Empire Diner chef John DeLucie’s favorite pasta, kitchen tool and more.

By Max Bonem
Updated July 07, 2017
Courtesy of Empire Diner

Chef John DeLucie might be known for serving up a wide range of American classics at his New York restaurant Empire Diner, but at home he definitely embraces his Italian roots. From his love of pasta to his insistence on having artichokes in their many forms available at all times, his family's heritage is always on display in his home kitchen. He shared his five kitchen essentials when he stopped by the F&W Test Kitchen this week to make his Sourdough Pretzel Fried Chicken.

The pot he can’t live without:

“I have a Le Creuset braiser that I really love,” he says. “I use it for everything from stews and soups to crazy Sunday Italian dishes that I make for the family. It’s really good for browning everything and making sauce as well.”

The kitchen utensil he swears by:

When it comes to kitchen tools, DeLucie swears by his favorite utensil, the microplane. “I use it for garlic, ginger, zest and cheese," he explains. "It’s really great to have in the kitchen and I’m always finding more ways to use it.”

What he always keeps stocked in his pantry:

“I always have spaghetti in my pantry, no matter what,” he says. “I’m not super picky about which type, even Barilla works. It's just good to have around for whenever I need to cook a quick meal.”

His favorite cookbook:

“There are a lot of great cookbooks, but my favorites are always changing,” he explains. “At the moment, though, I really like Ashley Christiansen and Kaitlyn Goalen’s Poole's: Recipes and Stories from a Modern Diner.”

What he always has in the fridge:

“I always have some form of artichokes in the fridge,” he says. “Canned, marinated or raw, they’re always in there. Also, olives and scallions, I always have both of those available too just in case.”