FROM THIS EPISODE
You may not think the Secretary of Agriculture has anything to do with you. But everything related to food in this country — down to the cost of produce at the market and the price of a steak dinner at your favorite restaurant — falls under the purview of the Ag secretary. The President has chosen former governor of Georgia, Sonny Perdue, to carry out his new agenda in the wake of this week’s hotly contested withdrawal from the Paris Treaty. We called Harvest Public Media’s Investigations Editor, Peggy Lowe, to find out how rural America is reacting to the big changes coming to crop subsidies, immigration, school nutrition programs, food stamps and more.
The last time we spoke with the world’s most famous butcher, Dario Cecchini, he shared his story of abandoning his dream of becoming a veterinarian to enter the family business. Antica Macelleria Cecchini in the small Tuscan village of Panzano is a destination for epicures who revere nose-to-tail cooking. Cecchini now has an ambitious new concept in the works. Inspired by a recent trip to Brazil, he plans to turn frequently overlooked forequarter cuts into delicious — yet affordable — dishes like Chianti ramen. The highly anticipated Cecchini Panini will open its doors in March of 2018.
Man, meat, fire. What could be more primal than the act of grilling a steak? For that, we turn to Richard H. Turner. He’s the co-owner of Turner & George, a rare breed meat merchant based in London, and the executive chef of Hawksmoor. In 2015, he took home the city prize for best steak. Get tips from Mr. Meatopia himself for everything from barbecuing to butchering bovines, buying quality cuts of beef and recipes in his newly published “PRIME: The Beef Cookbook.”
Richard H. Turner
In the 1970s, making smoked salmon mousse was a snap. A touch of cream, a little salmon, plus a few drops of liquid smoke. But in much of the barbecue community, the smoky liquid fix is considered sacrilege. Bottles of the flavoring agent have been on the market since 1898, but this quick fix is the antithesis to the “low and slow” ethos preached by barbecue purists. Food writer Matthew Sedacca delves into the history and controversy associated with liquid smoke for Eater.
There’s no shortage of Sichuan restaurants in the San Gabriel Valley, where a new host of trendy hotspots offers more options to adventurous eaters than just the tongue-numbing, ma la sensation found at places like Chengdu Taste or Szechuan Impression. This week, LA Times food critic Jonathan Gold sits down to a 9-course tasting tour at Chengdu Impression, the newest outpost of a Chinese restaurant group based in Sichuan’s capital city. Read his full LA Times review here.
Panda dumpling. (Photo courtesy of Sichuan Impression)
Chengdu Impression: 21 East Huntington Drive, Arcadia, CA 91006 | (626) 462-9999
Long before anyone realized that gluten-sensitivity was an autoimmune disorder, Elisabeth Prueitt endured the daily discomforts of developing the pastry recipes that would turn Tartine Bakery & Cafe into San Francisco's most popular destination for the carb-loving, all-day brunch crowd. It wasn't until she switched to naturally leavened breads made from heirloom grains that Prueitt's symptoms finally subsided. More than a decade later, she and her husband, Chad Robertson, are expanding to a fourth Bay Area location, with their largest retail operation yet coming to Downtown LA’s Arts District later this year. Prueitt’s new book, “Tartine All Day,” shares seasonal recipes and techniques for the modern home cook. Find a recipe for Prueitt’s buckwheat crêpes on the “Good Food” blog.
There's nothing more beguiling than food that speaks of place. At Truss & Twine in Palm Springs, chef Michael Beckman gets hyper-local with nopales from the Santa Monica Farmers Market that he uses to make a cactus confit that he pairs with goat cheese dusted in dehydrated bougainvillea powder. Farmer Mario Trevino of Trevino Farms in Lompoc, California, says his hearty succulents may be prickly, but nopales aren’t picky about the soil they’re grown in. The paddles grow year-round but are the most tender in the springtime. He uses the cactus pears that come in during the fall to make agua fresca. Find a recipe for Beckman’s cactus confit on the “Good Food” blog.
More From Good Food
NAFTA and Mexico, coastal California, and a Queens food tour Trump has called NAFTA the “worst” trade deal in history, but professor Alyshia Galvez says it’s Mexico’s food system that bears the brunt of it. Santa Barbara is home to some of California’s greatest seafood and produce, as Jason Paluska and Pascale Beale know all too well. Plus: a culinary tour of the New York’s most diverse borough, and novelist Jervey Tervalon dedicates a poem to his late friend Jonathan Gold.
The 'Fuerte Four,’ nixtamalization, and eggplants Gustavo’s Great Tortilla Tournament is this Sunday and our judges are faced with the ultimate decision: corn or flour? Bill Esparza talks tortilla makers in the LA area. And did you know that inside your tortilla is an ancient process, perfected over centuries? Also, L.A. Taco’s Daniel Hernandez recalls a Guadalajara taco crawl with Jonathan Gold. Plus: some tips on cooking eggplant, now in season.
Plastic straws, Persian cuisine, and Meathead Goldwyn What does the history of plastic straws tell us about U.S. capitalism? Growing up in Tehran, Naz Deravian watched her parents entertain with classic Persian dishes; now she’s carrying on the tradition in LA. Stressed about cooking brisket this Rosh Hashanah? Help is here. Plus, Zach Brooks stops by to discuss Jonathan Gold’s review of Vespertine.
Jell-O and feminism, ‘Losing Earth,’ vertical farming A new book examines the intersection of American feminism and Jell-O. This Labor Day, throw some desserts on the grill. Nathaniel Rich dives into the consequences of ignoring climate change warnings. Does vertical farming yield the same nutrient content as open air agriculture? Also: Tien Nguyen remembers Jonathan Gold’s impassioned defense of San Gabriel noodle shops, including Nha Trang.
LATEST BLOG POSTS
Taste California’s coast with Santa Barbara veggies Santa Barbara’s microclimates make it home to some of California’s best seafood and produce. Jason Paluska, executive chef at The Lark, showcases the region’s eclectic culinary style in his cookbook “Around the Table: Recipes and Stories from the Lark in Santa Barbara.” Read More
Gustavo’s Great Tortilla Tournament, Grand Finale: And SoCal’s Best Tortilla Is… Wow, what a great time yesterday at KCRW’s Inaugural Great Tortilla Tournament! Throngs of people lined up to taste samples from our Fuerte Four Finalists: Kernel of Truth and Taco… Read More
Gustavo’s Great Tortilla Tournament, week 4 recap: Behold SoCal’s four best tortillas! The bracket has been narrowed, the comal is heating up, and the tortillas are being filled for this Sunday at LA River and Gardens Center in Cypress Park! Find out who the final four are and don’t forget to RSVP for a day of micheladas, tortilla art, and live music. Read More