Show 243, October 7, 2017: Chef Eric Greenspan, 505 Southwestern’s “Clash of the Hatch” Food Truck Challenge

Eric GreenspanFlagship Food Group and 505 Southwestern have launched a unique campaign, the “Clash of the Hatch,” a food truck challenge curated by 505 Southwestern® and Celebrity Chef Eric Greenspan. Celebrating the Hatch Valley green chile harvest season, the “Clash of the Hatch” brings together 10 of LA’s most popular food trucks to compete to make the best dish possible featuring 505 Southwestern® Hatch Valley Flame Roasted Green Chile.

The 10 finalists chosen to compete are Locol, Border Grill, Baby’s Badass Burgers, Grilled Cheese Truck, South Philly Experience, Vchos Pupusas, Chubbee Monkee, India Jones, Dogtown Dogs and Wise Barbecue Co.  Each truck is challenged to develop an innovative menu item that matches the truck’s food genre and style. Trucks are encouraged to drive awareness and sales of their item through social media and creative marketing.

The truck with the winning item will be invited to the Flagship global research and development center in Burbank, California, to develop a version of their menu item as a consumer retail food product. 505 Southwestern® will work to distribute this product into retail channels, and the winner will receive 1% of the net revenue, subject to a minimum of $20,000 and up to a maximum of $100,000.

“Anyone who knows me, my restaurants, or my TV shows, knows that I am passionate about great restaurants and operators. Food trucks represent the epitome of real time innovation and passionate entrepreneurs- exactly the kind of people I, Flagship, and 505 Southwestern® love engaging with,” said chef Eric Greenspan. “I think this is an exciting event, and I can’t wait to see what these food trucks create.”

Chef Eric turns up the heat and fills us in.

 

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Show 232, July 15, 2017: Peak of the Season Produce Report with Robert Schueller of Melissa’s

Robert Schueller of Melissa's World Variety Produce in the AM830 KLAA StudioCan’t get enough of those fresh fruits & veggies…? Joining us with what’s new for the peak of the season hits is our resident produce expert, Robert Schueller of Melissa’s. He’s the unrivaled Watson (IBM Super Computer) of fruits & vegetables!

Think sweet, juicy and refreshing Muscato Grapes (Black, Red & Green) and Champagne Grapes, and more, for openers.

California grown Black Muscato grapes have a deep purple, almost black, coloring with a slightly softer texture than the green or red varieties. While the Black Muscatos have the same high sugar content as the other two, their sweet flavor seems stronger on the palate. Black Muscato grapes make the best sauces and sauce reductions because of this complexity in taste.

Melissa’s Muscato grapes vary in color from green to red to black and are hybrids of some very special seedless grape varieties. They make a perfect summer snack with their crisp texture and mouthwatering, juicy interior. Muscato Grapes are much sweeter than the average grape, measuring at a brix (sweetness) level of at least 22 compared to the average grape brix of about 16.

Toss Muscato Grapes into a summer fruit salad, add to your favorite sauce, or eat right out of hand. These delectable summer treats are a great addition to any dessert.

The always eagerly anticipated Hatch Chile season (from Hatch, New Mexico) arrives a bit early this year on August 5th. Check the Hatch Chile roasting scheduling to locate a store near you.

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Show 184, August 13, 2016: Robert Schueller, Melissa’s World Variety Produce, Hatch Chile Season

Robert Schueller of Melissa's World Variety Produce in the AM830 KLAA StudioIt’s that most wonderful time of the year – Hatch Chile season! Grown only in the Mesilla Valley of New Mexico they are only available fresh for a few shorts weeks annually, now through mid-September.

Joining us for an informative update with all the Hatch Chile 411, including where to find sure-to-please recipes, is our resident Produce authority, Robert Schueller of Melissa’s World Variety Produce. Let the roasting begin.

Harvested from fertile soil along the Rio Grande, Hatch Chiles thrive in the river valley’s combination of nutrient-rich soil, intense sunlight, and cool desert nights. The peppers develop thick walls and meaty, flavorful flesh unlike any other chile.

Because their growing season is short, Hatch Chiles are typically bought in bulk, roasted immediately, and frozen for use throughout the year. Nutritionally speaking, a single fresh medium-size green chile has as much Vitamin C as six oranges. Hot chile peppers are believed to burn calories by triggering a thermodynamic response in the body that speeds metabolism.

 

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Show 184, August 13, 2016: Robert Schueller, Melissa’s World Variety Produce, Hatch Chile Season Continues…

Melissa's Hatch ChilesIt’s that most wonderful time of the year – Hatch Chile season! Grown only in the Mesilla Valley of New Mexico they are only available fresh for a few shorts weeks annually, now through mid-September.

Once roasted, Hatch Chiles are easy to peel and seed. Roasting heightens the robust earthy flavor of chiles and the texture of thick walls of the chile pod becomes lusciously rich. These unique qualities, and the peppers’ variable heat (unlike other chile peppers. Hatch Chiles come in varieties that cover the full spectrum of heat levels) have earned Hatch Chiles great popularity far beyond the local community of Hatch New Mexico.

Connoisseurs and chefs from all over the globe have adopted Hatch Chiles as a condiment of choice. Many a home cook and celebrity chef have gone further, incorporating Hatch Chiles into all kinds of superb dishes from burgers, pizzas, quiches, pancakes, milkshakes, pastries and even spiced ice cubes.

Chef Marco’s Zapien’s Salsa Grill & Taqueria in Pico Rivera really makes a celebration out of Hatch Chile season. For the 6th straight year Chef Marco Zapien is hosting an evening Hatch Chile interactive cooking demonstration, Hatch Chile Saturday parking lot roast and Hatch Chile Saturday brunch. The cooking demo is Wednesday, September 7th from 6 to 8:00 p.m. The roasting and Saturday Hatch Chile Brunch is set for September 17th. Think Hatch Chile Picadillo, and Tacos de papa con Hatch Chile.

Mouth-watering Hatch Chile recipes are available on the Melissa’s Website. Perfected recipes for Hatch Chile Guacamole, Hatch Chile Chili and Hatch Chile Salsa are all right there at the ready. The informative Melissa’s Hatch Chile Cookbook is also an excellent reference.

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Show 182, July 30, 2016: Robert Schueller, Price of Produce, Melissa’s / World Variety Produce Continues…

Robert Schueller of Melissa's World Variety Produce in the AM830 KLAA StudioWhat’s new, fresh and exciting in the world of Summer fruits and vegetables? Glad you asked. Joining us for an update is our resident Produce authority, Robert Schueller of Melissa’s World Variety Produce.

Melissa’s Jackfruit is the world’s largest tree fruit, averaging between 15 and 33 pounds per fruit. This large fruit grows directly out of the trunk or branches. The exterior of the Jackfruit is covered with spiny, knobby bumps and is green in color.

As the fruit ripens the skin turns to a yellow color and is very fragrant. The pink or yellow flesh is best when eaten fresh with hints of mango and melon.

Jackfruit can also be enjoyed unripe, cooked in various recipes. The flesh of the Jackfruit can be used in desserts, as well. This soft, flaky, sweet fruit can be a delight for any meal. The many seeds in the Jackfruit are sensational when roasted, similar to a chestnut in flavor. Refrigerate Melissa’s Jackfruit. Choose Jackfruit with a strong fragrance and a deep yellow color.

Coconut Hearts are harvested before the meat is fully developed. At this stage, the water inside is at its prime, delicious, refreshing flavor. After you enjoy the coconut water you can cut the tender meat to make a perfect tropical snack. Coconuts are rich in fiber, vitamins and minerals. Coconut nourishes the skin as well as boosts metabolism. Coconut water is rich in electrolytes and potassium, making it a much healthier alternative to sports drinks that contain artificial sugars or color.

Hatch Chile season is upon us around August 9th. Check the Melissa’s Web site for the schedule of Weekend roastings around Southern California at your favorite food emporium.

 

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Show 136, August 29, 2015: Show Preview with Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel & Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

Andrew Gruel and Anthony Dispensa of Slapfish Restaurants and FYI Say It To My FaceExecutive Chef Andrew Gruel of the rapidly growing Slapfish empire with restaurants in Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, LAX, and now, Irvine at UCI, is back as today’s special Guest Host.

Next a tempting preview of Saturday’s ample show and not, with apologies, for dieters. With any luck we will always leave you hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a good thing…

The Los Angeles Times’The Taste” food festival returns to Paramount Pictures Studios in Hollywood on Labor Day Weekend running from September 4th through 6th. Executive Chef Michael Fiorelli of Love & Salt in Manhattan Beach is co-hosting the Saturday night program, “Dinner with a Twist.” He joins us to preview the festivities.

The well-traveled Sameer Suri is emblematic of the new breed of young writers covering lifestyle. He’s one of the Los Angeles correspondents for InsideHook, a daily, editorial e-mail newsletter to “inspire driven men.” It covers culture, food & drink and travel. As a student in the USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism, Sameer had the unusual opportunity to spend a semester in London. We’ll chat about the newly vibrant London food scene.

Tara Gomez, the Winemaker and General Manager of Kita Wines in Santa Barbara County, is no stranger to the show. Kita is unusually owned by the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians. It’s one of the few Indian-owned wineries that is actually managed by the Tribe. Tara is a Chumash Tribe member trained in enology. At the recent Los Angeles International Wine Competition, Kita Wines were awarded 2 Gold Medals, 3 Silver Medals, and 2 Bronze medals. Pretty impressive for a tiny boutique winery with an annual case production of 2,000.

Tom Gordon’s and Cris Petersen’s The Pepper Project promotes U.S. importation of fine Kampot pepper as a way to support Cambodians and the country’s economy. Its great pepper that was used in the finest French restaurants during the colonial era. They have partnered with Expedia to organize and host The Pepper Project’s Insider’s Tour of Cambodia in late February of 2016. We’ll get the inside information from Tom Gordon.

Russ Parsons is a veteran food writer and columnist for The Los Angeles Times as well as an award-winning cookbook author. He was previously the Food Section Editor for a number of years. As part of the upcoming Los Angeles Times’ The Taste, Russ is co-hosting the Saturday morning, September 5th program, “Field to Fork.” Russ Parsons is our guest to provide the details.

It’s New Mexico Hatch Chile roasting season. No independent restaurant in California celebrates this with the depth of Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill and Tacqueria in Pico Rivera. He hosts a Hatch Chile cooking demo with a full menu, a Saturday chile roasting and even a special Hatch Chile Brunch on September 12th. Chef Marco joins us with all the flavorful 411.

Fresh crab is a delicacy but it takes a bit of work and knowledge to extract the meat from the crab’s shell and claws. There are over 4,000 varieties. We’ll talk all things crab (including Dungeness, Blue and Stone crabs) with our knowledgeable Co-host, Chef Andrew Gruel.

Chef Andrew’s new FYI network restaurant makeover series, “Say It To My Face,” returns to the airwaves this afternoon (Saturday night) for the continuation of Season 1. Check your local listings for the time.

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

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Show 136, August 29, 2015: Owner / Chef Marco Zapien, Zapien’s Salsa Grill

Marco Zapien of Zapiens Salsa Grill and TaqueriaIt’s New Mexico Hatch Chile roasting season. No independent restaurant in California celebrates this with the depth and flair of Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill and Tacqueria in Pico Rivera. He hosts a Hatch Chile cooking demo with a full menu, a chile roasting and even a special Hatch Chile Brunch on September 12th.

Join Chef Marco Zapien at Zapien’s Salsa Grill and Tacqueria in Pico Rivera for a summer celebration of the arrival of New Mexico Hatch Chiles. It’s Wednesday, September 9th from 6 to 8:00 p.m. The interactive demonstration and class will include a full menu from Soup to Dessert and all of the Hatch Chile-inspired recipes. It’s Hatch Chile Pozole Verde, Hatch Chile Cilantro Caesar Salad, Hatch Chile Braised Short Ribs, Hatch Meatloaf, Hatch Chile Green Rice, Hatch Chile Buttermilk Biscuits and Hatch Chile Tres Leches Bread Pudding with raspberry whipped cream.

Saturday, September 12th from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. is the New Mexico Hatch Chile Roasting at Zapien’s plus the special Hatch Chile Brunch with action stations. Look for the Roasted Hatch Chile Picadillo.

Chef Marco joins us with all the flavorful 411.

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August 29: Andrew Gruel, Michael Fiorelli, Sameer Suri, Kita Wines, Pepper Project, Russ Parsons, Zapien’s Salsa Grill

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel & Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Executive Chef & Partner Michael Fiorelli, Love & Salt
Segment Three: Sameer Suri, Los Angeles Correspondent, InsideHook
Segment Four: Tara Gomez, GM & Winemaker, Kita Wines
Segment Five: Tom Gordon, The Pepper Project
Segment Six: Russ Parsons, Los Angeles Times, The Taste
Segment Seven: Owner / Chef Marco Zapien, Zapien’s Salsa Grill
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish

Andrew Gruel and Anthony Dispensa of Slapfish Restaurants and FYI Say It To My FaceExecutive Chef Andrew Gruel of the rapidly growing Slapfish empire with restaurants in Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, LAX, and now, Irvine at UCI, is back as today’s special Guest Host.

Next a tempting preview of Saturday’s ample show and not, with apologies, for dieters. With any luck we will always leave you hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a good thing…

The Los Angeles Times’The Taste” food festival returns to Paramount Pictures Studios in Hollywood on Labor Day Weekend running from September 4th through 6th. Executive Chef Michael Fiorelli of Love & Salt in Manhattan Beach is co-hosting the Saturday night program, “Dinner with a Twist.” He joins us to preview the festivities.

The well-traveled Sameer Suri is emblematic of the new breed of young writers covering lifestyle. He’s one of the Los Angeles correspondents for InsideHook, a daily, editorial e-mail newsletter to “inspire driven men.” It covers culture, food & drink and travel. As a student in the USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism, Sameer had the unusual opportunity to spend a semester in London. We’ll chat about the newly vibrant London food scene.

Tara Gomez, the Winemaker and General Manager of Kita Wines in Santa Barbara County, is no stranger to the show. Kita is unusually owned by the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians. It’s one of the few Indian-owned wineries that is actually managed by the Tribe. Tara is a Chumash Tribe member trained in enology. At the recent Los Angeles International Wine Competition, Kita Wines were awarded 2 Gold Medals, 3 Silver Medals, and 2 Bronze medals. Pretty impressive for a tiny boutique winery with an annual case production of 2,000.

Tom Gordon’s and Cris Petersen’s The Pepper Project promotes U.S. importation of fine Kampot pepper as a way to support Cambodians and the country’s economy. Its great pepper that was used in the finest French restaurants during the colonial era. They have partnered with Expedia to organize and host The Pepper Project’s Insider’s Tour of Cambodia in late February of 2016. We’ll get the inside information from Tom Gordon.

Russ Parsons is a veteran food writer and columnist for The Los Angeles Times as well as an award-winning cookbook author. He was previously the Food Section Editor for a number of years. As part of the upcoming Los Angeles Times’ The Taste, Russ is co-hosting the Saturday morning, September 5th program, “Field to Fork.” Russ Parsons is our guest to provide the details.

It’s New Mexico Hatch Chile roasting season. No independent restaurant in California celebrates this with the depth of Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill and Tacqueria in Pico Rivera. He hosts a Hatch Chile cooking demo with a full menu, a Saturday chile roasting and even a special Hatch Chile Brunch on September 12th. Chef Marco joins us with all the flavorful 411.

Fresh crab is a delicacy but it takes a bit of work and knowledge to extract the meat from the crab’s shell and claws. There are over 4,000 varieties. We’ll talk all things crab (including Dungeness, Blue and Stone crabs) with our knowledgeable Co-host, Chef Andrew Gruel.

Chef Andrew’s new FYI network restaurant makeover series, Say It To My Face,” returns to the airwaves this afternoon (Saturday, Aug. 29th ) for the continuation of Season 1. Check your local listings for the time.

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

Michael FiorelliThe Los Angeles Times’The Taste” food festival returns to Paramount Pictures Studios in Hollywood on Labor Day Weekend running from September 4th through 6th. Executive Chef Michael Fiorelli of Love & Salt in Manhattan Beach is co-hosting the Saturday night program, “Dinner with a Twist.”

Chef Fiorelli is on the L.A. Times Culinary Stage that night from 9 to 9:30 p.m. “Cooking and mixology demonstration presented by Michael Fiorelli and Vincenzo Marianella (Copa d’Oro / The Independence / Love & Salt.)”

“Discover plates and pours from L.A.’s dining scene. – What’s more L.A. than a swanky cocktail party on a Hollywood backlot ? That’s exactly what this Saturday evening event is. You’ll enjoy drinks that have brought Southern California’s cutting –edge cocktail culture into a golden age and unique dishes from the city’s hottest chefs.”

Chef Michael joins us to preview the festivities.

Sameer SuriThe well-traveled Sameer Suri, raised in Los Angeles, is emblematic of the new breed of young writers covering lifestyle. He’s one of the Los Angeles correspondents for InsideHook, a daily, editorial e-mail newsletter to “inspire driven men.” It covers culture, food & drink and travel.

In true Hollywood style Sameer is also a stand-up comedian. He’s performed at a variety of clubs around town, including the Laugh Factory and Flappers Burbank.

As a student in the USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism, Sameer had the unusual opportunity to spend a semester in London.

We’ll chat about the newly vibrant London food scene.

Tara GomezTara Gomez, the Winemaker and General Manager of Kita Wines in Santa Barbara County, is no stranger to the show. Kita, a small premium winery located in the heart of the Santa Ynez Valley within the Santa Barbara County AVA, is unusually owned by the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians. It’s one of the few Indian-owned wineries that is actually managed by the owning Tribe. Tara is a Chumash Tribe member trained in enology at Cal State Fresno.

In 2010, The Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians purchased Camp 4 Vineyard and Tara’s dream of giving back to her tribe became true when she was hired as Winemaker. Tara’s understanding of the site, soils and grapes allow her to shepherd the grapes with minimal input into elegant, balanced wines with lower alcohol content.

The word “Kita” means “Our Valley Oak” in the Santa Ynez Chumash native language of Samala.

At the recent Los Angeles International Wine Competition, Kita Wines were awarded 2 Gold Medals, 3 Silver Medals, and 2 Bronze medals. Pretty impressive for a tiny boutique winery with an annual case production of 2,500.

The Pepper ProjectTom Gordon’s and Cris Petersen’s The Pepper Project promotes U.S. importation of fine Kampot pepper as a way to support Cambodians and the country’s economy. It’s a great pepper that was used in the finest French restaurants during the colonial era.

They have partnered with Expedia to organize and host The Pepper Project’s Insider’s Tour of Cambodia in late February of 2016. It is 13 days of high adventure from insiders who really know the relatively unexplored territory.

Highlights include a chef’s dinner at Charcoal restaurant in Siem Reap where the cocktails are mixed tableside as well as many of the specialty dishes prepared & served at the table. Also included is a carefully curated tasting tour of the best of local street food transported in tuk tucks.

We’ll get the inside information from Tom Gordon.

Russ Parsons of the Los Angeles TimesRuss Parsons is a veteran food writer and columnist for The Los Angeles Times as well as an award-winning cookbook author. He was previously the Food Section Editor for a number of years. As part of the upcoming Los Angeles Times The Taste, Russ is co-hosting the Saturday morning, September 5th program, “Field to Fork.”

“California’s bounty of fresh produce inspires this homage to seasonal cooking, punctuated with engaging demos from Jessica Koslow (Sqirl), James Beard Outstanding Pastry Chef Sherry Yard (Helms Bakery), and Niki Nakayama (n/naka). In addition to offering a glimpse into these locally-inspired perspectives, the event will feature a roundtable moderated by Parsons that examines the rise of the “root-to-stem” philosophy with Gary Menes (Le Comptoir), Bruce Kalman (Union), and Ari Taylor (Alma).”

Russ Parsons is our guest to provide the details.

Marco Zapien of Zapiens Salsa Grill and TaqueriaIt’s New Mexico Hatch Chile roasting season. No independent restaurant in California celebrates this with the depth and flair of Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill and Tacqueria in Pico Rivera. He hosts a Hatch Chile cooking demo with a full menu, a chile roasting and even a special Hatch Chile Brunch on September 12th.

Join Chef Marco Zapien at Zapien’s Salsa Grill and Tacqueria in Pico Rivera for a summer celebration of the arrival of New Mexico Hatch Chiles. It’s Wednesday, September 9th from 6 to 8:00 p.m. The interactive demonstration and class will include a full menu from Soup to Dessert and all of the Hatch Chile-inspired recipes. It’s Hatch Chile Pozole Verde, Hatch Chile Cilantro Caesar Salad, Hatch Chile Braised Short Ribs, Hatch Meatloaf, Hatch Chile Green Rice, Hatch Chile Buttermilk Biscuits and Hatch Chile Tres Leches Bread Pudding with raspberry whipped cream.

Saturday, September 12th from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. is the New Mexico Hatch Chile Roasting at Zapien’s plus the special Hatch Chile Brunch with action stations.

Chef Marco joins us with all the flavorful 411.

Andrew GruelFresh crab is a delicacy for seafood aficionados but it takes a bit of work and knowledge to extract the sweet, succulent meat from the crab’s shell and claws. There are over 4,000 varieties. Always 10 legs and pinchers in front.

We’ll talk all things crab (including Dungeness, Blue and Stone crabs for starters) with our especially knowledgeable Co-host, Chef Andrew Gruel.

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel & Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Executive Chef & Partner Michael Fiorelli, Love & Salt
Segment Three: Sameer Suri, Los Angeles Correspondent, InsideHook
Segment Four: Tara Gomez, GM & Winemaker, Kita Wines
Segment Five: Tom Gordon, The Pepper Project
Segment Six: Russ Parsons, Los Angeles Times, The Taste
Segment Seven: Owner / Chef Marco Zapien, Zapien’s Salsa Grill
Segment Eight: Chef Andrew Gruel, Slapfish

Show 134, August 8, 2015: Show Preview with Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel & Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

Andrew GruelExecutive Chef Andrew Gruel of the rapidly growing Slapfish empire with restaurants in Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, LAX, and now, Irvine at UCI, is back as today’s special Guest Host.

Next a mouthwatering preview of Saturday’s fully overloaded show. With any luck we will always leave you hungry and thirsty. In our case that’s probably a good thing…

What’s new in ice cream ? (Sorry we just missed National Ice Cream Month…) Consider Manila Sky Ice Cream. This line of gourmet, sweet indulgences is a fusion of authentic Filipino inspired tropical ingredients combined with creamery fresh California milk. The flavors are bold. What started as a hobby for founder Anthony Reyes and his wife has grown (since 2012) into a viable business. What’s not to love about creamy ice cream? We’ll chill with Co-founder Anthony Reyes.

The raw oyster bar seems to be popping up as an attraction at a lot of restaurants these days including ones that offer very little seafood. It’s a trend…Satarist Jonathan Swift once wrote, “He was a bold man that first ate an oyster.” There are three primary species of oysters that are commercially harvested domestically. Our own resident seafood expert, Chef Andrew Gruel, will provide some needed 411 on what every listener should know about these plump bivalves that now are seemingly on restaurant menus everywhere.

Hatch Chile season is upon us! Fresh Hatch Chiles, grown only in the Mesilla Valley of New Mexico, are available for just a few short weeks each year in August and September. Many connoisseurs consider them the world’s tastiest chiles.Melissa’s World Variety Produce has led the charge in popularizing the coveted Hatch Chiles and developing many great, easy-to-prepare recipes using them. Their Corporate Chef, Ida Rodriguez, joins us to discuss the joys of Hatch Chile season.

At the age of 15, Chef Brendan Collins quit secondary school to follow his dream and enroll in culinary school, where is was classically trained in French technique. By 17, the talented Nottingham native had his first job at London’s La Gavroche, a Michelin two-star restaurant. Today Collins is the Executive Chef and Proprietor of both Birch in Hollywood as well as the Executive Chef of The Corner Door in Culver City.

Sadly the 125 Anniversary run of the Orange County Fair (“One Big Party” concludes on Sunday, August 16th. The Concessionaire’s Cup Awards for OC Fair’s Finest Foods have been presented. We’ll talk with one of the Trophy Winners, Lori Southerland of Grant’s Tasti Burgers and Tasti Chips.

Our spirited friends at The Museum of The American Cocktail (MOTAC) are at it again. Their next Los Angeles presentation isSin and the Silver Screen: The Birth of Spirited Hollywood.” The date is Monday evening, August 17th from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at Hollywood’s preeminent English pub, The Pikey Café & Bar. Lesley Jacobs Solmonson & David Solmonson, the authors of The 12 Bottle Bar and publishers of 12bottlebar.com are the always entertaining presenters.

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

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Show 134, August 8, 2015: Corporate Chef Ida Rodriguez, Melissa’s, Hatch Chile Season

Chef Ida Rodriquez of Melissas World Variety Produce

Hatch Chile season is upon us! Fresh Hatch Chiles, grown only in the Mesilla Valley of New Mexico, are available for just a few short weeks each year in August and September. Many connoisseurs consider them the world’s tastiest chiles.

Once roasted, Hatch Chiles are easy to peel and seed. Roasting heightens the robust earthy flavor of the chiles and the texture of the thick walls of the chile pod becomes lusciously rich. These unique qualities, and the pepper’s variable heat (unlike other chile peppers, Hatch Chiles come in varieties that cover the full spectrum of heat levels) have earned Hatch Chiles great popularity far beyond the local community of Hatch, New Mexico.

Melissa’s World Variety Produce has led the charge in popularizing the coveted Hatch Chiles and developing many great recipes using them. From now through mid-September Melissa’s will be sponsoring weekend Hatch Chile Roasting parties at area supermarkets including at select Bristol Farms and Gelson’s. Check the Melissa’s website for locations, dates and times.

Hatch Chiles are an inspired addition to libations. The Melissa’s Hatch Chile Cookbook has a recipe for Hatch Chile-Infused Tequila which is then used in a signature Spicy Margarita. Also there is a recipe for Spicy Ice Cubes and Ginger Ale. As the ice cubes melt, the drinks will become spicier.

There are also fun Hatch Chile desserts in the cookbook. Chef Andrew Gruel is a fan of the Hatch Chile S’mores. It’s a novel twist on the classic with a little punch.

Melissa’s Corporate Chef, Ida Rodriguez, joins us to highlight the joys of Hatch Chile season.

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