On a recent trip to Italy, courtesy of the Italian Trade Agency, I was introduced to the wonderful world of Italian olive oils and their many uses in cooking and eating. The point of the trip was to learn how to taste and evaluate extra-virgin olive oils from all over Italy. The Ercole Olivario, an annual competition that identifies and honors the best producers of Italian olive oil, is a big deal. Over 270 olive oils had been entered, and by the time we six American journalists arrived in Rome, the field had been narrowed down to 100 finalists. […Read More]
“Ya gotta try the sour orange pie,” our waitress at The Yearling restaurant in Hawthorne, Florida, insisted. “It’s our specialty.” Being citrus lovers, my wife and I perked up and started asking questions. What we learned was this: The pie was most likely a variation of Key Lime Pie with sour orange juice subbing for the lime. It had a Graham cracker crust and was served with a sauce. So we happily asked our server to “Bring it on!” […Read More]
I found this recipe years ago in a publication whose name I do not remember. I had torn the recipe out and zipped it into my briefcase and I said to myself: “I’ve gotta make this.” Finally, this past Thanksgiving, I kept my promise. Normally our Thanksgiving gatherings are fairly small affairs, but Thanksgiving 2015 was special because our entire family got together. This recipe makes a huge yield. The bars are rich, rich rich, and one bar will definitely satisfy, especially after a big meal and a sampling of a few pies. […Read More]
What to do on a post-Thanksgiving Sunday morning? Why, make chocolate cake doughnuts, of course. My two granddaughters offered to help, and we all had a jolly good time. Oops! That’s my British schooling showing. The photo above shows the results of our happy efforts. I posted a story on chocolate doughnuts a while back, so just click here and you’ll get the recipe and see step-by-step pictures of the whole process. I want to emphasize that the dough is quite wet. That is as it should be. I think it’s best to mix it the night before so that it firms up and becomes quite easy to handle. Resist any temptation to add more flour to the dough or the doughnuts will cook up dry. How do I know? I’ve done it! It’s fine to flour your work surface and the cutters you use as necessary to prevent sticking. Do have fun!
Years ago, when I was the National Spokesperson for Cuisinarts, Inc., I developed a recipe, “Yogurt and Jalapeño Corn Bread” for the food processor. I demonstrated it all over the country and people raved about it. As the years passed, I lost track of the recipe until last night. I made a beef and bean chili and my wife said, “Why don’t you make that yogurt cornbread to go with it?” That’s all I needed. I had all the ingredients, and off to the kitchen I went. […Read More]
Peach season is at its peak where I live, so make sure to bake this scrumptious torte now. About thirty years ago I made a recipe for Plum Torte, a New York Times classic that became that paper’s most popular recipe ever. I’ve baked it every year since. This year, thanks to fantastic local peaches grown by Tom and Lynn McCamant at their Forbidden Fruit Orchards, a friend suggested I try making a peach torte. Because peaches are such a juicy fruit, I knew I couldn’t simply use them as is. […Read More]