Chefs and coffee are a funny pair – most of them, as a result of their long days and late hours, are totally addicted to their caffeine fix. For example, Manresa’s David Kinch needs three cups to get through the day – and that’s after years of much greater consumption. But don’t be fooled by this love affair with coffee; like most chefs, Kinch doesn’t make his own. Brewing coffee is best left to the professionals.
Why don’t chefs who can whip up a delicious dish from offal or olives make their own coffee? Reasons abound. But here’s what some of the best palates around have to say.
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Not only does Chef Kinch not make his own coffee, the renowned chef has caused a stir among connoisseurs by saying that he isn’t that focused on his coffee’s flavor – he’s in it for the caffeine. Shocked, one outlet compared this statement to saying that you don’t care what you drink, you just focus on the alcohol. While plenty of chefs have alcohol troubles, you wouldn’t catch any of them saying they just drink to be drunk.
A Simple Schedule
Season one Top Chef winner Harold Dieterle also keeps his coffee practices simple; his daily consumption fuels him for service, when he’ll switch to water in the kitchen. Like many at home coffee drinkers, Dieterle’s habits are perfectly aligned with modern single-cup culture. These single serving machines make high quality coffee quickly, for a no fuss buzz.
An Ideal Ingredient
Rather than fuss about making a great cup of coffee, most chefs would far rather cook with this incredible ingredient, and they’ll put it to use in both savory and sweet dishes. One of the most popular ways to use coffee is as a crust on meats, where the bitter flavor acts as a perfect complement to sugar, garlic, and other spices. Chefs typically use such a crust on beef or pork tenderloins.
Of course, the obvious choice when cooking with coffee are desserts and pastries. There are the classics, like creamy, espresso infused tiramisu, as well as more innovative coffee-based desserts such as coffee flavored mousse. Skip the traditional chocolate mousse or heavy pot de cremes, and test out a smooth, coffee mousse for your next dinner party. You’ll be emulating some of the culinary greats, who are infusing coffee into a wide array of desserts over the last few years.
Coffee is a perfect ingredient, but when you spend your every working (and waking) hour thinking about food, brewing your coffee at the perfect temperature and getting the right concentration and acidity can seem excessively labor intensive. That’s what sends chefs to the coffee shop for their morning – and afternoon – pick me up, restricting their work with coffee to more culinary approaches.
When it comes to great food cities, most people think of New York City or other metro areas on the coasts, such as Los Angeles, Boston, or New Orleans.
As both Martha Stewart and Guy Fieri (stars of the Food Network) know, however, there’s great food to be enjoyed all across the United States. One city that has a cuisine that both stars love is Reno, Nevada. Continue reading »
People have a lot to be thankful for particularly with regards to the advancement of mobile technology. The cooks, whether the newbies or the veterans, are among those benefiting from many of today’s smart mobile devices.
The most important role that smartphones and tablets play is providing information on recipes to people who love to cook for their loved ones and friends. With so many websites and apps that feature recipes and tips, it’s fairly easy to prepare and cook dishes with the help of a mobile gadget.
A 2013 survey on the global food trends done by Allrecipes.com showed that a growing number of people are using a mobile device to search for recipes and food inspiration. The survey covered more than 7,000 cooks with many of them cooking for their families as the top users of mobile gadgets.
So what are the top uses of smartphones and tablets for these cooks?
The study found that searching for recipes is the most popular activity with 63 percent of them doing this with their gadgets. Very understandable because with just a few swipes, they can easily find recipes without exerting much effort. Continue reading »
Barbecue is a favorite food of many people worldwide. Whether in the developed countries or in the developing nations, this food is very popular among kids and adults alike.
A major proof confirming people’s love for barbecue is the high sales of grillers and smokers. In 2010, for example, more than 15 million were shipped in North America with the gas grills as the most preferred type. The latest study on barbecue lifestyle, usage and attitude done by the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association showed that majority of grill owners use their grills all year round. The summer are the most popular grilling times particularly during Independence Day, Memorial Day, Labor Day and Father’s Day.
Barbecues won’t be as tasty as they are without the marinade. Marinating is an important process as it makes the meat softer and juicier. Most marinades make use of vinegar, wine or lemon juice but other products may be incorporated. Continue reading »
Spring is here, which means that it’s time to prepare your yard for the barbecue parties you want to have this summer, starting with Memorial Day. This year, take a page from celebrity chefs and prepare a dish that is sure to impress, and easy enough to prepare in home kitchens and outdoor grills alike.
Shrimp-Bacon Kebabs influenced by Martha Stewart
Everything on these kebabs, including the lemons, is grilled. This means super-easy prep for you. Marinate shrimp and bacon in a mixture of lemon juice and Old Bay seasoning for at least 30 minutes. At the same time, soak wooden kebab skewers in water (if you’re using metal skewers, you can skip this step). Load up kebabs with shrimp, bacon and 1/4-inch thick slices of lemon. Grill on medium high heat for 3-4 minutes per side. You can omit the skewers and grill everything separately on the grill grates, but there is a risk of dropping bacon though the cracks. Consider downloading the Martha Stewart cookie app and making end-of-the-meal cookies. Continue reading »
As Thanksgiving in the U.S. approaches, for sure couples and families are now thinking of what dishes to prepare for this very special occasion. There’s no question that the turkey will continue to be the highlight of the menu.
Unless you have a big family who are turkey lovers, it is expected that many will have leftovers after the Thanksgiving celebration. But don’t throw them away yet because you can still make use of them in your meal for a few days more.
One way of using turkey leftovers is to make burgers. Here’s one recipe from Guy Fieri of Guy’s Big Bite called Jewels turkey-jasmine burgers.
To make the burgers, cut into tiny bits or ground the turkey leftover. Then mix with steamed jasmine rice (or any rice that’s available), thinly sliced spring onions, bread crumbs, one-half teaspoon sesame oil, one tablespoon soy sauce, one large egg, one Thai chilli or serrano chilli that’s minced, one teaspoon sugar and salt and freshly ground black pepper. Mix well until all ingredients are blended.
Continue reading »
gets tired of holidays? Not me, especially if the holiday is all a Learn more here bout food.
Well yesterday was another foodie dream holiday being the National Chocolate Souffle Day, and though we may be a day late in celebrating the holiday it isn't too late to get yourself a nice airy mouthwatering souffle.
If you fancy making yourself or
a special someone this sweet treat, here are a few recipes from all over the internet that you can try. Note though that souffles are really not beginner type of recipes easily caving in when not done right.
d.com.au/recipes/2115/gordon-ramsays-chocolate-souffle”>Gordon Ramsays chocolate soufflé
Chocolate Souffle with Chocolate Sauce – A kid-friendly recipe whipped up during the 2010 season of Junior MasterChef Australia. Now this, even beginner level cooks may want to try.
Chocolate Soufflé with Passion Fruit & Vanilla Bean Ice Cream – A different approach to chocolate souffle from Top Chef Just Desserts Season 1 contestant, Yigit. This is the kind of dessert you would expect from contestants of the show, as something too simple and straightforward will surely get you sent home!
Chocolate Orange Liqueur Souffle with Chocolate Sauce – Chocolate and orange liqueur equals YUM! This recipe is from renowned chef Paula Deen, which can only mean that this one's a home run as long as you execute it correctly.
d.com.au/recipes/2115/gordon-ramsays-chocolate-souffle”>Gordon Ramsays chocolate soufflé– This heavenly concoction is straight from his show, the F Word.
Image via Bravo
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up in the local Thai restaurant. Of course, when it comes to Thai food, the best kind you'll get will still be straight from the experts – the street vendors. Unfortunately, that would mean having to fly over to Thailand just to get my favorite Thai dish – the Pad Thai.
If you're craving for Pad Thai though, you don't even have to go to fly to Thailand for an authentic tasting dish. I've found one of the best Pad Thai recipes that you can try at home. If you do it right, you'll end up with a dish that tastes just like the best that Thai chefs make. Just make sure you always prepare the sauce first, because that's how any self-respecting Thai chef does it!
Ingredients for Pad Thai Sauce (makes four large servings)
- 1/4 cup palm sugar
- 1/4 cup fish sauce
- 1 tablespoon tamarind concentrate
- 1/4 cup Sriracha sauce
Directions for Pad Thai Sauce
- Put tamarind concentrate into a measuring cup, and add enough water to make
1/4 cup, stir, this is your
- In a small sauce pan, put palm sugar, fish sauce, tamarind juice, and sriracha sauce. Cook on low heat until the palm sugar dissolves, then increase heat. Let it start to boil, then quickly remove from heat, and set aside. You can make this Pad Thai sauce ahead and put in a jar in the fridge up to a week.
Ingredients for Pad Thai (makes 2 servings)
- 1 egg lightly beaten
- 3/4 cup (or more) fresh shrimp, uncooked
- 1 tablespoon sliced shallot
- 1 tablespoon chopped salted radish
- 1/4 cup diced firm tofu
- 1 handful rice stick noodle
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons water
- 1 cup fresh bean sprouts
- 1/4 cup fresh chives, cut into one inch long pieces
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 tablespoons chopped roasted peanut
- vegetable oil for frying
- Rinse the radish several times under cold water, gently squeezing off the water. Chop it and add a little bit of sugar to sweeten, mix well.
- Soak the rice stick noodle in warm water for about 15 minutes, leave in water until you are ready to use.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a wok at medium-high heat. Add egg and cook it quickly, scrambling into small pieces (see video below). Remove, set aside.
- Add 2 tablespoons of oil in the same wok. Add shrimps and cook until done. Transfer to a bowl, set aside.
- Add 1 tablespoon of oil to the wok. Add shallot, radish and tofu fry until aromatic. Increase the heat of your wok. Add a handful of soaked noodles followed with water. Stir-fry this mixture for about 5-6 minutes. The noodles will start to get soft. Add 1/4 cup of Pad Thai Sauce and mix well. Add sugar, cooked egg, bean sprout, chive and cooked shrimps. Stir well for another 1-2 minutes until everything blends together. Turn off heat, transfer to serving plate with sliced fresh lime, roasted peanuts, and more bean sprout on the side.
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Christmas Day may have come and gone, but the parties are far from over. With New Year's Eve approaching, you can bet that the drinks will be flowing again in abundance (if it has stopped for you) in a few days time.
If you're looking for some posh, but simple cocktails to serve during your party, why not give these three cocktails that chefs' themselves swear by:
The Red Hook (Blake Royer)
- 2 ounces rye whiskey
- 1/2 ounce Punt e Mes or other sweet vermouth combined with
- 1/2 ounce maraschino liqueur
Pour ingredients into a shaker with a generous handful of ice. Stir
briskly until well chilled. Strain into a cocktail glass and serve.
The Aviation (Blake Royer)
- 2 ounces gin
- 1/2 ounce maraschino liqueur
- 1/2 ounce lemon juice
Pour ingredients into a shaker with a generous handful of ice. Shake well until your fingertips ache. Strain into a martini glass and serve.
Grand Champagne Cocktail (Chef Bobby Flay)
- 4 shots orange-flavored liqueur (recommended: Grand Marnier)
- 4 teaspoons honey
- 4 fresh strawberries, tops trimmed
- 1 bottle Champagne, well chilled
- Special equipment: 4 chilled Champagne flutes
Add the orange-flavored liqueur, honey and strawberries to a food processor and process until smooth. Fill the chilled glasses halfway with the strawberry mixture and then fill the rest of the glass with Champagne.
Each of the cocktails above offer a very different taste so you can choose whichever will suit your palate best. The Red Hook is “dark, seductive, brown, and just a little bitter”, while the Aviation is “bright, gin-y, and tart with lemon juice.” The Grand Champagne Cocktail, on the other hand, is pretty sweet and probably has a more universal appeal.
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With just a few hours away before Thanksgiving dinner, I’m sure the turkey experts at home already busy doing preparations and cooking away. If you’ve waited till the last minute to figure out what to serve for Thanksgiving dinner though, and happen upon this post looking for last-minute turkey ideas, then I’m sorry to say that the perfect roast turkey is just not an option anymore. However, you can still serve turkey for Thanksgiving dinner.
Noemi, of Recipe Finder, compiled some of the best and simple turkey dishes on her post “7 Ways to Prepare Turkey”. None of the preparation ideas she gives will mean a traditional Thanksgiving turkey, but at least they are much faster and easier to prepare than a whole turkey roast. So if you don’t mind having turkey
burgers, fajitas, or casserole on Thanksgiving, then head on to the Recipe Finder blog for some great turkey ideas.
However, if you already have a whole th
awed turkey right before you that you don’t want to go to waste, then you can try Chef Gordon Ramsay’s Roast Turkey and Stuffing in a Pan. The recipe is good for 10-12 persons which means you’ll have plenty
of leftovers if you won’t being having guests over for dinner. Prep time is also just 2 hours, with cooking time about the same. And while 4 hours seems like a lot of time, anyone who’s had any experience roasting turkey will tell you that this is one of the fastest recipes you’ll ever find. So if you want to get your roast turkey in time for dinner, better get started or you’ll end up with one undercooked bird on your dinner table!
Turkey burger courtesy of Recipe Finder
Gordon Ramsay with turkey courtesy of The Independent
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