Interview With Australian Celebrity Chef and Author Pete Evans, Part 2
|Celebrity Chef and author of My Grill, Pete Evans used to be a vegetarian.|
Clean Plate Charlie: What are you working on next?
Pete Evans: I think I want to do something on a healthier path... after I finish this mojito.
I went to a spa resort and they had the most beautiful, clean vegetarian foods. I'm reading a lot on superfoods.
How do you feel about chefs who turn their noses up at vegetarians?
I was a vegetarian for four years -- from 19 to 23. Anthony Robbins was in town, and I went to his seminar. I walked the coals and everything. It was when I just opened my restaurant. I was living the life of a rock-star chef, only I didn't have any fans. Chefs like to party and not sleep, and that's what I was doing. All chefs do it -- we go really hard.
When I was given the opportunity to open my business, I thought I'd better clean up my act and focus, so by chance, I read an Anthony Robbins book. When I heard he was coming to Australia, I went to his three-day seminar, I walked the hot coals, and for four years, I didn't eat meat, smoke cigarettes, or drink alcohol.
I meditated. I had the time, mostly because I wasn't going out drinking all night. I was eating this lovely raw food diet.
So what happened?
It was a fantastic experience, and I keep a lot of the values I learned, but I was miserable.
It's supposed to make you happier, more Zen, not miserable.
I wasn't enjoying my life as much as I could.
You were dizzy from lack of protein.
Hmmm, maybe. I needed to find a balance. I became serious. Very serious. My girlfriend at the time said she wanted the old Pete back. I wasn't fun anymore. I was devouring self-improvement books and really trying to make my fortune.
But you were successful -- you had your own restaurant.
Yes, but the restaurant didn't make any money. We were just making a living. The definition of a successful restaurant is one that remains open. If we're busy, it doesn't mean we're making money. We did get successful, and I started to live a little and just try to keep a balance.
You're in the States for just a few days -- where are you off to next?
I'm doing a trip here and there to do research on my next project. I'm going to Fiji, I'm going to Vietnam to do some guest appearances, and I'll work out what I'm going to do.
You're really picking the ugliest places on the planet.
I was locked away in the kitchen for many, many years. I'm just glad I didn't become a plumber.
What were you going to do?
I was going to be an accountant. But I didn't pass English.
But you've written six books.
And I couldn't speak in public.
And yet you're on television.
How funny. I've worked on a lot of modalities to help me face my weaknesses. And America is one of those things as well for me. It's a huge challenge to see if I can have a business and a profile like I do in Australia here in America.
Stay tuned for a recipe by Pete Evans, coming soon.