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Note the light blue band below where you can find the last 10 diary entries. If you are looking for an item that is older (more than 10 entries ago), click on the word "Archive" to link to all the entries, which are listed by month and year. If you want to do a specific search, put a keyword in the Search the Site box.

Radio and the Holidays

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

First, a couple of announcements:

Tomorrow, Wednesday, I will be on Joan Hamburg's WOR radio program from noon to 1 p.m., co-hosting her pre-Thanksgiving program. I will be answering your cooking questions, as I did for so many years on Thanksgiving Day. Carol Berman, the wine chick, will also be on the program. It'll be old home week. This program is dedicated to our friend Steve Harkavy, the barbecue king from Brooklyn, who died suddenly last Sunday, the day he usually gives his annual Week-Before-Thanksgiving party.

Also from 6 to 6:30 p.m. tomorrow, I will also be on Judith Regan's Sirius satellite radio program, pretty much doing the same, and having fun, too.

 

THANKSGIVING AT THE FOOD MAVEN

After 42 years of plugging out recipes for Thanksgiving, you will find many appropriate dishes at thefoodmaven.com. Here's a small sampling:

 

Joan Hamburg's Ritz Cracker Stuffing

 

Carol Walter's Apple Pie

 

Carol Walter's Lemon Meringue Pie


Baked Quince

 

Rozanne Gold's Sweet Potato Pie and My Pumpkin Custard Pie

 

Gougere (cheese puffs)

 

Barbecued Turkey Hash

 

Bert Greene's Turkey Tetrazzini

 

Peter's Turkey Hash

 

Impossible Turkey Pie

 

COOK AT SELIANO

My cooking and culture tours are getting some excellent press. We are now recommended in some of the best guide books, including the latest edition of Fred Plotkin's Italy for the Gourmet Traveler, and we were recently cited as one of the Top 10 Culinary Tours (and the only one in Italy) by Sherman's Travel

My next group is May 8 through 14, Sunday lunch through Saturday breakfast. It will be artichoke season in Paestum, and we'll eat them every which way and probably every day. We also have some other very special activities planned. We'll be having a lunch at a very important private home in Ravello, on the Amalfi Coast, with gardens overlooking the sea. We'll get a baking lesson from one of Italy's most famous pastry chefs, our friend Sal DeRiso, also on the Amalfi Coast. We'll be visiting the world's largest and most opulent monastery, a Baroque masterpiece, now a museum. There's hands-on cooking, cooking demonstrations, a market visit, a tour of the Greek Temples of Paestum by archeologist Bob Harned, and other cultural and gastronomic excursions. If you are interested in joining us, please write to me at CookatSeliano@aol.com.

 

WHAT I'M COOKING

Again, I have been let off the hook to cook for Thanksgiving. This has always been my sister's holiday, but this year I am going to my nephew, her son-the-doctor. Many of you ask after him, Brian Alexander, wondering if he's a doctor yet. Well, he's been a doc for years already. He finishes his residency in anesthesiology at New York Cornell Hospital in a matter of weeks. While an impoverished resident, however, he learned more than how to keep you alive during surgery, or manage your pain. He learned how to cook. He's doing most of the work this Thanksgiving, including his now family-famous potato gratin, but I have been charged with bringing the stuffing, the vegetables and a chocolate cake, which I am buying - the superb so-called Brooklyn Blackout Cake from Ladybird Bakery, on Eighth Ave. near 12th St. in Park Slope.

As for the stuffing, I am going strictly old-fashioned American traditional - bread, lots of onions and celery sautéed in lots of butter, sage (dried from my garden), thyme (fresh from my garden), moistened with some homemade chicken broth I made last week and, when I get to Brian's apartment, with some of the drippings from the turkey. Should be good. Sorry, I have no formal recipe. I am going to eye-ball the whole thing, but I did just buy three of my favorite baguettes, from Tom Cat, so they'll dry out and be ready for my casserole.

As for the vegetables, look at roasted Brussels sprouts. They'll be on our table. And, right now, I can't decide what else. I'll go to the market tomorrow and see what looks good. Maybe a string bean dish - the children at our Thanksgiving table are, I think, more likely to eat string beans than Brussels sprouts. Sweet and sour onions have crossed my mind, too, but I don't look forward to peeling all those tiny onions. We'll see.

 

SHOPPING WITH THE FOOD MAVEN

If you are the kind of Jewish family that doesn't give one big gift but likes to give a small gift for each of the eight nights of Chanukah, which begins Dec. 1, just a week away, I've come up with this list from my Amazon store, all items that cost less than $20. If you are not of the Chanukah persuasion, consider them stocking stuffers. I hope you remember that anything you buy by clicking through my store - even if the item is not stocked in the store - earns me a tiny commission, the only money that helps keep up the site. Thanks for considering shopping with me.

 

From the Kitchen Tools section of my store, check out:

 

I grind coarse sea salt, so I'd find the Oxo Salt Grinder, $18.67, a great gift.

 

Or the really inexpensive salt grinder from Arta Dolce, $9.99.

 

Norpro's Silcone Whisk, $7.30, works well beating almost anything, is heat resistant and nearly silent when you hit it against metal, not to mention cute.

 

I use my Benriner Japanese Mandoline, $19.95, for making vegetable slaw and julinenne (see the pickled carrot salad in The Southern Italian Table), and slicing onions, fennel, carrots, parsnips, potatoes and other firm vegetables extremely thin.

 

The Oxo Silicone Pastry Brush, $6.99, cleans up easier and better than conventional bristle brushes and does the job just as well.

 

From the Kitchen Essentials section of my store, see:

 

Taylor instant thermometers, several types, are available from $4.79 to $12.70. For accurately cooked roasts, an instant read is invaluable.

 

The Oxo wooden reamer, $5.99, makes juicing lemons fun.

 

From the Italian Groceries section:

 

Paccheri (giant pasta tubes) are a shape particular to Naples (also called schiaffoni) that is now popular in Italian restaurants in the States, $6.99 a pound

 

Pecorino Crotonese is a sheep's milk cheese from Calabria that is sheepy tasting but not nearly as salty as pecorino Romano

 

From Other Flavors by Mail:

 

Sour salt (citric acid crystals), $3.95 a pound, is hard to find and is used to make sweet and sour Eastern European dishes (see several recipes in Jewish Home Cooking)

 

Amora Mustard, $5.99, is Dijon mustard made in Dijon, whereas most "Dijon" available in the States is made here or in Canada, and it isn't as strong.

 

Red Leaf Quebec Cheddar, $5.83 a half pound, $11.66 a full pound

 

 

From Reading not Cooking

 

These are mostly paperback books, so almost all of them cost less than $10.

 

The Man Who Ate Everything If you need a laugh and some insight into a food subject, there's no one like Jeffry Steingarten, columnist for Vogue, of all places. This is an anthology of those columns.

 

The Michael Pollan collection, The Omnivore's Dilemma, In Defense of Food, Food Rules, The Botany of Desire

 

Salt: A World History, Food tells us so much about history, which is to say life.

 

Cod: A Biography of the Fish That Changed the World, A great history by the author of "Salt,"; actually his first best seller.

 

Recent Entries
 
I'm Back...and you can join me on a delicious Mediterranean cruise
04/07/2012
 
Radio and the Holidays
11/23/2010
 
Gone With the Wind in St. Louis
11/17/2010
 
Return from Italy Part 2
11/06/2010
 
Return from Italy Part 1
10/29/2010
 
Le Marche, Urbino and Black Truffles
10/11/2010
 
Kitchen Complete and Time To Shop
09/30/2010
 
August Recipes
08/04/2010
 
Kitchen Renovations
07/27/2010
 
Mini-Cookbook of Pesto Recipes
07/23/2010
 
 

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Arthur Schwartz's
The Southern Italian Table

   
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Arthur Schwartz's
New York City Food:
An Opinionated History with Legendary Recipes

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Arthur Schwartz's Jewish Home Cooking: Yiddish Recipes Revisted

Arthur Schwartz's
Jewish Home Cooking:
Yiddish Recipes Revisted

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