Sometime in the next two hours, I’m going to give away five signed copies of SECRETS OF THE BEST CHEFS on Twitter. All you have to do is follow me over there, and you may win the perfect holiday gift for friends or loved ones or frenemies who are tired of drab, boring, repetitive recipes and want to step up their kitchen game. 150 exciting dishes! Gorgeous full-color photography! Sidebars full of helpful information! Just think of how happy they’ll be to find this under the tree this year. Or screw those loved ones and win a copy for yourself. Or just buy one by clicking right here. I mean, you deserve it, right? [UPDATE: Contest is now closed!]
The bar was set very low. I wanted to recreate the Olive Garden chocolate cake that we used to get for our non-birthdays, growing up (non-birthdays because my parents would lie and say it was somebody’s birthday so we’d get a free cake) and would keep in our refrigerator for the week. I’d eat it cold with a glass of milk and it always hit the spot. I wanted something simple like that, so I turned to Twitter. A follower suggested I make the chocolate cake on the back of the Hershey’s Cocoa container. I was sold.
One of the things that came up, when we found our new apartment, was the fact that there was room for a kitchen table. I liked that idea, but didn’t really think that much about it. As we set things up, though, there was an obvious space in the kitchen–in front of my cookbook shelf–that needed to be filled. Last week, I pressed Craig on the subject and showed him a wide variety of options. On Twitter, Charlotte Druckman and Oliver Strand mentioned the famous “Tulip Table” which was a little too expensive for us; but IKEA makes a decent copy called Docksta. We decided that would go well if we got some colorful chairs to go with it. We found those on Crate and Barrel’s website.
Jicama, when you buy it, looks and feels like a small planet. It’s big, it’s round, it’s hard. I almost put it back and thought about using something else as a first course for my friend Diana’s birthday dinner (during which I served a Smoky Beef Chili; that’s the next post) but the Jicama Mango salad I chose from a Rick Bayless cookbook was too perfect a choice to reject because of a big, scary jicama. So I brought the jicama home and turned to Twitter for advice.
The other day I Tweeted a recipe and people really dug it. It’s not so much a recipe as it is an idea: “Next time you take a roast chicken out of the pan, pour in a glug of Maker’s Mark and whisk in 3 Tbs butter on high heat. You’re welcome.”
The truth was I’d only done it once before and liked it so much, I wrote that Tweet. Then after writing that Tweet I felt inspired to do it again and take pictures. That’s how this post was born.
No one looks at a coil of barbed wire and thinks, “I would like to eat that.” Yet there are eaters among us who see a plate of frisée and think that very thought. Psychologists have a word for these people: masochists. How else to explain the inexplicable desire to consume razor-like stalks of pale green lettuce, each bite ravaging the inside of one’s mouth? It’s time for someone in the food world to stand up and expose frisée for what it really is: a sadistic trick of nature, seducing chefs and gardeners around the world with a hidden pheromone that creates the illusion that frisée is actually good to eat. I assure you, it’s not.
I’m so excited to finally share with you images from the latest issue of Food & Wine in which I have an article called “Real Heroes Don’t Tweet.” The article’s about following my food heroes on Twitter and how it’s changed my perception of them from untouchable gods and goddesses to just ordinary, everyday people. What’s funny is that Twitter played a prominent role in this article happening in the first place: Dana Cowin (editor-in-chief of Food and Wine) ReTweeted something I wrote, I thanked her and we made a date to meet for lunch. It was at lunch (at a place called Junoon) that I started talking about what I liked and what I didn’t like about Twitter and that’s when Dana suggested I write this article. So get thee to a grocery store to buy a copy and let me know what you think! Oh, and as far as that most memorable New Year’s Eve dinner that Molly made? You can read about that here.
On this blog, only one hot, caffeinated beverage gets the love (see: coffee), but what about the other hot, caffeinated beverage? No, not boiled Coke, I’m talking about tea.
Funny story: the other day I Tweeted, “I think I’m ready to own a teapot.”