Molasses-Glazed Acorn Squash

Mattarmendarizphoto

Is there some sort of cheap plastic switch nestled deep inside my brain
that gets reset each time the season's change? I swear my friends, I
become some automated eating robot that's completely incapable of
making my own choices when it comes to food. Take Autumn. It wasn't
some gradual ease into the season at my house but a very! drastic!
change! of! the! seasons! I began snubbing the grill and light summer
veggies almost immediately in favor of the tastes that currently rule
my existence: caramelly, sticky, roasted, savory, smoky, braisey, deep
and dark. And you know what? I couldn't be happier.

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Introducing 1000 Markets

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My heart has always been with those who follow their dreams and share their talents with the world. No where is this experienced more than with small artisan foodmakers and craftspeople. Theirs is a story rich with insight and background but sometimes things can get a bit too big and busy and those small voices may not ring loud enough to hear. Spend time talking to a grower at a farmers' market, a jewelry maker at a fair, a silversmith at a shop and you'll know exactly what I'm talking about.

That's why I'm super stoked to let you know that I've teamed up with 1000markets.com. And what exactly is 1000markets, you ask? It's a community of marketplaces, but it's much more than just a collection of products. It's a place for small, artisan businesses to get together and sell their unique products and share their one-of-a-kind stories. I truly love the idea and was pleased as punch when 1000 Market's creator Matt Trifiro asked if I'd be interested. I've known Matt for about a year and was truly moved when I experienced the site prelaunch. So many stories, so many unique items, and of course I loved the food aspect the most. I asked 1000 Market's creator to answer a few questions.

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Albondigas

Soup revised

Let’s make a deal:¬† I promise not to get all emotional on you here and
take you on a fast track down a sentimental freeway if you promise to
stay with me during this post’s entirely. A deal? Great. Thanks.

Matt-&-martha-with-credits
So a little over a month ago you may remember that I managed to successfully pull off an
appearance on the Martha Stewart show without fainting, stumbling on my
words or discovering a sudden loss of bladder control. Hey, when you’re
standing next to Martha herself it could happen, no? What many of you
may not know is that immediately after wrapping up the show and
watching Martha eat hot dogs from the green room I was invited to head
over to her other magazine for a blogger playdate in the test kitchen
by Everyday Food’s Editor¬† Deb Puchalla. I joined a few other of my
blogging idols to meet the staff and cook in the test kitchen and my
experience was the icing on the cake of one of the best days of my
life. Truly.

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All Bark. And Some Bite.

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Do you see this? No, really. I mean, do you REALLY see this? It's bark. But not just any bark. It's cinnamon from Vietnam and it's changed my life. Adam's too.

So I thought I knew cinnamon. There are no words I  can use to describe how amazing these 8- and 12-inch pieces of cinnamon truly are. Lifechanging. Subtle. Powerful. I feel like a character from a Willy Wonka movie, gnawing and biting off pieces of this bark given to us by our beloved friends Todd & Diane. And now that they've posted an entire blog entry about it you can read about it too. And they're giving a few pieces of their cinnamon away.

But not me. No way.

I'm hanging on to this stuff for as long as humanly possible. Because it's just that different. And that good. And I will be a very sad boy when my supply is gone. I guess I'll have to take a trip to Vietnam.

Read more about it here.

P.S. I forgot to say that you can actually eat pieces of this bark and it tastes exactly like a Red Hot candy. Sweet and all. It's phenomenal.