In Season: Gooseberries

 

Ever eaten gooseberries? The slightly fuzzy, tart berries are very popular in traditional British cooking, but don't get a lot of press stateside. A cousin of the currant, gooseberries range in color from pale green to dark purplish-red, getting muskier as they ripen. They aren't quite sweet enough to eat out of hand, but they become jammy and bright when cooked down with a bit of sugar. Gooseberries are in season from May through August, but they're at their peak in July.

 

How to Store: Like most berries, gooseberries should be stored in the fridge unwashed for 2 to 5 days. Don't have time to make a batch of jam or curd right now? Freeze them. Just wash the berries, pat dry, and then place on a cookie sheet in the freezer. Transfer frozen berries to an airtight container and keep in the freezer for up to a year.

 

How to Cook: Remove the stem and tail of each berry before cooking. Gooseberries are delicious in a range of desserts, but the simplest way to cook them is... Read more >

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Test Your Eat-Q: Foraged Finds

 

Sure, maybe you purchased a bunch of wild ramps at the farmers' market this spring, but how much do you really know about foraged grub? Test your knowledge with the below matching quiz, which appeared in the June/July issue of JBF Notes.

 

1.    Claytonia
2.    Knotweed
3.    Burdock
4.    Chicory
5.    Dandelion
6.    Kelp
7.    Sorrel
8.    Prickly pear cactus
9.    Fireweed
10.  Ramps

 

A.    Home gardeners may think of this plant as a weed, but whether its blossom is white or yellow, the whole thing is edible, from bitter stem to mild flower.  

 

B.    Also known as “miner’s lettuce” because Gold Rush miners ate it as a salad green, this flowering plant tastes like spinach.

 

C.    This desert plant boasts a sweet, pink-colored fruit that’s delicious and refreshing once its sharp spines are cut away.

 

D.    This slender, leafy herb has a tart, lemony flavor and is often puréed into... Read more >

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Recipe: Olive Oil Cake with Olive Oil Pudding and Plums

 

We were seduced by the full flavor and dense, moist crumb of olive oil cake years ago, but St. Louis–based chef John Griffiths has just now turned us onto a treat of a similar ilk: olive oil pudding. Prepared like a classic custard, the pudding is irresistibly fruity and aromatic. Griffiths serves it next to olive oil cake and macerated plums.

 

Get the complete dessert recipe here

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On the Menu: Week of July 29

 

Here's what's happening at the Beard House next week:

 

Monday, July 30, 7:00 P.M.

Fine Food, Wine, and Friendship

Enjoy an exceptional wine lovers’ dining experience when longtime friends join forces at the Beard House. Roy’s alum Jerry Weihbrecht of Zoës Steak & Seafood in Virginia Beach has crafted a menu of globally inflected American cuisine that will perfectly complement the boutique offerings of winemaker Ron Nicholsen of the prestigious Kelham Vineyards in Napa.

 

Tuesday, July 31, 7:00 P.M.

Taste of Grande Lakes

Set at the headwaters of the Everglades, Grande Lakes Orlando is one of Florida’s most sought-after destinations, offering guests an exquisite setting along with incomparable amenities. Experience a taste of this ultra chic getaway when the... Read more >

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Tastebud: Foraging from State to State

 

At one of our recent sustainability salons, we gained new insight into restrictions that farmers, chefs, and suppliers face when it comes to foraged food. Foraging regulations shift from state to state, creating gaps in access to local resources. In South Carolina, for example, wild mushroom regulations are more strict than in other parts of the country. While the FDA simply requires that wild mushrooms are to be inspected and approved by identification experts in order to qualify as commodities in the marketplace, South Carolina restricts any mushrooms harvested in the wild from being sold as merchandise or served in restaurants. For some members of the local community, this is a troubling waste of natural resources... Read more >

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Recipe: Lobster Buns with Shiso Pesto

 

In the minds of lobster roll aficionados, a perfectly toasted hot dog bun is the undisputed vessel for buttered or mayo-dressed crustacean. But New York City's Simpson Wong challenged this presumption at last weekend's Chefs & Champagne, where he nestled lobster meat in Chinese bao buns—the ones you've seen at dim sum brunches or hugging pork belly at Momofuku. Wong fries each bun for only a couple minutes, enough time to crisp the exterior while preserving its inner fluff. Building on this Asian spin, he tosses his lobster in a garlicky, shiso-based pesto that's juiced up with fish sauce and bird's-eye chili.

 

Watch out, hot dog buns. Get the recipe here.

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