REMINDER: GREAT TASTE LIVE AT GREEN BUILDING SUPPLY
TUESDAY, JANUARY 3 AT 7:00 PM
with CHEF ERIC FROM EVERYBODY'S CAFE
Last week's visit with Tenaya Darlington author along with her brother, André of Movie Night Menus, inspired me to replay the following show about movies and food. If you want to curl up on the couch with a great food flick read on.
It was so much fun discussing food in films with Caroline M. Grant. Caroline and her collaborator, Lisa Catherine Harper, are the editors of The Cassoulet Saved Our Marriage, a fascinating book of diverse essays focussed on "true tales of food, family, and how we learn to eat."
Caroline is an avid movie lover so we spent the hour talking about some of our favorite films where food plays a role like Aing Lee's Eat Drink Man Woman and its Westernized counterpart, Tortilla Soup. Dinner Rush, The Big Night, Moonstruck, and others were part of the banter before time ran out. We had many other films on our list, but I'm curious how the ones we ended up talking about fit in with your favorites. Let me know. Send your comments to email@example.com.
Caroline's kids also nominated their favorite food film.
Whenever I think of chestnuts the first image that pops into my mind is a street vendor in Rome selling fresh roasted marroni (chestnuts) in little brown bags. The smell of a wood fire wafts into my nostrils, and my heart fills with longing to walk the streets of Roma on a cold December night with my wife, and stroll from piazza to piazza experiencing the wide variety of stalls filled with a myriad of items for Natale.
Next I am transported to a small woods in Cerro, a tiny town above Verona at the foot of the mountains. Our family is walking with Severina, our Italian mother, and she is instructing us on how to find and pick up chestnuts. She turns the leaves over with her cane uncovering more and more of the prickly cases that encase the nut. We stuff our bags full, and head to her apartment to roast some, and get warm.
It may not be quite as romantic, but John Freeberg, Michael Havelka, and a few other folks joined me at Green Building Supply on Tuesday, December 13 for our own local chestnut festival. John turned out a quite delicious apple/chestnut soup. Also, he made a chestnut hummus, a chocolate cake with chestnuts, and the live audience enjoyed a triple cream cow's milk cheese (Trillium from Fox River Dairy)with a honeycrisp apple, and hot spiced apple juice.
Michael Havelka talked about the chestnut, its history in the States and Iowa, growing chestnuts for profit, and John chimed in about preparing them in numerous ways. We also tackled such lofty topics as the future of agriculture with Avi Pogel, Dr. Thimm, Chef Eric, and one or two other folks contributing to the lively discussion.
Next month join me and Chef Eric from Everybody's Cafe LIVE at GBS at 7:00 pm on Tuesday, January 3.
Interviews either click or they don't. Luckily, most of the time, they flow smoothly. Some times they flow like they could go on forever.
It was a real pleasure talking with Julia Turshen, and I actually discovered the "why" near the end of our discussion. Sorry, I can't give the revelation away, but I hope you'll listen and find out for yourself.
Julia has co-authored cookbooks, many for top-notch chefs and cooks like Mario Batali and Dana Cowin, and even the actor, Gwyneth Paltrow. She even hosted her own radio show for a time, Radio Cherry Bombe, on the Heritage Radio Network. Small Victories is her first cookbook, and it is an intimately personal tome full of stories that accompany each recipe.
JAKE GRATZON OF OLD CAPITOL FOOD COMPANY, JENNIFER KNOX OF SALTLICKERS, and Mary Adam, astounding local cook were guests on Tuesday's LIVE Great Taste at Green Building Supply!
Listen to the show on KRUU at 7:00 PM Wednesday or 7:00 AM on Friday.
Rosie Witherspoon from the At Home Store joined me Tuesday night at Green Building Supply for our montly GREAT TASTE LIVE show. We talked and cooked together, and Tom Allen surprised us by dropping by, joining in on the fun, and singing a song about the Boston Tea Party.
We built the show around a few critical utensils that will help you cook more effectively and easily. We featured silicone spatulas from GIR, Gefu's spiralizer, cheese grater, and mandoline, plus a cool jar lid that makes pickling in small batches a breeze.
Steve Katz is a renaissance man, cook, writer, recipe developer, attorney, musician, and a deep thinker concerning the role of men in the kitchen. Rosie Witherspoon, owner of the At Home Store, met Steve at the International Housewares Show this past March, wrote an article about him for the Iowa Source, and joined me this week in a discussion with Steve about gender and location specific (men in the kitchen) behavioral characteristics. Men (and women) get ready. You will be nodding in agreement with each observation Steve makes.
Click READ MORE for more information on this week's show.
I think you could make a case that Biodynamic farming has been around in one form or another since man began cultivating plants. It was formalized in the 1920's as a part of the anthroposophical philosophy founded by the Austrian philosopher, writer, and esotericist Rudolf Steiner.
The biodynamic approach continues to grow in popularity, and, for example, this week the 1,033 acre King Estate Winery in Eugene, Oregon, announced it will soon become the largest biodynamic vineyard in the United States.
Robert Karp is the Co-Director of the Biodynamic Association, and a long-time food activist. He was one of the cofounders of the Ames Farmers Market, and a former executive director of Practical Farmers of Iowa. Our discussion assisted me in gaining a better understanding of the holistic nature of biodynamics, and I know you will find his insights stimulating.
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Don't miss two of my favorite cooks this week on Great Taste: Amanda Hass and Anna Thomas.
Amanda Hass is the Culinary Director at Williams Sonoma, and she filled me in on what it's like working in the test kitchen. She is also the author of the recently published book, The Anti-Inflamation Cookbook, co-authored with Dr. Bradley Jacobs. Amanda, who has suffered from serious intestinal irritation issues, used her own wellness journey as a basis for developing the recipes in this book, which is filled with helpful tips designed to make eating a joyful and healthy experience again.
Anna Thomas started a cookbook revolution in 1973 when her now classic, The Vegetarian Epicure, was published. Her newest book, Vegan Vegetarian Omnivore: Dinner for Everyone at the Table, is a paradigm-shifting volume filled with over 200 recipes. The book is about hospitality. "Start with the foods that everyone eats," she writes, "design a meal that works, then expand it, make it flexible..." Personally, I think she may have hit on a real solution for world peace.
Don't forget GREAT TASTE is LIVE at Green Building Supply next week, Tuesday, May 3 with asparagus whisperer, Michael Havelka. See you there at 7:00 pm for the show and free tasting of my favorite spring vegetable.
Few restaurants have had as lasting an impact on the San Francisco (and beyond) food scene as Square One. Opened in 1984 by Joyce Goldstein, who served as the iconic spot’s chef/owner over the next 12 years, Square One showcased Joyce’s passion for not only the Mediterranean food of her beloved Italy, but also encompassed dishes from Spain, France, Turkey, Greece, and Morocco. The menu changed daily, and the focus on the plate was whatever was fresh and seasonal.
Throughout the years Joyce has continued to teach and inspire as a consultant to the restaurant and food industries, and as the author of numerous books and magazine articles. Her latest book, The New Mediterranean Jewish Table: Old World Recipes for the Modern Home, is an extensive collection of 420 recipes designed to expand the understanding of Jewish food beyond its generally narrow confines of matzoh ball soup and brisket.
Each easy-to-follow recipe is presented in its context as part of the Jewish culinary spirit that thrived in the Mediterranean, the Sephardic, Maghreb, or the Mizrahi cultures, as opposed to the familiar, but limited dishes of the Ashkenazi or Eastern European Jews.
Joyce continues to be one of my culinary heroes. I look forward to Passover, and the difference some of the recipes in this book will make to our table and understanding of the journey to freedom.
Don't worry! If you missed the tasting on Tuesday, March 1 at Green Building Supply, you can catch the show broadcast Wednesday at 7:00 pm or Friday at 7:00 am on KRUU.
CJ and Brett brought some awesome cheeses to Fairfield for us to taste, plus Brett provided a demo on how to make a superb grilled cheese sandwich. There are tricks. One major tecnique to employ: grate the cheese for a better, faster, more even melt. We were fortunate that Aaron Hall, pizzaiolo at Lincoln Wine Bar, brought a loaf of his fresh-baked bread down for the demo.
Also, Brett passed on a technique for making sauerkraut that doubles as a method of taking your own inner anxiety out on a head of cabbage.
Thanks to CJ for passing along great information on artisan American cheeses and cheesemakers. What a night.
As always, THANKS to Green Building Supply, Everybody's Whole Foods, Jason Strong and Fairfield Media Center, and KRUU.