Show 221, April 29, 2017: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris

Big Island Chocolate FestivalIt’s a very special day of indulgence and celebration on the “SoCal Restaurant Show.” We’re live from the 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival at The Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel. We’re broadcasting from the Reef Lounge with an incredible ocean view.

Hawaii is the only state in the USA where cacao, the primary base of chocolate, can be successfully grown commercially.

Now a properly decadent preview of this Saturday’s full show. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a pretty good thing…

When it comes to insider’s knowledge of the vibrant Chicago food scene one of the best sources is Chicago ABC 7 Eyewitness News Food Reporter, Steve Dolinsky, “The Hungry Hound.” Steve was recently nominated for his potential 14th James Beard Foundation Award for journalistic excellence in reporting. The James Beard Awards Gala is May 1st at the Lyric Opera of Chicago. As a veteran of The James Beard Awards in both New York and Chicago, Steve joins us with a preview of what’s in store and a report on the Media Awards.

Farsheed Bonakdar is the President of the Kona Cacao Association, the Producer of the 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival. The mission and goal of the Kona Cacao Association is to promote the cacao industry on the Big Island of Hawaii by presenting the Big Island Chocolate Festival as an educational and outreach opportunity for local cacao farmers, the hospitality industry and cacao enthusiasts. We’re talking all things chocolate with Farsheed.

Hawaii Island native Peter Abarcar, Jr. was promoted in 2015 from executive chef of Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel to director of culinary and beverage operations. Chef Abarcar now oversees all culinary, food and beverage operations at the 350-room oceanfront resort including the resort’s signature restaurant, Coast Grille. He also supervises operations for extensive catering and banquets, the Ocean Terrace Restaurant and The Beach Bar. We pull him out of the busy kitchens and “Talk Story.”

Alicia Boada is an acclaimed pastry chef and instructor with 20 plus years of experience in the culinary industry. She is the West Coast Technical Advisor for Barry Callebaut Chocolate (The Barry Callebaut Group) whose brands include Cacao Barry, Callebaut and Mona Lisa, among more. As a Corporate Pastry Chef & Chocolatier, Chef Alicia’s role often calls on her to perform demonstrations and training worldwide keeping her on the edge of what’s happening in the contemporary pastry and chocolate world. Chef Alicia will be performing a chocolate demonstration as part of the Festival in addition to judging the Gala’s delicious offerings.

Maui Chef Elizabeth (Betty) McDonald of B3 A Beach Bunny Bakery is a judge for the Gala as well as the College Competition. She is a veteran of The Big Island Chocolate Festival. Chef Betty has been in the culinary field since 2003, developing a love for baking at a young age from her mother and grandmothers. She has been fortunate enough to travel with her husband living and working in the four corners of the country.

Guittard’s Chocolate Company’s Executive Chef and Chocolatier, Donald Wressell, really needs no long introduction to listeners. Prior to his joining Guittard Chocolate as the in-house pastry chef, Donald Wressell spent 19 years at the Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills where he was named the 2005 Pastry Chef of the Year, won Silver and Gold medals in the Grand Salon Culinaire and placed second at the Les Masters du Chocolat competition. Chef Donald also represented the USA four times in Le Coupe du Monde de la Patisserie and captained the winning team at the 2011 National Pastry Team Championship.

Chef instructor Teresa “Cheech” Shurilla of University of Hawaii – Maui College oversees the college competition at The Big Island Chocolate Festival and has done it for several years. The Festival has had student participants from UH-Maui College, UH-Hilo and UH-Palamanui in Kona. It is Friday, April 28th and winners are announced at the Festival Gala. Chef Shurilla has been working and teaching in the culinary field for over thirty-four years. Prepare to be judged…

Andrew and William GruelChef Andrew Gruel is at Trade in Irvine this Saturday (busily training & cooking) in the soft opening phase of Two Birds and Butterleaf. He’ll happily fly the coop and be back with us next week.

Mahalo nui loa to The Big Island Chocolate Festival, Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel and Prince Resorts Hawaii, our gracious hosts in Hawaii.

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness on this week’s show!

Play

Show 221, April 29, 2017: Farsheed Bonakdar, President, Kona Cacao Association (KCA)

Farsheed BonakdarFarsheed Bonakdar is the President of the Kona Cacao Association, the Producer of the 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival. The mission and goal of the Kona Cacao Association is to promote the cacao industry on the Big Island of Hawaii by presenting the Big Island Chocolate Festival as an educational and outreach opportunity for local cacao farmers, the hospitality industry and cacao enthusiasts.

Beyond creating, implementing and promoting the Big Island Chocolate Festival, the Kona Cacao Association works with cacao growers, producers, chocolate enthusiasts and chefs to help create a recognizable brand for Hawaii Island Chocolate. KCA members work together towards creating a structure to maintain the quality of cacao grown, marketed and shipped from Hawaii for the future growth of this fledging industry.

Working with the American Culinary Federation, Kona Kohala Chefs Association, KCA encourages the advancement of culinary students at both the High School and College levels.

The 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival Gala sold out with a capacity 600 guests.

We’re talking all things chocolate with Farsheed.

Play

April 29: Live from the Big Island Chocolate Festival

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Steve Dolinsky, ABC 7 Eyewitness News’ (Chicago) – “The Hungry Hound”
Segment Three: Farsheed Bonakdar, President, Kona Cacao Association (KCA)
Segment Four: Chef Peter Abarcar Jr., Director of Culinary & Beverage Operations, Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel
Segment Five: Executive Pastry Chef Alicia Boada, West Coast Technical Advisor, Barry Callebaut Chocolate North America
Segment Six: Chef Elizabeth (Betty) McDonald, B3 “A Beach Bunny Bakery”, Maui
Segment Seven: Donald Wressell, Executive Chef, Guittard Chocolate Company
Segment Eight: Chef Instructor Teresa “Cheech” Shurilla, University of Hawaii-Maui College

It’s a very special day of indulgence on the “SoCal Restaurant Show.”

Big Island Chocolate FestivalWe’re coming to you from the 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival at The Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel. We’re broadcasting from the Reef Lounge with an incredible ocean view.

Hawaii is the only state in the USA where cacao, the primary base of chocolate, can be successfully grown commercially.

Now a properly decadent preview of this Saturday’s full show. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a pretty good thing…

When it comes to insider’s knowledge of the vibrant Chicago food scene one of the best sources is Chicago ABC 7 Eyewitness News’ Food Reporter, Steve Dolinsky, “The Hungry Hound.” Steve was recently nominated for his potential 14th James Beard Foundation Award for journalistic excellence in reporting. The James Beard Awards Gala is May 1st at the Lyric Opera of Chicago. As a veteran of The James Beard Awards in both New York and Chicago, Steve joins us with a preview of what’s in store and a report on the Media Awards.

Farsheed Bonakdar is the President of the Kona Cacao Association, the Producer of the 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival. The mission and goal of the Kona Cacao Association is to promote the cacao industry on the Big Island of Hawaii by presenting the Big Island Chocolate Festival as an educational and outreach opportunity for local cacao farmers, the hospitality industry and cacao enthusiasts. We’re talking all things chocolate with Farsheed.

Hawaii Island native Peter Abarcar, Jr. was promoted in 2015 from executive chef of Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel to director of culinary and beverage operations. Chef Abarcar now oversees all culinary, food and beverage operations at the 350-room oceanfront resort including the resort’s signature restaurant, Coast Grille. He also supervises operations for extensive catering and banquets, the Ocean Terrace Restaurant and The Beach Bar. We’ll pull him out of the busy kitchens and “Talk Story.”

Alicia Boada is an acclaimed pastry chef and instructor with 20 plus years of experience in the culinary industry. She is the West Coast Technical Advisor for Barry Callebaut Chocolate (The Barry Callebaut Group) whose brands include Cacao Barry, Callebaut and Mona Lisa, among more. As a Corporate Pastry Chef & Chocolatier, Chef Alicia’s role often calls on her to perform demonstrations and training worldwide keeping her on the edge of what’s happening in the contemporary pastry and chocolate world. Chef Alicia will be performing a chocolate demonstration as part of the Festival in addition to judging the Gala’s delicious offerings.

Maui Chef Elizabeth (Betty) McDonald of B3 A Beach Bunny Bakery is a judge for the Gala as well as the College Competition. She is a veteran of The Big Island Chocolate Festival. Chef Betty has been in the culinary field since 2003, developing a love for baking at a young age from her mother and grandmothers. She has been fortunate enough to travel with her husband living and working in the four corners of the country.

Guittard’s Chocolate Company’s Executive Chef and Chocolatier, Donald Wressell, really needs no long introduction to listeners. Prior to his joining Guittard Chocolate as the in-house pastry chef, Donald Wressell spent 19 years at the Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills where he was named the 2005 Pastry Chef of the Year, won Silver and Gold medals in the Grand Salon Culinaire and placed second at the Les Masters du Chocolat competition. Chef Donald also represented the USA four times in Le Coupe du Monde de la Patisserie and captained the winning team at the 2011 National Pastry Team Championship.

Chef instructor Teresa “Cheech” Shurilla of University of Hawaii – Maui College oversees the college competition at The Big Island Chocolate Festival and has done if for several years. The Festival has had student participants from UH-Maui College, UH-Hilo and UH-Palamanui in Kona. It is Friday, April 28th and winners are announced at the Festival Gala. Chef Shurilla has been working and teaching in the culinary field for over thirty-four years. Prepare to be judged…

Andrew and William GruelChef Andrew Gruel is at Trade in Irvine this Saturday (busily training & cooking) in the soft opening phase of Two Birds and Butterleaf. He’ll happily fly the coop and be back with us next week.

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness on this week’s show!

Steve Dolinsky and Andreew GruelWhen it comes to insider’s knowledge of the vibrant Chicago food scene one of the best and most reliable sources is Chicago ABC 7 Eyewitness News Food Reporter, Steve Dolinsky, “The Hungry Hound.”

Steve was recently nominated for his potential 14th James Beard Foundation Award for journalistic excellence in reporting. The James Beard Awards Gala is May 1st at the Lyric Opera of Chicago.

As a veteran of The James Beard Awards in both New York and Chicago, Steve joins us with a preview of what’s in store and a report on the Media Awards, held on Pier Sixty at Chelsea Piers, New York City.

Farsheed BonakdarFarsheed Bonakdar is the President of the Kona Cacao Association, the Producer of the 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival. The mission and goal of the Kona Cacao Association is to promote the cacao industry on the Big Island of Hawaii by presenting the Big Island Chocolate Festival as an educational and outreach opportunity for local cacao farmers, the hospitality industry and cacao enthusiasts.

Beyond creating, implementing and promoting the Big Island Chocolate Festival, the Kona Cacao Association works with cacao growers, producers, chocolate enthusiasts and chefs to help create a recognizable brand for Hawaii Island Chocolate. KCA members work together towards creating a structure to maintain the quality of cacao grown, marketed and shipped from Hawaii for the future growth of this fledging industry.

We’re talking all things chocolate with Farsheed.

Peter Abarcar JuniorHawaii Island native Peter Abarcar, Jr. was promoted in 2015 from executive chef of Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel to director of culinary and beverage operations. Chef Abarcar now oversees all culinary, food and beverage operations at the 350-room oceanfront resort including the resort’s signature restaurant, Coast Grille. He also supervises operations for extensive catering and banquets, the Ocean Terrace Restaurant and The Beach Bar.

Abarcar first began his Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel career as lead cook in 1997. In 2000 he left the Hapuna family to become Executive Chef at the Club at Hokuli’a. Eight years later, Abarcar returned to Mauna Kea Resort to help reopen Mauna Kea Beach Hotel as sous chef, following the hotel’s closure and extensive renovation. In 2010, he was promoted to chef de cuisine at Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel’s signature restaurant, Coast Grille. The following year, he was promoted to the position of Executive Chef.

Chef Abarcar enjoys pairing varieties of ethnic flavors from his Hawaii Island upbringing. His keen sense of local produce and seafood paired with his culinary talent and passion for creative food results in exciting tastes on each of the menus at Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel.

We’ll pull him out of the busy kitchens and “Talk Story.”

Alicia BoadaAlicia Boada is an acclaimed pastry chef and instructor with 20 plus years of experience in the culinary industry. She is the West Coast Technical Advisor for Barry Callebaut Chocolate, North America (The Barry Callebaut Group) whose brands include Cacao Barry, Callebaut and Mona Lisa, among more.

As a Corporate Pastry Chef & Chocolatier, Chef Alicia’s role often calls on her to perform demonstrations and training worldwide keeping her on the edge of what’s happening in the contemporary pastry and chocolate world.

Chef Alicia will be performing a chocolate demonstration as part of the Festival in addition to judging the Gala’s delicious offerings.

Alicia also serves as President of the Women Chefs & Restaurateurs.

Betty McDonaldMaui Chef Elizabeth (Betty) McDonald of B3 A Beach Bunny Bakery is a judge for the Gala as well as the College Competition. She is a veteran of The Big Island Chocolate Festival. Chef Betty has been in the culinary field since 2003, developing a love for baking at a young age from her mother and grandmothers.

She has been fortunate enough to travel with her husband living and working in the four corners of the country. Growing up in Rhode Island and attending culinary school in Massachusetts cemented her base knowledge and passion for traditional pastries.

Traveling the country and landing in the tropical destination of Maui has blended beautifully with Betty’s pastry skills. The tropical fruits and flavors have really made for an exciting flavor profiles in classic desserts.

Upon moving to Maui, chef Betty became the executive pastry chef for restaurateur Mark Ellman. Betty made her mark on the culinary scene at Mala an Ocean Tavern and Honu Seafood and Pizza, becoming an award-winning pastry chef. As the executive pastry chef for these restaurants Betty was awarded the Star Chef’s Rising Star Award for her desserts with vibrant and bright tropical flavors with gluten free and vegan options.

Chef Betty has continued her rise in the Maui culinary scene. In the summer of 2014 Chef Betty opened B3 “A Beach Bunny Bakery”. Specializing in cakes and cupcakes for all occasions. B3 also bakes fresh and delivers scrumptious desserts to several restaurants and coffee shops on the west side of Maui, most notably Paris Nabavi’s Sangrita Grill and Cantina.

Donald WressellGuittard’s Chocolate Company’s Executive Chef and Chocolatier, Donald Wressell, really needs no long introduction to listeners. Prior to his joining Guittard Chocolate as the in-house pastry chef, Donald Wressell spent 19 years at the Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills where he was named the 2005 Pastry Chef of the Year, won Silver and Gold medals in the Grand Salon Culinaire and placed second at the Les Masters du Chocolat competition.

Chef Donald also represented the USA four times in Le Coupe du Monde de la Patisserie and captained the winning team at the 2011 National Pastry Team Championship.

In his spare time Chef Donald created the spectacular “Official” Birthday Cakes for the City of Beverly Hills’ Diamond Jubilee (1988) & Centennial (2014) Anniversary celebrations. The Centennial creation yielded 15,000 ample servings and not a crumb was left!

Teresa Cheech ShurillaChef instructor Teresa “Cheech” Shurilla of University of Hawaii – Maui College oversees the college competition at The Big Island Chocolate Festival and has done if for several years. The Festival has had student participants from UH-Maui College, UH-Hilo and UH-Palamanui in Kona.

The college competition is set for Friday, April 28th at Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel and winners are announced at the concluding Saturday night Festival Gala. Chef Shurilla has been working and teaching in the culinary field for over thirty-four years. Prepare to be judged…

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Steve Dolinsky, ABC 7 Eyewitness News’ (Chicago) – “The Hungry Hound”
Segment Three: Farsheed Bonakdar, President, Kona Cacao Association (KCA)
Segment Four: Chef Peter Abarcar Jr., Director of Culinary & Beverage Operations, Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel
Segment Five: Executive Pastry Chef Alicia Boada, West Coast Technical Advisor, Barry Callebaut Chocolate North America
Segment Six: Chef Elizabeth (Betty) McDonald, B3 “A Beach Bunny Bakery”, Maui
Segment Seven: Donald Wressell, Executive Chef, Guittard Chocolate Company
Segment Eight: Chef Instructor Teresa “Cheech” Shurilla, University of Hawaii-Maui College

Show 216, March 25, 2017: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris

Now a tempting preview of this Saturday’s over-stuffed and richly decadent show. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a pretty good thing…

Long Beach has its own officially designated Little Cambodia Town. It’s known as the Cambodian capital of the United States. Where do you find “real deal” Cambodian food there? Little Cambodia Town’s Honorary Mayor, Rithy Hahn, and Chef “T” Visoth Ouk are our knowledgeable guides.
Brad Johnson’s & Chef Govind Armstrong’s Post & Beam officially opened in early 2012 on the West side of the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza (across the parking lot from the Debbie Allen Dance Academy) in an extensively remodeled, free-standing building with patio which had previously been a Golden Bird Fried Chicken stand. It’s 5 successful years later and we’ll get updates from the principals themselves, Brad & Chef Govind.

One of the most distinctive and personal restaurants in the new wave of Oceanside’s chef-driven establishments is Chef Staci Miller’s The Miller’s Table. It’s very hands-on and intimate with all of 24 seats. Most of the seats are at one, large, square Community Table. We’ll meet the engaging Chef Staci.

A standout product noted by the “SoCal Restaurant Show” at the recently concluded Natural Products Expo West at the Anaheim Convention Center was Regrained – Eat Beer. Regrained crafts supergrain snacks featuring upcycled brewer’s grain “harvested” from urban craft breweries. CEO & Co-Founder Daniel Kurzrock explains all.

Prosecco is on a lot of restaurant by-the-glass menus these days. It’s a common misnomer that it’s Italian sparkling wine. Actually it comes from difference grapes than Champagne and is created using a different process. Also, all Prosecco is not created equal. To bring clarity to the ongoing discussion our resident wine expert, Kyle Meyer of Wine Exchange in Santa Ana, joins us with the needed 411.

The 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival is set for April 28th & 29th at the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel. “Indulge in the alluring, rich taste of chocolate – in both its sweet and savory forms – while participating in delicious, fun and informative chocolate-themed activities.” Farsheed Bonakdar the President of the Kona Cacao Association (the event’s producer) and Executive Chef Donald Wressell (also an acclaimed chocolatier) of the Guittard Chocolate Company (Burlingame, CA) are with us to preview this weekend of rich chocolate indulgence.

After a decadent afternoon of feasting on March 12th on over 1,500 pounds of heritage breed pork raised on family farms, almost 500 guests gathered with glasses full of festive libations at Viceroy Santa Monica, Official Host Venue. From cooks and guests to winemakers and distillers, all were waiting for Cochon555 founder Brady Lowe to crown Los Angeles’ “Prince of Pork,” bestowing not just the title, but a place in the national finale, Grand Cochon, in October in Chicago. L.A.’s newly crowned “Prince of Pork” chef is our guest.

Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel is flying back from Utah on this Saturday morning. He rejoins us on April 1st, and that’s no April Fools’ joke…

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness on this week’s show!

Play

Show 216, March 25, 2017: 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival

Donald WressellThe 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival is set for April 28th & 29th at the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel. “Indulge in the alluring, rich taste of chocolate – in both its sweet and savory forms – while participating in delicious, fun and informative chocolate-themed activities.”

Farsheed Bonakdar the President of the Kona Cacao Association (the event’s producer) and Executive Chef Donald Wressell (also an acclaimed chocolatier) of the Guittard Chocolate Company are with us to preview this weekend of rich chocolate indulgence with a side of education.

Presented by the Kona Cacao Association (KCA), event proceeds annually benefit a variety of worthy local non-profits.

“Chocolate has an amazing history and it will be fun to share it at this year’s Big Island Chocolate Festival,” says KCA President Farsheed Bonakdar.

The two-day chocolate extravaganza includes a cacao plantation tour at Original Hawaiian Chocolate Factory, a college culinary competition and several public foodie and agriculture-themed seminars. Activities culminate 5-9 p.m. Saturday, April 29 with the indoor-outdoor festival gala—enjoy a host of sweet and savory culinary stations presented by top isle chefs, chocolatiers and confectioners. Fun chocolate activities include a live chocolate sculpture and chocolate body painting. Culinary participants will depict this year’s historical theme at their booths and be judged on originality.

Chocolate hails from Meso-America where cacao beans were brewed to make a drink or fermented into an alcoholic beverage. Highly valued, the bean was used as currency. The Mayans and Aztecs believed cacao was divine, including it in rituals. Once fashioned into a bar, chocolate became valued in America. During wartime it was included in soldiers’ rations and went to the moon with the Apollo astronauts.

Play

March 25: Little Cambodia Town, Post and Beam, The Miller’s Table, Regrained Eat Beer, Wine Exchange, Big Kahuna Chocolate Festival, Jonathan Granada

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: “Mayor” Rithy Hahn, Chef “T” Visoth Ouk, Long Beach’s Cambodia Town
Segment Three: Post & Beam, Los Angeles’ Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza
Segment Four: Chef Staci Miller’s The Miller’s Table, Oceanside, CA
Segment Five: Daniel Kurzrock, Chief Grain Officer, Regrained – Eat Beer
Segment Six: Kyle Meyer, Co-Proprietor, Wine Exchange, Santa Ana
Segment Seven: 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival
Segment Eight: LA’s 2017 Prince of Pork – Cochon 555

Now a tempting preview of this Saturday’s over-stuffed show. It’s not, with profuse apologies, for dieters. If we’re successful we will always leave you incredibly hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a pretty good thing…

Long Beach has its own officially designated Little Cambodia Town. It’s known as the Cambodian capital of the United States. Where do you find “real deal” Cambodian food there? Little Cambodia Town’s Honorary Mayor, Rithy Hahn, and Chef “T” Visoth Ouk are our knowledgeable guides.

Brad Johnson’s & Chef Govind Armstrong’s Post & Beam officially opened in early 2012 on the West side of the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza (across the parking lot from the Debbie Allen Dance Academy) in an extensively remodeled, free-standing building with patio which had previously been a Golden Bird Fried Chicken stand. It’s 5 successful years later and we’ll get updates from the principals themselves, Brad & Chef Govind.

One of the most distinctive and personal restaurants in the new wave of Oceanside’s chef-driven establishments is Chef Staci Miller’s The Miller’s Table. It’s very hands-on and intimate with all of 24 seats. Most of the seats are at one, large Community Table. We’ll meet the engaging Chef Staci.

A standout product noted by the “SoCal Restaurant Show” at the recently concluded Natural Products Expo West at the Anaheim Convention Center was Regrained – Eat Beer. Regrained crafts supergrain snacks featuring upcycled brewer’s grain “harvested” from urban craft breweries. CEO & Co-Founder Daniel Kurzrock explains all.

Prosecco is on a lot of restaurant by-the-glass menus these days. It’s a common misnomer that it’s Italian sparkling wine. Actually it comes from difference grapes than Champagne and is created using a different process. Also, all Prosecco is not created equal. To bring clarity to the ongoing discussion our resident wine expert, Kyle Meyer of Wine Exchange in Santa Ana, joins us with the needed 411.

The 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival is set for April 28th & 29th at the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel. “Indulge in the alluring, rich taste of chocolate – in both its sweet and savory forms – while participating in delicious, fun and informative chocolate-themed activities.” Farsheed Bonakdar the President of the Kona Cacao Association (the event’s producer) and Executive Chef Donald Wressell (also an acclaimed chocolatier) of the Guittard Chocolate Company are with us to preview this weekend of rich chocolate indulgence.

After a decadent afternoon of feasting on March 12th on over 1,500 pounds of heritage breed pork raised on family farms, almost 500 guests gathered with glasses full of festive libations at Viceroy Santa Monica, Official Host Venue. From cooks and guests to winemakers and distillers, all were waiting for Cochon555 founder Brady Lowe to crown Los Angeles’ “Prince of Pork,” bestowing not just the title, but a place in the national finale, Grand Cochon, in October in Chicago. L.A.’s newly crowned “Prince of Pork” chef is our guest.

Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel is flying back from Utah on this Saturday morning. He rejoins us on April 1st, and that’s no joke…

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness on this week’s show!

Rithy Hahn, and Chef T Visoth OukLong Beach has its own officially designated Little Cambodia Town. It’s known as the Cambodian capital of the United States. Some 20,000 residents of Long Beach are of Cambodian descent. Long Beach is thought to have the second largest population of Cambodian immigrants outside of Southeast Asia.

The Cambodia Town Culture Festival with lots of food & fun for the whole Family is Sunday, April 2nd from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Cambodian Restaurants we visited (that the locals frequent) in Long Beach include Crystal, Monorom Cambodian Restaurant, Dara Restaurant and Sophy’s – Cambodia Town Food & Music. Some are located just outside of the “official” boundaries of Cambodia Town. All have on-site parking.

Standout dishes to look for range from deep fried whole catfish to salmon salad and lemongrass soup.

Where do you find “real deal” Cambodian food there?

Little Cambodia Town’s Honorary Mayor, Rithy Hahn, and Chef “T” Visoth Ouk are our knowledgeable guides.

Govind Armstrong and Brad JohnsonBrad Johnson’s & Chef Govind Armstrong’s Post & Beam officially opened in early 2012 on the West side of the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza (across the parking lot from the Debbie Allen Dance Academy) in an extensively remodeled, free-standing building with patio which had previously been a Golden Bird Fried Chicken stand.

There is a fairly extensive on-site herb garden on the patio with raised beds. One entire wall of the patio is covered with trailing passion fruit vines. The highly perishable fruit is creatively used there seasonally in salad dressings and desserts.

“No stranger to the dining scene in Los Angeles, Brad Johnson’s and Chef Govind Armstrong’s venture, Post & Beam, is intended to bring warm hospitality, exciting, yet approachable cuisine and good times to the surrounding neighborhoods of the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza. Brad has created memorable places since relocating to California from NYC in 1989. Remember Georgia on Melrose Ave.? That was him, minus some of the gray hair.”

Among Chef Govind’s numerous local credits of note are the fondly remembered Chadwick (Co-Executive Chef) in Beverly Hills and Melrose’s Table 8. He started in the kitchen at Spago at the tender age of 13.

It’s 5 successful years later and we’ll get updates from the principals themselves, Brad & Chef Govind.

Staci MillerOne of the most distinctive and personal restaurants in the new wave of Oceanside’s chef-driven establishments is Chef Staci Miller’s The Miller’s Table. Her beverage goal is to compliment the vibrant Oceanside craft beer scene with her extensive knowledge of fine wine. It’s very hands-on and intimate with all of 24 seats. Most of the seats are at one, large Family Table.

The Miller’s Table is an intimate community experience, with simple, fresh fare, unique wines, craft beers and beverages all brought to a centerpiece of a family table. With all of the fresh produce available in North County, a large portion of Staci Miller’s menu is dedicated to Inspired Vegetables, balanced with Cheese & Charcuterie, and a creative cadre of Sandwiches, all fresh and made in house.

“Of note; our albacore confit tuna and house-made potato chips. With 24 seats, the service is very personal, with no waiters, but rather a culinary team that delivers the food they just prepared. Wine is presented as flights for exploration, with a wine list that changes weekly.”

We’ll meet the passionate Chef Staci.

Daniel KurzrockA standout product noted by the “SoCal Restaurant Show” at the recently concluded Natural Products Expo West at the Anaheim Convention Center was Regrained – Eat Beer. Regrained crafts supergrain snacks featuring upcycled brewer’s grain “harvested” from urban craft breweries. The end result is a whole lot tastier than it perhaps reads…

“When we started homebrewing beer as underage students at UCLA, we certainly did not predict it would lead to this.”

“Here’s what caught us by surprise: with every batch of beer made, we were left with a crazy amount of “used” grain! We understood that the sugar from the grain was somehow being turned into fresh barleypop, but what about the grain? What the heck were we supposed to do with that stuff?? And there was a lot of it!!”

“We didn’t have a compost bin, let alone any farm animals to feed out back of our frathouse homebrewery. So, week after week, vats of oatmeal were tipped into the dumpster. An idea struck. Sure, we didn’t have farm animals, but we had plenty of the next best thing: hungry party animals.”

“So, we set out to bake a sort-of whole grain bread using the leftover grain. We could become the cure for cases of the common drunchies.

After a few months of baking a dozen or so loaves of bread per week between beer making (with some studying in between), a few things became apparent:

  1. People loved our idea. We even developed a contingent of regulars.
  2. Bread was one of many possible applications for reuse of our grain.
  3. Craft beer was continuing to blow up around us. If urban craft breweries shared our sustainability challenge, our idea could be even bigger.

“So, we decided to make a go at a broader business model. ReGrained would not just be a bakery, but more of a go-between the brewing industry and local food systems. It would be both a service provider and a manufacturer. Eventually, we would upcycle all of the grain from every urban brewery in the world!”

“First, we decided, we should start with a product. We liked the bread, but baking it was time consuming, labor intensive, and the shelf-life was short. We needed something more practical.”

“We put our heads (and appetites) together. Jordan’s (Schwartz) crowded apartment kitchen Became our startup’s “garage,” and we developed an evolving recipe of small batch granola bars. Batch after batch we baked until we had something that we believed could have some legs. We believed in our idea, and that if we kept at it, we could turn it into something meaningful.”

“ReGrained has since become a full-time pursuit, and we couldn’t be more excited. We are hard at work every day earnestly growing our bar line, as well as developing other applications for ReGrained grain. We appreciate how far we have been able to take the company from ourcramped UCLA kitchen, but the best is truly yet to come.”

CEO & Co-Founder Daniel Kurzrock explains all.

Kyle Meyer of Wine ExchangeThe delightfully effervescent Prosecco from Italy is on a lot of restaurant by-the-glass menus these days. It’s a common misnomer that it’s Italian sparkling wine. Actually it comes from difference grapes than Champagne and is created using a different, less labor intensive process. Also, all Prosecco is not created equal.

To bring clarity to the ongoing discussion our resident wine expert, Kyle Meyer of Wine Exchange in Santa Ana, joins us with the needed 411.

Also, what sparkling wine and Champagne is now served in by the glass in better restaurants is starting to change. It’s not just presented in a Champagne flute anymore. What’s going on…?

Donald WressellThe 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival is set for April 28th & 29th at the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel. “Indulge in the alluring, rich taste of chocolate – in both its sweet and savory forms – while participating in delicious, fun and informative chocolate-themed activities.”

Farsheed Bonakdar the President of the Kona Cacao Association (the event’s producer) and Executive Chef Donald Wressell (also an acclaimed chocolatier) of the Guittard Chocolate Company are with us to preview this weekend of rich chocolate indulgence with a side of education.

Presented by the Kona Cacao Association (KCA), event proceeds annually benefit a variety of worthy local non-profits.

“Chocolate has an amazing history and it will be fun to share it at this year’s Big Island Chocolate Festival,” says KCA President Farsheed Bonakdar.

The two-day chocolate extravaganza includes a cacao plantation tour at Original Hawaiian Chocolate Factory, a college culinary competition and several public foodie and agriculture-themed seminars. Activities culminate 5-9 p.m. Saturday, April 29 with the indoor-outdoor festival gala—enjoy a host of sweet and savory culinary stations presented by top isle chefs, chocolatiers and confectioners. Fun chocolate activities include a live chocolate sculpture and chocolate body painting.

Culinary participants will depict this year’s historical theme at their booths and be judged on originality.

Chocolate hails from Meso-America where cacao beans were brewed to make a drink or fermented into an alcoholic beverage. Highly valued, the bean was used as currency. The Mayans and Aztecs believed cacao was divine, including it in rituals. Once fashioned into a bar, chocolate became valued in America. During wartime it was included in soldiers’ rations and went to the moon with the Apollo astronauts.

Jonathan GranadaAfter a decadent afternoon of feasting on over 1,500 pounds of heritage breed pork raised on family farms, almost 500 guests gathered with glasses full of everything from Franciacorta and Pinot Noir to Smoked Old-Fashioneds and Angostura Rum Swizzle cocktails at Viceroy Santa Monica, Official Host Venue. From cooks and guests to winemakers and distillers, all were waiting for Cochon555 founder Brady Lowe to crown Los Angeles’ “Prince of Pork,” bestowing not just the title, but a place in the national finale, Grand Cochon, in October in Chicago.

Representing the Berkshire breed of pig raised by Peads & Barnetts, the winner was Chef Jonathan Granada of Otium.

Winning Chef Jonathan’s pig breed from Peads & Barnetts Farm was a Berkshire that yields a brighter pork than most, and features a thick, delicious fat cap. The meat is sweet and creamy with hints of nuttiness, which is a by-product of the finishing process in several areas. These aspects worked in tandem with his six winning menu items, including a Head Cheese; Pork Belly with Feuille de Brick, Stinging Nettle and Caviar; Whipped Lardo with Sea Urchin, Pistachio and Brioche; Pork Shoulder with Artichoke Barigoule and Vin Jaune; a Croquette with Mojo and Potato; and finished with a Cider – Eric Bordelet Poire Granit from France.

A culinary competition featuring 5 chefs cooking 5 whole, heritage breed pigs with innovative flavors and timeless cooking techniques, Cochon555 challenges chefs to use every bit of their accumulated knowledge and inspiration. Each chef is given a 200-220 pound heritage breed pig and tasked to create, prepare and present a “Judge’s Plate” of 6 dishes scored on utilization, global influences, cooking techniques, and overall flavor, among other categories. This year’s experts and celebrity judges included local luminaries Jonathan Gold of Los Angeles Times, Christopher Ford of Beverly Wilshire, Chef Walter Manzke of Republique, Kelly Kang of Viceroy Santa Monica and others.

“The national competition gets more intense and dynamic every year, and the performance of the LA chefs, somms, and barkeeps shows precisely why the city is at the forefront for culinary excellence in this country,” said Cochon555 founder Brady Lowe. “Chef Jonathan’s winning dishes were bold, modern, thoughtful, and full of the kind of flavors that only enhance what heritage breed pigs have to offer. We owe a big thank you to the Viceroy Santa Monica Hotel – the setting was spectacular.”

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: “Mayor” Rithy Hahn, Chef “T” Visoth Ouk, Long Beach’s Cambodia Town
Segment Three: Post & Beam, Los Angeles’ Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza
Segment Four: Chef Staci Miller’s The Miller’s Table, Oceanside, CA
Segment Five: Daniel Kurzrock, Chief Grain Officer, Regrained – Eat Beer
Segment Six: Kyle Meyer, Co-Proprietor, Wine Exchange, Santa Ana
Segment Seven: 6th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival
Segment Eight: LA’s 2017 Prince of Pork – Cochon 555

Show 117, April 11, 2015: Show Preview with Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel and Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

Executive Chef Andrew Gruel of the rapidly growing Slapfish empire with restaurants in Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, and, now, Newport Beach is today’s special Guest Host.

Now a preview of today’s delightfully fully-leaded and always content-rich show.

In celebration of National Grilled Cheese Month in April Provisions Market (Chef Greg Daniels) and OC Baking Company (Dean Kim) will join forces to once again host The Big Cheese, Orange County’s grilled cheese festival and competition. Event Co-Founder Greg Daniels and his fellow Orange County Chefs will compete for the title of “The Big Cheese” on Monday, April 20th from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Provisions Market. All proceeds from this year’s event will be donated to You Are Special, a local nonprofit that operates a food pantry to feed the hungry in the Orange community.

Two-time James Beard Award-winning author Karen Page revolutionized the way both professional chefs and home cooks think about and create new dishes – based on compatible flavors instead of recipes – with her bestseller, The Flavor Bible, which Forbes named as one of the ten best cookbooks of the past century. Now Page brings the same innovative approach to plant-based cooking with The Vegetarian Flavor Bible. Photographs are by Andrew Dornenburg (Karen’s husband.) Karen Page is our guest.

Craving premium chocolate ? Who doesn’t ? The fourth annual Big Island Chocolate Festival (Hawaii) delivers with an array of fun, elegant and taste-tempting activities, seminars and culinary adventures May 7th to 9th. Most of the chocolately goodness will be offered at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii, but three new events take place at Kona farms. Hawaii is the only state in the United States that can grow cacao. Farsheed Bonakdar, the President of the Kona Cacao Association and acclaimed chocolatiers and veteran pastry chefs Stanton Ho and Donald Wressell of Guittard Chocolate Company join us with a preview.

“My first cookbook, Aarti Paarti: An American Kitchen with an Indian Soul is a love letter to both the flavors of my youth as an Indian girl growing up in the Middle East…and the flavors that embrace me in my new home here in the States.” “I’ll walk you through 101 recipes, some simplified versions of Indian classics…and some that show you how to use these same Indian spices to create exciting spins on American favorites.” Food Network’s Aarti Sequeira is our guest. She will be doing a cooking demo and book-signing at next weekend’s Los Angeles Times Festival of Books at USC.

Finally a chance to chat with Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish. He’ll share some useful tips about selecting and preparing lobster. This is a conversation started on last week’s show. Chef Andrew will also advise us on what parts of the lobster are best for use in some familiar dishes. We’ll also talk about what is an authentic lobster roll. They are seemingly appearing on menus everywhere.

All of this and lots more absolutely incredible deliciousness on Saturday’s show!

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Show 117, April 11, 2015: Big Island Chocolate Festival

BIg Island Chocolate FestivalCraving chocolate? Who doesn’t? The fourth annual Big Island Chocolate Festival (Hawaii) delivers with an array of fun, elegant and taste-tempting activities, seminars and culinary adventures May 7th to 9th. Most of the chocolatey goodness will be offered at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii, but three new events take place at Kona farms. Hawaii is the only state in the United States that can grow cacao.

On Thursday, May 7th from 5 to 9:00 p.m. is the farm-to-table, chocolate-themed dinner at Kokoleka Lani cacao farm in Holualoa. Dubbed a “Chocolate Soiree,” the scrumptious, seven-course meal will be prepared by celebrity pastry chef Stanton Ho, and others.

On Saturday, May 9th the 3-days of chocolate fun at The Big Island Chocolate Festival culminates from 5:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. in the Fairmont’s Grand Ballroom for the festival gala. Attendees can enjoy both savory and sweet chocolate cuisine created by top Island chefs, chocolatiers and confectioners while voting for their favorite culinary station. Diners can also visit the “all you can enjoy” mole and salad bars. Chef Donald Wressell of Guittard Chocolate Company will be demonstrating the fine art of chocolate sculpting.

Presented by the Kona Cacao Association (KCA), event proceeds benefit the “Equip the Kitchens” campaign for the future Hawaii Community College-Palamanui and a capital campaign to build a community kitchen at the Waldorf-inspired Kona Pacific Public Charter School in Kealakekua.

Farsheed Bonakdar, the President of the Kona Cacao Association and acclaimed chocolatier and pastry chef Donald Wressell of Guittard Chocolate Company and Stanton Ho (ex-Chocolates a la carte and the Las Vegas Hilton) join us with a tempting preview.

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April 11: Andrew Gruel, National Grilled Cheese Month, Karen Page, Andrew Dornenburg, Big Island Chocolate Festival, Aarti Sequeira

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel and Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Artisan Baker Dean Kim – “The Big Cheese” Competition
Segment Three: Karen Page – The Vegetarian Flavor Bible Part One
Segment Four: Karen Page – The Vegetarian Flavor Bible Part Two
Segment Five: Big Island Chocolate Festival
Segment Six: Food Network’s Chef Aarti Sequeira Part One
Segment Seven: Food Network’s Chef Aarti Sequeira Part Two
Segment Eight: Executive Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish

Executive Chef Andrew Gruel of the rapidly growing Slapfish empire with restaurants in Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, and, now, Newport Beach is today’s special Guest Host.

Now a preview of today’s delightfully fully-leaded and content-rich show.

In celebration of National Grilled Cheese Month in April Provisions Market (Chef Greg Daniels) and OC Baking Company (Dean Kim) will join forces to once again host The Big Cheese, Orange County’s grilled cheese festival and competition. Event Co-Founder Greg Daniels and his fellow Orange County Chefs will compete for the title of “The Big Cheese” on Monday, April 20th from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Provisions Market. All proceeds from this year’s event will be donated to You Are Special, a local nonprofit that operates a food pantry to feed the hungry in the Orange community.

Two-time James Beard Award-winning author Karen Page revolutionized the way both professional chefs and home cooks think about and create new dishes – based on compatible flavors instead of recipes – with her bestseller, The Flavor Bible, which Forbes named as one of the ten best cookbooks of the past century. Now Page brings the same innovative approach to plant-based cooking with The Vegetarian Flavor Bible. Photographs are by Andrew Dornenburg (Karen’s husband.) Karen Page is our guest along with Andrew Dornenburg.

Craving chocolate ? Who doesn’t ? The fourth annual Big Island Chocolate Festival (Hawaii) delivers with an array of fun, elegant and taste-tempting activities, seminars and culinary adventures May 7th to 9th. Most of the chocolately goodness will be offered at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii, but three new events take place at Kona farms. Hawaii is the only state in the United States that can grow cacao. Farsheed Bonakdar, the President of the Kona Cacao Association and acclaimed chocolatier and pastry chef Donald Wressell of Guittard Chocolate Company join us with a preview.

“My first cookbook, Aarti Paarti : An American Kitchen with an Indian Soul is a love letter to both the flavors of my youth as an Indian girl growing up in the Middle East…and the flavors that embrace me in my new home here in the States” “I’ll walk you through 101 recipes, some simplified versions of Indian classics…and some that show you how to use these same Indian spices to create exciting spins on American favorites. Food Network’s Aarti Sequeira is our guest. She will be doing a cooking demo and book-signing at next weekend’s Los Angeles Times Festival of Books at USC.

Finally a chance to chat with Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish. He’ll share some useful tips about selecting and preparing lobster. This is a conversation started on last week’s show. Chef Andrew will also advise us on what parts of the lobster are best for use in some familiar dishes. We’ll also talk about what is an authentic lobster roll. They are seemingly appearing on menus everywhere.

All of this and lots more absolutely incredible deliciousness on Saturday’s show!

The Big Cheese Grilled Cheese CompetitionIn celebration of National Grilled Cheese Month in April Provisions Market (Chef Greg Daniels) and OC Baking Company (Dean Kim) will join forces to once again host The Big Cheese, Orange County’s grilled cheese festival and competition. Event Co-Founder Greg Daniels and his fellow Orange County Chefs will compete for the title of “The Big Cheese” on Monday, April 20th from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Provisions Market. All proceeds from this year’s event will be donated to You Are Special, a local nonprofit that operates a food pantry to feed the hungry in the Orange community.

OC Baking Company Master Baker Dean Kim will supply locally produced, freshly baked bread to the competing chefs. The competitors will present their own spin on the classic grilled cheese sandwich that festival attendees will sample and then vote on.

This year, the professional chefs will be joined by one ProAm competitor who will be selected by event organizers in an Instagram contest. To enter, the public must create and present an original grilled cheese creation on Instagram and use the hashtag #thebigcheese2015 by Thursday, April 16th. The winning entry will be announced Friday, April 17th and the ProAm contender for “The Big Cheese” will participate in the festival on Monday, April 20th.

Artisan Baker Dean Kim of the OC Baking Company joins us with all the needed 411.

Karen Page and Andrew DornenburgTwo-time James Beard Award-winning author Karen Page revolutionized the way both professional chefs and home cooks think about and create new dishes – based on compatible flavors instead of recipes – with her bestseller, The Flavor Bible, which Forbes named as one of the ten best cookbooks of the past century. Now Page brings the same innovative approach to plant-based cooking with The Vegetarian Flavor Bible. Photographs are by Andrew Dornenburg (Karen’s husband.)

For the first time in history, per-capita consumption of meat in America has fallen for five consecutive years, with predictions of continuing declines. Vegetarianism and veganism are emerging from the margins and into the mainstream, as 54 percent of Americans now wish to decrease or eliminate meat from their diets. While people have chosen to adopt meatless diets throughout history for a variety of reasons – from ethics to economy to personal and planetary well-being – this book suggests a new reason for doing so: maximizing flavor, which is too often masked by meat-based stocks or butter and cream.

Karen Page is our guest along with Andrew Dornenburg.

After losing members of her family to cancer, the author – an established culinary professional – was shocked to learn that the number-one cause of death in America is nutritionally controllable diseases such as cancer, heart disease, and diabetes. A lifelong omnivore who grew up eating meat “two and often three times a day,” Page was motivated by nutrition studies to experiment with vegetarianism. She eventually eliminated meat from her diet, losing digestive aches and pains and more than twenty pounds in the process, while gaining new vitality and even joy – and she pours here newfound passion into this book.

BIg Island Chocolate FestivalCraving chocolate? Who doesn’t? The fourth annual Big Island Chocolate Festival (Hawaii) delivers with an array of fun, elegant and taste-tempting activities, seminars and culinary adventures May 7th to 9th. Most of the chocolatey goodness will be offered at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii, but three new events take place at Kona farms. Hawaii is the only state in the United States that can grow cacao.

On Saturday, May 9th the 3-days of chocolate fun at The Big Island Chocolate Festival culminates from 5:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. in the Fairmont’s Grand Ballroom for the festival gala. Attendees can enjoy both savory and sweet chocolate cuisine created by top Island chefs, chocolatiers and confectioners while voting for their favorite culinary station. Diners can also visit the “all you can enjoy” mole and salad bars. Chef Donald Wressell of Guittard Chocolate Company will be demonstrating the fine art of chocolate sculpting.

Presented by the Kona Cacao Association (KCA), event proceeds benefit the “Equip the Kitchens” campaign for the future Hawaii Community College-Palamanui and a capital campaign to build a community kitchen at the Waldorf-inspired Kona Pacific Public Charter School in Kealakekua.

Farsheed Bonakdar, the President of the Kona Cacao Association and acclaimed chocolatier and pastry chef Donald Wressell of Guittard Chocolate Company join us with a tempting preview.

“My first cookbook, Aarti Paarti: An American Kitchen with an Indian Soul is a love letter to both the flavors of my youth as an Indian girl growing up in the Middle East…and the flavors that embrace me in my new home here in the States”

“I’ll walk you through 101 recipes, some simplified versions of Indian classics like Chicken Tikka Masala, Raita and Naan…and some that show you how to use these same Indian spices to create exciting spins on American favorites like Kebab Sliders with Tamarind Chutney, Masala Shrimp and Grits, and Lemon Indian Donuts (Gulab Jamun) with Chamomile-Cardamom Syrup.”

“Each recipe is accompanied by swoon-worthy photos by Matt Armendariz, as well as stories (and photos) from my childhood”

Aarti SequeiraFood Network’s Aarti Sequeira is our guest. She will be doing a cooking demo and book-signing at next weekend’s Los Angeles Times Festival of Books at USC on Saturday afternoon, April 18th at 2:00 p.m.

Chef Aarti’s first cookbook is Aarti Paarti – An American Kitchen with an Indian Soul. The foreword is by Food Network’s Ree Drummond of The Pioneer Woman Cooks fame.

This collection of Aarti’s memories and over 100 recipes will make cooking with traditional Indian and Middle Eastern flavors easy and fun for any reader. Wonderfully evocative stories at the beginning of each chapter relate how a woman who was an outsider experienced many cultures and cuisines. But it is the food in Aarti’s life that keeps her close to her roots as she explores new culinary and cultural destinations.

Andrew GruelFinally a chance to chat with our patient Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish. He really knows seafood.

Chef Andrew will share some useful tips about selecting and preparing lobster. It’s easier to enjoy than its reputation. Chef Andrew will also advise us on what parts of the lobster are best for use in some familiar dishes. This is the continuation of a conversation Chef Andrew started last week.

Lobster Rolls are appearing on a lot of restaurant menus. Everyone, of course, has the “best.” Chef Andrew will give us some background on this delicacy. He grew up on the East Coast where this craveable sandwich originated.

Chef Andrew is the co-host of FYI’s new restaurant makeover series, “Say It To My Face!” It premiers Saturday night, May 9th.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel and Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Artisan Baker Dean Kim – “The Big Cheese” Competition
Segment Three: Karen Page – The Vegetarian Flavor Bible Part One
Segment Four: Karen Page – The Vegetarian Flavor Bible Part Two
Segment Five: Big Island Chocolate Festival
Segment Six: Food Network’s Chef Aarti Sequeira Part One
Segment Seven: Food Network’s Chef Aarti Sequeira Part Two
Segment Eight: Executive Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish

Show 64, March 8, 2014: Farsheed Bonakdar, President, Kona Cacao Association

BIg Island Chocolate FestivalThe alluring, rich taste of chocolate, in both its sweet and savory forms, is showcased at the 3rd Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival, May 2 to 3 at the Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii. Headlining the event is “Mr. Chocolate,” Jacques Torres, Food Network celebrity and acclaimed pastry chef from New York. Also appearing is Donald Wressell of Guittard and Derek Poirier of Valrhona USA.

“The Big Island Chocolate Festival is a fantasyland of chocolate.” Says Kona Cacao Association President Farsheed Bonakdar (Bone-ak-dar.) “It inspires our chefs, encourages our island farmers to grow cacao and shows our chocolatiers that chocolate can be a viable business.” Farsheed Bonakdar of KCA is our guest.

Hawaii is the only state in the USA where cacao grows.

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