I'm not the only one obsessed with Popsicles; so is Krystia Castella, the author of the recently released Pops! Icy Treats for Everyone. The book is full of frozen delights, but I was completely intrigued by her recipe for rice pudding Popsicles. For a Summer twist, I replaced the raisins and orange zest with fresh local peaches to complement the creamy and cinnamony rice pudding. I truly enjoyed the flavor of these Popsicles, however, the frozen grains of rice were slightly chewy and interfered with the otherwise smooth texture. During the next heatwave, I'll experiment with pureeing the rice pudding for a more horchata-like consistency. To learn how to make these delicious and original Popsicles, read more
Posts for August 11th 2008
As bartenders raise the bar on the quality of cocktails, it's no wonder I've become interested in doing the same at home. At happy hour, I no longer want to make a simple rum and coke, instead I prefer to experiment with exciting combinations and fresh, seasonal ingredients.
Recently I purchased Food and Wine Cocktails 2008, an informative, paperback full of classic and modern recipes from the nation's hippest bars and restaurants. From wine spritzers to whiskey drinks to party punches to bar snacks, nothing is overlooked or forgotten. To see what I think of the book, read more
Last night, I dined at a local Burmese cafe with a friend. While we went there for dinner, which was delicious, I wound up getting tipsy on these beer drinks called Burma coolers.
With a lemon zing and tangy ginger finish, they were wildly refreshing, so I tried to re-create them at home.
To see how I made my version of this divine drink, read more
At a recent restaurant outing, a friend and I ordered an appetizer that was an unusual (but not unheard of) combination of flavors: gruyère cheese and Fuji apples.
The combination of melted cheese and apples has always been a favorite of mine, and it made me ponder the other unusual pairings that I've loved in my lifetime. As a 5-year-old, I wrapped Kraft singles around my bananas. In college, my roommate got me hooked on canned tuna with cottage cheese. And these days, I enjoy chips in my sandwich.
I'd love to hear your confessions: What are the unusual (or even gross sounding) food combinations that appeal to you?
Yet Another Recall? Beef From Whole Foods Sorry to spread the bad news, but we have yet another recall to deal with. Whole Foods voluntarily recalled more than 1.2 million pounds of ground beef that has come from Coleman Natural Beef's Nebraska Beef processing plant. It pains me to say it but E. coli strikes again.
Recently my friend Kirin told me about her decision to start a documentary film club. The club will be similar to a book club, but instead of reading and discussing a book, guests will watch and chat about a documentary. I was excited by the idea and volunteered to create a menu for the first meeting, where King Corn will be the featured movie. Since the foodie film focuses on the lifecycle of the crop, Kirin wants the party to be as environmentally friendly as possible. Instead of wasting paper by sending hard invites, she's requested that I make a green email invite. To see how I made the one shown here, read more
Last week Forbes released a list of the 10 top-earning celebrity chefs. The richest celebrity "chef" is Rachael Ray who, thanks to her four Food Network shows, daytime television show, magazine, and Dunkin' Donuts deal, makes $18 million a year. She's followed by Oscar caterer Wolfgang Puck ($16 million) and Gordon Ramsay ($7.5 million).
While owning a restaurant doesn't necessarily factor into a chef's riches (Ray owns no restaurants), it's clear that more exposure and countless endeavors amount to more money.
Puck owns 15 restaurants and has a soup line in grocery stores and a collection of knives sold on the Home Shopping Network. Ramsay has numerous restaurants and hit television shows in both the US and UK.
Although television played a huge role in the success of Ray, Puck, and Ramsay, it's interesting to note that the fourth and fifth richest chefs, Nobuyuki Matsuhisa and Alain Ducasse, have little to no television presence, but each own more than 15 restaurants worldwide. To check out the complete list of the world's richest chefs, read more
One of my self-assigned tasks this week is to reorganize my rapidly growing cookbook collection. While I didn't start out with very many, I've accrued at least a dozen recipe books over the past two years. I love cookbooks, but I question whether I should hang on to the ones I've never used. How many cookbooks do you own? Do you use recipes from all of them?
Before my first attempt to make seared tuna, I was daunted by its sophistication. It wasn't until after that I realized the dish is deceptively foolproof — unlike chicken, you don't have to worry about whether it's cooked through!
Since the outside is seared quickly at high heat and the center of the steak is rare, the fish takes no time to cook. If you prefer more well done tuna, simply increase the cooking time. When searing the tuna in batches, be sure to add another 1 1/2 tablespoons oil for the second round of tuna.
To get the recipe, read more