If you’ve never visited Houston, you might be surprised at its similarities to LA. A sprawling city of 2.3 million, it’s been called the most diverse city in the U.S. There isn’t an ethnic majority, and one in four residents were born in another country.
Chris Shepherd is a Houston chef and restaurateur who revels in this diversity. At his restaurants like UB Preserv, ingredients like fish sauce, tamarind, and chili oil make regular appearances on the table. He says getting out of his silo to meet his neighbors has not only transformed his cooking and palate, but also his sense of community. He’s written a book recommending that we do the same, called “Cook Like a Local.”