JBF News: NYC Public Schools Recipe Contest Semifinals

Recipe contest Now that the deadline for our healthy school lunch recipe contest has come and gone, it's time for the fun to begin: the judging! On Monday night at the New York City Food and Finance High School, over 25 plant-based recipes were prepared and served to a panel of judges that included pastry chef François Payard, NYC public schools executive chef Jorge Collazo, and elementary and high school students. The judges whittled down the entries to ten finalists, which will be cooked and sampled at the Beard House tomorrow evening. Stay tuned for the the results and photos! Special thanks to our partners, New York Coalition for Healthy School Food, the NYC Office of SchoolFood, Candle Café/79, and the New York City Food and Finance High School, for helping our kids eat well.

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On the Menu: Gotham Bar and Grill

Alfred PortaleAfter Alfred Portale wowed us with his braised artichoke ravioli at last year's gala auction, we've been counting down the days until the iconic chef's Beard House dinner. The highly anticipated meal is going down tomorrow night, for which Portale will round up his New York team (as well as the crew from his semi-new Miami outpost, Gotham Steak) to prepare this New American menu: Cauliflower Custard with Santa Barbara Sea Urchin, Golden Osetra Caviar, and Aged Soy Sauce Hamachi Sashimi with Asian Pear, Radishes, Honshimeji Mushrooms, and Soy–Yuzu Sauce Truffle-Crusted Atlantic Halibut with Romanesco Cauliflower, Marcona Almonds, and Vermouth Emulsion 50-Day-Aged Niman Ranch Sirloin with Market Carrots, Vidalia Onion Rings, Bone Marrow, and Bordelaise Meyer Lemon

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Eye Candy: Icewine–Pear Granité

pear granite Chef Jason Parsons surprised guests with this extra course at last Thursday's Beard House dinner. He combined pear juice and icewine to create a tart granité, and garnished the intermezzo with flower petals, gold flakes, and a delicate twig from an icewine vine. See more photos of Parsons's elegant menu here. (Photo by Geoff Mottram)

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Eye Candy: The Final Touch

Plating foie A crew member seasons a quince, completing a plate of foie gras and Sauternes sauce. Click here to see more photos from Kevin Penner and Matt Birnstill's Beard House dinner. (Photo by Joan Garvin)

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Eye Candy: Maple–Gingerbread Cake

maple gingerbread cake Dan Kardos served this toasty maple–gingerbread cake with roasted pumpkin, granola, and cinnamon crème fraîche for the finale to his holiday Beard House dinner. Click here to see more photos from the evening. (Photos by David Braunstein)

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Eye Candy: Ringing in the New Year at the Beard House

New Year's Eve Sarah Langan, instructor at the New England Culinary Institute, places housemade crackers on cheese plates, which featured Vermont Butter and Cheese Company Coupole, Jasper Hill Farm Bayley Hazen Blue, and fresh cheeses made by NECI students. Click here to see more photos from our New Year's Eve dinner. (Photo by Tom Kirkman)

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Eye Candy: Bone Marrow Flan

Bone marrow flan A chef removes foil wrappings from roasted bones for the first course of the Benchmark Holiday Dinner held on December 17. The marrow was puréed, incorporated into a base of eggs and cream, and poured back into the bones to create a savory flan. See more photos from the multi-chef dinner here. (Photo by Eileen Miller)

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Food Matters: What We Loved in 2009

As we resolve to eat less and exercise more at the start of this new year, we can't help but think of some of the delicious stand-outs we enjoyed in 2009. (Does dreaming burn calories?) Even in such an unsettling year for the industry, there was no shortage of fantastic food. Below are the dishes that left us satisfied, smiling, or even speechless. We can't wait to taste what's in store for 2010.


Sun Gold tomatoes with parsley and olive oil panna cotta / Hugo’s, Portland, ME
JBF Award Winner Rob Evans once worked at the French Laundry, and he masters its philosophy in this sublime appetizer: tasteful creativity paired with ingredients in their prime.


Crispy pig's ear salad with tarbais beans, chicory, tomato confit, truffle vinaigrette, and poached quail egg / Pig and Pinot Feast, James Beard House

2009 may have been an errant year for Ryan Skeen, but memories of his superb Beard House dinner have us... Read more >

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Eye Candy: Jason's Giordano's Triple Treat

plating dessert Jason Giordano (second from left) and his crew plate a dessert trio, which included banana cream pie, chocolate cake, and pumpkin mousse topped with a macaron ice cream sandwich. (See, we told you they were on the rise.) Check out more photos from the Hotel Griffou luncheon. (Photo by Eileen Miller)

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