On the Menu: Valentine's Tea

Valentine's Day candies Treat your valentine to a romantic afternoon tea prepared by an all-star group of New York chefs. (See the full lineup here.) The incredible talents collaborating on this feast will tempt diners with a decadent selection of delicate savories and tempting sweets. Check out the menu below, then click here to secure your spot. Sweets Plain and Chocolate–Sweet Herb Scones with Kumquat Marmalade Irish Tea Brack Petits Fours Glacés Lemon–Lavender Jewels Miniature Mallomars (Get the recipe!) Dark Chocolate–Dipped Cinnamon Meringues Pear–Hazeln

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On the Menu: Valentine's Tea

Valentine's Day candies Treat your valentine to a romantic afternoon tea prepared by an all-star group of New York chefs. (See the full lineup here.) The incredible talents collaborating on this feast will tempt diners with a decadent selection of delicate savories and tempting sweets. Check out the menu below, then click here to secure your spot. Sweets Plain and Chocolate–Sweet Herb Scones with Kumquat Marmalade Irish Tea Brack Petits Fours Glacés Lemon–Lavender Jewels Miniature Mallomars (Get the recipe!) Dark Chocolate–Dipped Cinnamon Meringues Pear–Hazeln

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Recipe: Michael Schwartz's Meyer Lemon Pudding Cake

Michael Schwartz's recipe for Meyer lemon pudding cake
No offense to heart-shaped boxes and molten chocolate cake, but this Valentine’s Day we’re looking to branch out on the dessert front. Thankfully, this pillowy Meyer lemon pudding cake from Miami’s Michael Schwartz has come to rescue us from cocoa overload. Sweeter and more fragrant than conventional supermarket types, Meyer lemons give this dessert an appealingly subtle tang. If you can’t find them, use regular lemons—the result will be just as wonderful.

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Eat this Word: Amaranth

amaranthWHAT? A good Host. The Aztecs revered this mighty grain, using it in religious rituals to make what Barbara Grunes and Virginia Van Vynckt, authors of All-American Waves of Grain, liken to a Holy Communion wafer. The carnivorous sun-worshippers would combine the tiny grain with a liquid mixture that sometimes contained blood, form the concoction into cakes, and use the cakes in religious ceremonies. People who ate these cakes believed they were eating the flesh of the gods. Not surprisingly, the Spanish didn't approve of this custom, nor of the Aztecs generally. The conquistadors wiped out Aztec civilization and for good measure destroyed many acres of amaranth. For the next four centuries, the grain was practically unknown. Rediscovered a couple decades ago, it is now highly touted for its healthful properties. Amaranth greens, which taste similar to spinach, are edible, as are the seeds (which are sometimes ground to make flour). Many natural food stores

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Recipe: Shuna Lydon's Rose Petal–Vanilla Bean Shortbread

Shuna Lydon's rose petal–vanilla bean shortbreadThese rose petal–flecked cookies have a wonderful crumbly texture and a delicate sweet, floral flavor. Chef Shuna Lydon says, “Shortbread keeps for two weeks in a tightly sealed container lined with parchment paper, at room temperature. But I prefer to eat mine fresh from the oven, warm, with strong black milky tea.”

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The Bookshelf: A Bird in the Oven

 

If you’re staying in this Valentine’s Day, what could be better than a delicious, aromatic roast chicken for two? We asked Mindy Fox, author of A Bird in the Oven and Then Some, for tips to make sure you and your lovebird enjoy a meal to remember.

 

1. Start with a good bird

A great roast chicken starts with a great bird. Look for organic, grass-fed, antibiotic-free chickens from local farmers or family-farm brands like Murray’s, in Pennsylvania.

 

2. Rinse and dry the bird

To ensure a crispy bird, rinse the chicken in cold water, then use paper
towels to thoroughly dry all over, including inside the cavity.

 

3. Use good sea salt

The next step in achieving beautifully crisp skin is to season generously with a good-quality, flaky sea salt like Big Tree Farms Coarse Hollow Pyramid Salt, or Maldon.

 

4. Get out your cast iron

A good basic pan makes the best... Read more >

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On the Menu: February 6 through February 12

On the Menu Here’s what’s happening at the Beard House next week: Tuesday, February 8, 7:00 P.M. Elegant Vineyard Getaway Located amid rolling hills that evoke Italy’s Piedmont region, Palladio at Barboursville Vineyards has been referred to by food writer John Mariani as “one of the finest and most authentic Italian restaurants in the United States.” Chef Melissa Close Hart’s extraordinary cuisine pairs beautifully with the wines produced at the vineyard by winemaker Luca Paschina. Wednesday, February 9, 12:00 noon Beard on Books In Appetite for America: How Visionary Businessman Fred Harvey Built a Railroad Hospitality Empire That Civilized the Wild West Stephen Fried traces United-States history through the development of Fred Harvey'

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Recipe: Butternut Squash Soup with Pumpkin Seed Mousse

Recipe for butternut squash soup with pumpkin seed mousse With another 44 days of winter to go (yes, we're counting), we're on the hunt for recipes that sustain our appreciation for the season's meager offerings. This is one of them. For this easy soup from the Wright's Rodolfo Contreras, butternut squash gets gussied up in truffle honey, crème fraîche, and pumpkin seed oil–infused cream.

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