I can tell you this: strami is a beautiful thing, created through brining and smoking, two brilliant meat transforming techniques. Good lamb/pastrami has the power to elevate one's faith in humankind. Velvety, fatty, spiced, smoked and sliced. A slippery slope for the cheese melt. Sliver, slice, slab, slob. Lamb slam!
This is the Italian Combo and Broccoli Rabe Pressed Sandwich that I styled for a Food Network spread. Here is the recipe.
Just a flat out good idea. Another thing I think I will do often in my parallel life.
Please come on by for a cookie and a book. I will be presenting and signing "You're the Chef" at Hooray for Books in Alexandria on April 7 at 6 pm and at One More Page in Falls Church on April 10 at 4:25. I'd love to see you!
This is my new book and I'm very proud of it.
While it comes from the wonderful American Girl people and is a terrific book for girls, it is also a terrific book for boys. Girls and boys of any age - school age to dotage - who want to cook. I think it would make a great gift for college kids, young adults, newlyweds, or anyone else who is beginning their kitchen adventure.
I wish you all, all, all, those I know, those I know a little, those I do not know, those I would like to know, those who are unknowable, a Christmas that is a respite from the sturm and drang of life as a human in 2015, from life as a human in the 21st century, a day when wonder overwhelms, awe precedes all else, and your heart feels so big and s0 heavy that your legs must work extra hard to carry it.
"One Meatball" is a song my family sang after dinner when I was a kid, with my sister on guitar. We did that, sang around the table, which sounds so archaic now. It breaks my heart to think how earnest my parents were and heartfelt too.
National Sandwich Day may fall on November 3, but sandwiches are surely most honored on the days following Thanksgiving, when everyone’s fridge is loaded with amazing seasonal fixings, particularly if you think to cook – or buy – enough for leftovers.Note to self: make plenty.
My friend and neighbor, writer/producer/director, Mike Sobola, took advantage of my personal affliction - no resistance here - and interviewed me for his terrific new podcast, Stay Relevant. A key element in staying relevant is staying on top of the worldwide sandwich scene or course, a topic we cover on Stay Relevant.
A shake from Roy's is really a milkshake - ice cream and milk. Yup, real stuff. They make them in good flavors too - salted caramel, hazelnut-chocolate, baked apple pie, pumpkin - changing with the seasons or maybe just for fun.
Styling for the Food Network - with Sara Rosenblum producing, Renee Comet behind the camera, Audrey Weppler wrangling the props, and Carolyn Schimley cooking - continues to be a whirl.
We finished off this brutal winter by renting a snow cone machine and turning the studio into a winter wonderland - until Carolyn hit me broadside with a snowball. She did not, however, load the center with a rock, so I must be doing something right.
Yesterday in NYC at a morning banquet, FOLIO announced the winners of the 2014 Eddie and Ozzie Awards. Washingtonian took top honors for best COVER DESIGN (consumer- under 250K circulation) for our June 2014 Burger cover!
It's always a blast to create photos for the Food Network with the well-oiled machine of Sara Levine Rosenblum, Renee Comet, Audrey Weppler, Carolyn Robb Schimley and Steve Redfearn. We work hard and produce a lot of pictures. And we have a lot of fun along the way.
Thanksgiving is almost here. My favorite holiday. I love how it bridges and crosses cultures. Not everyone feels the same, I'm sure, and in many cases Thanksgiving is a time when what you are without becomes magnified. I'm grateful to be as monumentally safe, well-fed and comfortable as I am. But that's not enough. I need to think way beyond my fortunate parameters.
My grandfather, Fred Schroeder, was known to say, "There is always room for pie," and he lived by his word. One evening my grandmother served pie for dessert and grandpa cleaned his plate. Shortly thereafter, making a call at a neighbor's, pie was offered. "There is always room for pie!" exclaimed my grandpa and ate a second piece with relish. He was thin always and tall, too, so I thought. Come to find out, years and years later, he was tall only as I saw him, which is the kind of tall that counts.
My son and I took what could be considered a trip, rather than a vacation - sixteen days in Greece. He's fourteen, beginning to be a man, old enough to haul the very heavy suitcase with the very broken handle, old enough to read a (paper) map and old enough for my uncensored rants while circling the traffic-choked mazes of ancient city streets. So narrow were they I thought of greasing the fenders.
We ate. Me as adventurously as possible, him not so much, but admirably for a somewhat cautious archetypical teenage American boy. I plied him with creamy gelato, dense and sour frozen Greek yogurt and icy drinks in lurid colors, sometimes three times a day. It was hot there day and night.
The day of the shoot, a massive snowstorm hit DC and shut down the city and the government. Regardless, everyone made their way to the studio for an all-day shoot—photographer Scott Suchman, food stylist Lisa Cherkasky, photo director Diane Rice, staff photographer Jeff Elkins, and me. Thanks to everyone’s dedication, the photos turned out great despite less-than-ideal circumstances. Also, hats off to illustrator Jill de Haan, whose beautiful hand-lettering provided the perfect finishing touch to make the cover really shine.
A story ran in The Washington Post Express featuring restaurants open on Thanksgiving and catering to the "non-traditional" diner, Founding Farmers among them. The photo above was created for the Founding Farmers Cookbook by Renee Comet, me, Audrey Weppler, Jennifer Motruk Loy and Carolyn Robb Schimley.
A little shop talk tracking the Venn diagram of the business of food and the art of food and the business of both sparked the man's remark that what we do is "create desire." Ding ding ding ding! Gongs bonged in my head.
So many sandwiches in all our pasts. What do we remember and can we choose? I think yes. The cards you were dealt are played, for heaven sakes. Do you remember them as winners? Color me Dr. Norman Vincent Peale. Geez, yeah, every Reuben was the best Reuben ever!
Moms are funny. Sometimes funny good, sometimes funny peculiar and sometimes funny haha. Ask my son. He will say that a mom is about 87% funny peculiar and the remaining 13% split between haha and funny
"Respected chef-restaurateur Bob Kinkead once told me that dinner should be “a circus on the plate.”
Well, that’s not quite my style — and professional food styling has been my meal ticket for 27 years. Restaurant service has lots more helping hands than when you entertain at home, I reckon. But I like to bring composed plates to the table, even for casual meals. It’s a luxury when a host says, “Let me fix you a plate.” I don’t have to worry about how much — or little — to take. A buffet’s not for me."
Nutella is the Audrey Hepburn of clients - classy in any context, smooth but not unctuous, European and effortlessly chic, sweet with depth. Color me swirly-happy to be a Nutella stylist-of-choice for now.
Working with Baltimore Magazine is something I always enjoy. A lot. Amanda White-Iseli, the art director, gets me out and about in Baltimore. Into restaurants unknown to me, into the kitchens of those restaurants, and into the minds and food of the wonderful chefs who inhabit these haunts.