Carla Hall — co-host of TV program “The Chew,” chef, cookbook author, teacher and youth advocate — has risen to fame with her culinary wisdom and sense of fun.
One of Hall’s calling cards is merging Southern traditions — she’s a native of Nashville, Tenn. — with the classical French culinary techniques that reflect her training at L’Academie de Cuisine in Gaithersburg, Md.
Last year, Hall consulted on the menu at the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C., which integrates traditional African-American dishes from across the U.S. — from soul food staples to lesser-known traditions.
Also last year, Hall opened her first restaurant, adding “restaurateur” to her list of accomplishments. Her new place, Carla Hall’s Southern Kitchen, which she describes as “a fast-casual love letter to Nashville,” is located in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Nashville hot chicken is the star of the show at her restaurant, and the Southern Sides menu is like a big, comforting hug, with potato salad, coleslaw, mac ‘n cheese, collards ‘n pot likker (the liquid left behind after cooking greens), sweet potato rolls, pimento cheese, biscuits and more.
Then comes the pain: Nashville hot chicken is known for its endorphin-releasing fire, and Hall is offering sauces ranging from “hoot & honey” to “hootie hot” and finally “boomshakalaka.”
As Hall would say, “Hootie hoo!”