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A Press Democrat Blog

Kitchen Talk

Turn up the heat on home cooking

Throw a “Food Inc.” potluck

If you haven’t seen Robert Kenner’s documentary, “Food, Inc.,”  now’s the time.  The Oscar-nominated film is making its national broadcast debut at 9 p.m. this Wednesday, April 21, on PBS’ POV (Point of View) series, which airs locally on KQED’s Channel 9. The POV series hopes to provoke a national discussion on the subject of eating healthy, affordable and sustainable food by encouraging its viewers to host potluck parties on the night of the film. If you can’t tune in… Read More »

A smokin’ quesadilla from the Border Gals

Bravo TV has launched its second season of “Top Chef Masters,” and so far, the show has managed to whip up our  appetite for spice and heat, from Susan Feniger’s  smokin’  shrimp and scallops to Marcus Samuelsson’s  upscale twist  on soul food. Wait a minute, rumor has it that the  Swedish/Ethiopian chef who trained in Europe and lives in New York is opening a new American restaurant in Harlem called Red Rooster. Could this mean that the show is fixed?… Read More »

A Baker’s Dozen plus one

The James Beard Foundation has just compiled The Baker’s Dozen, a list of 13 essential baking books that all bakers should have on their kitchen shelves. The classic cookbooks  range from  “Beard on Bread,” first published in 1973, to “Martha Stewart’s Cookies,”  published in 2008. Along with this “must have” list, selected by the James Beard Foundation Book Awards Committee, there’s a new cookbook you might want to add to your collection: Deborah Madison’s “Seasonal Fruit Desserts” (Broadway Books, 2010).  Madison… Read More »

Wild about salmon?

Wild salmon is one of my family’s favorite foods. Not only is it delicious, but it is high in protein, omega 3 fatty oils and vitamin D, all vital to maintaining health. During the grilling season, I prefer to grill the salmon with a dry rub such as Tom Douglas’ Rub with Love. If it’s too wet or cold to fire up the barbecue, I’ll compromise by cooking the salmon skin down in a cast-iron pan, then finishing it off… Read More »

Are you a Kitchen Gardener?

Kitchen Gardener magazine,  published  from 1996 to 2001,  left behind a legacy of simple yet sophisticated recipes from farmers, chefs and food writers with a penchant for high-flavor salads and salsas, soups and stews. Those recipes have been lovingly  resurrected in a new cookbook, “Cooking from the Garden: Best Recipes from the Kitchen Garden” (Taunton Press, 2010), edited by garden writer Ruth Lively. The cookbook boasts a kitschy,  retro design, with whimsical illustrations  and an array of farm-to-table recipes by… Read More »

The pleasure of leftovers

 One of the pleasures of  an empty-nest household is the home cook’s ability to spin off multiple meals from a limited  amount of raw ingredients. With a little creativity, you can transform a simple dish of Sauteed Shrimp into a shrimp salad the next day, or take a Roast Pork Tenderloin and resurrect it as a Red Flannel Pork Hash or  Pork Stir Fry with Vegetables. This is the philosophy behind Judith Jones’ trusty little cookbook, “The Pleasures of Cooking… Read More »