Adopt-a-Proscuitto; Powerseed; Wok Whisperer; Picnics; Fried Chicken Cubes; Fight Back with Herbs

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Laura Avery spoke about grass-fed bison from Lindner Bison, which you can find online as well as at the Santa Monica, Venice, and Hollywood Farmers' Markets. She also spoke with Mike Cirone from See Canyon Farms near San Luis Obispo.

Chefs' chef Mario Batali describes how you can adopt your own prosciutto at You can also find coppa, a delicious marbled pork shoulder cured in sugar and salt and then spiced with cayenne or chili peppers on the website. Mario also shared a recipe from his new book, Molto Italiano: 327 Simple Italian Recipes to Cook at Home

. Meatballs with Ricotta in Milk (Polpette con la Ricotta)
Makes 4 servings

  • 8 ozs ground pork
  • 8 ozs ground veal
  • 8 ozs Ricotta, preferably fresh
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • - cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • - cup fresh bread crumbs
  • 6 cornichons, chopped
  • 3 pistachio nuts, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup chicken stock, or more if necessary
  • - cup whole milk
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  1. In a large bowl, combine the ground meats, ricotta, eggs, Parmigiano, bread crumbs, cornichons, and pistachio nuts and mix with your hands just until blended. Form into balls 1 inch in diameter.
  2. In a large heavy-bottomed skillet, heat the butter over medium heat until it foams and subsides. Place the meatballs in the pan and brown on all sides. Add the stock and milk; the liquid should come halfway up the sides of the meatballs. Bring the liquid to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook until the meatballs are cooked through, about 15 minutes. Season the broth with salt and pepper.
  3. Serve in warmed shallow bowls, with the broth poured over the meatballs.

Bill Curry developed the Powerseed Mindful Eating Coach to help people become more aware of their eating habits, and to encourage people to check in with their body while eating. The device is small enough to fit in the palm of your hand, and flashes a light or emits a beep every 30 seconds. Ideally, a diner takes a bite only at each thirty-second interval. This reminder to slow eating allows more time to chew and digest. When that light flashes it-s a reminder to bring your mind back, enjoy what you are eating, and take a bite.

Grace Young, author of several books including the award-winning Breath of a Wok, spoke with us about woks. This recipe is from her website.

Jean Yueh-s Shanghai-Style Shrimp
Serves 4 as part of a multicourse meal

  • 1 lb large shrimp
  • 3 1/2 Tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3 slices ginger
  • 2 scallions, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 Tablespoon dry Sherry
  • 3 Tablespoons sugar, or to taste
  • 1 Tablespoon sesame oil, optional
  1. Using kitchen shears, cut through the shrimp shells two-thirds of the length down the back of the shrimp. Remove the legs and de-vein the shrimp, leaving the shells and tails on. Rinse the unpeeled shrimp, drain, and set on several sheets of paper towels. With more paper towels, pat the shrimp dry. In a small bowl combine the soy sauce and vinegar.
  2. Heat a 14-inch flat-bottomed wok over high heat until a bead of water vaporizes within 1 to 2 seconds of contact. Swirl in the vegetable oil, add the ginger and scallions, and stir-fry 30 seconds or until aromatic. Add the shrimp and stir-fry 30 seconds. Add the sherry and stir-fry a few seconds. Swirl in the soy sauce mixture and sprinkle in the sugar. Stir-fry the shrimp 1 to 2 minutes or until the sauce is distributed and the shrimp are just cooked.
  3. Remove from the heat. Stir in the sesame oil if desired. Serve immediately or at room temperature.

Food writer Jeremy Jackson, who piqued our curiosity with The Cornbread Book and Desserts That Have Killed Better Men Than Me, has a new book, Good Day for a Picnic. If you still don-t feel up to making your own lunch, La Cachette offers five Take-Out Picnic Baskets, one of which is vegetarian. Orders must be placed one day in advance by calling (310) 470-4992. Delivery is available within a 3 mile radius for a $15 service charge. Menus range from $23 - $35.

La Cachette
10506 Santa Monica Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90025
Ph: 310-470-4992

Jonathan Gold spoke about Lucky Dragon, (626-573-5060) at 321 West Garvey Avenue, a Hunan/Sichuan restaurant in Monterey Park. Jonathan says they do a house-smoked Chinese bacon better than anyone in town. He also recommends the eel jam, fried chicken cubes in red chilies, and mapo tofu.

Stuart Tomc, Chief Science Coordinator for North American Herb and Spice, spoke about Anti-Mosquito Food. He is a consultant to the Chief Medical Officer of the World Health Organization on alternatives to pharmaceutical drugs. Tomc has given thousands of lectures and radio shows educating the public about scientific research into natural alternatives to DEET. You can order the oregano oil that Stuart says naturally repels mosquitoes online.