'SF Chronicle' on Serious Eats

The SF Pennywise Eat Local Challenge

Carol Ness of the SF Chronicle explains the Pennywise Eat Local Challenge: It's a new wrinkle in the Eat Local Challenge, started two years ago by a small group of Bay Area women -- the Locavores. They issued an online call to people to spend one month trying to eat only foods from within 100 miles of where they live -- their foodshed.That doesn't mean buying breads, say, from a nearby bakery -- it means trying to find breads made from flour ground from wheat grown within 100 miles (impossible in the Bay Area, by the way).Ideally, every ingredient in every mouthful eaten for the month should come from the local foodshed -- down to the last grain of... More

The Accidental Vegetarian

The SF Chronicle debuts a new column today called The Accidental Vegetarian, by Amanda Berne; her first installment includes three recipes, tips to properly stocking a pantry, and of course, a good introduction to the column's intention: "I'm not a vegetarian, but I love vegetarian cooking. Through my years of working in restaurants, and time in culinary school, I've found the most satisfying dishes for me tend to be the vegetable sides or inventive vegetarian entrees. I've culled ideas from those years, and the recipes in this column will reflect the seasons, Bay Area produce and a penchant for whole grains and natural foods. I'll delve into beans under pressure, fancy dinner party fare, raw food for hot summer days... More

SF Chronicle Food Section Roundup: Valentine's Day Menu, Mayonnaise, and Chinese New Year

In Dining high on the hog for Chinese New Year, Olivia Wu discusses traditional foods of the day, how lavishly the New Year is feted in both Asia and in San Francisco, and lists ten mission critical tips to booking and ordering a private banquet at a fine-dining Chinese restaurant. This one is I think potentially most useful: "Ask for the restaurant's fixed-price menus for a 10-course meal. They can start at around $350 and go up to $650; some restaurants have menus composed for each price level. This is a good idea, especially if you don't know the restaurant and the chef doesn't know your tastes, or you don't know how to organize and pace a 10-course meal." Other... More

SF Chronicle Food Section Roundup: Picking Wild Mushrooms, Fried Chicken and Maple Syrup

Sizzling hot: Bay Area chefs and diners rediscover the irresistible appeal of fried chicken by Amanda Byrne: "The weird thing about chicken at Town Hall is that I couldn't sell it before," says chef-partner Mitchell Rosenthal. "Then I put this fried chicken on the menu, and now I sell upwards of 35 orders a night." Really thorough article that manages to also be mouth-watering—I'm having fried chicken for lunch today as a result! There are great tips at the end on frying chicken plus four recipes, in case you'd like to make your own, and also a selected listing of SF Bay Area restaurants that serve fried chicken. Other highlights: Marlene Sorosky Gray, on how real maple syrup isn't just... More

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