Trans-Siberian Railroad; Seafood Stew; Wasabi
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An Oregon farmer grows "real" wasabi on American soil and the editor of Saveur shares some tall turkey tales. Restaurateur Danny Meyer tells us that the customer is always second and Michael Freeman has unearthed the best chocolates on the planet. Sharon Hudgins relays her journey on the Trans-Siberian railroad and Russ Parsons warms us up with seafood stews. Christopher Kimball steps out of America’s Test Kitchen to tell us that families should eat at home and keep it simple.
Market Report: Pomegranates ()
Laura Avery speaks to Willy Nuata of Rocky Canyon Produce. Rocky Canyon is best known for their grass fed beef, but insiders know that they have some of the tastiest yams in the market. They sell a variety named Diane which has a very deep color and is super creamy inside. They also have several varieties of squash and their table looks like a harvest celebration.
If you haven't tried their beef, you may be in for a treat. In addition to being certified organic and grass fed, Rocky Canyon beef is dry-aged for up to 21 days, a rarely practiced process that results in the loss of up to 20 percent of the beef in the process. After dry aging, the outside of the beef must be cut away to expose the tender, flavorful interior meat. The beef products that remain are of exceptional quality and taste.
Laura also chats with Amelia Saltsman about pomegranates and she offers a delicious, easy way of preparing them.
Pomegranate and Orange-Glazed Beets
24 small beets, 1 to 2 inches in diameter, or 3 pounds larger beets, quartered
1 to 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup orange juice
1/3 cup pomegranate juice
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened
2 to 3 tablespoons chopped toasted pistachios, optional
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. If you haven¹t already, cut off the beet greens, leaving 1 inch of stem attached to beets, and reserve for another use. In a large baking dish, toss the beets with the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Cover pan and roast beets until almost tender when pierced with a knife, about 30 minutes, shaking the pan once during cooking
time. Uncover, shake the beets again, and roast uncovered until tender, about 15 minutes more. When cool, peel the beets using a paring knife (skins should come off easily). The beets may be prepared 1 day ahead and refrigerated. Return them to room temperature to finish the dish.
Pour the orange and pomegranate juices into a large skillet set over medium-high heat, and cook until juices are reduced by half and slightly syrupy, about 10 minutes. Add the beets and a little salt and pepper. Reduce the heat to medium, and cook the beets, frequently spooning the juices over them, until the juices become a very thick syrup, 6 to 7 minutes. Stir in the tablespoon of butter, reduce the heat as needed to keep the glaze from browning, and stir constantly 1 to 2 minutes until the beets are richly coated and the juices are a thick glaze. Add salt and pepper as needed. Sprinkle with the pistachios.
Makes 6 servings.
Adapted from The Santa Monica Farmers' Market Cookbook (Blenheim Press, Spring 2007) by Amelia Saltsman.
Music Break: One Way Trip (Cool Version) - Pop Group from the new Dance Orchester
Trans-Siberian Railroad ()
The Trans-Siberian Railway is a 5700 mile long route that connects Eastern Russia with Far East Russia. It's spans 8 time zones and takes about 7 days to do the complete journey.
An award-winning food and travel writer, Sharon Hudgins
has recently returned from a journey on the railway. She taught for the
University of Maryland University College in Germany, Spain, Greece,
Japan, Korea, and Russia. She served as an administrator for the
university's two undergraduate degree programs in Siberia and the
Russian Far East. Hudgins currently resides in McKinney, Texas, with
her husband, Tom.
Her book is The Other Side of Russia: A Slice of Life in Siberia and the
Russian Far East.
Russian Garlic Cheese
Called pikantny syr (spicy cheese) in Russian, this piquant cheese mixture is often used for stuffing ripe red tomatoes or spreading on chewy-textured Russian dark bread. Plenty of garlic provides the kick; you can also add some cayenne pepper or paprika to make the cheese even hotter. On a Trans-Siberian Railroad tour sponsored by National Geographic Expeditions last summer (2006), cheese-stuffed tomatoes, served on a bed of dark green lettuce leaves, was an especially popular appetizer in the train's dining car.
1/2 pound (8 ounces) medium-sharp white Cheddar cheese, finely shredded
1/2 pound (8 ounces) Emmental cheese, finely shredded
1/4 cup pure sour cream (containing no additives)
1/4 cup full-fat mayonnaise
8 to 10 large garlic cloves, put through a garlic press
1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper or hot paprika (optional)
1/4 teaspoon salt
Garnish: Snipped fresh chives (optional)
Toss the shredded cheeses by hand in a large bowl. Mix together the sour cream, mayonnaise, pressed garlic, cayenne pepper or paprika (optional), and salt in a small bowl. Add this mixture to the cheese, stirring to combine well. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours (and preferably overnight) to let the flavors meld. Let the mixture come to room temperature before serving. Use as a stuffing for small firm ripe tomatoes or cherry tomatoes, as a spread for dark bread, or as a topping for baked potatoes. Garnish with snipped fresh chives, if desired.
Yield: Approximately 3 cups.
Recipe ©2006 by Sharon Hudgins, author of The Other Side of Russia: A Slice of Life in Siberia and the Russian Far East (Texas A & M University Press, 2003, 2004).
Music Break: Paramaribo - John Schroeder
Where the Heck Is My Waiter? ()
Even the most delicious food can't make up for poor service in a restaurant. Some restaurateurs have figured out the formula for good service.
Danny Meyer is President and CEO of Union Square Hospitality Group, which includes 11 restaurants: Union Square Café, Gramercy Tavern, Eleven Madison Park, Tabla, Blue Smoke, Jazz Standard, Shake Shack, The Modern, Café 2 and Terrace 5 at MOMA, and Hudson Yards Catering.
His latest book examines the power of hospitality in restaurants, business and in life. Setting the Table: The Transforming Power of Hospitality in Business, is a book that is part memoir, part-business book. Danny tells colorful stories about chefs, customers, reviewers and family members, and gives a look behind the kitchen door. His restaurants have earned 17 James Beard Awards in a world where restaurants are continually closing their doors. Danny believes that his business vision of "enlightened hospitality" is integral to success.
Music Break: Paris (Instrumental) - Brigette Bardot
No More Left-over Chocolates ()
Michael Freeman has searched the world looking for the highest quality, best tasting chocolates. Most of the chocolates he carries at Cocoabella are from small, family owned and operated chocolatiers. One current assortment features chocolates from makers in Belgium, Switzerland, France, Italy, and the United States. He is also featuring a custom box of chocolates where you can choose your favorites and assemble your own box online.
Music Break: Sort of Soul - Birds & Brass
The Perfectionist's Cookbook ()
Christopher Kimball is founder, editor, and publisher of Cook's Illustrated magazine. He is the author of numerous cookbooks and is a columnist for the New York Daily News and the Boston-based TAB newspapers. He also hosts the syndicated PBS cooking show America's Test Kitchen.
Chris Kimball chats with Evan about home cooking and how more people are going to restaurants during what could be quality family time at home.
Christopher's book is The America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook. All of the recipes have been tested in the kitchens 40 or more times.
Music Break: Soul House - Max Gregor
Real Wasabi ()
That green stuff you're eating with your sushi is not really wasabi.
Roy Carver is an Oregon farmer who has figured out how to grow real
wasabi. Roy tells us that the wasabi powder available in most grocery
stores and used in most sushi restaurants in the U.S. is not real
Wasabi at all. The primary ingredient is dehydrated ground horseradish
powder, which has a hot flavor that has been passed off as wasabi. It's
convenient and inexpensive but tastes nothing like real wasabi.
To buy the real thing, go to Roy's website .
Music Break: Supergenerous - Johnny Cactus
Seafood Stew with Russ Parsons ()
Russ Parsons is food columnist for the LA Times and author of How to Read a French Fry . He talks to us about seafood stew.
Monkfish and Clams with Chorizo
Total time: 1 1/2 hours
Note: The best sausage to use for this is the semi-cured Spanish chorizo available locally as chistora, though any other Spanish chorizo will suffice. Mexican chorizo is not a substitute.
1/2 pound small potatoes, cut in bite-size pieces
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 pound Spanish chorizo, chopped
1 onion, minced
1 red bell pepper, minced
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 plum tomatoes, blanched, peeled, seeded and chopped
1 cup dry white wine
Pinch of saffron
1 1/2 pounds monkfish, cut in 1-inch chunks
1 pound small clams
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1. In a covered pot, steam the potatoes over rapidly boiling water until tender, about 10 minutes.
2. In a large, heavy pot over medium-low heat, warm the oil and add the chorizo. Cook until it has rendered some of its fat and looks cooked, about 5 minutes. Add the onion and bell pepper and cook until softened, about 5minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes, white wine and saffron and cook until the tomatoes have melted into the sauce, which should have lost its alcohol smell. Add the potatoes. The texture should be loose and slightly soupy, but not broth-like. Taste and season with salt. (The recipe can be prepared to this point up to 2 hours in advance; or even further if tightly covered and refrigerated.)
3. When almost ready to serve, warm the base over medium heat. Add the monkfish and cook just until it changes color, about 3 minutes. Add the clams, raise the heat to high, cover tightly and cook until all of the clams have opened, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley and serve immediately.
Total time: 1 1/2 hours
Note: Adapted from Helen Evans Brown's "West Coast Cook Book." Serve cioppino with thick slices of baguette you've toasted, rubbed with raw garlic and drizzled with olive oil.
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped green onion
1 cup chopped onion
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
6 to 8 cloves garlic, chopped
1/3 pound squid, tubes and tentacles, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
2 cups fruity red wine
1 teaspoon salt
1 bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
2 pounds firm, meaty fish such as shark, yellowtail, grouper or sea bass, cut in 1-inch cubes
1 pound lean flaky fish, such as rock cod or snapper, cut in 1-inch cubes
3/4 pound shrimp, in shell
1 pound small clams
1/2 cup parsley
1. In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the green onion, onion and bell pepper and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the crushed red pepper and garlic and cook until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add the squid and stir to coat with flavorings. Add the crushed tomatoes, red wine, salt, bay leaf and oregano and bring to a simmer.
2. Lower the heat and continue cooking, stirring occasionally. The mixture will eventually lose its raw alcohol smell and the wine and crushed tomatoes will form a sauce. This will take about 45 minutes. You will notice a change in the smell and taste of the sauce as it loses its harshness and mellows. (The recipe can be prepared to this point up to 2 hours in advance or even further if tightly covered and refrigerated.)
3. In a separate large saucepan, one that is taller than it is wide, arrange the fish. First, ladle in a thin layer of the sauce. Then begin stacking the fish in the rough order of how long they will take to cook: start with the meaty ones, then the flaky, then the shrimp and then the clams. If you are using crab or lobster, put those on the bottom layer.
4. Pour the remaining sauce over the fish and give the pan a good shake to distribute the sauce evenly. Cover and place over medium heat. Cook until the small clams are open, about 20 minutes. From time to time, shake the pan vigorously (hold the lid on tight!) rather than stirring, to avoid breaking up the fish.
5. When ready to serve, taste and add more salt if necessary, gently stir in the parsley and ladle the stew into warm bowls.
Music Break: The Big Score - The New Sounds
Saveur Magazine Talks Turkey ()James Oseland is the editor-in-chief of Saveur and he meets up with Good Food to share some tall turkey tales from their November issue.
James mentions a story by author Rita Williams about a family tale with America's favorite bird.
James also happens to have a fabulous book out called Cradle of Flavor: Home Cooking from the
Spice Islands of Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore.
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GOOD FOOD THANKS ITS UNDERWRITERS:
Du Vin Wine & Spirits: In business for more than two decades at San Vicente in West Hollywood, Du Vin offers more than 10,000 bottles of hand-picked wine, with staff specialists in the wines of France, Italy, Latin America and California.
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