Waiter, Don’t Take My Plate Away

Back in the old days of my blog, I used to write Thursday Night Dinner Songs. Those files went missing, I got older and more self-conscious, and the days of food related songs on my blog were over. But tonight I Tweeted that I wanted to write a country song called: “Waiter, Don’t Take My Plate Away” (because so many servers take our plates away before we’re finished) and was surprised to see it get ReTweeted many, many times. So then I thought: “What if I actually write it?” I sat down at the piano, took out a notepad, and created the song you can hear up above. A few notes: (1) sorry that you can see up my nostrils; (2) sorry that I turn blue every few seconds; (3) yes, it sounds like Dolly Parton’s “Why’d You Come In Here Looking Like That?”; and (4) I know I’m not a great singer, which is why I’d love for you to record your own version of the song….

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Someone’s In The Kitchen With…Zach Brooks

When Craig got his L.A. job offer and I knew that we’d be moving out here, I took great comfort in the fact that Zach Brooks, creator of the legendary N.Y.C. food blog Midtown Lunch, made a similar move a year prior. Which is why, when I thought of starting up my web series “Someone’s In The Kitchen With” again here in L.A. (check out my new L.A. kitchen in the background!) I knew precisely who my first guest should be. Join us as, then, as we chat about Zach’s blog, his childhood, his life in radio, how he thought up the idea of a site that’d tell office workers where to eat a good lunch in midtown Manhattan and how he’s expanded his empire to include downtown New York, Philadelphia and, of course, L.A. Thanks, Zach, for being my first L.A. guest! Your final interview bit about L.A. makes me excited to be living and eating here.

Someone’s In The Kitchen With…Penny De Los Santos

If you haven’t heard of Penny De Los Santos, you clearly don’t follow many food folks on Twitter. The woman is a superstar to the nth degree. Beloved by food bloggers everywhere for her photography (she works regularly for Saveur and National Geographic) and for the stirring lectures she gives at food conferences, the woman is unstoppable. So how lucky am I that she came to my kitchen (when I still had a kitchen) to talk about her career and the nitty gritty of food photography? Learn how to take great pictures of food (essential tip: it’s all about the light) and scratch your head as I make a weird Harry Potter analogy. Thanks, Penny, for dropping by!

Previous Episodes: Anita Lo & Charlotte Druckman, Lauren Shockey, Ludo & Krissy Lefebvre, Sara Jenkins, Amanda Hesser & Merrill Stubbs, Ed Levine, Matt Armendariz, The Big Gay Ice Cream Truck.

Someone’s In The Kitchen With…Anita Lo & Charlotte Druckman

Why doesn’t New York have any female chefs with four-star restaurants? What are the obstacles that stand in the way of women who want to make it in the restaurant industry? Joining me today on “Someone’s In The Kitchen With” are two guests who can speak authoritatively on the subject: one of New York’s best chefs (regardless of gender), Chef Anita Lo from Annisa, and Wall Street Journal reporter Charlotte Druckman who’s currently writing a book about women chefs called “Skirt Steak.” It’s a fascinating conversation and one that I hope you’ll continue in the comments.

Previous Episodes: Lauren Shockey, Ludo & Krissy Lefebvre, Sara Jenkins, Amanda Hesser & Merrill Stubbs, Ed Levine, Matt Armendariz, The Big Gay Ice Cream Truck.

Someone’s In The Kitchen With…Lauren Shockey

It’s not every day that one of New York City’s anonymous food critics comes to your apartment and unmasks herself on your web show to all the world. But that’s precisely what happened when Village Voice food critic Lauren Shockey stopped by to talk about her brand new book, “Four Kitchens,” a book that covers her time cooking at wd-50 in New York and restaurants in Hanoi, Tel Aviv and Paris. Find out all about how this 27 year-old became a food critic at a major paper, the challenges of restaurant criticism, the food that she cooked at wd-50 (“Campari Tofu with Smoked Eel”), her ultimate conclusions about molecular gastronomy, how to properly hold a knife (and mince chives), what it’s like being a woman in the brigade system in France and Lauren’s favorite off-the-beaten-path New York City restaurants. P.S. I’m pretty sure that I have a cowlick in this episode.

Someone’s In The Kitchen With…Ludo & Krissy Lefebvre

Yesterday saw the premiere of the new Sundance show “Ludo Bites America.” It stars French chef Ludo Lefebvre and his wife Krissy Lefebvre who, together, have taken the Los Angeles restaurant scene by storm; creating pop-up events that sell out so quickly you have a better shot of getting J.K. Rowling to write you another Harry Potter book than you do scoring a table there. The show tracks the Lefebvres as they create pop-up events all around the country. The first episode (which you can watch here on Hulu) is an entertaining mix of culinary tourism and high-stakes cooking drama. Ludo and Krissy stopped by my kitchen yesterday to chat about the show, the reality of reality TV, the virtues of a pop-up vs. a food truck vs. a restaurant and whether or not I could bribe my way into winning a table at the next LudoBites when I move to L.A.

Previous Episodes: Sara Jenkins, Amanda Hesser & Merrill Stubbs, Ed Levine, Matt Armendariz, The Big Gay Ice Cream Truck.

Someone’s In The Kitchen With…Sara Jenkins

Today’s episode of “Someone’s In The Kitchen With” takes us to Porsena in the East Village where Chef Sara Jenkins (who also owns the amazingly popular Porchetta) talks to me about the challenges of opening a new restaurant, her childhood in Italy (and Lebanon), the benefits of dried pasta vs. fresh pasta, and how she fed porchetta sandwiches to 300 troops in Afghanistan. (That story is not to be missed; make sure to stay for that). Thanks so much to Sara for taking the time to do this! I enjoyed talking to her so much, I could’ve stayed for many more minutes.

Previous Episodes: Amanda Hesser & Merrill Stubbs, Ed Levine, Matt Armendariz, The Big Gay Ice Cream Truck.