TODAY   |  August 17, 2012

Prodigy chef, 13, makes mushrooms on a log

Flynn McGarry, a 13-year-old chef, and acclaimed French restaurateur Daniel Boulud show TODAY’s Al Roker how to make the haute cuisine dish mushrooms on a log.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> long. kitchen, step by step , a 13-year-old chef prodigy. when flynn mcgarry was 10 years old he started cooking for his family because he was tired of the meals his mother was making. three years later he's working with some of america's most prominent chef. one master chef he admires also started cooking at a very young age. good to see both of you.

>> i started at 14, the age of flynn .

>> that's cool. flynn , is this true that you're so serious about cooking, you turned your bedroom into a kitchen?

>> yes, it is.

>> how did you do that?

>> with the help of ikea and my dad, we just kind of built --

>> what are you doing?

>> this is coffee bean puree.

>> it's not just coffee beans . it's actually coffee and beans.

>> right here with a little cream and butter.

>> kind of the basis for -- making mushrooms on a log.

>> mushrooms on a log.

>> you literally have a log.

>> that's a lot of fiber.

>> outside on the sidewalk -- not on the sidewalk, but went outside and burned it with the blow torch .

>> you're actually here doing kind of an apprenticeship.

>> yes.

>> how has that been for you?

>> it's a great experience, teaching me different stations. every day they put me on a different station to work. i mean, every day i learn a new thing.

>> learn new skills. what are you doing here, chef.

>> i'm very impressed by his knowledge. go ahead. i am "the apprentice" today.

>> you started cooking at a young age. do you see a little of yourself in flynn ?

>> very much. i didn't have a chance to have -- certainly very much his generation, he told me he started to be interested by classic cooking but now is also studying all the different techniques.

>> flynn , tell me about this. you're kind of like dry sauteing the strawberries.

>> we're just charring them.

>> how come?

>> get kind of a toasty, smoky flavor?

>> what do you think of that?

>> very interesting. he wanted a contrast of fruityness on this very woodsy -- the idea of using the log and to bring -- of course, when he burned the log, he explained me the whole recipe. you really get this flavor.

>> so the idea you're getting some flavor, smokiness from the log.

>> if we could have open flames, i blow torch the log. the flame coming up and smell the smoke as you're eating it.

>> how many did you serve the most menu. i've seen on your website, on your blog you are serving up to 12 course sometimes.

>> i've done a couple where i've done like 16 courses.

>> what are you putting there?

>> these are time flowers.

>> wow, you are dedicated.

>> dried corn.

>> freeze dried corn.

>> impressive.

>> you're about to turn 14. what are you going to do for your birthday?

>> probably go out to eat somewhere.

>> go out and eat.

>> just go nuts. go to in-n-out burger.

>> scallions. watercress.

>> a dash of --

>> black vinegar.

>> the finished product there. that's fantastic.

>> i want flynn to travel. he's never been to france, never been to europe yet.

>> all right.

>> so i think the next big challenge for him is to go and work there.

>> you need somebody to help you.

>> one day flynn , his dream is to become a chef and be in the 50 best restaurants in the way.

>> on his way.

>> on his way.

>> in fact, you guys might want to pay attention. we've got bon appetit coming up with the top ten recipes. coming up, the recipe, mushrooms