View all posts filed under 'Great Finds'

My Top 10 Eats of 2013

Monday, 30. December 2013 5:25

(Cool background courtesy of Background Labs)

(Cool background courtesy of Background Labs)

 

What were my most favorite bites of 2013, the ones I still remember to this day and can’t wait to enjoy all over again?

Take a look. Here are my Top 10 dishes of the year, in no particular order:

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Category:Bakeries, Chefs, General, Great Finds, Restaurants | Comments (7) | Author:

“Favorite Asian Dumplings From Scratch” and A Food Gal Giveaway

Monday, 2. December 2013 5:25

Learn how to make a bevy of Asian dumplings with instructor Andrea Nguyen. (Photo courtesy of Craftsy)

Learn how to make a bevy of Asian dumplings with instructor Andrea Nguyen. (Photo courtesy of Craftsy)

 

There is both an art and a skill to meticulously folding, shaping and cooking all manner of precious little Asian dumplings.

I can’t think of any better teacher to learn from than my good friend and Asian food authority bar none, Andrea Nguyen.

After all, she knows Asian food like nobody’s business. She teaches dumpling-making classes regularly at Love Apple Farms in Santa Cruz. And she wrote the book, “Asian Dumplings” (Ten Speed Press).

Now, no matter where you live, you can learn from her, thanks to Craftsy.

The site offers online classes on everything from cooking to knitting to photography. Started by former eBay executives, it allows you to learn in the privacy of your own home and at your own speed, as you can watch the videos over and over, and even with friends and family. You can even ask questions of the instructors in a virtual classroom.

Andrea’s “Favorite Asian Dumplings from Scratch” includes eight lessons, from “Introduction to Dumplings” to “Making Shrimp Wontons” to “Japanese Pot Stickers” to “Korean Dumplings.” The complete package is $19.99.

Yes, you can make this. (Photo courtesy of Craftsy)

Yes, you can make this. (Photo courtesy of Craftsy)

I had a chance to preview the class for free for this review. The videos have nice production values, like a cooking show you’d see on PBS. There are plenty of close-ups of the food, too, which not only get you hungry but help you follow along easily, especially when it comes to learning how to stuff and fold the dumplings. You’ll also learn where each of these dumplings originated and what makes each unique. Along the way, Andrea offers up stories of her love for dumplings and endless words of encouragement. Crafsy even allows you to share your new-found dumpling skills with your virtual classmates through the posting of your own photos and comments.

I’ve actually been lucky enough to stand alongside Andrea as she’s cooked in her own home kitchen. This video class is the next best thing to that.

CONTEST: One lucky Food Gal reader will win “Favorite Asian Dumplings from Scratch.” The best part about this contest is you can live anywhere in the world to enter.

How to win?

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Category:Cool Cooking Techniques, Enticing Events, General, Great Finds, New Products | Comments (3) | Author:

Pomegranate in What? Hot Sauce, Of Course

Friday, 18. October 2013 5:25

A Menlo Park couple's new hot sauce creation with pomegranate

A Menlo Park couple’s new hot sauce creation with pomegranate.

By day, Menlo Park’s Bobby Marhamat is a branding and mobile marketing expert who guides companies on ways to gain greater exposure and prominence.

In his off hours, he continues his creative tinkering — but in the kitchen, cooking alongside his wife, Shima.

In fact, one of his experiments led to his newest creation this year: Bah Bah Hot Sauce.

Kind of like the chocolate and peanut butter moment with Reese’s, Marhamat wondered what would happen if he added pomegranate, a staple ingredient from his Persian heritage, to hot sauce?

As he discovered, something quite delicious, indeed.

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Category:Fruit, General, Great Finds, New Products | Comments (13) | Author:

Run, Don’t Walk, to B. Patisserie

Wednesday, 19. June 2013 5:25

Front and center, the incredible kouign-amann from B. Patisserie, as well as a croissant and an apple brown butter coffee cake.

Front and center, the incredible kouign-amann from B. Patisserie, as well as a croissant and an apple brown butter coffee cake.

 

It’s a good thing I don’t live close to the new B. Patisserie in San Francisco’s lower Pacific Heights neighborhood — or I’d be 300 pounds.

If I lived within walking distance, it would be a far, far dangerous thing.

That’s because these are pastries worth every single calorie.

Pastry Chef Belinda Leong and business partner Michel Suas have created a very special place.

That’s because Suas, founder of the San Francisco Baking Institute, is a master of bread, which star in the bakery-cafe’s open-faced tartine sandwiches. And Leong knows her way with butter, having trained in Paris with Pierre Hermé, and staged at Fauchon in New York. She’s also headed the dessert side of the kitchen at Manresa and Gary Danko restaurants.

The result is the perfect neighborhood bakery that feels like a slice of Paris.

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Category:Bakeries, Chefs, General, Great Finds | Comments (6) | Author:

Belcampo Ushers in A New Age of Sustainable Food

Monday, 1. April 2013 5:25

A butcher making porchetta at Belcampo Meat Co. in Larkspur.

A butcher making porchetta at Belcampo Meat Co. in Larkspur.

 

Belcampo Meat Co. in Larkspur may look like the latest trendy, farm-to-table butcher shop stocked with pedigreed meat for sale at sky-high prices.

But it’s so much more than that.

It’s part of a corporation that aims to start a new food revolution — by producing sustainable food on an unheard of scale. And at a profit, to boot.

It is the brainchild of Todd Robinson, a Wall Street veteran with deep pockets; and Anya Fernald, a California-native and long-time locavore entrepreneur. She may look familiar from her previous appearances as a judge on “Iron Chef America” and as the founder of the Eat Real Festival in Oakland.

The two founded Belcampo, Inc. in 2011, which consists of several operations spread across three countries. They include: a 10,000-acre certified organic, sustainable ranch at the base of Mt. Shasta in California, where cows, pigs, chickens, sheep, rabbits, goats, turkeys, geese and squabs are raised sustainably, organically and on pasture; another cattle ranch in Uruguay; and an eco-lodge and farm in Belize that produces coffee, chocolate and rum.

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Category:Food TV, General, Going Green and Sustainable, Great Finds, Health/Nutrition, Meat, More Food Gal -- In Other Publications, Restaurants | Comments (3) | Author: