What We're Reading: January 26, 2015

 

Maternity maki rolls? A new study refutes previous bans on eating sushi while pregnant. [MUNCHIES]

 

Dive right into that dumpster: one food waste activist has promised to pay the fines of those caught in the act. [Civil Eats

 

These mood-boosting ingredients are literal comfort foods. [Greatist

 

The consumer shift towards fast-casual chains reveals much more about our social priorities than a love of burritos. [... Read more >

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America Cooks with Chefs: The Final Competition (and a Recipe!)

 

It's time for the final phase of America Cooks with Chefs, our healthy cooking competition in partnership with the Clinton Foundation. We've paired six ordinary Americans from across the country with JBF Award–winning chefs, who have equipped our contestants with nutritious recipes and valuable cooking tips for healthier lifestyles. You can watch videos of our first four participants and their respective chef trainers in action here. (Stay tuned for more videos next week!)

 

This weekend, at the Clinton Health Matters Annual Activation Summit, each contestant-and-chef duo will prepare their signature recipe for conference attendees and judges. On Monday, in front of a live audience, we'll announce the winning dish and present the grand prize to the victors.... Read more >

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Happy Hour: Sinatra Smash

Sinatra smash cocktail

 

Awards season is in full swing, and the anticipation has us reminiscing about the many opulent galas in our past. One of the highlights from the 2009 Beard Awards reception was the eclectic mix of festive cocktails, and among our favorites was this delicious blackberry and whiskey concoction from Patricia Richards of the Wynn Las Vegas. The beauty of a smash, which dates all the way back to the late 1800s, is its versatility: it's refreshing in the summertime, and it's uplifting in the dead of winter; it's most often made with whiskey, but is equally delightful with gin, vodka, or rum; and any garnishes you have on hand (mint, citrus, fresh berries, or anything you favor) will only make it shine even more. This luscious, elegant rendition, however, might just win our vote. Get the recipe here.

 ... Read more >

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On the Menu: Week of January 26

 

Here's what's coming up at the James Beard House and around the country:

 

Monday, January 26, 7:00 P.M.
The Butcher and The Chef
As a young apprentice butcher at Jefferson Market, Salvatore Petruso delivered meats to James Beard at the icon’s Greenwich Village townhouse. Now at the helm of Westwood Prime Meats, Petruso is teaming up with chef John Vitale of Tuscan-inspired Caffe Anello for an evening that will showcase some of Beard’s butcher-shop favorites.

 

Tuesday, January 27, 7:00 P.M.
New York Meets Copenhagen
At Noho hot spot Acme, well-heeled urban locavores clamor for a reservation to sample Noma co-founder Mads Refslund’s world-renowned Nordic fare. For this can’t-miss Beard House event, the Danish chef will bring his farm-to-table, hyper seasonal ethos to our diners with a winter menu highligh... Read more >

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Sustainability Matters: January 23, 2015

 

The FAO is calling for a "paradigm shift" toward sustainable food across the globe. [UN]

 

The development of nanopesticides could mean less overall pesticide use in the U.S. [Grist<]

 

A restaurant in Iran coated entirely with salt is cleaning the polluted air. [TreeHugger]

 

How wings, thighs, and ground chicken could be more contaminated than the whole bird. [NPR]

 

The impact of politics on the Gulf of Mexico Dead Zone and Louisiana farmers. [... Read more >

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Throwback Thursday: Remembering James Beard

 

Yesterday, January 21, 2015, marked the thirtieth anniversary of James Beard's death. In honor of the culinary icon, this TBT we’re sharing some of our favorite quotes, from a man who was as prolific with the pencil as he was with the spatula:

 

“There is absolutely no substitute for the best. Good food cannot be made of inferior ingredients masked with high flavor.” (The Fireside Cookbook, p. 13)

 

“Grilling, broiling, barbecuing—whatever you want to call it—is an art, not just a matter of building a pyre and throwing on a piece of meat as a sacrifice to the gods of the stomach.” (Beard on Food, p. 20)

 

“The roe of the Russian mother sturgeon has probably been present at more important international affairs than have all t... Read more >

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Eat This Word: Sunchokes

sunchoke

 

WHAT? A member of the sunflower family, this unusual vegetable, native to North America, can grow to be ten feet tall. Sunchokes are also known as Jerusalem artichokes, although they've got nothing to do with the Holy Land and they certainly aren't artichokes. The origins of its etymology are as varied and gnarled as this tuber’s skin. Some suspect that the Italian word for sunflower, girasole, tumbled through a game of telephone to become Jerusalem. A marketing scheme took this confusing nomenclature, combined it with the bulbs’ light artichokey flavor, and the “Jerusalem artichoke” was born. But the eccentric titles don’t end there: the sunchoke has also been nicknamed the “fartichoke.” Julia Child once said, “I just love those Jersualem artichokes. But is there anything you can do about the flatulence?” The sunchoke’s high starch content is the culprit (and also a natural remedy for diabetics).
 
Thankfully, these monikers have been eclipsed by this vegetable’s versatility. Sunchokes can be eaten raw, cooked like potatoes, or... Read more >

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What We're Reading: January 22, 2015

 

A baking guide for every faction of chocolate chip cookie lover, from crispy to chewy to cake-y. [HuffPo]

 

Organizations like Seed Matters seek to foster genetic diversity in organic produce not just through seed banks, but out in the fields. [Civil Eats]

 

Not all low-sodium chicken broths are created equal: the Kitchn reveals their top picks. [The Kitchn]

 

An investigation into the work of the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center suggests the uncomfortable consequences of more efficient meat production. [... Read more >

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JBF in the News: Izabela Wojcik on WABC-TV New York

 

On Sunday our own Izabela Wojcik appeared on WABC-TV's Eyewitness News Sunday to talk about the Beard House and our guest chef dinner series. Wojcik, who has served as JBF's director of House programming since 2002, was joined by chef Josh Boeckelman, who represented his New Orleans–based restaurant, Superior Seafood and Oyster Bar, at the House last Friday. The guests and anchor Rob Nelson discussed a few of the dishes from Boeckelman's Beard House menu, including smoked trout rillettes, red snapper crudo, and a deconstructed crawfish boil.

 

More than 250 dining events are held at the James Beard House each year, with dinners taking place almost every night of the week. See our complete Beard House events calendar

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Eat This Word: Semifreddo

 

WHAT? A half-frozen idea. Italian for "half-cold," semifreddo is an Italian dessert made by freezing mousseline-like custards, which are often layered with ingredients like ground amaretti, nuts, or chocolate. Unlike ice cream, semifreddo is not churned. To make it edible while frozen, air is incorporated into the custard base, usually in the form of meringue or whipped cream. The air also has the effect of making the semifreddo seem less cold than it actually is, which accounts for its name.

 

WHERE? Rappahannock Oyster Celebration

 

WHEN? January 21, 2015

 

HOW? Tangerine Creamsicle with Buttermilk Semifreddo, Paige Tangerines, and Quince Cookie

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