What were your food influences when you were growing up and what kind of food did you eat at home or with your family?
My father cooked mostly. Pasta was the staple. Anything from Bolognese to stuffed capsicum sauce to marinara to puttanesca. We’re not Italian, but for some reason my folks were obsessed with pasta. I also ate the traditional food of my grandparents, who were eastern European Jews. Chicken soup with creplach, schnitzel, pickled cucumbers, potatoes for days.
What dish or cuisine do you most like to eat on tour and why?
I live on fruit and vegetables. The biggest challenge on tour is staying healthy and a big part of that is eating healthy. You have to offset all the red wine somehow.
What type of food do you hate, and what is the most disgusting thing you’ve ever eaten?
I hate fast food because it tastes so good and smells so good and looks so good and is cheap, but it makes you feel terrible. In other words it’s the devil in disguise. The most disgusting thing I ever ate was brains. It’s another traditional food that was eaten by my European ancestors. Somehow, it tasted just like brains, and that was not a good thing.
What type of food do you make sure to avoid before a gig or going on stage?
Anything that sits heavy in my stomach. I need at least 3 hours to let my food settle before I sing and I always eat a light meal. I like to feel free and light when I sing. I always get really hungry after a show because I don’t eat much beforehand. That’s when I have to do battle with aforementioned devil in disguise.
Imagine for a second you can request anything on your rider at a gig. What food do you put on it?
Very expensive red wine.
Very expensive vodka.
A giant fruit platter.
A big pot of vegetable soup.
A big pot of ginger, lemon and honey tea.
A juice squeezer and fruit.
A big pot of pasta puttanesca.
What has been your biggest cooking disaster to date?
I dropped a ring into a cake mixture once and only realised after it was baked. So I had to eat the cake myself, very slowly until I found the ring. The cake tasted great though. And I found the ring.
When you tour overseas, what food from home do you miss the most?
I very rarely get the chance to cook, so I miss the simple things. A vegetable stir fry, a bowl of homemade pasta, butter and Vegemite on toast.
This is your last day on earth, what is your final meal?
Hmm, who is the meal with is probably the more relevant question. It would probably be a bowl of spaghetti Bolognese. You can’t escape your upbringing.Write a Letter to the Editor