Culinary school students may enroll with dreams of their own kitchens and maybe a television show, but upon graduation they face the tough reality of restaurant cooking. Lauren Shockey, a Chicago University graduate who decided to pursue a culinary education at the French Culinary Institute, embraced the opportunities that were presented to her after receiving her degree. She set out on a world tour of four acclaimed restaurants, training in very different cuisines and in very different atmospheres. She shares her experiences in Four Kitchens: My Life Behind the Burner in New York, Hanoi, Tel Aviv, and Paris.
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In pastry school, we learned dozens of techniques for making sugar look like all kinds of things: ribbon, balloons, delicate flowers, and even sponges. I love having these skills in my wheelhouse because it's great to be able to jazz up a simple dessert with a little sugar work for special occasions. Of all the sugar techniques I've learned, making spun sugar is my favorite way to add some drama to desserts.
This week we survived a salt and vinegar chips tasting (try feeling your tongue after one of those!), played fetch with Hambone, special-ordered the semi-discontinued Rice Krispies Treats Cereal, and more. And if you're wondering, yes, RKTC would be RK cereal that turned into treats then transformed back into cereal again (full circle!).
>Slice'r Lance Roberts has never let wide expanses of territory come between him and a good pie. You might have seen a report or two to that effect. He's a regular Pizza Bedouin. Sliceland is just the place for a roving pie man like Lance to hang his hat (and you're sure to have seen him around these parts—always sure to put in his two cents). Let's get to know him a little better when he takes a trip to the hot seat.
Roti canai is probably Malaysia's more famous roti, but the lacy, crepe-like pancakes known as roti jala are even prettier—and much simpler to make. A simple batter of eggs, coconut milk, and flour is drizzled in concentric circles onto a hot pan, cooking in seconds and then folded to form a loose, netlike pancake whose nooks and crannies are ideally suited to mopping up curries and sauces.
Just prior to opening Flour in 2000, Joanne Chang was featured in the Boston Globe for a story all about cookies, and it was a giant photo of these Black Sesame Lace Cookies that illustrated the story. These cookies were a holdover from Chang's days as a pastry chef, where she made these delicate, sesame dotted rounds to garnish bowls of ice cream and sorbet.
Swirl ice creams are the best of both worlds--ribbons of sweet and sticky jam folded into rich and creamy ice cream. It's like a sundae in one scoop. What could be better?
When I make a crisp, I make a very large crisp—mostly because it's such a crowd pleaser that unless you have way more than you need, you'll never have leftovers. And those leftovers make a fantastic breakfast!
How this classic French dessert goes virtually unknown amongst many home bakers is a mystery to me. It is elegant, easy to make, and goes great with just about any ripe fruit—cherries are perfect for the season. Give it a try and tell your friends; I'm on a mission to give it the limelight it deserves.
Squeamishness aside, the tongue is such an appealing cut: tender and fatty, and delicate in taste (unlike kidneys or liver, for instance, which have a more distinctive flavor). I enjoy tongue sandwiches. Like corned beef or pastrami, the thin slices of tongue are so rich and satisfying that it's perfect between two slices of rye bread. All it needs is some horseradish and mustard, and maybe a dill pickle.
If there's a more ambitious young pastry chef out there than Jenny McCoy, I haven't met her. She's come through the ranks of many fine kitchens in Chicago, New Orleans, and New York, made her mark as the pastry chef at A Voce, and is now heading the pastry department at Tom Colicchio's flagship restaurant Craft. And oh yeah, she's got a BA in food writing and a cookbook on the way.
The theme of my trip to Spain: even when I wasn't trying to eat jamon, I was probably eating jamon. Oops? Another example: potato chips. While roaming the corner grocery stores of Madrid, it was fun to see all the meat-centric flavors on the chips wall. Jamon Ruffles, barbacoa Fritos and cheeseburger Lay's. There were "vegetarian" options too.
Thankfully none of the SE staffers are cheese-intolerant. We all love cheese, really love it. And thankfully, SEHQ is situated right across the street from one of the best mozzarella sources we know. When we're not slicing up a ball of that, we're melting Kraft Single slices on sliders or ending a nice dinner with a cheese plate and some red onion jam. Yup, we love our cheese. Here are some of our favorites; let's hear yours!
It's that time of year again. My annual plug for durian, the oft-maligned, odoriferous fruit beloved in Southeast Asia and beyond. Usually, my advice to durian novices is to select a fruit with the least-pungent smelling odor you can find since different kinds of durian will range from mildly cheesy-smelling to gym-locker-stench-evoking. Durian smoothies are a treat on a hot summer's day. You might even get a few durian converts if you serve the fruit in smoothie form, which offers a milder kick of that distinctive cheesy taste.
While previous attempts at barbecued short ribs have been so-so, this latest batch done with just a simple rub let the natural flavor of the beef and smoke against a tender meat take center stage and made them irresistible.
Serious Eaters can be vegetarians, too, and we don't want our meat-abstaining friends to miss out. We've got a meatless lineup to keep you happy.
Faced with nearly 30 kinds of candies that are popular in Norway, I reverted to my excited five-year-old self after a prolific night of trick-or-treating. Click through the slideshow to get an overview of popular Norwegian (and some Swedish; there's candy overlap between these neighboring countries) chewy candies, hard candies, chocolate bars, chocolate not-bars, and licorice.
I'm sure Alan Richman is still mad at me about what I wrote about his New Orleans food piece, but that doesn't mean I can't blog about his writing. His review last week of Il Mulino is so spot on...
Though less well-known than the touristy Versailles restaurant, Puerto Sagua is still a must-go for Cuban food in Miami. Don't get intimidated by its location, where many high-end, chic restaurants cluster—this is as cheap as a great sandwich in Miami Beach can get. There's nothing complicated about this authentic Cuban: ham, Swiss cheese, mustard, and another layer of roast pork stuffed in slightly toasted Cuban bread that resembles French baguette, but tastes fattier, with crispy edges.