Field Trip: Going for the Gold at Bocuse d'Or USA

Bocuse d'Or Even with the Winter Olympics on the horizon, it’s hard to imagine a display of patriotic pride—or foodie frenzy—greater than what we saw in the Bocuse d’Or USA bleachers at the Culinary Institute of America this weekend. Scores of boisterous culinary students and gastro fans gathered to support the 12 chefs competing for the chance to represent America at the Bocuse d’Or in Lyon in January 2011. Each chef, assisted by a commis, faced the same challenge: prepare a salmon dish and a lamb dish for an intimidating all-star lineup of judges that included Daniel Boulud, Thomas Keller, and Grant Achatz. It made Iron Chef look like a school talent contest.

StudentsMacKenzie Arrington (CIA, Bachelor’s, 2009) and Vinny Dyevoich (CIA, Bachel... Read more >

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Eat this Word: Spoonbread

spoonbreadWHAT? "The apotheosis of cornbread." Or so said writer Redding Sugg. This Southern soufflé may take its moniker from suppon or suppawn, an Indian porridge. Perhaps the name stuck because this Southern comfort food is best eaten with a spoon. It's made from cornmeal, eggs, butter, and milk, sometimes enlivened with baking powder and a dash of sugar, and it's served across the South with country ham or rabbit stew or all on its own. Spoon bread is an any-meal kind of food: Jefferson, for instance, ate it for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Spoonbread, according to Southern Food author John Egerton, is "the ultimate, glorified ideal" of cornbread." True Grits author Joni Miller declares it "one of the most elegant and classic Southern dishes." An essential Southern savory, "a properly prepared spoonbread," Egerton writes, "can be taken as testimony to the perfectibility of humankind." WHERE?

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Awards Watch: The 2010 America’s Classics Winners

beard medal

If our 2010 America’s Classics Award winners got together to prepare dinner, it would be one incredible meal. Maybe they’d start things w... Read more >

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Eye Candy: French–Asian Fusion

torte A group of Philadelphia-area chefs gathered at the Beard House last month to prepare a menu of French classics with decidedly Asian ingredients. For dessert, the group served a Valrhona white chocolate torte with yuzu curd and green tea mousse. See more photos from the event here. (Photo by Bobbi Lin)

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On the Menu: February 7 through February 13

on-the-menu-erin gleeson Here’s what happening at the Beard House next week: Tuesday, February 9, 7:00 P.M. Southern Roots An Alabama native who trained under Susan Spicer and Frank Stitt, Mike Davis has made his own mark on the Southern food tradition at Terra, where he turns out contemporary dishes accented with the flavors of the region. Taste the terroir in his palate-expanding cuisine at this homage to the South. Wednesday, February 10, 7:00 P.M. Seasonal Italian At Seattle’s Cantinetta, executive chef Brian Cartenuto serves up serious, soulful Italian food. Hewing to a style he describes as refined simplicity, Cartenuto has wowed critics with “assured cooking” that combines “a wonderful balance of flavors with an element of su

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On the Menu: JBF at the Bocuse d'Or USA Finals

Bocuse d'Or While most folks are counting down the days until the Vancouver Olympics, we're fired up for one of the most spectacular events in the wide world of food: the Bocuse d'Or USA Finals at the Culinary Institute of America. It all kicks off this morning with demonstrations, book signings, and panels on the school's Hyde Park campus. The official competition, where twelve finalists will cook and painstakingly plate several dishes for a chance to represent America at the 2011 Bocuse d'Or world competition in Lyon, starts at 8:00 A.M. on Saturday. JBF president Susan Ungaro will host demos by JBF Award winners Eric Ziebold and Charlie Trotter, and will also emcee tomorrow's main event. "I really think that this year's finalists represent the best of America's chefs," Ungaro says. "I'm very excited that JBF i

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Reel Food: Sichuan Buttons Tingle Tongues at the Beard House

As we noted in Tuesday's New Feed, a handful of adventurous chefs are experimenting with sichuan buttons, the yellow flower buds that tingle and numb the tongue when eaten. And sure enough, the unusual ingredient popped up in the Beard House kitchen that very same day. Check out this clip of Bryan Forgione, brother of Marc and son of Larry, discussing the effects of the sichuan button while he preps for their Beard House event:

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Eye Candy: A Badge of Honor

Beard Tattoo An invitation to cook at the James Beard House is an honor that chefs take very seriously. For chefs Michael Giletto and Alina Eisenhauer, who recently prepared a fête to fennel at the House, it was an experience they never wanted to forget. After their dinner these friends (they met while competing on Food Network's Chopped) decided to create a tattoo that would commemorate the night for all time. We think it's pretty cool. Check out gorgeous shots of the dishes from their dinner here.

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