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SI: Will the dishes in your book be based on specific tracks? Bristol Bruschetta, anyone?
Batali: Otto does not have a huge NASCAR fan base among its regular customers, so these guys, who are generally mobbed wherever they go, are left to themselves.
SI: You've been to several NASCAR races. Do people recognize you at the track?
Batali: When I was getting ready to drop the green flag at the Pocono 500, there was a stand that holds about 110,000 people, and we guessed that 70,000 were chanting "Mol-to, Mol-to."
SI: You also cooked a prerace meal for the drivers at Pocono. What did you serve them?
Batali: We did polenta, shrimp scampi, barbecue brisket, ribs, skirt steak and braciola, and berries with zabaglione.
SI: In a fantasy cooking draft who should be picked first: you, Rachael Ray or Thomas Keller?