Show 437, August 7, 2021: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

We’re previewing the show with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris.

Birkholm’s Bakery & Café in Solvang was founded by Carl “Cookie” Sr. and Charlotte Birkholm in 1951.  2021 celebrates the 70th Anniversary of this local institution. The Birkholms have been baking as a family and the recipes and techniques passed from generation to generation.  In 1980, Carl Jr. and Elizabeth Birkholm stepped in to carry on the tradition of baking in Solvang.  Carl continues to use the original Danish recipes that “Cookie” brought over from Denmark. In 2012, son Carl “Thomas” returned to Birkholm’s and the Santa Ynez Valley with the desire to learn and continue the business like his Grandfather “FarFar” and Father had done before him.  Thomas is the 3rd generation of Birkholm bakers in Solvang and with the Family he is carrying forward the proud Family tradition. 3rd generation baker Thomas Birkholm joins us rolling pin in hand.

The well-traveled Hany Ali is the executive chef of Europa Village Wineries and Resort in the heart of the Temecula Valley wine country. His current primary area of responsibility (as the Resort expands with Italian and French winery estates in development) is overseeing the cuisine at Bolero Restaurante & Cantina at Bolero at Europa Village as well as all the on-site catering and special events. Bolero Restaurante serves Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner daily as well as Sunday Brunch. “Bolero Restaurante takes the guest on a culinary journey throughout the country of Spain—from the humble farm-to-table cuisines of Asturia, to the majesty of modern interpretations coming from San Sebastian or Barcelona. The menus celebrate the centuries-old tradition of dining and drinking together in Tapas style. Whether it is seafood, steak, roasted vegetables, olives, or the finest cheeses and charcuteries in Europe, the meal is shared by all.” We’ll meet Chef Hany Ali.

“As a celebration of the short Hatch Chile season, The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar is hosting an afternoon of ‘Roasting & Toasting’ on Saturday, August 14 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. at its original Tustin locationExecutive Chef Yvon Goetz and Chef de Cuisine James Chavez will be live roasting Melissa’s Hatch Chile Peppers and serving them up in a variety of unique dishes. Event attendees will be able to enjoy the Hatch Chile-focused dishes, along with beer, tequila and live music on The Winery’s recently expanded patio, situated in the heart of The District in Tustin.” Chef Yvon is our guest with Hatch Peppers in hand.

Robert Schueller of Melissa’s (our resident Prince of Produce) presented two talks on the Culinary Stage in the OC Pavilion on Opening Day at the 2021 OC Fair. On the menu were California Specialty Fruit Crops and California Specialty Vegetable Crops. When Robert was with us last month we ran out of time before he could highlight California Vegetable Specialty Crops. We’ll pick up the conversation with that. Think rhubarb, heirloom tomatoes, artichokes, and Melissa’s Steamed Line of ready to enjoy beets, chickpeas and lentils. Also, it’s now the short, but always anticipated, fresh Hatch Chile Pepper season. Robert will talk about convenient area chile roastings and the publication of Melissa’s all-new Hatch Pepper Cookbook with over 100 inspiring (and home-kitchen tested) recipes.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where Chef Andrew responds to listeners thoughtful inquiries. Chef Andrew is continually updating us on the real impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the continued survival of restaurants during the initial, highly fluid stages of the hoped-for recovery. Genuine concerns remain… “Regenerative agriculture” is very much in the news these days. The practice can actually help reduce the carbon footprint and replenish depleted soil as a growing medium which is a big positive. What’s it all about? We’ll “Ask the Chef.”

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness on this week’s not-to-miss show!

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