Hi all. Brian here (the husband). We are very happy to launch this new design. Our goals include better navigation, site speed, and a better overall design for some of the amazing things we have planned this year. Hope you like it! (Don't fear change.)
Posts for March 5th 2009
My favorite bar in San Francisco, 15 Romolo, recently got a makeover where they installed a kitchen. Now, they not only offer innovative cocktails, but they're making scrumptious bar snacks as well. The best dish on the menu are the crispy dogs.
They take a hot dog, stuff it with cheese, wrap a tortilla around it, deep fry it, and serve it with a spicy chili sauce. The result is insanely tasty. It's spicy, crunchy, salty, and porky — everything you need in bar food. After taking one bite, I knew I could chow down multiple crispy dogs in minutes, especially when paired with a Rio Grande cocktail. How about you? Do these dogs sound delicious or disgusting?
Tired of TV chefs recommending kosher salt in recipes, retired barber Joe Godlewski decided to develop a Christian variety of salt. Next week, the Cesaptown, MD, businessman will roll out Blessed Christians Salts, sea salt that's been blessed by an Episcopal priests and packaged in containers bearing bright red crosses.
For Godlewski, the trademarked salts, which are made by Ingredients Corporation of America, are meant to help the Christian faith: "I said, 'What the heck's the matter with Christian salt?' This is about keeping Christianity in front of the public so that it doesn't die. I want to keep Christianity on the table, in the household, however I can do it."
Godlewski plans to sell the salt in religious bookstores and as a fund-raising tool for religious groups, pointing out that a share of the proceeds will be donated to Christian charities. If the salt proves to be successful, the entrepreneur is planning an entire line of Christian-branded foods, including rye bread, bagels, and pickles.
When I first learned of this, I practically did a double take to make sure I wasn't reading the Onion. It's somewhat entertaining to follow, since I admittedly take the whole issue with a grain of salt. In fact, I'm rather surprised nobody has come up with this already. What do you think about the whole concept of Christian salt?
Masa & Masa Harina
Masa — literally "dough" in Spanish — is a cornmeal dough traditionally used in Latin cuisine. Unlike cornmeal, it's made of sun- or fire-dried corn kernels that have been cooked in a solution of lime or ash and water and then ground.
When dried again, the substance becomes masa harina, or "dough flour." Both are used to make tortillas, empanadas, tamales, among other dishes.
Months ago, I ripped this recipe for rose sangria out of Food and Wine magazine. The recipe has haunted me — I've tried to make it several times, but on each occasion, I've run into problems. The first shot I didn't realize the syrup needed a night to macerate. The second try I thought I had Port in my wine rack, but didn't. The third attempt I could no longer find fresh cranberries at the local market. However, I've decided I WILL make it for my half birthday picnic. There is plenty of time between now and then for me to make sure I have all of the necessary ingredients. A batch can be whipped up in advance and kept chilled in a cooler on the ride out to the Hog Island Oyster Company farm.
Besides the sangria, I'll pack beer, water, and champagne. To look at the recipe, read more
Take the Quiz
The fifth season of Top Chef officially came to a close last night with the cast gathering for the reunion episode. The show was hilarious as they highlighted Jamie's complaining and Carla's kookiness. Did you watch? How well were you paying attention? Find out now when you take my last — well until season six starts! — TC quiz.
Last week, Rocco DiSpirito declared he was sick of foie gras. Then we made a list of things we're over. Here's another tired food trend to add to the queue: kid foodies. Lately, the little ones have been making a lot of noise in the kitchen. First, there was Greg Grossman, a 13-year-old who was the hottest rising caterer on the Hamptons circuit. Then the New York Times told the world about David Fishman, a 12-year-old aspiring food critic, and Paramount promptly purchased the rights to turn his story into a movie. Last, but certainly not least, was Julian Kreusser, a 5-year-old from Portland with a recurring cooking show.
What to make of this growing trend? While those with a fondness for a child's precociousness may be bowled over, the rest of us are left feeling slightly perturbed. In response, at least one journalist has voiced her issue with it.
In a Slate article, food writer Regina Schrambling argues that letting children into the kitchen at such a young age is both dangerous and premature. Childrens' taste buds differ from adult palates and they have a smaller frame of reference for food, making it hard to tell the difference between a good burger and a bad burger. Schrambling writes:
On a larger scale, the trend emphasizes the worst of the food frenzy today: The celebration of celebrity and novelty over authenticity and seriousness.
Maybe it's because I didn't hone my culinary skills until I was an adult, but I have to side with Schrambling. Kids should be kids — childhood, in all its joys, is short enough. Do you agree — are you equally sick of hearing about tots flipping omelets in the kitchen?
My obsession with all things Spanish is no secret. From José Andrés to Crianza to paella, if it's Spanish, I love it! This affection includes manchego, Spain's most famous cheese. Manchego cheese is protected by a Denominación de Origen, meaning it can only be made from sheep that graze in the La Mancha region of Spain. The whole sheep's milk cheese must also be aged in natural caves for a minimum of two months.
Depending on how long it's aged, the flavor can range from mild to sharp. Manchego comes in a round shape and is cut into chunky wedges. The inedible rind gets its pattern from the manufacturing process that involves wrapping the cheese in sheets of a special woven grass. Manchego tastes creamy and slightly salty. Learn how to use the versatile Spanish cheese and check out the recipe for this scrumptious pizza when you read more