While I love an overstuffed sub, some occasions call for a daintier sandwich. One of my favorites is the traditional cucumber and cream cheese sandwich served at high tea. On this week's episode of Between the Bread, I show you how to make the American version with this recipe for a Benedictine cheese sandwich. Created in Louisville, KY, at the turn of the century, this crustless sandwich combines cucumber, cream cheese, and scallions and is perfect for serving at a bridal shower, a luncheon, or a sophisticated picnic. Watch the video to learn how to make this easy, chic sandwich this Summer.
Headed to the horse races this weekend — or just looking to cool off? Then settle in with a frosty mint julep. It's a drink that's perfectly balanced: it's sweet, clean, and potent all at the same time. Although it involves crushed ice, it's an easy cocktail to make at home. Watch the video now to see how it's done.
Kentucky is perhaps best known for thoroughbred horse racing, mint juleps, and — lately — its national championship-winning college basketball teams. But the state is quite a foodie haven with a rich culinary tradition.
Thanks to the many ethnic influences on its cuisine, Kentuckians have developed a diverse array of foods over the last few centuries that make the state a worthy destination for Derby Day and beyond. Take a minute to learn more about some of the state's delicious offerings.
Burgoo: While this stew was not invented in Kentucky, the state has molded the dish into something all its own. There was a time when burgoo derived its main ingredients from whatever meat was available (squirrel, opossum, raccoon, and venison were popular choices), but today you'll find most restaurants fill their hearty pots with pork, chicken, and mutton.
Mutton barbecue: Western Kentucky was once the state's center for wool production, so mutton became a popular meat. However, the most widely available sheep were often older and their meat tougher and too strongly flavored. Slow-cooked barbecue became an efficient way to soften and season the meat. Today, Owensboro, KY, is still renowned for its delicious mutton barbecue.
Keep reading to see more Kentucky favorites.
The Kentucky Derby is next weekend, and even if you're not a horse-racing aficionado, getting into the spirit for this big Spring event can make for a seriously fun party. Let's be real: who doesn't love an excuse to wear over-the-top Spring fashions and drink pretty bourbon-filled beverages? If you're needing a little inspiration, here are some tips for ways to bring the Derby spirit to your home.
Set the Scene
Before the race, you've got to set the mood. In the décor department, channel the Derby's nickname "Run For the Roses" with big bouquets of lovely fresh flowers. For a modern take on traditional bluegrass music, look to the bands Railroad Earth and Assembly of Dust to provide the soundtrack. Everyone will be asking whose music is playing.
Assemble a Southern Spread
I've never been lucky enough to make it to the Kentucky Derby, but this year I am attending a Derby party! I offered to take care of the drinks for my friends, knowing exactly what I'd be serving: mint juleps, of course.
It's unclear how this beverage became the official refreshment of the Kentucky Derby, but it's served with great ceremony at the event, and has been since as far back as 1938.
Since I'm pouring the cocktail for a crowd and I don't have the right number of julep cups, I'm preparing most of the drink ahead. Then, I'll set up a self-serve bar with mason jars for a different kind of Southern charm. Get a laid-back take on the Derby classic when you read on.
Like most of you, I relish Thanksgiving leftovers. Stuffing, mashed potatoes, and turkey legs all possess a greater depth of flavor the next day. But white meat turkey always seems to taste worse the following morning. In my mind, consuming leftover turkey breast is up there with finishing day-old fish. To help matters, I decided to try a regional dish I've always wanted to make: the legendary Kentucky Hot Brown. This warm sandwich, created at the Brown Hotel in 1926, is an open-faced wonder of roasted turkey, bacon, and tomatoes on fat toast, drizzled with luscious Mornay sauce. Nearly a century later, there are many variations, but I returned to the original, a move I don't regret. I love how the creamy, nutty Pecorino cheese sauce offsets the lean tone of turkey breast. For a Thanksgiving leftover idea you'll be making for years to come, keep reading.
I've always wanted to be at Churchill Downs during the Kentucky Derby, and this year is no exception — especially since the Top Chef crew will be there, cooking up a storm. But if you're like me and will only be able to watch the races from the comfort of your home this weekend, get into the spirit by making a Louisville, KY, classic: the hot brown. In case you're not familiar with it, the hot brown is a creamy, rich, hot sandwich that's made of sliced turkey, bacon, toast points, and a cheesy Mornay sauce. Many aspects of the hot brown are up for debate, from the original creator of the sandwich and the year it was conceptualized to what type of cheese ought to go on the sandwich. But what's indisputable about this sandwich is that it's insanely indulgent, and a quintessential part of Kentucky cuisine.
For a version that's easy from start to finish, employ the use of sliced, roasted turkey. Or, impress your friends by going all out with an elaborate recipe that calls for making the turkey from scratch. See both versions of the sandwich when you read more
KY Workplace Shooting: An employee at a plastics plant in Kentucky opened fire after an argument, leaving six dead including the shooter. The CEO says the killings are just a "total shock." The incident began when an employee began arguing with a supervisor around midnight — he then shot the supervisor before opening fire in a break room. The plant employs around 150 people and makes plastic siding for homes.
- Divers Pull Bodies From Typhoon: 100 divers search the wreckage of the capsized Philippine ferry, finding no additional survivors yet. When the seven-story ferry sunk in less than a half-hour during a powerful typhoon, the 800 passengers had little time to prepare, but the transportation undersecretary says she's hoping for "a miraculous air pocket somewhere in the ship." Only 62 of the 800 passengers have been found alive. The shipwreck could raise the typhoon's death toll to more than 1,300, with 329 people confirmed dead from flooding and landslides and more than 200 still missing.
- Mortgage Aid Could Pass: The US Senate could pass a mortgage aid plan as soon as today. The massive foreclosure rescue bill cleared a key Senate test yesterday by an 83-9 margin, with both parties eager to help homeowners. The plan would let the Federal Housing Administration back $300 billion in new, low-cost home loans for about 400,000 distressed borrowers who would be considered too financially risky to qualify for government-insured, fixed-rate loans. Though it could pass vote today, President Bush is threatening a veto and Democrats are still fighting each other over key details, possibly delaying any final deal until mid-July.
If Obama winds up being the Democratic nominee, he'll have an uphill climb in Kentucky. According to exit polls, 41 percent of Clinton supporters said if Obama's the choice, they'd cast their vote instead for John McCain, and 23 percent said they would not vote at all. Those odds are worse for Obama than West Virginia.