Sunday, January 31, 2010

Too Many Blueberry Muffins

Give or take a pinch of baking powder, most blueberry muffin recipes are pretty much the same. One thing that varies is the dairy used – some recipes call for buttermilk, while others use yogurt, or sour cream as this one does.

When it comes to the amount of blueberries, it seems that 1 1/2 cups is the standard measure. Since I get my blueberries in pint baskets, which is 2 cups, I decided to push the envelope and toss in the whole thing.

Is that too many? You can be the judge, but I really like that these are chock full of juicy fruit, and while it does make them less sweet, I think it's a good tradeoff. This recipe is going to be published, so let me know what you think if you decide to give them a go.

I usually do my voiceovers in the morning, when I'm fresh and peppy, and my voice is dripping with enthusiastic verve. This voiceover was done late in the evening, as I was getting ready to take off to Las Vegas (where this is being posted from).

If you are new to the blog you probably wouldn't have noticed anything, but the regular viewers will hear the same thing I do…I sound really tired. Anyway, maybe I'm being a bit self-conscience, but I thought it was really noticeable, and a good reminder to make sure I do these soundtracks before a long day of production. Notwithstanding the sleepy narration, I like these blueberry muffins a lot, and hope you give them a try. Enjoy!

Ingredients for about 16 muffins:
3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup white granulated sugar
1 (1/2 cup) stick butter, softened
finely grated zest from one lemon
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract, optional
2 cups fresh blueberries

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Short and Sweet

There isn't enough time today to do a recap of yesterday and night, so I've just posted my favorite picture from the festivities. This short, sweet, and spicy cocktail was from Chef Sammy D. at the restaurant First in the Venetian. Sammy was very cool, and in addition to serving up a bunch of delicious appetizers, he mixed up a batch of "spicy Vegas sunrises" - a blood orange and jalapeno vodka cocktail that I thoroughly enjoyed. Stay tuned for a proper recap soon.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Scenes from the Vegas Uncork’d Luncheon at Vintner Grill

Just a quick post before heading off for a tour and dine around at the Venetian/Palazzo Restaurant. The menu and photo below are from a fantastic meal we just had at the Vegas Uncork’d Luncheon at Vintner Grill.

You'll be hearing a lot more about Vegas Uncork’d in the coming weeks. Sorry, no time for details about this food right now, but if you check out the menu below, you can make it all out. Enjoy!

What Happened in Vegas: 3 Courses, 3 Chefs, 3 Demos, and 1 Very Funny Answer

Hello from Las Vegas! Last night was a great start to what's looking to be a very delicious trip. We got a tour of the Bellagio Hotel's finest food offerings with the hotel's Food & Beverage Director, Daniel Adams.

After the tour we headed to their Tuscany demonstration kitchen for a three-course meal. The food was done by three of the Bellagio's newest chefs, who also demo'd the dish in front of us before it
was served.

A great first course of scallops, cauliflower and truffled Brussels sprouts was prepared by Chef Jaime Mendoza
of Olives. The main course of beef short ribs with chive spaetzle was prepared by Chef Sean Griffin of Prime, and the dessert course was prepared by Chef Jean-Marie Auboine, who made something called "8 Chocolate Textures."

Chef Jean-Marie had the line of the night when one of the reporters asked him, "why 8?" He replied, "Because 9 is too many." That's so chef. Enjoy the pictures, and stay tuned!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

What Happens in Vegas, Will be Recorded and Shared on this Blog

I'm headed to Las Vegas for a fabulous week of food and wine as a guest of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority. They put together a culinary journalists tour to showcase the latest industry trends and newest restaurants in the city. We'll be grazing our way through the Palms, CityCenter, Bellagio, Wynn/Encore, Venetian/Palazzo, MGM Grand, and Mandalay Bay, just to name a few.

This trip comes at a perfect time. Since the cookbook production started, I've been pretty much working 7 days a week, usually 12-14 hours a day to keep up with the daunting schedule. It's been a blur of cooking, videotaping, photographing, editing, and writing. The nice thing about a trip like this is not only do I get lots of great content for my American Food site on, but I get a welcomed break from the routine.

Being around all the new and interesting dishes, drinks, and describers of such, will be restorative on several levels.
I also get to meet and share ideas with other food writers, which is always a blast. Stay tuned for updates and posts to follow soon. Speaking of following, if you want to come along on what promises to be a very interesting few days in my third favorite city, follow me on my Twitter page. Enjoy!

Vegas Photo (c) Flickr user jimg944

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Jinx-Proof Braised Lamb Shanks – There's NO Way You Can Mess These Up

I don't want to put too much pressure on you, but you're going to have to try really hard to screw up this great tasting lamb shanks recipe.

Lamb shanks are one of the most foolproof meat choices out there, and when you braise it, you have about as close to a sure thing, as there is.

After a long, slow roast in an aromatic, deeply flavored broth, these shanks are sure to get rave reviews. In fact, you culinarily challenged may want to give this a go for Valentine's dinner. The risk/reward ratio is very good.

The long, slow cooking technique works perfectly with your plans to mesmerize your date with a few hours of witty and romantic conversation before dinner. I'm sure that will be great, but maybe have the Wii out just in case. Enjoy!

6 lamb shanks, about 5 1/2 pounds
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
1 tablespoon butter
1 onion, diced
1 rib celery, diced
1 large carrot, diced
1 tablespoon flour
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup drinkable red wine
1 cup chicken broth
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 cup water
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary leaves

Monday, January 25, 2010

While You're Waiting for the the Next Video, Why Not Try Some New England Clam Chowder?

I'm in the middle of what I hope turns out to be a delicious batch of braised lamb shanks, but in the meantime, I thought I'd post this clam chowder recipe for you to try, and hopefully report back. Please see the cookbook-bound written recipe following the photo. Thanks and enjoy!

New England Clam Chowder

Makes 6 servings

1 pound little neck clams, washed
1 cup water
2 slices bacon, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
2 (10-ounce) cans whole clams, drained
2 cups cold clam juice (note part of this may be made up from the drained canned clam liquid, but clam juice has a stronger clam flavor)
1 1/2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled, and cut into 1/4-inch cubes
1 cup milk
1 cup cream
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
fresh chopped parsley to garnish
oyster cracker to garnish

Bring one cup of water to a boil in a small saucepan over high heat. Add the little neck clams, cover tightly, and cook for a couple minutes, until the clams open. Remove the clams to a bowl and reserve. Stain the cooking liquid and reserve.

In large saucepan, over medium heat, cook the bacon in the butter until almost crisp. Remove the bacon with slotted spoon and reserve, leaving the butter and rendered bacon fat in the pan.

Reduce the heat to medium-low, and add the onions. Sauté until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Whisk in the cold clam juice, slowly at first. Add the reserved clam cooking liquid. Bring back to a simmer and add the potatoes. Cover and cook for 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.

Note: at this point some chowder heads like to smash some of the potatoes against the bottom of the pan with a masher to add body to the soup. Optional!

Stir in the canned clams, milk, and cream. Reduce heat to low, and cook until just heated through. Do not boil. Add the reserved little neck clams, and cook for another minute. Taste and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper as needed.

Serve hot topped with the reserved bacon, parley, and oyster crackers.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

A Spinach and Feta Pie Fit for a Diva

This simple pan of food was supposed to be called a "Spinach and Feta Oven-Baked Omelet" in the cookbook – but after making, eating, and starring at photos of it for a couple hours, I decided it shall now be known simply as Spinach and Feta Pie.

Besides, if I've said it once, I've said it a thousand times…if it's shaped like a triangle and you can eat it, it's pie (reminder: all comments are moderated).

When I hear, "omelet," I think eggs, but while there are a dozen of those here, it's just not the star of the show. That would be the spinach, and lots of it. I put a whole pound of fresh spinach in this, and when it was done baking, the eggs had gone from headlining diva to backup singer. And not even the hot backup singer they always put in the first row of the chorus – that was the feta cheese.

This spinach and feta pie may remind you of spanakopita, that delicious Greek phyllo-wrapped pastry which is stuffed with a very similar filling. In fact, as delicious as this was, part of me wished I were also biting into those crisp, buttery, flakes.

At the beginning of the video, you'll see I already have the spinach cooked. I was positive I had done an old video for creamed spinach in which I showed the simple technique I used to wilt the greens. Do any of you old timers remember that clip? I was going to link to it to show you, but it's nowhere to be found.

Anyway, simply put a large stockpot over high heat, toss in a chunk of butter (let your conscience be your guide), throw in the spinach, cover, and wait one minute. Uncover and toss with a wooden spoon until it's just barely wilted, then drain as you see in the video.

This spinach and feta pie makes a nice breakfast, of course, but could also be served as a side dish sitting next to some braised lamb. Hey, that sounds pretty good. Enjoy!

1 pound spinach
1 tablespoons butter to wilt spinach in
6 slices bacon
1/2 onion, diced
12 eggs
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
pinch of cayenne
3 oz feta

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Boston Cream Pie - It's One Wicked Pissah of a Cake

I'm so glad I can't do a decent Boston accent, otherwise this video recipe for Boston cream pie would have probably been really annoying because I would have done the entire voiceover in it.

This is my quick and easy version of Boston's Pa
rker House Hotel's famous cake. Why is it called a pie? Your guess is as good as mine, but what I do know is that a real Boston cream pie is comprised of two layers of sponge cake, not a yellow cake from a boxed mix.So technically this is only two-thirds of a Boston cream pie, but trust me, it's the most important two-thirds. In the video, I joke about the cake in this recipe simply acting as a pastry cream and chocolate ganache delivery system. I wasn't joking.

A Boston cream pie is all about the cream and ganache. In fact, here's a tip in case you want to take that idea and run with it – instead of two cakes, just use one. Use a long, serrated knife to split the cake in two, and proceed with the recipe as shown.

By the way, in a testament to just how busy I am, I completely forgot to mention those hairless hands you'll see stirring, whisking, and pouring, belong to my wife – the lovely and talented Michele.


yellow cake mix, prepared according to directions
For the pastry cream:
1/2 tbsp butter
1 cup whole milk
1 cup whipping cream
6 tablespoons sugar (upon further review we've added another tablespoon of sugar)
2 tablespoon cornstarch
3 eggs
1 or 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, or to taste
big pinch of salt
For the chocolate ganache:
4 ounces high-quality dark chocolate, preferably bittersweet
1/2 cup cream
1 teaspoon butter

View the complete recipe

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

A Tuna Noodle Casserole that Will Make Even Mad Men Smile

At the risk of becoming a social outcast, I'll admit to having never watched Mad Men. I mean, it's on the television while I'm working, and Michele seems to thoroughly enjoy it, but I just haven't gotten into it. However, when I see the sets, clothes, cars, and other iconic imagery of that era, I can't help but think the characters are probably enjoying tuna noodle casserole on a regular basis.

Below the photo you'll see the written recipe for this retro-chic classic, which is going in the cookbook. I really love this recipe, and hope some of you give it a go and tell me what you think. Enjoy!

Tuna Noodle Casserole

Makes 6 Portions

12 ounce package dry egg noodles
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 yellow onion, finely diced
3 tablespoons flour
3 1/2 cups cold milk
1 (10-oz) can condensed cream of mushroom soup
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 (7-oz) cans tuna, well drained, crumbled
3/4 cup frozen peas, thawed, drained
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup shredded Monterey jack cheese
1/2 cup plain bread crumbs
2 tbsp olive oil

Melt the butter in a medium saucepan, and sauté the onions over med-low heat for about 4 minutes, or until translucent. Turn up the heat to medium; add the flour, and cook, stirring, for another 2 minutes. While whisking vigorously, slowly pour in one cup of the cold milk.

When the mixture begins to simmer, add the rest of the milk, can of mushroom soup, salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens, and comes to a simmer. Remove from heat, and reserve.

Cook noodles in boiling salted water, one minute less than the directions call for. Drain well, and add to a large mixing bowl. Add the sauce, tuna, peas and about 2/3 of the cheese. Mix with a spatula to combine.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Pour the mixture into a lightly oiled 9 x 13 casserole dish, and top with the rest of the cheese. Mix the breadcrumbs and olive oil together in a small bowl until combined. Sprinkle evenly over the casserole. Bake for 35 minutes, or until browned and bubbly.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Garlic Parmesan Croutons, My Beyoncé Imitation, and How Did Cesar's Salad Become Caesar Salad?

There may not seem to be much rhyme or reason to the video selection these days, but there's a good reason for that. As I've alluded to in previous posts, for the next couple months I'll be basically cooking only recipes that appear in the cookbook.

When I have a chance to turn on the video recorder, I will, and this crouton how-to is an example. During normal times I'd probably not wake up inspired to film croutons, but hey, it's better than another talking plate clip from YouTube.

In addition to what may be a useful recipe for some number of you, you'll get my first and last Beyonce tribute. Sources deep within the music industry tipped me off she was planning a parody of my chicken wing video, so I wanted to strike the first blow.

Speaking of blow, virtually a
ll salad dressing historians claim Caesar salad was invented in 1924 by Cesar Cardini in Tijuana, Mexico. It doesn’t appear on any written menus or cookbooks until decades later, and when it does, it’s called the “Caesar.”

What happened? I realize the inventors name, Cesar, is Spanish for the Latin, Caesar, but so what? The salad was invented by a Cesar, not Caesar. It’s not like it was changed to make it easier to say, or to Americanize it. Anyone have any ideas?

While you're pondering that one, why not head over to my American Foods site where I've posted my version of Caesar salad dressing, and the same recipe that will go into the book. Any thoughts or corrections would be greatly appreciated. Enjoy!

Crouton Ingredients:
4 cloves garlic, minced very fine
1/2 cup olive oil
1 (8-ounce) loaf French baguette or similar style bread (for best results, use day old bread)
3/4 cup finely grated "real" Parmesan cheese (sold as Parmigiano-Reggiano)
1/2 teaspoon dried Italian herbs
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
pinch of cayenne

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Coming Soon: Homemade Garlic Parmesan Croutons

A Shorty Interview with Chef John

Thanks to many loyal readers of this blog, and my beloved YouTube channel fans, I'm proud to announce @FoodWishes (as I'm known on Twitter) is currently in 5th place for Shorty Awards nominations! I hear the top 5 finishers get an invite to NYC for the ceremony, so if you haven't voted, here's the link.

The following is an interview I did as part of the nomination process, and I thought I would repost it here. Enjoy!

What's your best tweet?

I love them all. That's like a
sking Octomom which child is her favorite.

What are six things you could never do without?
the other half of the twelve-pack

How do you use Twitter in your professional life?
To promote new (and totally awesome, if I do say) video recipes I've just produced.

What's your favorite Twitter app?
What's a Twitter app?

Twitter or Facebook?
Twitter! Facebook sucks. No offense.

What was the funniest trend you've seen?
Twitpics of food from really dark restaurants. It all looks like corned beef hash.

What feature should Twitter add?
With one click, you can delete another user's Twitter account if you think it's lame.

Who do you wish had a Twitter feed but doesn't?
That guy that does the 6 Flags commercials.

What are some words or phrases you refuse to shorten for brevity?
"the" and "notwithstanding"

Is there someone you want to follow you who doesn't already? If so, who?
Top Chef host @PadmaLakshmi. She has 19,428 followers and only follows 74 people. You do the math.

Have you ever unfollowed someone? Who and why?
Yes. Can't say, and won't say.

Why should we vote for you?
Why not?

Terms you wish would start trending on Twitter right now?

What's the most interesting connection you've made through Twitter?
Now following my wife.

Hashtag you created that you wish everyone used?

How do you make your tweets unique?
I only type with my pinkies.

What inspires you to tweet?
Desperate need for attention and huge amounts of free time.

Ever get called out for tweeting too much?
Never. If anything, I'm surprised people don't ask me to tweet more often. My tweets really are quite scintillating.

140 characters of advice for a new user?
Contrary to what most Twitter advisers say, I encourage new uses to tweet *more* when they're drinking.

How long can you go without a tweet?
Approximately 2.7 hours

What question are we not asking here that we should?
What's the deal with those Jersey Shore kids?

Who do you admire most for his or her use of Twitter?
Steven Colbert

Why'd you start tweeting?
All the cool kids were doing it.

Has Twitter changed your life? If yes, how?
Yes. Not sure.

What do you wish people would do more of on Twitter?
Follow me.

How will the world change in 2010?
Apparently, from what I hear, it will get about .03 degrees warmer.

What are some big Twitter faux pas?
Trying to sound smart by using pretentious terms like, "faux pas."

What will the world be like 10 years from now?
It will be very similar to today, except people will cook at home much more often, thanks to the abundance of online cooking videos.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

With Friends Like Mandometer, Who Needs Enemies?

Did you ever think to yourself, "I wish they made a dinner plate that would criticize me while I eat?" Well, thanks to a clinic in England, that very thing is now a reality!

At first glance I thought this device was intended to scold overeaters, but it looks like its real mission is helping people with eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia. Still, I can't help but imagine setting a plate of chicken fried steak down and hearing, "Oh no you didn't!"

Friday, January 15, 2010

Sherry Braised Beef Short Ribs – Stick a Fork in Them, They Might Be Done

Sticky, succulent beef short ribs are such a favorite of mine, and I when I realized I'd only done a couple other previous videos with them, one recipe way back when I still used a tiny web cam taped to the spice rack, I decided to film this version, which is going in the cookbook.

The video doesn't need a lot of set-up. Beef short ribs are pretty much foolproof, and as long as two things happen, you are in for some very fine eats. First, the beef must be really well browned – I'm talking deep, dark, crusty, and caramelized.

To this end I use a separate, very heavy duty, super thick, copper-bottomed pan on high heat. You can, and I have many times, simply brown in the Dutch oven itself, but they're generally thinner than a skillet, and not as easy to keep on high heat for prolong periods without scorching.

The other key step is easier. To paraphrase an expression you'll probably hear watching football this weekend, "Stick a fork in them, they're done." Just braise them until they're fork-tender. After browning properly, the only way to mess these up is to undercook them, so don't.

If you watch carefully, you'll actually see in the shot where I test them with the fork, they're a little "bouncy," and not quite there, so I put them back in for another 20 minutes. Once done, your patience will be well rewarded. Enjoy!

Tech note: the quality of these movies is poor until they are completely finished processings, so if they look low res, check back later to enjoy the sheer visual ecstasy that is HD video!

4 slices bacon, cut in 1/2-inch pieces

salt and fresh ground black pepper as needed
3 1/2 pounds beef short ribs
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp flour
1 cup dry sherry wine
1 quart beef broth or veal stock
6 springs of thyme, picked
1 bay leaf

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Do You Have a Strong Heart and Clear Mind?

Actually, on second thought, I don't care about the clear mind, but you should have a very strong heart before deciding to help me test this recipe. This is the chicken fried steak with country gravy that's going in the cookbook. If you'd like, follow the written recipes below and see what happens (besides massive deliciousness and not having to eat again for about 8 hours). Enjoy!

Chicken Fried Steak (makes 4 portions)

4 (6-ounce) beef cube steaks
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup milk
vegetable oil as needed

Season both sides of the cube steaks generously with salt and pepper.

Whisk together the eggs and milk in a pie pan and reserve. Add the flour, paprika, and white pepper into a second pie pan, and mix well to combine.

One at a time, dip the cube steaks into the egg mixture, turning to coat completely, and then dredge in the flour, coating both sides. Place the egged and floured steaks on a plate, and allow to rest for 10 minutes.

Add about a 1/4-inch of vegetable oil to a large skillet, and place over medium-high heat. When the oil begins to shimmer, add the steaks and cook about 3-4 minutes per side, until golden brown and cooked through.

Remove and drain for a couple minutes on a wire rack set over some paper towels. If working in batches, keep the cooked steaks in a warm oven until the rest are done. Serve immediately topped with country gravy.

Country Gravy (makes about 3 cups)

4 ounces ground pork sausage, or pork sausage link with casing removed
3 green onions, light parts chopped, green parts sliced and reserved
3 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 1/2 cups cold milk
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
pinch of cayenne

Lightly brown the sausage in a medium saucepan over medium heat. As it cooks, break the meat up into very small pieces with a wooden spoon. Add the light parts of the green onion and the butter; saute for a few minutes, until the onions are translucent.

Stir in the flour and cook this pasty mixture for 3 minutes. Whisk in the cold milk gradually until combined. The gravy will thicken as it comes up to a simmer. When it simmers, reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes. Before serving, season with salt, pepper, and cayenne to taste.

Note: the thickness of this gravy is easily adjusted by adding another splash of milk towards the end of the cooking process. For an extra thick version, reduce the milk by 1/2 cup.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Baked Acorn Squash – You're So Going to Score

I know what you're probably thinking. I could have used this recipe a few weeks ago for Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner. Well, it's actually not late, it's just super early for next year. You're welcome.

It's rare I enjoy a recipe for its looks more so than its taste. Don't get me wrong, I like how this tastes, but scoring the squash with a knife before baking really makes for a great presentation. It also allows the simple, but delicious glaze to penetrate nice and deep.

I'm not sure why I don't eat more squash. It's so nutritious, or at least that's what I'm led to believe, and I'm way too busy to search for evidence to the contrary. It also serves double-duty as a vegetable and a starch. This recipe, or something extremely close will be in the cookbook, so if you try it, let me know what you think. Enjoy!

2 acorn squash
2 tablespoon freshly squeezed orange juice
1 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons maple syrup
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
pinch of cayenne

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Calling All Twitterers – Please Nominate Foodwishes for a Shorty!

"Hollywood has the Oscars. Broadway has the Tonys. Now Twitter has the...Shorty Awards" – The New York Times

There's a something called the Shorty Awards that, according to their mission statement, "…honor the best people and organizations on Twitter. These unique awards are for the Twitter community, by the Twitter community. Online voting is public and democratic, culminating in an awards ceremony that recognizes the winners in 27 official categories as well as those in brand new crowd-sourced ones."

Sounds good to me! If you are on Twitter, you can follow this link and give some Shorty love in the food category! Thanks!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Let Your Chicken Fingers Do the Walking

I sure hope you enjoyed that phone/Yellow pages/chicken finger pun as much as I did. The chicken finger video has finally been approved and uploaded to YouTube, and I'd love to say it will be worth the wait, but I'm not sure.

This video recipe is more of a technique tutorial (yes, some people don't know how to bread things), and you more advanced foodies may be underwhelmed. Having said that, this is a really tasty, and pretty easy, appetizer to whip up for your Super Bowl party (and be sure to check out the honey mustard sauce video here).

The secret is the panko breadcrumbs. These larger, flaky crumbs get much crispier, and stay crisp much longer than conventional breadcrumbs. By the way, I can already hear some of you grumbling about finding panko, but it's very common these days (thank you Food Network and Bravo), and you'll find them in every large grocery chain.

As far as the phone goes, I really enjoyed giving it a test run and it performed very well. It's very fast, feels great in your hand, and the voice activated feature for basically any text input field is perfect for someone like me.

I should also probably state for the record that I was kidding about the Nexus One apps – I'm really not developing smart phone programs that chop onions and peel potatoes. I'm sorry to disappoint those of you that thought that part of the video was real, but then again, if you were fooled, you have other more important issues to address. Enjoy!

4 large skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2 inch strips
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon chipotle pepper
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
4 eggs, beaten
1 tablespoon milk
3 cups Japanese-style panko bread crumbs
canola oil for frying

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Since I Can't Give You the Finger Video, Here's a Baked Acorn Squash Tease

Due to certain high tech machinations and assorted Silicon Valley vagaries, it doesn't look like the chicken finger video will be flipped until Monday. In the meantime I thought I'd give you a little peak at these baked acorn squash. which will air in a recipe video very soon. Enjoy!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

A Double Dip of Social Discourse

Sorry, but I'm still waiting for approval from the powers that be on the chicken fingers video, but here's a little double dip of silliness from a clip I shot to test the video camera on the new Nexus One Google phone.

This clip has sparked a huge debate on my Youtube channel over the dos and don'ts of double dipping. Hopefully we can have the same heated discussion here. Some say the DD is disgusting, others say it's been proven you don't get sick from this party foul. What do you think?

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Honey Mustard Sauce - Something to Dip Your Fingers Into

Very soon, maybe tomorrow, I'm going to be airing a crispy chicken finger how-to video and this honey mustard sauce recipe would have made it too long, so I'm posting it separately.

One reason there was no extra time in the chicken recipe was, in addition to showing you how to make chicken fingers for your Super Bowl party, I'll also be showing off an exciting new gadget I've been using recently. Hint: think biggest smart phone launch ever.

In the meantime, make some sauce and get ready to do some serious dipping. Enjoy!

1/3 cup real mayo
2 tbsp Dijon
2 tsp yellow mustard
1 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tbsp honey
1/2 tsp hot sauce

Food Wishes Now Featured on YouTube's Ad Blitz Super Bowl Channel

It must be the wings. YouTube has just launched a Super Bowl channel that will feature all kinds of fun stuff for the big game, and we've been asked to share some of our favorite football fare.

They'll have
analysis, predictions, recipes, drink ideas, and of course all those new commercials, which have become as big as the game.

So, check it out here and get your game plan together for Super Bowl XLIV! (that's 44 in football math)

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Kick Out the Jams

Since I just posted that buttermilk biscuit recipe, I figured I better put out some jam. This video from my friend Liza de Guia at Food Curated focuses on specialty jam maker Laura O’Brien from Josephine’s Feast. Enjoy!

Read Liza's original post here

Boiling Down to Heightened Flavors: The Specialty Jams of Josephine's Feast *food curated* from SkeeterNYC on Vimeo.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Beautiful Buttermilk Biscuits

I won't give you my full list, but if I had to decide on 10 contests for a Great American Food Decathlon, the first event will be buttermilk biscuits. Sorry, but if you can't make buttermilk biscuits, you have no business attempting the other nine events.

Buttermilk biscuits are not so much a recipe, as they are a mythology. Secret knowledge passed down from generation to generation, mother to child, blogger to people like you.

This deceptively simple recipe can come out a million different ways with some very minor variations on the ingredients and amounts. This one's my favorite – flaky, but not dry; chewy, but not tough; crisp in just the right spots.This is a recipe you need to practice to really get a feel. Once you do, you can refine the formula to achieve your ultimate buttermilk biscuit. Some like their biscuits moist and tender, while others aren't happy unless they collapse into a buttery pile of crumbs.

In the video recipe, you'll notice I only cooked 10 biscuits. You can get a few more than that, but I only cooked the prettiest ones since, like the dinner rolls, this was made for the cookbook.

Anyone who makes the recipe below is encouraged to chime in. Thanks and enjoy!

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
7 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into thin slices, chilled in freezer
3/4 cup cold buttermilk

View the complete recipe

Friday, January 1, 2010

Beans and Greens for New Year's Day? Good Luck with That!

One of the oldest culinary traditions in American cooking is serving beans and greens on New Year's Day. Tradition has it that eating "poor" on the first day of the year brings wealth and good fortune throughout the rest of the year.

The greens represent paper money, and the beans, usually black-eyed peas, coins. I've posted all my beans and greens videos below. You can also click the titles to read the original posting with ingredients. These recipes are so tasty, the fact that they may, or may not, bring prosperity won't seem to matter. Happy New Year, and enjoy!

Black Eyed Peas with Pork and Greens

Butter Beans with Bacon and Rocket

Italian Pork and Beans and Greens Recipe

Beans and Greens