea. Surprisingly it didn’t have any sand

Our hosts in Normandy, created a plateau that surpassed any we had ever had at a restaurant. Monsieur cracked crabs and shucked oysters. Over the course of the week, Madame was a wonderful, inspirational cook.
She grilled lamb chops over an open fire, she whipped up a pork roast for lunch.

Grilling lamb chops

Grilling lamb chops

Her fruit platter could be featured on the cover of a magazine. Most amazingly of all, she made it look so effortless. Plateau de Fruits No less so than when she arranged her plateau. A sprinkling of berlingeaux here. The placement of torteau crab legs and bodies there, there and there. And then topping off with les huitres – the best oysters I have ever had.DSC_0153

When it came time to leave, Madame asked me what I would most want to take home from France. Without hesitation, and with all sincerity, I said: “You.”