Friday, March 31, 2006
Before I wrap things up here for the week, I'd just like to give another nod to Food Network's 30 Minute Meals host, Rachael Ray, and her new glossy, the Everyday magazine. And no, I'll not comment here again on the age-old question that's been buzzing around for far too long : Is she, or is she not a "bona fide" chef?
Quite frankly...who cares? Well, yes, I'm sure some do (or seem to), but I'll just let them deal with that -- along with the valuable time that's wasted in thinking about it. Without any doubt, for anyone who wishes or cares to check out Rachael Ray's * lengthy * background in the food industry, the answer to this question remains more than clear.
In any case, I'd like to mention one of Rachael's fantastically time-saving recipes that I tried out on the hubster just last night. And by the way, the big guy loved it. I think I should also mention here that my better half is the proverbial "Mikey" (if you were around in the 70s most likely you'll remember those Life cereal ads) who hates just about everything. But, this was one that he really enjoyed. Rachael also recommends either vegetable or peanut oil for this one, and not her usual "E.V.O.O" (her simple way of saying "extra-virgin olive oil") that has many of her detractors harping and moaning...constantly. And yes, trust me, I already know. Extra-virgin olive oil is just as it says, and normally reaches the point of over-heating faster than regular virgin olive oil, and therefore, will often impede the natural flavors of your ingredients when it's used for sautéing. Nevertheless, as Rachael and many of us also know, it's not always the case depending upon -- the particular dish you happen to be preparing at the time.
Anyway, the full recipe for last night's Ginger-Scallion Slaw with Five-Spice Snapper is here (thanks Rach!):
And that's all for me here this week. Make it a great weekend. Peace.
Wednesday, March 29, 2006
In her introduction to the first segment of The New Medicine , the late activist and champion, Dana Reeve tells viewers: "Your emotional state has a tremendous amount to do with sickness, health and well-being. For years, my husband and I lived on -- and because of -- hope. Hope continues to give me the mental strength to carry on."
Read more here about this latest look into the world of medicine, from alternative to mainstream, i.e., nutritional supplements, acupuncture, massage and holistics-- that might improve a patient's overall experience while battling the most chronic diseases.
Dana Reeve was chairperson of the Christopher Reeve Foundation (CRF) and founder of the Christopher and Dana Reeve Paralysis Resource Center. She will always be remembered for her passion, strength and ceaseless courage that became her hallmark. Along with her husband Christopher, she faced adversity with grace and determination, bringing hope to millions around the world.
The New Medicine airs on PBS tonight. Check your local listings for the exact time.
And now for a quick (well, actually belated) mention here about this year's James Beard Foundation Awards. The recipient of the 2006 James Beard Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award is Judith Jones, Senior Editor and Vice President of Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House publishers.
In her nearly 50-year career as a cookbook editor, Jones has worked with a long list of esteemed food writers, including Julia Child (Judith published Julia's first book and was her editor ever after), James Beard, Nancy Verde Barr, Lidia Bastianich, Marion Cunningham, Rosie Daley, Marcella Hazan, Ken Hom, Madhur Jaffrey, Irene Kuo, Edna Lewis, Scott Peacock, Joan Nathan, Jacques Pépin, Claudia Roden, Nina Simonds, and Anna Thomas, among many others.
So congrats to her now on receiving this prestigious award.
Read the entire press release here on this year's ceremony to be held on May 8 in New York City.
Spring temperatures *all around* today for most of the U.S. according to this morning's forecast -- so get on out there and enjoy them. Good Wednesday, all. Peace.
Monday, March 27, 2006
Today Show's Al Roker
Okay, with a face as familiar -- and loved -- as his, how can we not welcome him into the already over-saturated fold, known more commonly as...(ah yeah, here comes that much-used moniker yet again)...reality TV.
As well as an accomplished author of several books, he's the genial NBC Today Show weatherman we've all known and loved for years. And now Al Roker, a consummate foodie in his own right as demonstrated by the many Food Network showcases he's hosted, will be branching out into a production of his very own called, Celebrity Food Fight.
Mix in two celebrities ... stir in two world-renowned chefs and a dash of audience participation and you've got a recipe for this star-studded culinary showdown, produced by Al Roker Entertainment, Inc. for the Food Network. The new reality cook-off, a one-hour special hosted by Al, will enter into its first taping with contestants Morgan Fairchild and comedian Mario Cantone ( the mere mention of multi-talented Mario Cantone's name -- is enough to prompt a lot of folks to tune into this one, I'm sure), who will be under the tutelage of Master Chefs Daniel Boulud and Todd English of the Institute for Culinary Education in New York.
"We have been simmering this show in our creative culinary crock pot for more than a year and now we're ready for everybody to have a taste," Roker said in a recent press release as the show's executive producer and host.
And it'll be complete with a live audience as two celebrities don chef's hats and prove that they've got the talent to out-shop and out-cook one another. Fairchild and Cantone will begin with culinary boot camp and learn to cook 5-star style in high-pressured kitchens -- with Fairchild in English's renowned Gramercy Park restaurant Olives and Cantone in Boulud's contemporary French east-side eatery Daniel. They then take their newfound skills into the grocery store and ultimately back to the kitchen set to battle it out one-on-one for the title of hottest new celebrity chef. There are time limitations, chef lifelines and plot twists to this delectable food fight in which the celebrities are judged by experts on presentation, taste, creativity, and accuracy of cooking a full-course meal.
Formed in 1994, Al Roker Entertainment, Inc. (ARE) is a thriving multimedia company involved in the development and production of network, cable, home video, and public television projects. Al Roker is CEO and Lisa Sharkey is President. ARE produces programming for a diverse clientele including NBC News, Lifetime Television, A&E, The History Channel, Discovery Networks, PBS, TV ONE, Oxygen and NBC Television Stations Group. Al Roker Entertainment, Inc. clients include real estate superstar Barbara Corcoran, fitness guru Jorge Cruise, model/actor Tyson Beckford, celebrity dog trainer and handler Tamar Geller, designer Elaine Griffin, and the Wilhelmina Model agency.
Al Roker is the author of the must-have, how-to book for all aspiring grill-masters and barbecue chefs Al Roker's Big Bad Book Of Barbecue. He's also the author of one of the *funniest* and most heartwarming books about parenting I've ever read titled Don't Make Me Stop This Car: Adventures In Fatherhood
Kudos, Al! And best of success with Celebrity Food Fight.
Check your local listing for the exact date and time of its premiere episode.
Have a great Monday, all. Peace.
Friday, March 24, 2006
From NY Times bestseller Sticks And Scones to Double Shot , author Diane Mott Davidson is back with her latest installment in the Goldy Bear Schulz mysteries titled, Dark Tort. And once again, proving that when it comes to the culinary whodunit -- she's the number one *diva* who always succeeds at getting the story told.
In this latest offering by Davidson, I'm told protagonist Goldy Schulz has a lucrative new gig, preparing breakfasts and conference-room snacks for a local law firm. It's time-consuming, but Goldy is enjoying it -- until the night she arrives to find Dusty, the firm's paralegal, dead. This young woman also happened to be Goldy's friend and neighbor, and now Dusty's grieving mother begs Goldy to find out who murdered her daughter. And just because the police are on the case, doesn't mean Goldy can't do a little snooping herself. While catering a party at the home of one of the firm's lawyers, she manages to overhear an incriminating conversation and ends up discovering a few clues in the kitchen. Before long, Goldy is knee-deep in suspects, one of whom is very liable to cook Goldy's *ahem*... goose.
In any event, if you love that cuddle-up "cozy" kind of mystery with a few mouth-watering food descriptions thrown in for good measure, this one is scheduled to officially be on the shelves by April 11th. In the meanwhile, Diane Mott Davidson is the capable author of a total of twelve best-selling novels in the Goldy Schulz series, so do check one -- or all -- of them out whenever you can.
And that's about it for me here this week. Have a super weekend -- and get out there and enjoy the spring season now that it's here. Peace.
Wednesday, March 22, 2006
First came Fake News and "Truthiness," now the publisher of Jon Stewart's best-selling America: The Book is releasing a book recently penned by -- none other than Mr. Stephen Colbert.
"This book will have the same noble goal as my television show: to change the world one factual error at a time," Colbert said in a statement on Tuesday through Warner Books.
Colbert's book, currently untitled, is scheduled to come out in the fall of 2007.
Colbert, a longtime fixture on Stewart's Daily Show , now hosts The Colbert Report, also aired on Comedy Central. He also has a background with the written word. He contributed to America (The Book), co-authored Wigfield with Amy Sedaris and Paul Dinello and is credited with coining the word "truthiness," named Word of the Year for 2005 by the American Dialect Society (yes, there is such a society, and just to prove it here's the link).
And just for the record, "truthiness" by definition, is the quality of stating concepts one wishes or believes to be true, rather than the facts. A phenomenon that I'm sure many of us are familiar with, even if you've only been paying as much as half attention for the past six years, three of them being war years -- filled with enough little "truthies" to...oh, well, you get the picture.
In any event, as a regular viewer of both Stewart and Colbert, this book has definitely now been added to my "to buy" list once its released. And, if you've never caught either one of these Comedy Central shows -- you really should. Funny stuff, as well as some great interviews with quite a few notables who come on for a brief sit-down segment as guests.
Make it a good spring Wednesday, all. The weekend's almost here. Peace.