Cooking

Why I Love My Pricey Juicer

The bargain juicer literally exploded while I juiced grapes! A centrifugal juicer, the juicer’s strainer basket/shredder disk dislocated itself, blasted through the plastic top cover like a terrorist’s bomb. Then the shredder disk rocketed into the air, spun like a UFO, landing 20 feet into the living room. Grape remnants stuck to the kitchen ceiling, the dining room chandelier and cabinets—about 10-feet west—and some plastered the TV screen in a protective cabinet.

An Operetta of Wine and Spice

Author’s note: This is a serendipitous story of wine, friends, daughter, and spices— a camerata (experimenting with art form) if you will. (The aria, “Song of India,” from Sadko plays in the background.) Tell me the last time that you tasted wines paired with exotic spices. You have done this? What happened when you paired a chalky Chenin Blanc with three freshly ground peppers? Did you make a slight scene when you shouted, “OMG! What was that mouth explosion?” I did. It []

“Invisible Consequences of Mistaking Plastic for Dinner”

Now, I’m planning a family barbecue featuring fresh caught tuna. Yum! Healthy, low fat protein. Unfortunately that tuna may still have high levels of BPAs and PCBs (for starters) in its system. It all began with ten lantern fish that ingested plastic debris floating in their fave plankton cafe. A couple of hungry squid dined on the 10 lantern fish. The tuna that I’m covering in a tasty chili rub, ate those two squid.

Pressure Cooking: Duck and Cover or Relax?

1956: Blub, blub, blub. Wheeze, whistle, spit. KABOOM! A silver lid with an attached gauge becomes a projectile and looks like a flying saucer shooting forth from its aluminum pot base. Scalding hot water takes to the air.  Someone screams, “Oh, my God,” in the background, followed by a 3-pound beef brisket that explodes like the A-bomb tests out in the Nevada desert. A mushroom cloud of brown meat rises above the white Westinghouse range.  Shrapnel-like bits of beef plaster themselves to []

Embracing My Sensitivity

I discovered yesterday that my sensitivity to spoken  words is a weakness, a fault, and a chip on my shoulder. Admittedly, I’m a sensitive person.  I can cry watching car commercials.  Tears flood my eyes when I watch adorable pet videos on You Tube.  A beautifully worded poem will cost my box of tissue about 10 tissues.  When a soulful guitar solo wafts towards my ears, the whites of my eyes turn red and I sniffle through the song.  Yes, I’m a []

Sit Back–Enjoy The Show–Nosh Venison Sliders

Author’s note:  This is a continuation of a series of blogs about the experience of watching my daughter, Chef Dakota Weiss,  make her way through Bravo TV’s Top Chef Texas, currently airing on Wednesday nights. Over 250 Los Angeles chefs and restaurant industry professionals swarmed the W, Westwood (where Dakota  is executive chef) this week for a red carpet roll out of Dine LA 2012.  What’s this to do with my daughter-on-Top-Chef series?  Read on. News cameras rolled and media photographers clicked []

It’s Trite, But Winning Top Chef Isn’t “Everything”

Author’s note:  This is a continuation of a series of blogs about the experience of watching my daughter, Chef Dakota Weiss,  make her way through Bravo TV’s Top Chef Texas, currently airing on Wednesday nights.  Check for updates at bottom of post. “June Gloom” also known as a “thick marine layer” that typically hangs over California’s coast during June, lasted most of the summer.  It was the kind of summer when I wore fleece instead of gauze while Dakota, in the hellish []

Top Chef Texas–Dakota’s Sauce Sinks and Gazpacho Flies

Ah, it’s holiday time in LA. Lit like drunken fireflies, 50-foot yachts cruise the harbors at night. Steaming sweet tamales delight the air above a Los Posadas procession on Olvera Street. Scientology Santa greets menorah lighting Santa in Hollywood. Ice skating hotel guests, in shorts and tank tops, slip, spin and slide on synthetic ice in the 70-degree sun over the pool at the W, Westwood.

My Top Chef Cheftestant Kid Plays With Food

Author’s note:  This is a continuation of a series of blogs about the experience of watching my daughter, Chef Dakota Weiss,  make her way through Bravo TV’s Top Chef Texas, currently airing on Wednesday nights.    Early in Dakota’s career she worked under the chef de cuisine at The Mansion at Turtle Creek in Dallas.  There she met and observed celebrity chef Dean Fearing. This was a natural transition from her time with chef Mark Miller and his chef de cuisine,  Jeff []