March 29, 2012 |
Kale is about as unlikely a food star as you can imagine. It's tough and fibrous. Bite a piece of raw kale and you'll practically end up with splinters between your teeth. Nevertheless, kale has become a green of the moment because, given a little special care, it's not only edible but delicious. You can cook it, of course, the lower and slower the better. But surprisingly, one of the most popular ways to use kale these days is in salads. Though kale leaves have always been found on almost every salad bar, it wasn't for reasons of edibility - it was for decoration, because this was one green so tough it would last forever without wilting.
March 23, 2012 |
Bold, dramatic, and invigorating, tangerine tango is dancing its way into home-decor trends in 2012 with a punch of reddish-orange panache. The hue is a vivacious alternative to last year's honeysuckle, and design experts say it's easy to incorporate. Pillows, bedspreads, and tabletop accessories in this high-impact color can add spice to any room. Or add tangerine appliances and personal electronics for an unexpected pop of color, says Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Institute, the research arm of Pantone Inc. of Carlstadt, N.J., which sets color standards for the home and fashion industries.
March 15, 2012
WELCOME to Cheap Buzz, where we eavesdrop as sommelier Marnie Old attempts to teach the joys of wine and fine spirits to Buzz, a guy with no sophistication and not much money. Here's their latest conversation: Buzz: So Marnie, Saturday is St. Patrick's Day. Are you a green-beer gal? I bet you'd look great with a green tongue. Marnie: Very funny, Buzz. I prefer Irish whiskey. It's getting more popular every year, and not just in March. People are discovering it's a milder, softer style of whiskey than scotch or bourbon.
March 15, 2012 |
AUSTIN, Texas - The 2012 South by Southwest Music Festival officially got under way Wednesday, with day parties all along the Texas state capital's Sixth Street strip and official showcases for up-and-coming and already-arrived bands banging on at more than 100 venues. There are more big names than ever this year in Austin - rap kingpin Jay-Z played a free show downtown on Monday before the festival began but while the SXSW film and interactive conferences, the latter a must-attend for tech and social-media geeks, were peaking.
March 1, 2012 |
It was a transporting bite. I had recently been to the coast of Spain, where I had devoured (for breakfast, lunch, dinner - basically whenever I could) the best shrimp I had ever tasted. It wasn't the preparation or the sauce, it was the crustacean itself: sweet, soft, creamy, head-on, lobsterlike. Which is why I was incredulous when I tasted those same qualities in my shrimp at Old City's Fork. It turns out the incredible flavor of my Spanish shrimp had nothing to do with Mediterranean waters, and everything to do with freshness.
February 9, 2012 |
THESE DAYS, with all the emphasis on eating fresh and local, it's not unusual for neighbors in and out of the city to take a stab at keeping bees or collecting eggs from their own free-range yard hens. What's next on the DIY frontier? Hint: it's growing in a moist and shady place and pairs well with a nice, round pinot noir. Welcome to the fabulous world of home-cultivated fungi. For mushroom lovers, and there are plenty of them out there, the notion of colonizing an army of shiitakes on a log in the back yard is downright seductive.
February 2, 2012 |
Fermented bean paste? Doesn't exactly scream "party in your mouth. " And yet we happily slurp it in that salty, savory soup doled out every time we sit down for sushi. And that's because miso really is a flavor bomb worth knowing. So let's start there. Miso is a broad term for pastes made from fermented cooked soybeans that are aged, sometimes for years. Miso has origins in China, but is best known for its role in Japanese cooking, where it is used in soups, sauces, marinades, glazes, and dressings.
January 26, 2012 |
Maybe it's time to look beyond claims of virginity in the oil aisle. Because you see, our 20-year love affair with olive oil has had fallout. We've forgotten that there's a whole world of oils that don't come from the olive tree. And they can do a heck of a lot more than just saute and make a fine dressing. OK, maybe we didn't forget. Maybe we didn't know about them at all. It's not as though before the EVOO revolution we were all swilling avocado and grape-seed oils. But olive oil has done a fine job of elbowing out other up-and-comers.
December 25, 2011 |
It was a Green Acres theme this year for the Philadelphia dining scene, as restaurants from city to suburb stuffed their farm-to-table wheelbarrows with a rich bounty of local ingredients. Some were driven by an inspiring passion for seasonal greens and sustainable fish. Others were simply moved by trend. And if the chef wasn't wearing his 4-H badge on his sleeve, his PR marketing machines certainly were, with an agro-concept frenzy that saw a crop's worth of new ventures - from cocktail bars to conference centers to food trucks - with a "farm" or "garden" sprouted in the name.
December 22, 2011 |
Here is an excerpt from the blog "My Daughter's Kitchen. " When our three kids come home for Christmas, they always want the meals they remember. It's funny, as I don't think of our dinners together as Norman Rockwellesque. It was always a challenge for me to get home to get it on the table, and someone was always running somewhere five minutes after we sat down. But I guess all of that is part of the family glue. One of the family favorites was this stir-fry dinner that is so old, it was called "Basic Oriental Stir-fry with Chicken.