Brian Boitano talks food, new cookbook

Brian Boitano

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Brian Boitano is as comfortable in the kitchen as he is on the ice.

The Olympian, who took the men's figure skating gold in 1988 at the Calgary Games, has been in Omaha for the U.S. Figure Skating Championships.

Boitano started cooking in his 20s, and now he has a show on the Cooking Channel called “What Would Brian Boitano Make?” and a cookbook coming out this spring. He said he's been enjoying Omaha's culinary scene.

He played pool with the owner of the Upstream Brewery, had macaroni and cheese and a meatloaf sandwich at the Twisted Fork and dinner at V. Mertz. He's also on the hunt for a craft cocktail or two.

“I'm into the mixology thing big time,” he said. “My new one is the Aviation (cocktail). I love the creme de violette. It's my new passion.”

Boitano's show takes place in his San Francisco home. He invites people over and cooks for them.

“Sometimes it's one-on-one dinners, sometimes it's big parties,” he said. “It's kind of goofy and kind of quirky.”

Some of his favorite dishes to serve include appetizers and homemade pizza.

“I think there is a new swing of entertaining out there, really casual entertaining,” he said. His cookbook focuses on entertaining as well as healthy eating, his Italian family heritage and his travels.

“I've been traveling around the world and eating since I was 14 years old,” he said. “The ingredients in the recipes are really easy and accessible, and the food is fast and fun. ”

Boitano said his diet is mostly healthy. He works out regularly, but he will sometimes get cravings for chocolate or corn chips. “When I tweet photos of food, I'm tweeting photos of other people's food,” he said, laughing. “I don't eat it all.”

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