Eat This Word: Chicharrones

 

WHAT?  Crispy pork chips. Originally from Spain and popular in Latin America, chicharrones are prepared by deep-frying seasoned pieces of meat in their own fat. The dish was intended to eliminate waste by utilizing all parts of the animal, including the skin. Before it's placed in the pan, the meat and skin must be rubbed in baking soda so that they will fry evenly and brown to perfection. The most important ingredient, however, is patience: depending on what part of the animal is being fried, chicharrones can take all day to make. Frying the meat immediately will yield greasy and chewy strips, so a few extra steps are essential to achieve the porcine perfection. First, the meat should be boiled until the skin easily peels off from the fat to limit the amount of grease, and second, the pieces should be completely dry so that they can fry to an even crisp. Also known as pork rinds and cracklins, these addictive crispy bits va... Read more >

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On the Menu: Monday, April 18, 2016

 

Here’s a taste of what’s on tap today at the Beard House.
 
 
Small Towns, Big Flavors, 7:00 P.M. 
Nate Allen, Knife & Fork, Spruce Pine, NC / David Bauer, Farm & Sparrow Bakery, Candler, NC / Ian Boden, The Shack, Staunton, VA / Harper Bradshaw, Harper’s Table, Suffolk, VA / Kyle McKnight, Highland Avenue, Hickory, NC

 

Praised by Esquire as an “incredible restaurant in the middle of nowhere that nobody knows about,” the 16-seat Shack spotlights the immense talents of chef Ian Boden, who now returns to the Beard House with his hand-picked group of like-minded Southern chefs. Together the dynamic Dixie team has put together a menu of mouthwatering bites such as Southern Flounder Crudo with Wild Nettles, Preserved Yuzu, Spring Flowers, and Greens; Braised Rabbit Vol-au-Vent with Rabbi... Read more >

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Happy Hour: Transfusion Cocktail by 2016 Beard Award Semifinalist Canon

 

To honor this year’s Beard Awards, we asked each of our 2016 Outstanding Bar Program semifinalists to create a cocktail inspired by a television show. This inventive drink from the Seattle beloved watering hole Canon takes its inspiration from The Walking Dead, because everyone knows that the only chance to beat zombie infection is to swap out your blood for booze. Get the recipe.

 

Learn more about the 2016 James Beard Awards.

 

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Next Week at JBF

 

Here’s what’s coming up at the James Beard House and around the country:

 

Monday, April 18, 7:00 P.M.

Small Towns, Big Flavors

Praised by Esquire as an “incredible restaurant in the middle of nowhere that nobody knows about,” the 16-seat Shack spotlights the immense talents of chef Ian Boden, who now returns to the Beard House with his hand-picked group of like-minded Southern chefs.

 

Tuesday, April 19, 7:00 P.M.

Beltane in the Berkshires

Spinning locally sourced ingredients into tantalizing fare at his Berkshire farmhouse restaurant since 1990, chef Dan Smith practiced a farm-to-table ethos long before it emerged as a national trend. For his Gaelic May Day–inspired Beard House dinner, Smith will observe spring’s rite of passage wit... Read more >

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What We're Reading This Week

 

These windowsill herbs will give your homemade cocktails extra layers of flavor. [Saveur

 

Practice Zen Buddhism in the kitchen through observation and intuition. [MUNCHIES

 

This fava bean flatbread is a great way to welcome spring. [Bon Appétit

 

A look into how the USDA contributes to America’s local food movement through digital media and storytelling skills. [Modern Farmer

 

The desire for cheap, “ethnic foods” in America restricts immigrant chefs and their creativity. [... Read more >

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On the Menu: Friday, April 15, 2016

 

Here’s a taste of what’s on tap this weekend at the Beard House.

 

Saturday, April 16, 2016 
Taste of Charlotte, 7:00 P.M. 
Chris Coleman, The Asbury at the Dunhill Hotel, Charlotte, NC / Blake Hartwick, Bonterra Dining & Wine Room, Charlotte, NC / Paul T. Verica, Heritage Food & Drink, Waxhaw, NC / Pastry Chef Ashley Boyd, 300 East, Charlotte, NC; and Heritage Food & Drink, Waxhaw, NC / Head Mixologist Bob Peters, The Punch Room, Charlotte, NC

 
Boasting classic Southern grandeur as well as hip and creative newcomers, Charlotte’s dining scene has it all, and you’ll find it at this Beard House event, featuring a lineup of talented chefs and one mixologist who have made this city one of America’s most exciting new dining locales. Savor a samplin... Read more >

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Recipe: Tacos al Pastor from the JBF Award–Nominated "Tacos: Recipes and Provocations" Cookbook

Photo by Evan Sung

 

After lauded stints as a pastry chef at fine-dining establishments like Alinea and WD~50, Alex Stupak swapped tuilles for tortillas with the opening of his Mexican hot spot Empellón Cocina in 2011. With the Empellón brand now encompassing three restaurants across New York City, the restaurant group's kitchens are serving up some of the metropolis’s best south-of-the-border cuisine. Stupak’s fascination with Mexico’s culinary traditions prompted the genesis of his new cookbook, Tacos: Recipes and Provocations, which was written with former Time Out food & drink editor Jordana Rothman and nominated for our JBF Award for Cookbook: Single Subject. Featuring mouthwatering recipes and lavish photography showcasing the diversity of regional techniques and flavors, the tome is a love letter to all that can be born out of a torti... Read more >

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JBF Trip Planner: Japan (Keeps) Calling

 

If you’re anything like us, the first thing you do when planning a trip—perhaps even before booking a plane ticket—is figure out where you’re going to eat while you’re there. Museums, sightseeing, and shopping are all well and good, but food is often the main attraction. To make trip planning a little easier, we’re compiling lists of our can’t-miss pit stops in some of our favorite places. Below, our executive vice president (and resident globe-trotting gourmand) Mitchell Davis shares his absolute must-eats in Japan for this special international installment.

 

America’s culinary world is having a Japan moment. Again. 

 

While the food media tries feverishly to find the next node of culinary innovation, the attention of chefs and food-focused entrepreneurs has returned to Japan, as it almost always does. 

 

I, for one, go there for i... Read more >

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On the Menu: Thursday, April 14, 2016

 

Here’s a taste of what’s on tap today at the Beard House.
 
 

Virgina Spring Supper, 7:00 P.M. 
Joy Crump, FOODĒ and Mercantile, Fredericksburg, VA
 

Virginia is for lovers—or food lovers, more specifically. Talented toque and Top Chef contestant Joy Crump charms diners with market-driven fare at her two Fredericksburg hot spots, FOODĒ and Mercantile, and tonight she'll set our table with the best of mid-Atlantic spring bounty, including dishes like Rib-Eye with Tomatoes and Worcestershire Cream; Smoked Potato Chips with Sorghum–Mustard Pretzels and Chipotle Caramel Corn; and Renegade Chicken with Hot Virginia Honey.
 
 
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Interview with JBF Award Nominee Grae Nonas of Austin's Olamaie

 

Native New Englander Grae Nonas has put down roots in Austin, Texas, with his white-hot eatery, Olamaie. Working in tandem with fellow chef and partner Michael Fojtasek, this dynamic duo uses their expansive culinary knowledge to treat diners to Southern flavors backed by contemporary techniques. We spoke to the 2016 JBF Award nominee for Rising Star Chef of the Year about his culinary perspective, how he showcases the beauty of generic vegetables, and why his former life as a musician is so important to his current gig.

 

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JBF: We hear you collect vintage cookbooks. What’s the most treasured book you have on your bookshelf? 

 

Grae Nonas: My partner, Michael Fojtasek, is actually a more avid vintage cookbook collector, but I do have a small, cherished collection. One of my favorites is The Taste of Co... Read more >

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