She’s that blonde chef you’ve seen and you still see on TV today who sports different hairstyles. She became Mario Batali’s sous chef in the Iron Chef and now has several shows on the Food Network. She has already published her first cookbook entitled “Cook Like a Rock Star” and a new one is in the works set for release this October.

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Make way for Anne Burrell, host of Secrets of a Restaurant Chef and reality shows Chef Wanted as well as Worst Cooks of America. Before hitting the TV, this tough woman worked for some top restaurants in New York City. Now, she loves her work on television and considers Chef Wanted as the most rewarding.

Burrell said what is remarkable about Chef Wanted is it’s a win-win situation. They help people land jobs and everyone involved benefits from the chefs and their families to the restaurants.

The other reality cooking show “Worst Cooks of America,” she added, is also beneficial in that they are able to help improve their skills. The rewarding part, she pointed out, is the part when they see participants transform to become respectable home cooks despite the mistakes they commit along the way.
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Chef John Ash

A lot of cooks would agree that the use of wine in some meals have added a certain spice in making them sought after. Such can be attributed towards the contributions of Chef John Ash, an internationally recognized chef, educator and author. His continued work and application of wine towards cuisine and his evident mastery for winery has been his obvious trademark that has brought him towards world wide prominence.

John is known to hold various classes and teaches culinary schools and institutions with regards to the tricks of the proper use of wine for culinary meals. Majority of his known reliability has been attributed towards the wine industry and such has been something that has continued to push him up towards fame and fortune.

He has published two books, namely American Game Cooking in 1991 and From the Earth to the Table: John Ash’s Wine Country Cuisine in 1996. The latter book was awarded the Julia Child Award for Best Cookbook in 1996 by the International Association of Culinary Professionals.

Chef Jody AdamsChef Jody Adams personifies the ease of being a great chef through the use of available resources found in your kitchen today. Being a good cook is a given with practice, but with more practice and a touch of imagination at that, good chefs are sure to arise. This has been one of the beliefs that have catapulted Chef Jody towards mastering the art of cooking.

Cooking in the eyes of Chef Jody would simply be like following instincts rather than the usual traditional cooking practices that people see on television or from reading the available cookbooks in stores today. It all boils down to following a cooking style which would carve out your name in the genre of food that a person would want to cook up.

This is the secret that Jody Adams shares as her ultimate success in cooking. With a wide array of recipes that includes starter meals, seasonal prepared meals and Italian tradition meals such as pasta until deserts, Chef Jody has a long list of recipes all based on her instincts and what she can do around the kitchen. People can do this as well if they know how to go around the kitchen of their homes as well.

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Corn ChowderThis delicious recipe (said to be Oprah‘s favourite) from the cookbook “Taste Pure and Simple“, Nischan interestingly uses fresh vanilla bean. Not something you would expect from a corn chowder but Michel Nischan explains quite endearingly why he thought of the unlikely combination:

This recipe proves a belief of mine. When you cook with ingredients that sound good in your head, they will taste good, too. I feel this way about vanilla and corn, which may seem like a strange pair, but once you try this combination, you’ll like it.”

Sweet Corn and Vegetable Chowder

Serves 4

About 2-4 fresh ears corn, shucked
1 Yukon Gold Potato
split vanilla bean, or pure vanilla extract
2 pounds fresh or frozen edamame, fava, or lima beans (about 1 cup shelled)
1 to 2 tablespoons water
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1/2 cup shredded spinach, sorrel, or arugula
1 tablespoon julienned lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Preheat over to 450 degrees F. Place 2 ears of corn directly on the over rack and roast, turning occasionally, until golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool. When cool, cut the roasted corn kernels off the cob. You should have about 1 1/2 cups.

Meanwhile, cook the potato in salted boiling water until tender in the center when pierced, 20 to 25 minutes. Drain and let cool to the touch, Slip off the skin and cut the potato into 1/4-inch dice.

With a large, sharp knife, cut the kernels off the remaining ears of corn. Run the kernels through a vegetable juicer. You should have about 4 cups of juice. Combine the corn juice and the vanilla bean in a medium nonreactive saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium-low heat, stirring constantly so the liquid doesn’t curdle. The natural starch in the juice will thicken it to a sauce consistency. The degree of thickness will depend on the amount of starch in the corn. If the soup is too thick, thin it with a little water or lemon juice. Remove from the heat.

Fish out the vanilla bean and, with the tip of a small knife, scrape the seeds from the bean into the soup; discard the pod. If the soup appears a little broken, don’t worry. Blend the soup in a blender at medium speed for a silky-smooth consistency. Return the soup to the pot.

Put the roasted corn kernels, beans, and potato in a medium saute pan or skillet with the water. Bring to a simmer over a medium heat and season with salt and pepper. Simmer for a few minutes until the vegetables are hot. Pour off the water and add the vegetables to the soup. Stir in the shredded spinach or other greens, the lemon zest, lemon juice, salt, and pepper.

Note: If the corn milk curdles during cooking, don’t worry. Beat the curdled milk with an electric mixer set on medium speed until it returns to its perfect smoothness before you add the rest of the vegetables.

Photo via laurat

Chocolate and Vanilla.gifChocolate or vanilla? Which do you use? There are times when you really can’t make up your mind because they are both so good. Gale Gand agrees and this is why she wrote “Chocolate and Vanilla”.

The book was made available last year and if you haven’t bought it yet, you are missing out. It’s a fun, novelty item that has some cool recipes. If you pick up the book and open the cover you will see chocolate recipes. Flip the book and open the other cover and you get vanilla recipes. A two in one book – isn’t that great?!

Gale Gand wrote this book with Lisa Weiss. It features a whole lot of desserts that are absolutely sinful but definitely worth eating. She describes vanilla as the “lingerie of baking” which sure perks up the imagination of many home chefs. Is she right? Check out her book and you decide.

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Forget the gingerbread house. Your holiday dessert should be simple to prepare, so you can spend more time with your family (that is what Christmas is about, right?). Here’s a quick chocoalte mousse recipe from Nigella Lawson’s cookbook, Nigella Express: 130 Recipes for Good Food, Fast.

Nigella says that most mousses need to be made the day before, to allow the egg yolk to set. Here’s her “instant” alternative. She does away with eggs, which not only saves time but allows you to safely feed it to young children.

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups mini marshmallows
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) soft butter
9 oz best-quality semisweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces
1/4 cup hot water from a recently boiled kettle
1 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Pour the marshmallows, butter, chocolate, and water in a heavy-bottomed saucepan.
2. Melt over gentle heat, stirring occassionally. Remove from heat and let cool.
3 Whip the cream with the vanilla until it’s got a thick consistency. Fold it into the cooled chocolate mixture.
4. Pour into individual dishes or cups and chill until ready to serve.

Watch Nigella’s regular TV show, Nigella Express on the BBC Channel for more recipes and tips.

Jeff SmithWith a dozen best-selling cookbooks tucked under his belt, Jeff Smith, is best known for hosting the popular American cooking show that began in Washington. The show was aired in PBS from 1988 to 1997.

Smith was a United Methodist who graduated at the University of Puget Sound in 1962 and Drew University in 1965. His first run at food ventures was the Chaplain’s Pantry where he held cooking classes to the public and stored deli and kitchen supplies as well.

Being in the celebrity status that he is in the world of cooking, Smith has had his share of controversies as well. Legal issues concerning sexual harassment in the 70s were just some of the trials that Smith had to go through.

Known to be the food genius that he is, Smith has authored several books under his wing including The Frugal Gourmet (1984), The Frugal Gourmet Cooks with Wine (1986), The Frugal Gourmet Cooks American (1987) and The Frugal Gourmet Cooks Three Ancient Cuisines: China, Greece, and Rome (1989).

Ainsley is known for his brilliant barbecue talents, so here’s one of his best-loved recipes, incredibly easy to make, although better if marinated the evening before to achieve full flavour.

This is from his book, Ainsley Harriott’s Barbecue Bible, which talks about the best barbecue techniques from around the world. Not just a recipe book, this comprehensive study on the evolution of the “Barbie” is a great source of information touching on style, equipment, and flavours. It is also a great guide to entertaining on the barbie ( after all, who fires up an outdoor grill for a lone meal?), with masses of tips to help you plan and execute a successful barbecue with simple ingreadients and a hassle-free, proven method.

Moroccan Spiced Lamb Kebabs

Preparation time over 2 hours

Cooking time 10 to 30 mins

Ingredients

900g/2lb boned shoulder or leg of lamb
3 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground turmeric
�tbsp paprika
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 tsp harissa paste
1 small red onion
1 small lemon
salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 x 30cm/12in flat metal skewers

Method

1. Trim any excess fat off the outside of the lamb and then cut it into roughly 5cm/2in chunks. Place it into a bowl with the olive oil, lemon juice, spices, garlic, harissa paste and some seasoning and mix together well. Cover and leave to marinate at room temperature for 2 hours or overnight in the fridge.

2. Peel the onion, leaving the root end in tact and then cut it into 8 wedges.

3. Thread the lamb, lemon and onion wedges alternately on to the skewers and barbecue over medium-hot coals for about 10-15 minutes, turning now and then, until they are nicely browned on the outside but still pink in the centre.

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Chef Ann has an incredible and impressive list of achievements and credentials in the course of her culinary career. Among these accomplishments include that of Chef of the Year awards and winning national American Culinary Federation awards.

Chef Ann Cooper

Chef Ann Cooper works as an industry services consultant for the Culinary Institute of America, a corporate chef and as a consultant to various restaurant and hotels located around New England. Ann was among the first 50 women to be certified as an executive chef by the educational arm of the American Culinary Federation.

Chef Anne has also published a book titled “A Woman’s Place in the Kitchen” that narrates the vision of women and their role around the kitchen. It contains both traditional and innovative approaches that women have had in the field of cooking. She also authored another book, “The Sustainable Kitchen” that will surely make the grade and be a hot commodity among aspiring chefs of today.

broccoliProstate cancer is something that a lot of men fear, but don’t talk about. Just like many other “fears,” men really don’t talk about these things. But maybe it is about time that they did – prostate cancer is one of the most prevalent types of cancer in the United States today. While many men with the condition do not exhibit symptoms, in cases wherein the symptoms occur, it can get really bad. That is why it is important that information be disseminated effectively.

Some celebrity chefs agree with this – they have been recruited to collaborate on a project which involves writing a cookbook featuring recipes that may help combat or prevent prostate cancer. Some of the celebrity chefs involved are Raymond Blanc and Antony Worrall Thompson. Dubbed The Prostate Cancer Care cookbook, it features recipes making use of ingredients that have been scientifically proven to prevent prostate cancer. These include broccoli, garlic, and tomatoes (as well as derivative products such as tomato sauce).

Collaborating with the celebrity chefs is Professor Margaret Rayman, from the University of Surrey. She says that it is important to incorporate these food items into one’s regular diet in order to take pro-active measures against prostate cancer. She goes on to say that while eating these dishes is not a guarantee against prostate cancer, it is definitely better than doing nothing and waiting for the doctor to tell you that you have got the disease. The professor is also working on cookbooks focusing on other conditions such as breast and bowel cancer.