Beard House Highlight: Bananas Foster Pot-de-Crème with Toasted White Chocolate Bread Pudding

Photo by Tom Kirkman

 

Beard House Highlight: Bananas Foster Pot-de-Crème with Toasted White Chocolate Bread Pudding / French-Creole, Modern and Classic

 

With a culinary reputation as established as New Orleans’s French-Creole cuisine, the successful reimagining of any classic dish is a tall order. Thankfully, Nathan Richard and Neal Swidler were more than up to the task during their Beard House dinner, turning out course after course filled with familiar components creatively transformed into elevated yet satisfying modern fare. For the final course, Swidler presented this play on the Big Easy mainstay bananas foster, trading the table-side flambé for a more refined riff on the traditional French pot-de-crème. The delicate custard conjured comforting memories of banana pudding, contrasting with the gooey top layer of foster sauce, just boozy enough to take your tas... Read more >

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Eye Candy: Chicken Liver Mousse with Seaweed and Trout Roe

Photo by Rina Oh

 

Josh Hebert of Scottsdale’s Posh dazzled diners with this arresting hors d’oeuvre at his recent group Beard House dinner highlighting Grand Canyon State chefs. Seven top toques from across Arizona took guests on a culinary tour of the region, covering an eclectic collection of cuisines, from squid ink biscuits with buttered leeks, uni gravy, and wasabi to mesquite-dusted sweetbreads with apple, black trumpet mushrooms, chestnut mousse, and mesa walnut vinegar. Hebert’s appetizer kicked the night off on a high note, pairing silky smooth chicken liver mousse with the briny punch of the seaweed wrapper, and finishing with a burst of savory saline from the healthy dose of trout roe. A petite package brimming with flavor, Hebert’s dish perfectly primed diners’ palates for the wide-ranging seasonal dégustation ahead o... Read more >

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JBF Award Winner Sean Brock’s DIY Whiskey Bar

 

JBF Award winner Sean Brock has a passion for educating friends and family about the plurality of fine bourbon in our country, but at parties he often found himself playing bartender instead of host. In this excerpt from his Beard Award-winning cookbook Heritage, Brock gives tips for setting up a DIY bar, which allows him to showcase some choice whiskeys while letting guests go wild with cocktail experimentation—and frees him from the role of permanent bartender.

 

Choose five whiskeys that are different in flavor, age, and proof: 

  • A high-proof bourbon, something above 107 proof
  • A rye whiskey
  • A lower-proof bourbon (between 80 and 90 proof)
  • An older bourbon (at least 10 years old)
  • White corn whiskey 

 

Fill out your station with glassware, water, ice, and various items like bitters, c... Read more >

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Recipe Roundup: Holiday Cookies

 

There are many reasons to appreciate holiday cookies: they satisfy even the most overbearing of in-laws; they’re sweet sustenance for shivering carolers; and they bring us all together via a shared love for creamed sugar and butter. While every family has their own cookie traditions, we hope to add to the season's spirit with a few of our own festive recipes.


Let's Sugar Cookies
Throughout his childhood, James Beard enjoyed these simple, elegant sugar cookies made by Jue Let, the Beard family’s personal chef. But don’t be fooled by their innocent looks: the cookies contain mace, the outer membrane of nutmeg that packs a more pungent flavor.... Read more >

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Eat This Word: Hoecake

 

WHAT? Pancake’s papa. Johnnycakes, ashcakes, battercakes, corn cakes, cornpone, jurney cakes, jonakin, jonikins, Shawnee cakes, and hoe cakes (or hoecakes) are all regional variations of flatbreads made with cornmeal, water, and salt. According to the website foodreference.com, since Native Americans showed the Pilgrims how to cook with corn, they are also most likely to have taught them how to make these precursors of our modern-day pancake. Hoe cakes were, as Culinaria United States notes, “supposedly created by slaves who cooked ‘journey’ cake batter on their hoes under the hot sun while working in the fields.” The original three-ingredient recipe has evolved during the last 400 years, and eggs, oil, butter, and even baking powder are now standard in most recipes. You can of course opt for a mix, but Aunt Jemima prefers wheat to cornmeal. Whichever recipe you use, the frying pan has become the cooking utensil of preference.

 

WHERE? ... Read more >

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What We're Reading This Week

 

A bean-to-bar nightmare for one Brooklyn-based chocolate company. [Washington Post]

 

Why throw your Christmas tree to the curb when you can cook with it? [MUNCHIES]

 

Changes in international labeling laws could make it harder for consumers to identify where’s the beef (coming from). [NPR]

 

How one vegan butchery is grinding up a batch of meatless controversy. [Eater]

 

The former president of Trader Joe's is making a differe... Read more >

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Happy Hour: Sean Brock’s The Charleston Light Dragoon Punch 1792

Excerpted from Heritage by Sean Brock (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2014. Photographs by Peter Frank Edwards.

 

Although JBF Award winner Sean Brock is a self-proclaimed bourbon buff, his innate Southern love of entertaining extends across the spirit spectrum. This punch is a mélange of the historic and the present-day South, updated from an antebellum militia recipe found by a friend of Brock’s at the South Carolina Historical Society. Mixing a sweet tea base with rum and brandy, this crowd-pleasing punch is a perfect expression of Southern hospitality.

 

Get the recipe here.

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On the Menu: Week of December 21

 

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


Tuesday, December 22, 7:00 P.M.

Feast of the Seven Fishes

The Southern Italian tradition of the Feast of the Seven Fishes celebrates the Christmas holiday through a decadent dégustation of underwater fare. Join us as Puglia native and seafood savant Francesco Coli brings his acclaimed fish-forward cuisine to the Beard House, for a repast packed to the gills with seasonal luxury.

 

Thursday, December 31, 9:00 P.M

Ring In the New Year!

Ring in 2016 with good cheer and incredible food at our annual New Year’s Eve celebration. The teams from the International Culinary School at the Art Institutes have planned an extravagant menu high... Read more >

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The Future Chronicle, Part 5: UberEats to Provide Outsourced Digestion Service

 

As we wrap up our coverage of the 2015 JBF Food Conference, we turn our eyes to the possibilities of tomorrow's farms, restaurants, grocery stores, and kitchens. We've partnered with the Future Market for a multi-part series exploring some of the visions of the future discussed at the conference, in the form of the Future Chronicle, a newspaper snapshot of 2065. Read the full issue here, and stay tuned for more dispatches from the mid-twenty-first century.

 
 

UberEats to Provide Outsourced Digestion Service

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An Illustrated Guide to Steak au Poivre Flambé

By Cakespy

 

James Beard's recipe for steak au poivre flambé finishes with a fiery flourish of flaming Cognac. This step is understandably intimidating for first-time flambé-ers, so we called on crackerjack culinary cartoonist CakeSpy to walk us through the process. Read through her tips, get the recipe, and impress your dinner guests!

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