Archive of Great Taste

58:12 minutes (53.29 MB) Mono 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

We are so fortunate to have the opportunitMade in Americay to meet amazing people regularly because of the Great TastLucy Leane radio program.  Through solar-powered KRUU we get to bring those folks into your home or car or wherever you may happen to pick up the stream.

 Right from the beginning of our conversation with our guest this week, Lucy Lean, Kathy and I felt like we had met a kindred spirit on many levels.  Lucy is a mother, wife, farmer's daughter, former editor of edible Los Angeles, blogger, photographer, a food judge for the Gordon Ramsay Fox hit TV show Masterchef, and the author of Made in America:  Our Best Chefs Reinvent Comfort Food.  The book features 100 recipes from chefs located all over the country and with varying cultural backgrounds.  The diversity of personalities and Lucy's vision of adapting 20th century regional comfort food recipes to today's ingredients and techniques makes for an engaging read and amazing recipes.

60:00 minutes (54.93 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Jessica TherouxAward-winning author Jessica Theroux kicks off our show this week.  Jessica was on the show last year talking about her book, Cooking with Italian Grandmothers.  In May the book won the coveted International Association of Culinary Professionals 2010 Judge's Choice Award.

58:57 minutes (53.97 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Everyday Raw ExpressIt's been a couple of months since I started incorporating more raw foods into my diet as a result of our vegan/raw challenge on Great Taste. I'm definitely not on the "this is amazing and you have to do it" bandwagon for raw foods, but I have noticed significant and positive ongoing beneifits from the adjustments I made. 

Breakfast turned out to be the focal point for me.  My routine went from eggs, toast, cheese, and other standard American fare to fruit smoothies or whole fruits and manna bread.  That switch has meant less cravings, elimination of snacking before lunch and more mental clarity.  Because of those results and a determination to eat lighter and add a raw element at lunch and dinner I've also lost some excess body baggage.

59:36 minutes (54.57 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Mendocino Coast

Garlicpalooza returns to the Fairfield Farmer's Market, Saturday, September 3 as the focal point for the annual Hometown Harvest fundraiser. Tanya Webster, the event coordinator, and Kim Keller from Hometown Harvest are our in-studio guests for the first half hour.

Some of the dishes you might experience at Garlicpalooza (made almost entirely with local produce) feature garlic from roasted to raw on bruschetta, and in a marinara sauce.  Kathy and I are making a gazpacho with an infused garlic/mint olive oil plus look for salsa, a garlic potato soup and much more. Plus, there will be lots of speakers so don't miss it.

Kacie with Sea Palm

We move to the West Coast for the second half of the hour to visit with Kacie Ioparto, the energy behind She Sells Seaweed.  Kacie recently moved from harvesting seaweed on the coast of Maine to Mendocino where she's learning about new varieties of the vitamin-rich plants.  What she said about her current swimming hole resonated with me:

"Each time I move to a new place it is song and work that make me feel at home. There are a few women that help us dry our seaweed who also love to sing. You’ll be happy to know that your seaweed is serenaded as it is thoroughly inspected and hung to dry."

- 20110824 - Great Taste - Get "Blissfully Fit"

60:01 minutes (54.95 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Wild Rice SaladI knew it was a sign that Great Taste is right in tune with what's happening in America when I read an article in the NYT Monday entitled, "Preaching a Healthy Diet in the Deep-Fried Delta."  It seems that the National Baptist Convention is planning to have "health ambassadors" in every member church by September 2012.  Some churches have even established "No Fry" zones in their kitchens.  Frankly, this is great news as it's critical that organizations with influence on family life take an aggressive approach to educating their public about eating well.

Our guest this week, David Lee Sheng Tin, is a health coach and lifestyle consultant. who has developed the Blissfully Fit course.  He asserts that, "Bliss is a state of complete joy and/or happiness.  When you are blissful you feel contentment and serenity.  For Bliss to be maintained 24/7 a state of mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual well-being has to be present."

60:01 minutes (54.95 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Melon Salad/AmisKathy and I are back in the studio this week with a "live" show.  I've been on the road enjoying meals in Las Vegas, Chicago, and Philadelphia.  One thing I finally realized is that I would make a very poor food critic.  A food critic does visit a restaurant several times (or should) before putting into print what, in some markets, determines a spot's success or eventual boarding up.  After and between those visits there are numerous other establishments that have to be subjected to the scribe's palate.  It's a never-ending story of moving on and not going back until it's time to do another review. 

60:01 minutes (54.95 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Red Beet RavioliIt's been a very interesting two weeks for me as I started the Challenge a little earlier than our Great Taste listeners.  Those of you who tuned in for the introductory show a couple of weeks back know how skeptical I was.  Several times I said there was no way I could stand drinking my breakfast (smoothies) every morning.  I needed something substantial that I could chew.  OK, I don't.  What a revelation.  I love the smoothies.  They make me feel alert.  My need to snack has been tamed.  I can happily say I was wrong.  Now, does that mean I've been converted to vegan/raw foods?  No, but I do plan to continue integrating a lot more raw food into my daily diet.   For my physiology, it seems to work.  That's all I can really say plus I like the clean flavors (and I've lost some weight). 

I would be very interested to hear from all our Vegan/Raw Challenge participants.  What did you do, learn, experience?  Let us know by sending an email to:

60:01 minutes (54.95 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Gastronomic Creation12 Indian Hills Culinary students along with the director of the program, Chef Gordon Rader, returned this week from two weeks in Spain.  They spent the mornings learning Spanish, cooked all afternoon and enjoyed excursions to wineries, restaurants, and farms while basking in an atmosphere overflowing with the red carpet treatment.  They are all going to crowd into the studio and give us the chance for some vicarious thrills while relating some of the trip's significant happenings on this week's GREAT TASTE.

The program they participated in is part of a larger cultural and educational exchange created by Rader and his Spanish counterpart, Fernando Perez of Escuela do la Cocina International in conjunction with the Univ. of Valladolid, University of Salamanca and the Royal Academy of Gastronomy of Spain.  One objective of the program is to have year-round classes for high school and college students, farmers, producers, and anyone involved in the world of food.   These classes would be held in both Spain and the states.

- 20110713 - Great Taste - Vegan/Raw Food Challenge

59:37 minutes (54.58 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Raw LasagnaWe've been talking about doing a two week vegan/raw food challenge for months, and now it's time.  We've assembled a great team to help those of us who are going to need a lot of hand-holding (#1 on that list is your show host), otherwise we'll be reaching for the cheese among other foods .  Check out their credentials below, and join us on Wednesday for all the details of how you can participate in this great Great Taste event.

By the way, it's going to be easy and fun.  No stress.  The first week will consist of a vegan diet transitioning to a raw diet in the second week of the challenge.  Many menus and recipes will be provided, but you will need a few things:

Food Processor
Your own copy or borrow from a friend the following books:
Ani's Raw Food Essentials by Ani Phyo
Veganamicon by Moskowitz and Romero
Both books are available in electronic editions

59:57 minutes (54.89 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Cosmic MintAnother delicious show is set for this week's version of Great Taste.  Barbara Yeager joins us in the studio.  Normally, she resides in Boulder, Colorado where she's engaged in creating all organic raw cacao bites with names like Heart Throb, Cosmic Mint, and Naked.   Her Life Openings chocolates are made without dairy, soy or gluten and sweetened with a low glycemic agave.

59:39 minutes (54.62 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Sunflower with Bee


Taggert Siegel

We have an amazing show lined up for you this week.  Our first guest Taggart Siegel is the director of Queen of the Sun:  What Are the Bees Telling Us?  Taggart was the acclaimed director behind the recent documentary The Real Dirt on Farmer John which told the true story of John Peterson, a farmer near Chicago who through a series of misfortunes ended up developing a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) that serves 1200 families.  

60:01 minutes (54.95 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Saturday, June 18 Fairfield turns red, green and white as we celebrate the best of Italia during the All Things Italian Street Festival.  On Great Taste we honor the food heritage of Italy with a little in-studio cooking done by our resident Sicilian, Kathy DuBois.  Also, we'll tell you about the pastas we'll be making at the At Home Store on Saturday afternoon.  Dick Deangelis, the godfather of the affair, will drop by to fill us in on all the festival details including the dishes that will be available on the piazza.

Micro-brews are continuing to expand their niche in the beer end of beverages.  We have an interesting micro-brewery almost on our doorstep-Peace Tree Brewing Company in Knoxville.  With luck we'll talk to the brewmaster (if his son's little league team loses on Tuesday we're on for sure, if they win there is another game on Wednesday so we have to hope his mobile signal works from the ballpark) and get the crazy story of how with a little smoke and mirrors the company was created and is putting out some delicious brews.

20110608 - Great Taste - Marion Nestle

57:41 minutes (52.81 MB) Mono 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Marion Nestle
Kathy and I taped an interview with Marion Nestle.  The hour is packed with timely information as we discussed the current outbreak of E. coli in Germany, MyPlate, and a host of other issues.  If you are not familiar with Marion, check out her bio (from her website) below.  She has been an outspoken voice in the area of food politics for many years and plays a key role in the "food revolution" along with Michael Pollan, Eric Shlosser, Alice Waters, Fairfield's own Francis Thicke, and many others.

Her blog can be found here.

- 20110601 - Great Taste - Why Choose a Vegetarian Diet?

60:00 minutes (54.93 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Mixed garden veggies and riceIt's almost impossible to pass by any location that features magazines without being bombarded by stories about the latest and greatest dietary triumphs.  From "Seaweed-eating Grandmother loses 175 pounds-Gives Birth to Triplets at 65," to "You can Stay Slim, Smart, and Supple eating 5000 calories/Day," we are obsessed with different types of consumptive behaviors.  With all the attention on food and diet it's even possible to conclude that the information available is easily understood and consumers can make intelligent choices without any problems.  Unfortunately, that doesn't play out in reality since the United States has one of the highest obesity rates in the world among industrialized nations and close to 25% of children and teenagers in this country are either overweight or obese.

- Great Taste - 20110511 - Creme Brule

60:01 minutes (54.95 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Crème brûlée is one dessert I can never pass up when it appears on a menu at a great spot.  The velvety feel of the custard provides a sensual treat for my mouth while the crunch of a perfectly caramelized sugar top adds that fun extra textural dimension.  I think a simple infused vanilla bean flavor is my favorite.  That's, of course, if all the elements come together properly.  There's a lot that can turn the dish into something not quite special, which is why it's always fun to continue the search for the perfect rendition.  Little did I think that journey might add a new chapter in the GREAT TASTE kitchen in our KRUU studio.

- Great Taste - 20110504 - Taiwan Food

60:00 minutes (54.94 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

We're going somewhere we've never dared venture before on this week's show-Taiwan.  I don't know how you feel, but my normal thinking about Asian restaurants is "I must be missing something."  So many of them serve the same food found on menus that look almost exactly the same, and read like they all came from the same copy machine.  Rumors always abound, from those in the know, that the best Asian food is only a language barrier away in many spots.  I know that to be true, sort of.  Many years ago, my wife and I walked into a spot in San Francisco I had carefully researched prior to beginning our trip.  The place was huge and completely filled.  We were the only Caucasians, the menu was not in any language I could read, and no one admitted that they spoke English.  I said "vegetarian" to our waiter and we had an amazingly satisfying, delicious and unknown meal.  In January I was in the Philly suburbs and spotted a place while cruising online that purported to serve "real" regional Chinese specialties if you ordered off the non-English part

60:00 minutes (54.93 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Pollinating the aroniaI met this week's guest, Andrew Pitz, several weeks ago at Wheatsfield, the co-op in Ames.  Andrew was promoting his Sawmill Hollow Family Farm's two varieties of aronia berry wine.  Immediately, I was struck by his passion for not only the little purple berry that is packed with high concentrations of anti-oxidants, but his ideas about land stewardship, natural healing, and the importance of sharing that knowledge to enrich both people and planet. While I listened, I tasted the wines which were very pleasing and will especially appeal to folks who don't like the tannic quality inherent in many grape wines. 

59:57 minutes (54.89 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)



We've got happy shots adorning this week's blog post. The little guy on the left is taking his life's work of pollinating seriously as he checks out the bloom on a Meyer Lemon tree. It's pretty easy to forget about the role that pollinators play in bringing food to our table. The bottom line is that without them most of the vegetables and fruits we eat wouldn't grow. Wanda Sandfire and Sean Johnson have plenty to tell us about the critical role of pollination played by a diverse number of insects, animals, and natural forces is explained.  Tune in as they help us understand and explain how we can contribute positively to the pollinator world.

59:52 minutes (54.81 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Spring is here?  Well, close enough for us to showcase Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) and the opportunities that abound locally and nationally.  The Asian greens pictured on this post come from a local CSA.  Asian greens are so simple and quick to serve plus they give a lot of nutrition back to us.  A fast and tasty method is to thinly slice some garlic and toss it into a pan that's been heated with a small amount of extra virgin olive oil.  Let the garlic soften over a medium low fire, but not brown.  After 2-3 minutes of cooking the garlic toss in the greens, hit them with a generous sprinkle of sea salt and use a tongs to mix them in the hot pan.  Cook until they are a bit wilted, but still maintain their bright color.  It only takes another 2-3 minutes.  Serve with a spritz of lemon or lemon zest on top and maybe a drizzle of olive oil.

- Great Taste - 20110406 - Cheesecake

60:01 minutes (54.95 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)


This week's show is one I have been looking forward to for months.  It took some major coordination to have all the proper players in town at the same time and available to share a treasured family recipe with our Great Taste audience.

I don't want to give away the story behind the formation in 1976 of the Bob Busch Cheesecake Company with its headquarters in Hawaii or how the company expanded and opened its own bakery in Venice, California.  You'll have to tune in as family members Lillian, Chris, Judy and Julia join us in the studio to share amusing anecdotes of cheesecakes past. Memoirs-Lillian Darr

Will they be bringing any cheesecake?  What do you think?  The famous recipe is available to subscibers to my free GREAT TASTE eletter.  You can sign up at this link.

- Great Taste - 20110330 - Nepali Feast

60:36 minutes (55.48 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Chef Mangal Tamang presents a dinner of typical Nepali food on our "live" broadcast from The Mainstay Inn this Wednesday.  Mangal is a Nepali native, graduate of the Indian Hills Culinary Program, and winner of an international cooking competition in Spain. 

The dinner is the first in our planned quarterly culinary extravaganzas that will serve as fundraisers for solar-powered and listener-supported KRUU. 

Here's what we'll be enjoying while you listen: [Click on the "Read More" link below]


- Great Taste - 20110323 - Feeding Your Brain

59:58 minutes (54.9 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

GREAT TASTE gets a bit scientific this week as we explore the role food plays in feeding the brain.  It seems funny that little attention is paid to this particularly important part of the physiology in the course of general food discussions.  We're always talking about how a particular food affects the functioning of other organs or usually conversing about the sensory titillations we experience when eating.  But, our brain serves as the central hub for everything that happens to us processing information through as many as 1 quadrillion synaptic connections.

If we are really taking care of physiological businesss we need to consider how to keep the brain in prime condition.  Rates of Alzheimer's disease are climbing dramatically, and some health experts believe that within the next 20 years one in every four adults in the US over 65 will contract the disease.  Perhaps the best strategy to combat brain-debilitating diseases is a routine designed to support the brain and its functioning?

- Great Taste - Nepali Dinner Blurb

7:45 minutes (7.1 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

The first KRUU fundraising dining experience is tastefully coming your way from The Mainstay Inn, 300 North Main Street on Wednesday, March 30th from 6:45-9:00 PM.

Experience a five-course Nepali dinner (vegetarian and non-vegetarian options) cooked by Chef Mangal Tamang, plus the fun of "LIVE" radio as we broadcast GREAT TASTE at 7:00 PM.

This elegant affair is designed to enhance not only your tastebuds, but Fairfield's grassroots, solar-powered community radio station, KRUU 100.1 FM. KRUU broadcasts its amazing array of diverse shows with the help of nearly 100 volunteers and relies on listener support to for operating expenses.

Here's how to get tickets to the Nepali taste extravaganza:  We have room for ONLY 22 guests. You have to submit a one-time bid to try and secure a ticket.One chance is all you get!

- Great Taste - 20110316 - Indian Hills

60:00 minutes (82.4 MB) Stereo 44kHz 192Kbps (CBR)

It's almost Spring so it's time to eat baby artichokes that make their way here from California.  The best I've found are grown organically by T & D Willey Farms in Madera.  We've had them in soup, pasta, risotto, and braised.  Every day is artichoke day; at least for a short while.  Before we know it asparagus will arrive, and the flood that follows that amazing stalk.  That reminds me I still haven't ordered seeds for a number of plants.  Hmmm, better get on that.

- Great Tase - 20110303 - Dora Pollack - tea time

58:30 minutes (80.34 MB) Mono 44kHz 192Kbps (CBR)

Ah, tea.  It was a wonderfully entertaining, relaxing and informative hour spent with Dora Pollak recording this week's Great Taste.  The previous weekend I had been to Gong Fu tea in Des Moines twice, and enjoyed the quiet atmosphere while sitting on a tatami mat with family members and sipping green tea.  So I was ready to learn more when Dora brought her pot, teas, and delicious goodies for tea snacking into the studio.  The aromas and smells of the different teas we tasted were divine.  The tea eggs and scones were perfect partners.

- Gravel Road Radio - 20110223 - Christine Goodale

59:53 minutes (54.83 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Want to get to know what drives a person to create the same thing over and over again until she's got it right?  Tune it to this week's Great Taste and listen to Christine Goodale.  This woman is a powerhouse plus an excellent cook.  Sure, she's got good genes coming from France, but it took perseverance to actually make the creations, you see as images on this post taste amazing.

- Great Taste - 20110216

59:13 minutes (54.22 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

Indian Hills held its own internal culinary Iron Chef competition on Monday and Ben Froah's team reigned supreme. Ben's agreed to recreate the dish that put his team over the top.  What's for dessert?  A tropical delight; a welcome addition nearing the end of winter's weeks.

Two of Ben's classmates join us so we'll get an inner look at why culinary school from them.  Indian Hills students always bring their passion into the studio, and this week was no exceptiion.

Your road warrior host has just returned from stops in Philadelphia, Atlantic City, Manhattan, Oakland, Ukiah, and Monterey.  I'll pass along the latest tips for great spots to eat if you are in any of those locales. 

Stop by for an after-dinner taste as we're broadcasting LIVE from the studio on Wednesday, listen to the stream at, or catch us on the rebound Friday at 7:00 am CST.  Anyone for a fish sandwich?

- 20110119 - Great Taste - Visits Paris

57:24 minutes (65.68 MB) Mono 44kHz 160Kbps (CBR)

Croissants Cole Porter's simple, but lovely song sung by Frank Sinatra is ringing in my ears while I write this post:
I love paris in the spring time
I love paris in the fall
I love paris in the summer when it sizzles
I love paris in the winter when it drizzles
I love paris every moment
Every moment of the year
I love paris, why oh why do I love paris
Because my love is here

We love the FOOD in Paris,  No surprise there.  Maybe you are planning a trip this year to that amazing city or possibly only dreaming of going.  Either way, you'll enjoy hearing the recent food exploits of Lonnie and Valerie Gamble during our next show. They returned a couple of weeks ago from a month's stay with Valerie's mom and shared their thoughts on how to eat well and not spend a fortune while talking with Kathy and me.

- 20110105 - Great Taste - Best of 2010 Cookbooks

59:52 minutes (54.81 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

The Art of Mexican CookingStrawberry Crepe It's hard to imagine what could top wandering New York's finest culinary bookstore where over 13,000 titles make stomachs gurgle and mouths water daily.  We're doing the next best thing which is talking with Matt Sartwell, manager of Kitchen Arts and Letters in Manhattan.  For more than 25 years the store has been a destination for chefs, authors, "foodies," and anyone interested in finding the right food book.  Its owner, Nock Wacksman, even has a strong Iowa connection.  He and his wife have been food judges at the Iowa State Fair for seven years.  Matt, who was an editor at Penguin Books before becoming a fixture at the store, will help us explore the best cookbooks of 2010, some current trends among publishers and the purchasing public plus discuss what books speak most clearly to different culinary interests.


59:57 minutes (54.89 MB) Stereo 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

chocolate pieedible table pieceThis week's show comes with a homework assignment.  Please read "Foodie Fatigue" by Christopher Borrelli prior to the show and be prepared to both laugh and do some head scratching.  The article appeared in the December 27 online edition of the Chicago Tribune and was forwarded to me by Great Taste listener Tom Kroupa.

Borrelli, who characterizes himself as "part of the problem," will spend some time on the phone with us from Chicago discussing his take on the frenzy surrounding many aspects of current food culture. 

Syndicate content