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Critiquing and learning from the programs, periodicals and reference sources -- old media and new -- that feed our passions for cooking and eating well, chronicle the history and culture of food, and teach or amuse us.
Alton Brown has signed on for three more years at the Food Network which includes new eps of Good Eats, Iron Chef America, a spinoff of Feasting On Asphalt called Feasting On Waves and "various other specials", whatever that means.
I look forward to the effusive praise of FN for keeping AB on the network equal to the bashing they received for cancellling the well-past-its-sale-date Emeril Live. Or maybe all the Alton haters will come out of the woodwork and re-cast him as "part of the problem". In any case, the reaction should be interesting, so let 'er rip, Internet foodies!
Sunday night we cooked at the house. I took inspiration from the Mantoulin blog on the Food Traditions and Culture page and made a clipper ship cocktail for everyone. It was tasty.
For dinner we had grilled swordfish and grilled mackerel, a loaf of bread from a local bakery and a caprese salad made with arugula, tomatoes and burrata purchased at the Cape Abilities farm store. Cape Abilities is a pretty cool operation, you can check it out here:
Last night we went back to Bistro on Main for dinner. Menu photos:
I made a Corn Soup with Vadouvan spice, garnished with lump crab meat. I juiced a dozen ears of corn, made corn stock from the cobs, made my own crème fraiche, then topped with lump crab and paprika oil
This is liquid gold from my Breville juicer. It is so concentrated in sweet corn flavor.
The only bad thing, my crème fraiche was a bit dense, so it didn't "float" like I hoped which would have made for a more fun visual presentation. Oh, and fresh lump crab meat is always good. The paprika oil had a nice smoky flavor, which added more to it than just visual.
Yesterday, as part of a seminar discussing ways to promote local rural tourism, I went off to visit, among other things, a dragon fruit farm in southern China. The area is home to the Zhuang ethnic minority.
Growing up, we had a place on Chincoteague Island and driving from Northern VA to the island we passed through MD – and dozens of farm stands. My mom would stop and buy enough Silver Queen and tomatoes for the weekend. Sometimes our meals would be just that – corn and tomatoes. The only condiments being butter, Miracle Whip, salt and pepper. Can’t ever find Silver Queen corn anymore, but that was my favorite.
My mom always boiled corn, but now I do it one of two ways – if I’m just doing a few ears, I use the microwave method of cooking for a few minutes, cutting off the end and shaking the ear out of the husk. If I’m doing a large amount, I do the cooler method – husk the corn, put it in a cooler and cover with boiling water.
My favorite ways of serving having corn (other than dripping with butter, sea salt, and pepper) are Maggie's Shrimp w/ Corn & Basil:
Fresh Corn Chowder with paprika oil:
And the way it is served at our favorite central American restaurant – Al Carbon in Charlottesville VA – mayo, cotija, chili powder, and lime: