Michelin Star Chef Dani Garcia's Favorite Dishes To Cook - Exclusive

Triple Michelin star chef Dani Garcia has spent his professional life working with and creating new dishes inspired by the cuisine of his native Spain. He has restaurants in myriad cities in multiple countries, he is recognized globally as one of the finest Andalusian cooks at work today, and he has done much to spread awareness of and appreciation for the foods he himself loves to diners all around the globe.

During an exclusive Mashed interview, the chef was asked which were a few of the dishes he most enjoyed preparing and eating himself. He answered, "One of my favorite dishes is prawns with garlic and when I don't go to [my restaurant] Lobito de Mar to eat them, I prepare them at home. In winter, there is also no shortage of noodle and mussel stews."

The chef went on to mention gazpachuelo and marmitako, both also seafood-centric soups, as well as classics like tortilla de patatas (also called tortilla Española, or Spanish omelet), tapas, and of course, paella. He did point out that what most people outside of Spain tend to think of as paella is an inferior take on the classic dish, due to use of the wrong type of rice and the wrong preparation methods.

Like any good chef,  what chef Dani Garcia loves cooking the most is whatever will most satisfy those who will be eating it. That means something very different when he's cooking not for a restaurant full of discerning diners ready to spend a pretty penny on fine fare, but for those hungry kids of his. When Garcia is cooking for them, the menu changes considerably.

What Dani Garcia cooks at home

While you might expect that chef Dani Garcia's first answer regarding his favorite dishes to cook would include things from the menu of his restaurants, and particularly his latest spot, Casa Dani in New York City, it didn't — not at first, any way. Instead of immediately calling out the Alcachofas con Jamón (artichoke hearts with ham) or Txangurro (crab stew) or Bacalao al Pilpil (cod with peppers), the first dish Garcia mentioned was one you yourself may well have cooked in recent days.

"When it comes to cooking at home I like to do anything," he told us. "My daughters, for example, love it when I make them some good mac and cheese."

Granted, he isn't talking about from the box powdered cheese style macaroni and cheese, but still it was refreshing to hear a multiple award winning chef happy to make such classic comfort foods for his kid.

That said, if you do make it to his restaurant, you won't have mac and cheese on the menu. What to try, then? "Undoubtedly, the oxtail brioche," Garcia said. "This is the dish that has been with us since its creation in New York, almost a decade ago, and is undoubtedly a best seller wherever it goes. We have it in Bibo restaurants (Marbella, Madrid, Doha, London, and Ibiza) and in the delivery line that we have in Spain, and without a doubt, it had to accompany us on our return to New York."

Moving away from dishes and asked what one ingredient he couldn't live without, Garcia replied, "Olive oil! I can't imagine a good dish without this ingredient; for me, it's fundamental. A good extra virgin olive oil enhances any dish."

Check out Casa Dani at Citizens New York, an NYC culinary destination.