“I remember my grandmother who made us semolina exactly like that in her tiny kitchen. I had one that made me couscous, bricks, tagine… and my maternal grandmother made me the cassoulet. So, I was in the middle, between the two … ” explains to the magazine “1:15 pm on Saturday” (replay) the starred chef Lionel Levy, in charge of the catering of a large hotel in Marseille.
“Since the age of eight or nine, I lived above a restaurant run by Alberte, a Pied-Noir. I would come home from school, throw in my satchel and go downstairs to help her, tells the cook installed since 1999 in the Phocaean city, and particularly recognized for his reinterpretations of Marseilles specialties. I have always been surrounded by women who cook. They indirectly gave me a taste for cooking. “
“It’s like when I made a bouillabaisse milkshake”
Lionel Levy puts merguez in his couscous, which is not at all classic for this legendary dish: “What’s interesting is also having fun with the codes. It’s like when I made a bouillabaisse milkshake which has become my signature dish.” For this starred couscous, the chef transforms the semolina into croquettes, colors his meats, passes red and green peppers over the fire, adds a hint of cinnamon, harissa… before setting up the plates.
“You have semolina croquettes with cumin, mint, coriander and orange blossom, he explains. There is a harissa-merguez condiment and the beef-lamb meatball under the roast rack of lamb. “ That day, he presented his reinterpretation of couscous to Leslie Cherfils, the general manager of the establishment, to convince her to put this dish on the menu. Tasting, exchange … So, does couscous have its place at the table of a luxury hotel? “Ah but, when he wants… If we don’t do that in Marseille, we do it nowhere. So, yes!” she believes.
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