Our 8th annual Dan’s Taste of Two Forks, presented by Farrell Building Company, will be hosted by East Hamptonite David Burtka on July 21 at Fairview Farm in Bridgehampton, located on beautiful Mecox Bay. As Burtka points out, we “have the best from the ocean and the farms!”
Burtka is a chef, caterer and award-winning actor who will release his first cookbook, Life Is a Party, in the spring of 2019. The book is a spinoff from his 2016 Food Network special, Life’s a Party with David Burtka, which won a Telly Award and 1st prize at the New York Film and TV Awards. The cookbook will showcase his expertise in preparing delicious recipes and celebrating a variety of occasions with guests. Burtka also has a residence in Manhattan with his husband, Neil Patrick Harris, and their twin children, Harper and Gideon.
If you had two giant forks right now, what would you stick with them?
I’m currently in Gordes, France and the produce here is incredible. One fork would have a perfectly ripe doughnut peach and the other would have a freshly baked baguette with French butter dripping off it.
What says “summer in the Hamptons?”
Going to Serene Green Farm Stand and Seafood Market [outside Sag Harbor], picking up a local catch of the day, some local produce like tomatoes and corn, and not forgetting sunflowers for the table. I’m not cooking unless it’s fresh. With the produce available right now, it’s so easy to throw meals together.
What are some of your other favorite East End foodie haunts?
The Sag Harbor Farmers Market, Round Swamp Farm, Balsam Farm Stand, Cavaniola’s Gourmet Cheese Shop.
Do your kids help in the kitchen?
Yes, they love it. We cook almost every day. Right now they really want to use knives but I’m a little wary. I stand over them so no one loses a finger. Harper can now make pancakes from scratch and I hardly help.
What are your favorite things to cook at home?
Steaks and whole fish, at the moment. For breakfast, Gideon can poach a mean egg. We usually put them on avocado toast, and sprinkle with flaky sea salt.
Tell us about your upcoming cookbook.
My book is a seasonal guide to throwing a party at any time. I take a lot of inspiration from my parents. They never needed an excuse to party. I hope readers take from my book that it can be easy and stress-free. I encourage people to cook together and use resources around them.
What makes the best summertime party?
Being prepared, lots of ice, tasks in the kitchen for kids, a great playlist, fresh ingredients and a well-thought-out group of friends.
What’s the best culinary advice you’ve received?
Gradually salt your food to layer flavor.
What drew you to cooking?
After I lived in LA for a bit, my mom died and I had to get away from acting. It’s way too depressing being an out-of-work actor in L.A. Cooking always makes me happy. I thought going to cooking school was a good fit.
Relate acting and cooking.
They’re quite similar. They both fall in the Arts category—they don’t call it “the culinary arts” for nothing. In my upcoming book I compare throwing a party to getting ready for a role. I use the who, the what, the why and the when method. As an actor you prepare for a role in learning your lines and developing your character. In cooking, you learn techniques and refine your skill. When it’s time to perform you’re ready to go. In cooking there are a ton of variables: when the guests are coming, the timing in readying everything, etc.
Dan’s Taste of Two Forks presented by Farrell Building Company features tastings from top restaurants & purveyors from both Forks on Saturday, July 21 at Fairview Farm in Bridgehampton. GA tickets are $195 & grant you access to all you can eat and drink. VIP tickets are $295, include early entrance, with access to the exclusive VIP waterfront lounge and more! Tickets sell out, so buy NOW at DansTaste.com.