Robert Falls has a knack for cooking.
Noted for his creative director's touch, Falls, artistic director of Chicago's Goodman Theatre, also has a love of food and the art of cooking.
"I enjoy it and have been doing it for some time," he said, during a recent interview.
"In the summer, I enjoy grilling and like to get out there in the garden," he said. As we move into winter, he opts for heartier dishes.
Braising, roasting, slow cooking, and grilling are among his favorite cooking styles.
Falls is currently directing Goodman Theatre's production of "Measure for Measure," which runs through April 14. FYI: goodmantheatre.org
When it comes to watching the skills of noted foodies, Falls said he's a big fan of "certain" chefs.
"I've always loved Rick Bayless," the director said, adding he enjoys his books, recipes and eating at Bayless' various restaurants. Among Falls' favorites in Mexican cuisine (especially as done by Bayless) are enchiladas, moles, green sauces and red sauces, and guacamole.
"I love just about everything," he said. "One of the great things about living in Chicago are all the ethnic restaurants."
Other favored cuisines by Falls are Japanese and Thai.
Falls said he's always been interested in food but up until the age of 40, he didn't do much cooking. "(Then) I found cooking to be a hobby," he said.
If Falls could choose a perfect dinner companion, he said he would have loved to share a meal with William Shakespeare.
"He could tell me all the things I don't understand about his plays. There's nobody who uses words better in the English language."
The following is a recipe from Falls.
ROASTED VEAL SHORT RIBS
4 veal short ribs
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup sherry vinegar
1/2 bouillon cube
1 large onion, thinly sliced
4 garlic cloves, crushed
1 spring flat-leaf parsley, chopped
DIRECTIONS: Coat each rib with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. In a small saucepan, bring wine and vinegar to a boil. Whisk in bouillon. Remove from heat and set aside. Arrange onions in bottom of a roasting pan and pour in wine/vinegar mixture. Add garlic. Place ribs in roasting pan, skin-side up. Place pan in a cold oven, then turn heat to 325 degrees and let ribs cook for 1 hour. Baste ribs with pan juices and cook for another hour, turning and basting every 15 minutes. Increase heat to 400 degrees and cook for another 30 minutes, until ribs are dark black. Remove ribs from the oven and arrange on a platter. Spoon pan sauce and onions over ribs, garnish with parsley, and serve.