Thomas Higuchi-Crowell, Chef
186 Franklin St.
Kutsher’s House Smoked Pastrami on Rye with cole slaw and sour pickles. Why — because we want to showcase our signature sandwich which encompasses our brand’s DNA, is classic NYC, melts in your mouth and is a great introduction to our restaurant.
If I ordered the pastrami sandwich in my restaurant, I would also get an order of crispy artichokes and a glass of house-made Cel-Ray soda or a pint of Sixpoint Righteous Ale.
Who taught you to cook?
My mother was my original cooking and baking teacher. She started me off at the age of 4 and to this day her best words of wisdom were, “How you feel shows in your food, so cook with love and happiness and all will go well.”
Favorite food growing up?
My favorite foods growing up unfortunately are still my favorite foods. But they have become nicer, better, and fortunately not any healthier. My top foods were in no particular order: grilled cheese, hot dogs, stew of any kind, and of course DESSERT.
The one tool that all people interested in kitchen work need is a good chefs’ knife. Once you have that, you can really do anything with it. For some things, you may want a smaller knife, but it’s not really necessary. After that, I would say the “Food Lover’s Companion.” It’s pretty much like my bible.
The most common mistake new chefs make is on seasoning. A lot of chefs forget to taste after they season. How do you know if you over or under seasoned if you don’t taste the final product?
My worst cooking injury would be the time I cut my hand on a bandsaw meant for cutting through whole animals like cows. I was very close to taking my thumb off.
My last meal would be a prime rib eye steak cooked medium rare, creamed spinach and an entire chocolate layer cake washed down with a bottle of Cheval Blanc. Of course, I would also want one of my pastrami reuben eggrolls too.