Did you know February is potato-lover’s month? Well that was news to me as well (as if I need a reason to eat more potatoes). I learned about this at the 2015 Potato Palooza Party sponsored by Don Odiorne of the Idaho Potato Commission and hosted by Erika Kerekes of In Erika’s Kitchen & Judy Lyness of Two Broads Abroad.
There, potatoes were smashed, shredded, whipped, roasted, smothered & decorated from savory to sweet. More than 30 Southern California food bloggers were present, each swooning with delight. Individual dishes were cleverly coordinated with a holiday, reminding us of the potato’s year round availability. Continue reading
I love Spanish cuisine. Recently I had the opportunity to learn how to make one of its stars, a “tortilla,” from my Spanish born-and-raised girlfriend Visi. When I arrived at her home I found out I wasn’t the only one dying for a Spanish cooking lesson. Six other enthusiastic cooks were chatting with excitement about making Visi’s “Tortilla de Patata” (Potato Tortilla) a dish it turned out we all loved. Today’s recipe is an appetizer-sized twist on this traditional recipe that Visi brought to my Spanish themed party I recently hosted. Continue reading
Trying to explain Indian cuisine is like describing quantum physics. I love both, but they are best left to an expert. India’s cuisine is anything but uniform for many reasons: its 5000-year-old history, numerous settlers with diverse belief systems and distinct geography differences. But… there is a common thread.
The French have their sauces, the Mexicans have their chilies, the Italians have their pastas, and the Indians have their spices.
India produces 70% of global spice market. They grow about 50 of the 80 varieties of spices harvested worldwide. Continue reading
Recipes & Ramblings from Chef School
The secret behind pasta’s popularity in many cultures is its simplicity; simple ingredients, simple to make, simple to cook. The beauty of pasta is its amazing ability to comfort even the most tormented soul.
The history of pasta is controversial at best, and dates as far back as 5,000 years. Interestingly enough, how pasta is made has stayed relatively unchanged for the last 500 years.
If you thought pasta originated in Italy, guess again! Try China. What the Italians are famous for however, is making pasta famous.
It is estimated that Italians eat over 60 lbs. of pasta per person, per year easily beating Americans, who eat about 20 lbs. per person.
Coming to America
It was Thomas Jefferson who is credited with bringing the first “macaroni” machine to America in 1789 when he returned home after serving as ambassador to France.
The first industrial pasta factory in America was built in Brooklyn in 1848 by, of all people, a Frenchman, who spread his spaghetti strands on the roof to dry in the sunshine.
Americans have been in love with pasta ever since. Continue reading