Potatoes as a cornerstone.
Being from France, Vongerichten thinks of potatoes as cornerstone cuisine, an everyday item made easily sublime. "We do a potato at Jean-Georges," he says, "where you cook onions in olive oil, then add slices of Yukon gold and then chicken stock, salt, pepper, lemon juice, and chilies. Cook until the onions are soft and the potatoes are brown. We finish it in the oven, and the potatoes absorb all the flavors."