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473 article submissions by the ChefTalk.com community.

History of The Truffle

A rare fungus that grows underground (only several inches below ground). They come in both white and black varieties. Not all truffles are created equal, as there can be considerable quality differences between truffles due to ripeness and location of harvest. Truffles have a pungent, almost magical flavor that is greatly appreciated among gourmets.     La Truffe A fungus that grows under certain trees mainly Oaks, but also chestnut, hazel and Beech                      Arguments amongst truffle scholars   The name comes from the Latin Tuber or Tubera, meaning... read more

Packing in Festive Feasting (How To Make Fruitcake w/ Photos)

By Becky Billingsley   A densely packed fruitcake lovingly laced with grape juice is a memorable holiday treat with a creamy texture using this old southern method.   Holiday dishes served at the South Carolina coast have influences from several cultures (German, Scottish, Irish, French, African), but about an hour west of Myrtle Beach the roots run deep to 17th-century England. That heritage is found in a generations-old recipe called Packed Fruitcake.   Pulitzer Prize-winning author Julia Mood Peterkin (1880-1961) wrote about old southern ways in her books and... read more

Hot Buttered Rum--A Kid Friendly Recipe

by: Ruben Urias   Hot Buttered Rums warm the soul, relax tired muscles, and comfort the weary--both young and old.  Yes, really.  Kids can also partake in the coziness of hot buttered rums by replacing the potent spirit with tasty apple cider.  But first, you need a flavorful, non-alcoholic mixer that can be added to whatever warm drink you wish.    For those unfamiliar with hot buttered rums, they are basically any rum drink that’s been warmed, sweetened, and given more body.  There are dozens of variations of this formula that vary by family, region, and... read more

Footprint on the Moon

  Cooking is a job. It is a way to take rough and raw ingredients, turn them into something palatable and, with a little experience and knowledge, perhaps make people happy with the bits and pieces on the plate. And that is all. Political opinion matters for nothing. Chefs that get all high and mighty by sharing their thoughts about, say, the fair treatment of wage-earners in Uganda are not lending any voice to the down-trodden and, more than likely, are laughable for their attempt. Stick to cooking. Desire to do something of measurable impact to save the environment... read more

Work the line. Or not.

  Cooks aren’t heroes. A chef is no celebrity. The crew of a kitchen is a gaggle of socially awkward miscreants and hooligans. The only revelry is in our own heads and from the sideways glance of other cooks with culinary envy. We are in the spotlight of our own minds. To be perfectly clear, when you walk down the street wearing chefs’ whites, you are not being mistaken for wearing a bright blue cape and the paparazzi will not stalk you. Get over it. I cook for sustenance and to provide a bright moment in somebody’s day, if that. The food we prepare is to fulfill an... read more

On Being A Sous Chef

  For those of you not in the know I recently was hired on at the University of Houston as a sous chef.  This is a big deal for me as this is my first job as a sous chef.  I was very excited when I got my first chef coats with my name sowed in.  Well this happened back in mid August and it seems as things have finally settled down.  My schedule has been hammered down into a predictable pattern and I am finally starting to get a handle on all that I need to do as a sous chef.  I just want to share with you some thoughts as a first time sous chef. The first challenge I... read more

More than a Chef

"I bet you cook all the time right?" "What is your favorite thing to make?" "Your wife\girlfriend\husband must love you."   We as chefs get questions like these all of the time.  At best we smile ruefully, knowing that the person asking the question will never understand, and give a polite response.  At worst we seethe to ourselves at how stupid the average non professional can be. Maybe we even show it a little bit.  Having worked in food and beverage for 12+ years I have my own answers to these questions and their ilk.  It would probably surprise none of you to... read more

Inebriated Fruitcakes

  "Fruitcake is a geological homemade cake," Charles Dickens     When I was a kid I hated fruitcake. Ok, hate is a pretty strong word, an intense dislike is probably more appropriate, and this is coming from someone who's had a sweet tooth since the day they were born. But to be honest I didn't really gave it a chance.   One of the sticky little blocks always seemed to appear around holiday time, I'd spot it stashed in the back of the refrigerator. I wouldn't eat it even when there were no other sweets in the house. The way its plastic wrapping stuck to it kind of... read more

How To Make Bagels Part II With Photos

Holy, Wholly Bagels, v2.0 by: Chef Jim Berman It is really difficult to write about food, a dining experience or other kitchen foray, let alone revisit that writing. Putting into words the experience is a labor of love; articulate a feeling about something so endearingly personal is much akin to going to the gynecologist with your daughter; everything is out there, in the open, waiting to be examined and, with bated breath, holding out for some intensely personal reaction, in a voyeuristic sense. My relationship with the kitchen is deeply intimate. I get hankerings to... read more

Cider-Autumn's Elixir

  • by PeteModerator

    Autumn-my favorite time of the year.  It’s that time, at least in North America, when Mother Nature shows us her most colorful side as trees turn from verdant green to every imaginable shade of red, yellow, and orange; a time when the hills and valleys become ablaze with color.  The aroma of wood smoke fills the air for the first time in months as wood stoves and fire places are once again lit to ward off the chill that starts to pervade the night air.  Everywhere you look the sights, sounds, and smells of autumn are all around, from farmers frantically... read more

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