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There is more to orange juice than what’s on the carton, says author Alissa Hamilton.  LA Times writer Russ Parsons gives us some structure for our next trip to the farmers market.  Randall Graham decided to forgo a $20 million dollar business to produce biodynamic wine.  A mobile slaughterhouse is how Bruce Dunlop and other farmers in Washington State process their locally raised meat.  Robert Danhi tells us where to shop for those hard-to-find Asian ingredients.  Jonathan Gold has something to say about the San Francisco versus Los Angeles burrito debate.  Stacy Perman reveals the drama of In-N-Out.  Plus, Laura Avery and Amelia Saltsman talk peaches at the farmers market.


Michael Ruhlman

Guest Interview Market Report 8 MIN, 19 SEC

Amelia Saltsman with Peaches


Amelia Saltsman shares a brainstorm with Laura Avery to make Peach Brulee.  She is going to cut yellow peaches in half or in pieces, add a dollup of creme fraiche on top and then sprinkle brown sugar over the whole thing.  Then she'll put this baking sheet of peaches under the broiler for 5 minutes or so, until the sugar is nearly burned. 

Amelia Saltsman’s Peach “Brulee”
Serves 6

6 small or 3 large ripe peaches, about 2 pounds, preferably freestone
2/3 cup crème fraiche or Greek yogurt
Up to 1/2 cup, packed, light brown sugar

Preheat broiler. Cut peaches in half and remove pits. Place peach halves in shallow broiler-proof baking dish or pan. Place dollop of crème fraiche in cavity of each peach half. Sprinkle brown sugar generously and evenly over peaches. Place pan under broiler close to heat source (about 3 to 4 inches away) and broil until sugar bubbles vigorously, about 2 to 4 minutes depending on distance from and strength of heat. Watch the pan carefully; do not walk away during cooking time!  Remove from oven and let stand a few minutes before serving. Sugar will harden in places as peaches cool briefly. Place 2 small halves or 1 larger half in individual dishes and spoon pan juices around fruit.

If you have “cling” peaches whose pits don’t release easily, simply cut peaches into thick slices, place snugly in pan, dollop crème fraiche over and cover with sugar. Broil as above and spoon into bowls to serve.

If you have a torch, fill peaches, cover with sugar and torch to create hard sugar coating.

© 2009, Amelia Saltsman



Jaime Farms has the first eggplant crop available at the market. Edgar Jaime is growing about 8 different kinds of eggplant -- including Japanese, Chinese and many other shapes and sizes. These eggplants are grown in a hothouse and are "baby" sized. They are perfect to slice in half and tossing on the grill.


Music Break: Last Days by The Real Tuesday Weld

Guest Interview Structure Your Shopping 8 MIN, 5 SEC

Russ Parsons is the editor of the LA Times Food section and the author of How to Pick a Peach.

Simple Risotto
Serves 4 to 6
From Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything   

2 Tablespoons butter or extra virgin olive oil, to taste
1 medium onion, chopped
Large pinch saffron threads (optional)
1 1/2 cups Arborio or other short- or medium-grain rice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup dry white wine or water
4 to 6 cups chicken, beef, or vegetable stock
2 to 4 Tablespoons softened butter or extra virgin olive oil
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

1. Put the 2 tablespoons butter or oil in a large, deep nonstick skillet over medium heat. (Allow the remaining butter to soften while you cook.)  When the butter is melted or the oil is hot, add the onion and saffron and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion softens, 3 to 5 minutes.

2. Add the rice and cook, stirring occasionally, until it is glossy and coated with butter or oil, 2 to 3 minutes.  Add a little salt and pepper, then the white wine.  Stir and let the liquid bubble away.

3. Use a ladle to begin adding the stock, 1/2 cup or so at a time, stirring after each addition.  When the stock is just about evaporated, add more.  The mixture should be neither soupy nor dry.  Keep the heat at medium to medium-high and stir frequently.

4. Begin tasting the rice 20 minutes after you add it; you want it to be tender but still with tiny bit of crunch; it could take as long as 30 minutes to reach this stage.  When it does, stir in the softened butter or oil (more is better, at least from the perspective of taste!) and at least 1/2 cup of Parmesan if you're using it.  Taste, adjust the seasoning, and serve immediately, passing additional Parmesan at the table if you like.

Vegetable Stew


Spring vegetable stew  - Photo Courtesy LA Times

Spring Vegetable Stew

Juice of 1/2 lemon
2 lbs baby or medium artichokes
1 cup shelled fava beans (about 1 1/2 pounds in the pod)
2 lbs asparagus
1/2 lb bulbing onions
1/4 cup butter ( 1/2 stick), divided
2 Tablespoons minced shallots
1/2 cup white wine
1/4 cup water
2 tsps minced tarragon
Herbed ricotta gnocchi (recipe)
Grated Parmigiano- Reggiano

1. Clean the artichokes: Fill a large bowl with cool water and add the lemon juice. Trim away each artichoke's tough outer leaves, then cut off the top half-inch of the tip and peel the base and stem. Quarter the baby artichokes and cut the larger artichokes lengthwise into 8 pieces. Keep the artichokes submerged in the lemon water to prevent browning and set aside.

2. Place the shelled fava beans in a large bowl and pour boiling water over to cover. Let stand until the water is cool enough to touch. Use your thumbnail to cut a slit in the thin membrane surrounding each fava and squeeze the bright green bean halves into a bowl. Discard the membranes. Repeat with all the favas and set aside.

3. Cut the tough bases and tender tips from the asparagus and reserve the tips (discard the bases). Peel the asparagus and cut crosswise into 1-inch sections.

4. Trim the roots and most of the green stems of the bulbing onions and halve them lengthwise.

5. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium heat and add the shallots. Cook until the shallots soften, about 3 minutes. Add the artichokes, the white wine and water, cover tightly and cook until the artichokes are just tender enough to pierce with a paring knife, 5 to 15 minutes (the time will vary depending on the freshness and type of the artichoke).

6. Add the chopped asparagus stalks, replace the cover and cook until they are tender, about 3 minutes. Stir in the bulbing onions, the asparagus tips and the tarragon and cook until the tips are bright green and tender, about 3 minutes. Season to taste with salt and reduce the heat to low to keep warm.

7. Bring a wide pot of water to a rolling boil and salt generously. Reduce the heat to a slow boil and add the gnocchi to the pot (reducing the heat helps keep the gnocchi from breaking up). Stir gently to lift them from the bottom of the pot and cook until they float to the surface, 1 to 2 minutes, then cook them an additional 20 to 30 seconds and retrieve them with a strainer, transferring them directly to the vegetable stew.

8. Increase the heat under the stew to high and add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter. Stir gently to coat the gnocchi with the glaze and divide among 6 heated pasta bowls. Sprinkle grated Parmigiano over the top and pass more at the table. Serve immediately.

Evan's Cianfotta

1/2 - 1 cup olive oil (depending on how luscious you want the result and how many of the ingredients you choose to use)
1 white of leek, sliced and washed, tops reserved for soup
2 garlic cloves or 4-6 fresh garlic cloves or 1 stalk green garlic, peeled and sliced
1/2 bunch pencil thin asparagus, tough stems cut off and discarded, stalks cut into 1 ½ inch pices
1/4 lb sugar snap peas, stem end and string removed, each pod sliced vertically so the peas inside are exposed
1/2 lb english peas, shelled
1/4 lb young fava beans shelled (twice if you want)
1 small head romaine lettuce, cut into a chiffonade
1/4 lb baby artichokes, cleaned and cut into 1/4s vertically.
Spearmint leaves to taste, at least 15
Salt and pepper to taste

In a medium to large skillet cook the leek slices in oil over medium high heat.  When the leeks have started to soften add the garlic and cook until you smell the characteristic aroma.  Turn the heat up to high and add the asparagus, sugar snaps and mint.  Move everything around so there is maximum contact of veggies with heat.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Cook to your liking.  I like this dish when the aspaagus and sugar snaps no longer have that raw edge but are still “al dente”.  Take the veggies off the heat and put them in a bowl or on a plate before they are actually completely done.  They will continue to cook off the heat.

Eat hot, room temp, or cold as is or add to pasta or risotto.


Music Break: Leaving The Town by Marco Beltrami

How to Pick a Peach

Russ Parsons

Guest Interview Squeezed 6 MIN, 50 SEC

SqueezedAlissa Hamilton is the author of Squeezed: What You Don't Know About Orange Juice.








Music Break: Autumn Leaves by Cannonball Adderley


Alissa Hamilton

Guest Interview Biodynamic Wine 8 MIN, 15 SEC

Bonny Doon Vineyard

Bonny Doon Vineyard

Randall Graham

Randall Graham

Randall Graham is the owner of Bonny Doon Vineyards, biodynamic wine producers in Santa Cruz, CA. 

Biodynamic viticulture comes from principles developed by Rudolf Steiner in the 1920's.  It's a holistic approach to agriculture that unites soil, plants and animals in a self-sustaining system.

Wine Fingerprint


Wine Fingerprint

Bonny Doon Vineyards recently opened a restaurant in Santa Cruz called The Cellar Door Cafe - 328 Ingalls St., Santa Cruz, CA, (831) 425-4518.


Music Break: Fathead by Lee Morgan

Guest Interview Mobile Slaughterhouse 7 MIN, 7 SEC

Mobile SlaughterhouseBruce Dunlop lives and works Washington's Lopez Island where he and his fellow farmers use a mobile slaughterhouse to process their meat.  It's the first of its kind to be sanctioned by the USDA.  It was developed by the Lopez Community Land Trust and is leased to the Island Grown Farmers Cooperative, that supplies locally grown meat to the community.


Music Break: The Fool On The Hill by Trio Rococo

Guest Interview Asian Markets 5 MIN, 55 SEC
Vietnamese Balm


Vietnamese Balm - Photo Courtesy Todd Porter & Diane Cu

Robert Danhi is the author of Southeast Asian Flavors:  Adventures in cooking the foods of Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, and Singapore.  He teaches culinary techniques in Los Angeles and leads culinary tours to Asia.

Hoa Binh Garden Grove Supermarket -  13922 Brookhurst, (7140 534.8899
Dong Phong Tofu -  15022 Moran St, (714) 894.7002

Assi Supermarket - 3525 W 8th St., Los Angeles, CA 90005, (213) 388-0900
Marukai - 1740 West Artesia Blvd.


Music Break: Funky Yeah by Eddie Bo

Guest Interview Burritos - San Francisco vs. LA 7 MIN, 2 SEC

View LA Burritos in a larger map

Jonathan Gold is the Pulitzer Prize-winning food critic for the L.A. weekly.  Recently, a reader asked him where to take a San Francisco native for a burrito here in Southern California.  Jonathan recommends:

Lupe's Hot Dog Stand
4642 E 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90022
(323) 266-6881

Al & Bea's
2025 E. First St., Boyle Heights
(323) 267-8810

2056 Hillhurst Ave. 
Los Feliz, CA 90027
(323) 662-1214

El Tepeyac - Manuel's Special
812 N Evergreen Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90033
(323) 267-8668

If you must have a burrito in San Francisco, Jonathan and Evan like:

La Cumbre Taqueria - The Mission
515 Valencia St
San Francisco, CA 94110
(415) 863-8205

La Taqueria - The Mission
2889 Mission St, San Francisco
(415) 285-7117


Music Break: Night Of The Tikis by The Tiki Tones

Guest Interview In & Out Burger 6 MIN, 57 SEC

In-N-OutStacy Perman is the author of In-N-Out Burger: A Behind-the-Counter Look at the Fast-Food Chain That Breaks All the Rules

The first In-N-Out Burger was opened in Baldwin Park in 1948 by Harry and Esther Snyder.  It was the first restaurant to use a two-way speaker box so that customers could order from their cars.  In-N-Out is still run by the Snyder family and they have no plans to take the company public.

The "official" secret (or not-so-secret) menu can be found here

This unofficial menu includes Animal Style Fries, a Neopolitan Shake and the Flying Dutchman.

In-N-Out Burger

Stacy Perman

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