Show 455, December 11, 2021: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

TERRACE by Mix Mix at South Coast Plaza focuses on well-priced, market-driven small plates. The cuisine showcases Chef Ross Pangilinan’s (Mix Mix Kitchen Bar, ReMix Kitchen Bar) eclectic style, which is influenced by French, Italian, and modern Filipino flavors, as well as his refined technique. An approachable wine list offers varietals by the glass and bottle as well as rotating craft beers.”

Chef Ross takes a break from his busy Holiday kitchens and is our guest.

Amorcito SoCal Taqueria is a quick service offshoot of Chef Thomas Ortega’s multi-awarded Amor y Tacos in Cerritos, CA, that’s bringing its own style of a Modern Taqueria while being true to the familiar Mexican flavors of Southern California. The original location is at the Hangar at the Long Beach Exchange and the newly launched second location is in Costa Mesa. Amorcito SoCal Taqueria has quickly stood out on its own bringing rave reviews from multiple restaurant critics including Brad A. Johnson of the Orange County Register and Patricia Escarcega of the Los Angeles Times.” Chef Thomas Ortega joins us with a stack of warm corn tortillas in hand.

“Travel to Krokos-Kozanis, Greece to immerse yourself in cooking with saffron and Greece’s vibrant saffron harvest through the pages of this gorgeous, 88-page, full-color travel-cookbooklet (Saffron) collaboration by Photographer, Emily Brooke Sandor, and Greek-American Chef, Christina Xenos. Saffron contains a brief history of saffron, tips on best uses and storage of the spice, 12 lively saffron-forward recipes to inspire the beginner and advanced home cook, and a photography story of the annual saffron harvest in Krokos, one of forty small villages in the town of Kozani, Western Macedonia, Greece.” Emily Brooke Sandor and Chef Christina Xenos are our guests with a proper cup of saffron tea in hand.

Bracken’s Kitchen is a 501(c)(3) organization based in Garden Grove, Orange County California.  Founded in 2013 their mission is simple: Through food rescue, culinary training and their community feeding program Bracken’s Kitchen is committed to rescuing, re-purposing and restoring both food and lives.”“With the help of Bracken’s Kitchen’s nonprofit charity partners, business and professional supporters, volunteers, donors and employees they are committed to providing over 2 million tasty and nutritious meals in 2021.” Founder & Culinary Director Chef Bill Bracken takes a break from his busy Garden Grove kitchens and joins us.

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. This week’s (Holiday Cooking) question is from Marcella of Santa Monica. She is the lucky winner of the prize package of premium USDA Prime Steaks from West Coast Prime Meats.

Play

Show 455, December 11, 2021: Chef Bill Bracken, Founder & Culinary Director Bracken’s Kitchen, Garden Grove

Bill Bracken of Brackens Kitchen

Bracken’s Kitchen is a 501(c)(3) organization based in Orange County California. Founded in 2013 their mission is simple: Through food rescue, culinary training and their community feeding program Bracken’s Kitchen is committed to rescuing, re-purposing and restoring both food and lives.”

“With the help of Bracken’s Kitchen’s nonprofit charity partners, business and professional supporters, volunteers, donors and employees they are committed to providing over 2 million tasty and nutritious meals in 2021.”

“In its simplest form, Bracken’s Kitchen delivers hot and nutritious meals in a fun, and dignified manner. The program strives to serve the highest quality and most nutritious meals that many of their clients will get all week.”

“Bracken has leveraged his relationships in the business to build a model that can provide a complete, well-balanced dinner spending less than $0.35 for the food to prepare it. A typical meal may be Roasted Pork Loin with Charred Tomatoes and Bell Peppers, Brown Rice Pilaf, Sautéed Seasonal Vegetables, Southwestern Caesar Salad and Fresh Fruit.”

Founder & Culinary Director Chef Bill Bracken takes a break from his busy Garden Grove kitchens and joins us.

Play

December 11: Ross Pangilinan, Amorcito SoCal Taqueria, Christina Xenos and Emily Brooke Sandor, Bracken’s Kitchen

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef / Proprietor Ross Pangilinan, Terrace by Mix Mix, South Coast Plaza Part One
Segment Three: Chef / Proprietor Ross Pangilinan, Terrace by Mix Mix, South Coast Plaza Part Two
Segment Four: Chef Thomas Ortega, Amorcito SoCal Taqueria, Long Beach & Costa Mesa Part One
Segment Five: Chef Thomas Ortega, Amorcito SoCal Taqueria, Long Beach & Costa Mesa Part Two
Segment Six: Saffron with Authors Emily Brooke Sandor and Chef Christina Xenos
Segment Seven: Chef Bill Bracken, Founder & Culinary Director Bracken’s Kitchen, Garden Grove
Segment Eight: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel with “Ask the Chef”

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

TERRACE by Mix Mix at South Coast Plaza focuses on well-priced, market-driven small plates. The cuisine showcases Chef Ross Pangilinan’s (Mix Mix Kitchen Bar, ReMix Kitchen Bar) eclectic style, which is influenced by French, Italian, and modern Filipino flavors, as well as his refined technique. An approachable wine list offers varietals by the glass and bottle as well as rotating craft beers.

Chef Ross takes a break from his busy Holiday kitchens and is our guest.

“Amorcito SoCal Taqueria is a quick service offshoot of Chef Thomas Ortega’s multi-awarded Amor y Tacos in Cerritos, CA, that’s bringing its own style of a Modern Taqueria while being true to the familiar Mexican flavors of Southern California. The original location is at the Hangar at the Long Beach Exchange. Amorcito SoCal Taqueria has quickly stood out on its own bringing rave reviews from multiple restaurant critics including Brad A. Johnson of the Orange County Register and Patricia Escarcega of the Los Angeles Times.” Chef Thomas Ortega joins us with a stack of warm corn tortillas in hand.

“Travel to Krokos-Kozanis, Greece to immerse yourself in cooking with saffron and Greece’s vibrant saffron harvest through the pages of this gorgeous, 88-page, full-color travel-cookbooklet (Saffron) collaboration by Photographer, Emily Brooke Sandor, and Greek-American Chef, Christina Xenos. Saffron contains a brief history of saffron, tips on best uses and storage of the spice, 12 lively saffron-forward recipes to inspire the beginner and advanced home cook, and a photography story of the annual saffron harvest in Krokos, one of forty small villages in the town of Kozani, Western Macedonia, Greece.” Emily Brooke Sandor and Chef Christina Xenos are our guests with a proper cup of saffron tea in hand.

Bracken’s Kitchen is a 501(c)(3) organization based in Garden Grove, Orange County California. Founded in 2013 their mission is simple: Through food rescue, culinary training and their community feeding program Bracken’s Kitchen is committed to rescuing, re-purposing and restoring both food and lives.”“With the help of Bracken’s Kitchen’s nonprofit charity partners, business and professional supporters, volunteers, donors and employees they are committed to providing over 2 million tasty and nutritious meals in 2021.” Founder & Culinary Director Chef Bill Bracken takes a break from his busy Garden Grove kitchens and joins us.

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. This week’s question is from Marcella of Santa Monica. She is the lucky winner of the prize package of premium USDA Prime Steaks from West Coast Prime Meats.

The Winning (multi-part) Holiday Cooking Question:

“I’m going to make a prime rib for Christmas dinner and I’m undecided on how to cook it. Looking into different cooking methods, rubs, etc. I came across this one – Reverse Sear.

“What is a reverse sear? Don’t know much about it. When is it appropriate to use a reverse sear and would it apply to steaks, roasts, pork, chicken? Or ?”

“Would I want to reverse sear my prime rib? What’s the best way to cook a prime rib roast? We like it rare with lots of au jus and all the sides!”

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

Ross Pangilinan of Mix Mix Kitchen Bar

TERRACE by Mix Mix at South Coast Plaza focuses on well-priced, market-driven small plates. The cuisine showcases Chef Ross Pangilinan’s (Mix Mix Kitchen Bar, ReMix Kitchen Bar) eclectic style, which is influenced by French, Italian, and modern Filipino flavors, as well as his refined technique. An approachable wine list offers varietals by the glass and bottle as well as rotating craft beers.”

“True to its name, the restaurant showcases full-service dining for Lunch, Dinner and Weekend Brunch in a beautifully designed covered terrace located at the west end of the Bridge of Gardens. Features include a small wine bar, an open kitchen and a chef’s table counter offering an omakase-style tasting menu experience.”

A highlight at Terrace by Mix Mix is the three-course Express Lunch menu changing frequently. A sample entrée is Salmon Paella with sofrito, market vegetables, parmesan and gremolata.

“Chef Ross’ passion for cuisine started at a young age and he has since crafted it with a remarkable background of culinary experience including studying at Le Cordon Bleu, working at the two-Michelin-starred Les Trois Marche in France, the Patina Restaurant Group‘s Pinot Provence and Patina, where they earned a Michelin star in 2007, opening Sinatra within Encore at the Wynn in Las Vegas, and as executive chef of Leatherby’s Cafe Rouge at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts. Pangilinan opened Mix Mix Kitchen Bar in Downtown Santa Ana to rave reviews in 2016 and was named Restaurant of the Year by Orange Coast Magazine and Best New Restaurant by the Golden Foodie Awards.”

Chef Ross takes a break from his busy Holiday kitchens and joins us.

Chef Thomas Ortega

Amorcito SoCal Taqueria is a quick service off shoot of Chef Thomas Ortega’s multi awarded Amor y Tacos in Cerritos, CA, that’s bringing its own style of a Modern Taqueria while being true to the familiar Mexican flavors of Southern California. The original location is at the Hangar at the Long Beach Exchange. Amorcito SoCal Taqueria has quickly stood out on its own bringing rave reviews from multiple restaurant critics including Brad A. Johnson of the Orange County Register and Patricia Escarcega of the Los Angeles Times.” “

“At Amorcito SoCal Taqueria the principals come from a Chef- driven background and pride themselves on sourcing incredible ingredients from farmers, ranchers, bakers and food purveyors who all share their core values of helping Amorcito deliver the freshest, best tasting menu Amorcito SoCal Taqueria can offer.”

A year-round specialty is the juicy Hatch Burger. It’s an Angus beef patty with garlic aioli, Hatch chile, mustard onions, pickles, American cheese and served on a soft potato bun.

Chef Thomas Ortega joins us with a stack of warm corn tortillas in hand.

Christina Xenos of My Sweet Greek Catering

Travel to Krokos-Kozanis, Greece to immerse yourself in cooking with saffron and Greece’s vibrant saffron harvest through the pages of this gorgeous, 88-page, full-color travel-cookbooklet (Saffron) collaboration by Photographer, Emily Brooke Sandor, and Greek-American Chef, Christina Xenos. Saffron contains a brief history of saffron, tips on best uses and storage of the spice, 12 lively saffron-forward recipes to inspire the beginner and advanced home cook, and a photography story of the annual saffron harvest in Krokos, one of forty small villages in the town of Kozani, Western Macedonia, Greece.

“The goals of Saffron (the cookbook) are to demystify what saffron is and also to empower readers to confidently incorporate saffron into their dishes more frequently. The recipes in this cookbooklet are wonderful on their own but they also serve to familiarize the reader with flavors that pair well with saffron.”

Emily Brooke Sandor and Chef Christina Xenos join us with a cup of saffron tea in hand.

Bill Bracken of Brackens Kitchen

Bracken’s Kitchen is a 501(c)(3) organization based in Orange County California. Founded in 2013 their mission is simple: Through food rescue, culinary training and their community feeding program Bracken’s Kitchen is committed to rescuing, re-purposing and restoring both food and lives.”

“With the help of Bracken’s Kitchen’s nonprofit charity partners, business and professional supporters, volunteers, donors and employees they are committed to providing over 2 million tasty and nutritious meals in 2021.”

“In its simplest form, Bracken’s Kitchen delivers hot and nutritious meals in a fun, and dignified manner. The program strives to serve the highest quality and most nutritious meals that many of their clients will get all week.”

“Bracken has leveraged his relationships in the business to build a model that can provide a complete, well-balanced dinner spending less than $0.35 for the food to prepare it. A typical meal may be Roasted Pork Loin with Charred Tomatoes and Bell Peppers, Brown Rice Pilaf, Sautéed Seasonal Vegetables, Southwestern Caesar Salad and Fresh Fruit.”

Founder & Culinary Director Chef Bill Bracken takes a break from his busy Garden Grove kitchens and joins us.

Andy Harris and Andrew Gruel at Cabana 14 at the Cove at Pechanga Resort and Casino

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. This week’s question is from Marcella of Santa Monica. She is the lucky winner of the prize package of premium USDA Prime Steaks from West Coast Prime Meats.

The Winning (multi-part) Holiday Cooking Question:

“I’m going to make a prime rib for Christmas dinner and I’m undecided on how to cook it. Looking into different cooking methods, rubs, etc. I came across this one – Reverse Sear.”

“What is a reverse sear? Don’t know much about it. When is it appropriate to use a reverse sear and would it apply to steaks, roasts, pork, chicken? Or ?”

“Would I want to reverse sear my prime rib? What’s the best way to cook a prime rib roast? We like it rare with lots of au jus and all the sides!”

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef / Proprietor Ross Pangilinan, Terrace by Mix Mix, South Coast Plaza Part One
Segment Three: Chef / Proprietor Ross Pangilinan, Terrace by Mix Mix, South Coast Plaza Part Two
Segment Four: Chef Thomas Ortega, Amorcito SoCal Taqueria, Long Beach & Costa Mesa Part One
Segment Five: Chef Thomas Ortega, Amorcito SoCal Taqueria, Long Beach & Costa Mesa Part Two
Segment Six: Saffron with Authors Emily Brooke Sandor and Chef Christina Xenos
Segment Seven: Chef Bill Bracken, Founder & Culinary Director Bracken’s Kitchen, Garden Grove
Segment Eight: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel with “Ask the Chef”

Show 433, July 10, 2021: Chef Bill Bracken, Bracken’s Kitchen, The Hungry Games 4.0 Preview Part One

Bill Bracken of Brackens Kitchen

“For the fourth year, Bracken’s Kitchen is hosting its signature culinary event benefiting the less fortunate and food insecure in Southern California. This year’s edition, THE HUNGRY GAMES 4.0 will feature talented, local chefs creating their trademark dishes and competing in the organization’s very own 9,000 square foot kitchen in Garden Grove on Thursday, September 9, 2021, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.”

“All who attend are encouraged to come HUNGRY as guests will enjoy selections of small bites, appetizers, snacks, sweets, beer, and wine, while experiencing the entire Bracken’s Kitchen facility including three commercial kitchens and a newly renovated outdoor space. Guests will have the opportunity to enjoy the culinary competition, participate in silent and live auctions, and learn more about the great work to which Bracken’s Kitchen is devoted.”

“Bracken’s Kitchen welcomes a variety of Southern California’s top chefs including our own Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish, Chef Rich Mead at Farmhouse at Roger’s Gardens, Chef Peter Petro of Bosscat Kitchen + Libations, Chef Greg Daniels of Harley Laguna Beach, Chefs Michael & David Rossi (ex-The Ranch Restaurant,) Chef Tarit Tanjasiri of Crema Café and and Master Baker Dean Kim of OC Baking Co., to name just a few.”

“This past year has seen an exponential increase in food insecurity and need here and in Southern California and across the nation. Over the past several months we’ve seen the attention on food insecurity wane and move to other hot topics,” said Bill Bracken, founder Bracken’s Kitchen. “Unfortunately, the need is still there and we are committed to help meet it. The Hungry Games 4.0 is a fun and exciting way that you can help us to meet that need. We hope you will join us for an evening of food, fun, and purpose for our friends and neighbors in need.”

Chef Bill Bracken takes a break from his busy kitchens and joins us.

Play

Show 433, July 10, 2021: Chef Bill Bracken, Bracken’s Kitchen, The Hungry Games 4.0 Preview Part Two

Bill Bracken of Brackens Kitchen

“For the fourth year, Bracken’s Kitchen is hosting its signature culinary event benefiting the less fortunate and food insecure in Southern California. This year’s edition, THE HUNGRY GAMES 4.0 will feature talented, local chefs creating their trademark dishes and competing in the organization’s very own 9,000 square foot kitchen in Garden Grove on Thursday, September 9, 2021, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.”

“All who attend are encouraged to come HUNGRY as guests will enjoy selections of small bites, appetizers, snacks, sweets, beer, and wine, while experiencing the entire Bracken’s Kitchen facility including three commercial kitchens and a newly renovated outdoor space. Guests will have the opportunity to enjoy the culinary competition, participate in silent and live auctions, and learn more about the great work to which Bracken’s Kitchen is devoted.”

“Bracken’s Kitchen welcomes a variety of Southern California’s top chefs including our own Chef Andrew Gruel of Slapfish, Chef Rich Mead at Farmhouse at Roger’s Gardens, Chef Peter Petro of Bosscat Kitchen + Libations, Chef Greg Daniels of Harley Laguna Beach, Chefs Michael & David Rossi (ex-The Ranch Restaurant,) Chef Tarit Tanjasiri of Crema Café and and Master Baker Dean Kim of OC Baking Co., to name just a few.”

“This past year has seen an exponential increase in food insecurity and need here and in Southern California and across the nation. Over the past several months we’ve seen the attention on food insecurity wane and move to other hot topics,” said Bill Bracken, founder Bracken’s Kitchen. “Unfortunately, the need is still there and we are committed to help meet it. The Hungry Games 4.0 is a fun and exciting way that you can help us to meet that need.  We hope you will join us for an evening of food, fun, and purpose for our friends and neighbors in need.” 

Chef Bill Bracken takes a break from his busy kitchens and joins us.

Play

Show 400, November 21, 2020: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

It’s about last call on Thanksgiving so reduce your stress level and please plan ahead…Thanksgiving is going to look a bit different for most of us this year. Take it in stride, adapt as best as your circumstances allow, and, with any luck, Thanksgiving 2021 will be back to the traditional celebrations! We’re previewing the show with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris.

“Next week a new edible attraction takes center stage at The Paramount (the legendary eastside Los Angeles cultural institution & history-making music venue) as Brooklyn Ave. Pizza Co.  opens its doors (Nov. 24th.) along Cesar E Chavez Avenue (historically known as Brooklyn Avenue in the early 1900s). Melding past, present, and future––both through the décor and menu––Brooklyn Ave. Pizza Co. aims to be a neighborhood spot for locals serving pizza, wings, loaded fries, beer, wine, and cocktails at the casual and colorful all-day restaurant. The concept is the brainchild of Chef–Owner Mario Christerna—a proud Boyle Heights native, community leader, and former “MasterChef Latino” judge—alongside the team behind The Paramount.” Chef Mario Christerna joins us pizza peel in hand.

Now in its fourth year, The James Beard Foundation’s Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership program (WEL) is part of the Foundation’s broader Women’s Leadership Programs presented by Audi and aims to support woman-identifying hospitality industry entrepreneurs, restaurant owners, and chefs in order to grow their careers and scale their businesses. The only California Fellow selected for 2020 is Dina Samson of Rossoblu and Superfine Pizza Co. in Downtown Los Angeles. We’ll meet her and also learn what services Rossoblu and Superfine Pizza are currently providing to their guests with the new restrictions.

“For the second straight year, Chef Founder Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen is hosting his signature holiday event benefiting the less fortunate and food insecure in Southern California. This year’s edition, “DECK THE HALLS,” will be its first virtual party featuring special guests, community partners, and Bracken’s own chefs cooking up a surprise along with pumpkin carvings as you’ve never seen before. Christmas tree decorating, silent auction items, opportunity drawings, and a gourmet meal delivered to attendees’ doors are also in store for those who join Bracken’s Kitchen virtually in Garden Grove on Thursday, December 3, 2020, at 6 p.m.We’re in the busy Holiday kitchen at Bracken’s Kitchen with Chef Bill Bracken.

“For over 36 years Clay Oven’s (Irvine) cuisine directed by Executive Chef & Proprietress Geeta Bansal has been about transforming tradition and old techniques of Indian cuisine while retaining the flavor profile to make them relevant to the present times and lifestyle. Food progresses and changes, and Clay Oven consistently strives to move Indian cuisine forward into the present and attempts to modernize their dishes while keeping the Ayurvedic principles intact. The menus are tied to the seasons and what is growing locally.” Clay Oven is currently operating for takeout, curbside, and delivery only with a change in address on the way as of December 1st. Chef Geeta Bansal is our guest.

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 regularly updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Thanksgiving is fast approaching on November 26th. In the spirit of the Holidays it’s appropriate for Chef Andrew to now share his best Thanksgiving cooking tips as he has been doing with great enthusiasm for the last three weeks. For the pre-Thanksgiving finale it’s all about suggesting some inspired sides. Stuffing (or dressing) properly prepared outside the bird gets some deserved attention, too. It seems more people will be doing Family Thanksgiving at home this year and probably with smaller groups. We’ll “Ask the Chef.”

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness (with proper Social Distancing) on this week’s not-to-miss show!

Play

Show 400, November 21, 2020: Chef Founder Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen Part One

Bill Bracken of Brackens Kitchen“For the second straight year, Chef Founder Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen is hosting its signature holiday event benefiting the less fortunate and food insecure in Southern California. This year’s edition, “DECK THE HALLS,” will be its first virtual party featuring special guests, community partners, and Bracken’s own chefs cooking up a surprise along with pumpkin carvings as you’ve never seen before. Christmas tree decorating, silent auction items, opportunity drawings, and a gourmet meal delivered to attendees’ doors are also in store for those who join Bracken’s Kitchen virtually in Garden Grove on Thursday, December 3, 2020, at 6 p.m.”

“Attendees will have the opportunity to experience the kitchen, virtually, where they’ve already prepared and made over 1.3 million meals for those suffering from food insecurity in Southern California. This year’s event is even more meaningful and important due to the pandemic that has caused unexpected job loss, and even more people to suffer from food insecurity. Everyone will have the opportunity to help Bracken’s Kitchen meet this unprecedented demand for food caused by the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in a fun and festive way.”

“With all the negative things happening all around us we are excited to welcome you “our friends” into our kitchen virtually for an evening of food, fun, and caring for those in need,” says Bill Bracken.

“All are invited to “Deck The Halls” and help Bracken’s Kitchen maintain its dramatically increased meal production at a time when so many people need help. Participants can help to keep recently laid off restaurant workers employed and production at more than 30,000 meals a week. 100% of the proceeds from the event will support the work and programs of Bracken’s Kitchen.”

Tickets are now available online

We’re in the busy Holiday kitchen at Bracken’s Kitchen with Chef Bill Bracken.

Play

Show 400, November 21, 2020: Chef Founder Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen Part Two

Bill Bracken of Brackens Kitchen“For the second straight year, Chef Founder Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen is hosting its signature holiday event benefiting the less fortunate and food insecure in Southern California. This year’s edition, “DECK THE HALLS,” will be its first virtual party featuring special guests, community partners, and Bracken’s own chefs cooking up a surprise along with pumpkin carvings as you’ve never seen before. Christmas tree decorating, silent auction items, opportunity drawings, and a gourmet meal delivered to attendees’ doors are also in store for those who join Bracken’s Kitchen virtually in Garden Grove on Thursday, December 3, 2020, at 6 p.m.”

“All are invited to “Deck The Halls” and help Bracken’s Kitchen maintain its dramatically increased meal production at a time when so many people need help. Participants can help to keep recently laid off restaurant workers employed and production at more than 30,000 meals a week. 100% of the proceeds from the event will support the work and programs of Bracken’s Kitchen.”

Bracken’s Kitchen is a 501(c)(3) organization based in Orange County California. Founded in 2013 our mission is simple: Through food recovery, culinary training, and our community feeding program we are committed to recovering, re-purposing, and restoring both food and lives. At the core of our mission is a deep commitment to our nonprofit charity partners, business and professional supporters, volunteers, donors, and employees. Our relationship with each and every one of these groups is as important to us as those we feed.”

Tickets are now available online

We’re back in the busy Holiday kitchen at Bracken’s Kitchen for a second helping with Chef Bill Bracken.

Play

November 21: Brooklyn Avenue Pizza Co., Dina Samson, Bracken’s Kitchen, Clay Oven Irvine

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef Mario Christerna, Brooklyn Ave. Pizza Co. and The Paramount, Boyle Heights, Los Angeles Part One
Segment Three: Chef Mario Christerna, Brooklyn Ave. Pizza Co. and The Paramount, Boyle Heights, Los Angeles Part Two
Segment Four: Dina Samson of Rossoblu and Superfine Pizza Co. 2020 Fellow of Women’s Entrepreneurship Leadership Program
Segment Five: Chef Founder Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen Part One
Segment Six: Chef Founder Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen Part Two
Segment Seven: Chef & Proprietress Geeta Bansal, Clay Oven, Irvine
Segment Eight: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group with “Ask the Chef”

It’s about last call on Thanksgiving so reduce your stress level and please plan ahead…We’re previewing the show with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris.

“Next week a new edible attraction takes center stage at The Paramount (the legendary eastside Los Angeles cultural institution & history-making music venue) as Brooklyn Ave. Pizza Co. opens its doors along Cesar E Chavez Avenue (historically known as Brooklyn Avenue in the early 1900s). Melding past, present, and future––both through the décor and menu––Brooklyn Ave. Pizza Co. aims to be a neighborhood spot for locals serving pizza, wings, loaded fries, beer, wine, and cocktails at the casual and colorful all-day restaurant. The concept is the brainchild of Chef–Owner Mario Christerna—a proud Boyle Heights native, community leader, and former “MasterChef Latino” judge—alongside the team behind The Paramount.” Chef Mario Christerna joins us pizza peel in hand.

Now in its fourth year, The James Beard Foundation’s Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership Program (WEL) is part of the Foundation’s broader Women’s Leadership Programs presented by Audi and aims to support woman-identifying hospitality industry entrepreneurs, restaurant owners, and chefs in order to grow their careers and scale their businesses. The only California Fellow selected for 2020 is Dina Samson of Rossoblu and Superfine Pizza Co. in Downtown Los Angeles. We’ll meet her and also learn what services Rossoblu and Superfine Pizza are currently providing to their guests with the new restrictions.

“For the second straight year, Chef Founder Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen is hosting its signature holiday event benefiting the less fortunate and food insecure in Southern California. This year’s edition, “DECK THE HALLS,” will be its first virtual party featuring special guests, community partners, and Bracken’s own chefs cooking up a surprise along with pumpkin carvings as you’ve never seen before. Christmas tree decorating, silent auction items, opportunity drawings, and a gourmet meal delivered to attendees’ doors are also in store for those who join Bracken’s Kitchen virtually in Garden Grove on Thursday, December 3, 2020, at 6 p.m.” We’re in the busy Holiday kitchen at Bracken’s Kitchen with Chef Bill Bracken.

“For over 36 years Clay Oven’s (Irvine) cuisine directed by Executive Chef & Proprietress Geeta Bansal has been about transforming tradition and old techniques of Indian cuisine while retaining the flavor profile to make them relevant to the present times and lifestyle. Food progresses and changes, and Clay Oven consistently strives to move Indian cuisine forward into the present and attempts to modernize their dishes while keeping the Ayurvedic principles intact. The menus are tied to the seasons and what is growing locally.” Clay Oven is currently operating for takeout, curbside, and delivery only with a change in address on the way as of December 1st. Chef Geeta Bansal is our guest.

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 regularly updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. Thanksgiving is fast approaching on November 26th. In the spirit of the Holidays it’s appropriate for Chef Andrew to now share his best Thanksgiving cooking tips as he has been doing with great enthusiasm for the last three weeks. For the pre-Thanksgiving finale it’s all about suggesting some inspired sides. It seems more people will be doing Family Thanksgiving at home this year and probably with smaller groups. We’ll “Ask the Chef.”

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness (with proper Social Distancing) on this week’s not-to-miss show!

Mario Christerna of Brooklyn Avenue Pizza Company“Next week a new edible attraction takes center stage at The Paramount (the legendary eastside Los Angeles cultural institution & history-making music venue) as Brooklyn Ave. Pizza Co. opens its doors along Cesar E Chavez Avenue (historically known as Brooklyn Avenue in the early 1900s). Melding past, present, and future––both through the décor and menu––Brooklyn Ave. Pizza Co. aims to be a neighborhood spot for locals serving pizza, wings, loaded fries, beer, wine, and cocktails at the casual and colorful all-day restaurant. The concept is the brainchild of Chef–Owner Mario Christerna, a proud Boyle Heights native, community leader, and former “MasterChef Latino” judge, alongside the team behind The Paramount.”

Brooklyn Ave. Pizza Co. serves up to 30 seats al fresco, and 75 seats indoors (once again permitted) with all Covid 19 protocols in place including physically distanced tables, heightened sanitation protocols, single-use items, contactless ordering and payments, and an enforced mask policy.”

“It’s been my life’s journey to get to this moment of opening my very own restaurant in Boyle Heights –– the place that birthed and raised me,” says Christerna. “Brooklyn Ave. Pizza Co.’s vision is to provide a slice of home for neighbors and visitors. The flavors, sounds, sights that guests will enjoy at the pizzeria are meant to stir up emotions of both happiness and nostalgia; from authentic Mexican inspirations to our favorite corner store snacks (Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, anyone?), all the ingredients speak to familiarity and character. During a time when we are experiencing so much distance, we hope people can come together here and continue to uplift each other –– as they always have in Boyle Heights.”

“At Brooklyn Ave. Pizza Co., Christerna, one of the city’s rising chefs, with recognition for the ‘Best Dish’ at L.A.’s Latin Food Fest and the #3 taco on Bill Esparza’s ‘Best L.A. Tacos’ list, is focusing on pizza & wings with his signature Boyle Heights twist. Inspired by his beloved Chicano heritage and love for melding cultures (Christerna opened and helmed the kitchen at The Briks in South Park, a concept that reflected his early culinary influences––from North African and Spanish to French and Mexican), the menu marries familiar and vibrant sabores (flavors), while remaining approachable for all to enjoy.”

“Built within the space originally established as the Jewish Bakers Union of Los Angeles Local 453 Headquarters during the early twentieth century, the restaurant’s name (Brooklyn Ave. Pizza Co.) is inspired by its location in Boyle Heights along Cesar E Chavez Avenue –formerly known as Brooklyn Avenue as a way to attract East Coasters moving out West. The Jewish Bakers Union was deeply ingrained in their community, helping to feed people in need through the early twentieth century and into the Great Depression. Christerna and his team of locals are inspired by this history and are dedicated to continuing the space’s legacy as a community meeting point and culinary oasis.”

Chef Mario Christerna joins us pizza peel in hand.

Dina Samson of Rossoblu and Superfine PizzaNow in its fourth year, The James Beard Foundation’s Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership program (WEL) is part of the Foundation’s broader Women’s Leadership Programs presented by Audi and aims to support woman-identifying hospitality industry entrepreneurs, restaurant owners, and chefs in order to grow their careers and scale their businesses.

“We are thrilled to be able to continue this program this year, with the opportunity to bring together an extraordinary group of industry professionals from across the country,” said Clare Reichenbach, CEO of the James Beard Foundation. “As the devastation caused by this pandemic continues, it is more important now than ever to support our community and do all that we can to help entrepreneurs continue to succeed and thrive. We are honored to provide them with resources and to help expand their networks.”

The only California fellow selected for 2020 is Dina Samson of Rossoblu and Superfine Pizza Co. in Downtown Los Angeles. We’ll meet her and also learn what meal services Rossoblu and Superfine Pizza are currently providing to their guests with the new restrictions.

Bill Bracken of Brackens Kitchen“For the second straight year, Chef Founder Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen is hosting its signature holiday event benefiting the less fortunate and food insecure in Southern California. This year’s edition, “DECK THE HALLS,” will be its first virtual party featuring special guests, community partners, and Bracken’s own chefs cooking up a surprise along with pumpkin carvings as you’ve never seen before. Christmas tree decorating, silent auction items, opportunity drawings, and a gourmet meal delivered to attendees’ doors are also in store for those who join Bracken’s Kitchen virtually in Garden Grove on Thursday, December 3, 2020, at 6 p.m.”

“Attendees will have the opportunity to experience the kitchen, virtually, where they’ve already prepared and made over 1.3 million meals for those suffering from food insecurity in Southern California. This year’s event is even more meaningful and important due to the pandemic that has caused unexpected job loss, and even more people to suffer from food insecurity.  Everyone will have the opportunity to help Bracken’s Kitchen meet this unprecedented demand for food caused by the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in a fun and festive way.”

“With all the negative things happening all around us we are excited to welcome you “our friends” into our kitchen virtually for an evening of food, fun, and caring for those in need,” says Bill Bracken.

“All are invited to “Deck The Halls” and help Bracken’s Kitchen maintain its dramatically increased meal production at a time when so many people need help. Participants can help to keep recently laid off restaurant workers employed and production at more than 30,000 meals a week. 100% of the proceeds from the event will support the work and programs of Bracken’s Kitchen.”

Bracken’s Kitchen is a 501(c)(3) organization based in Orange County California.  Founded in 2013 our mission is simple: Through food recovery, culinary training, and our community feeding program we are committed to recovering, re-purposing, and restoring both food and lives. At the core of our mission is a deep commitment to our nonprofit charity partners, business and professional supporters, volunteers, donors, and employees.  Our relationship with each and every one of these groups is as important to us as those we feed.”

Tickets are now available online

We’re in the busy Holiday kitchen at Bracken’s Kitchen with Chef Bill Bracken.

Geeta Bansal of Clay Oven in Irvine“For over 36 years Clay Oven’s cuisine directed by Executive Chef & Proprietress Geeta Bansal has been about transforming tradition and old techniques of Indian cuisine while retaining the flavor profile to make them relevant to the present times and lifestyle. Food progresses and changes, and Clay Oven consistently strives to move Indian cuisine forward into the present and attempts to modernize their dishes while keeping the Ayurvedic principles intact. The menus are tied to the seasons and what is growing locally.”

“Clay Oven serves a large selection of game including venison, wild boar, rabbit, duck, antelope, quail, and elk. Fruits and vegetables in season appear alongside organic herbs grown in their own garden. There is no fusion of cuisines, just a fun and creative Indian experience created for their guests.”

Clay Oven is currently operating for takeout, curbside, and delivery only. A yearly (limited-time) special Thanksgiving tradition at Clay Oven, Tandoori Turkey, is still available to order.

Chef Geeta Bansal is our guest.

Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group at the AM830 KLAA StudiosOur 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 regularly updating us on the impact of the Covid-19 crisis in the hospitality field and what we, as diners, can do to support the very survival of restaurants. New restrictions placed on California restaurants in the last week…

Thanksgiving is fast approaching on November 26th. In the spirit of the Holidays it’s appropriate for Chef Andrew to now share his best Thanksgiving cooking tips as he has been providing for the last three weeks. For the pre-Thanksgiving finale it’s all about suggesting some inspired sides. It’s more than just the turkey…More people will be preparing Family Thanksgiving at home this year and probably with smaller groups. We’ll “Ask the Chef.”

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef Mario Christerna, Brooklyn Ave. Pizza Co. and The Paramount, Boyle Heights, Los Angeles Part One
Segment Three: Chef Mario Christerna, Brooklyn Ave. Pizza Co. and The Paramount, Boyle Heights, Los Angeles Part Two
Segment Four: Dina Samson of Rossoblu and Superfine Pizza Co. 2020 Fellow of Women’s Entrepreneurship Leadership Program
Segment Five: Chef Founder Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen Part One
Segment Six: Chef Founder Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen Part Two
Segment Seven: Chef & Proprietress Geeta Bansal, Clay Oven, Irvine
Segment Eight: Co-Host Chef Andrew Gruel of the Slapfish Restaurant Group with “Ask the Chef”

Show 366, March 28, 2020: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

It’s a disconcerting and confusing time for all of us and our “SoCal Restaurant Show” mission, until the Covid-19 crisis is abated, is to provide reliable and genuinely useful information on how the restaurant business is coping with the rapidly evolving events. With an emphasis on the health, safety and well-being of our listeners we’ll be detailing what the range of services restaurants can provide to their guests. Creativity is at the forefront. We’re keeping it upbeat…Thanks so very much for the highly positive response to last week’s restaurant guests.

Chefs and restaurateurs are the most generous people I know. In times of need they are always the very first in generously giving back and meaningfully supporting their communities. Truly remarkable…Right now restaurants urgently need our support to stay afloat. Kindly keep this in mind and please do what you possibly can to support a local restaurant….

As always, we greatly appreciate you being a part of our loyal listening audience. Truly couldn’t do it without the supportive & encouraging foodie community.

Amy and Craig Nickoloff of West Coast Prime MeatsIt’s an especially difficult time to navigate the supermarkets right now (particularly with “Social Distancing”) and you want fresh proteins of the highest quality to cook at home in addition to your ability to take advantage of restaurant delivery/takeout. West Coast Prime Meats supplies the top restaurants and hotels in Southern California. Responding to the crisis they are now selling to the public for the very first time with next day pickup in their Brea facility between 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. For information please call them Monday through Thursday from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. You can conveniently obtain a wide range of superior proteins in case packs at fair prices with their usual wonderful customer service. Available are Beef, Grinds & Patties, Poultry, Pork and even Seafood. Their exemplary sanitary practices are way above Industry requirements. Call them to get an Inventory List emailed to you. 714.255.8560.

“A newcomer to the vibrant culinary scene that can be found in and around Newport Beach, BELLO by Sandro Nardone offers a combination of traditional authentic Italian food and modern dishes in a style similar to that served at the top restaurants in Italy. Born in a small town located between Rome and Naples, Chef Sandro comes from Atina, Italy, where he was raised in a family of chefs.” We nudge Chef Sandro away from his eye-catching, wood-burning pizza oven to tell us about his take-out & delivery menu. It includes his always popular, signature pizzas.

Jar, a modern chophouse in the heart of Los Angeles, commands the attention of Angelenos with the allure of Chef / Proprietor Suzanne Tracht’s familiar retro dishes from the American culinary repertoire. Since it’s debut in 2002, Jar’s devoted fans return again and again to enjoy her signature Pot Roast, Kansas City Steak, wild and sustainable Seafood, Lemongrass Chicken, Black Mussels with Lobster Bearnaise & Fennel Salt, award-winning French Fries, market-fresh sides and perfectly mixed martinis. During the ban on dine-in Jar continues to serve guests with Jar to-go, Jar Cocktails to-go, Wines to-go and a boxed Dinner for four. Chef Suzanne joins us with all the salivating menu details.

Farmhouse at Roger’s Gardens in Corona del Mar is open for take-out and offers an ever-evolving menu courtesy of the imagination of Owner and Executive Chef Rich Mead. Designed to elevate the at-home dining experience, the Farmhouse take-out menu now offers a curbside market, produce boxes, a signature kids menu and curbside cocktails to-go in addition to weekly wine deals, fresh daily specials, family-style meals, and more through easy pick-up or local delivery options. Delivery is available from 11:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m. and 4:00-7:00 p.m. daily. Complimentary deliveries will be made on orders of $75 or more within a 2.5 mile radius.”

In times of crisis it’s always best to rely on the reassuring expertise of those truly knowledgeable in their specific areas. Such is the case with our always engaging resident wine authority Kyle Meyer, the Managing Partner of Santa Ana’s Wine Exchange. Tragically Italy and Spain have been particularly hard-hit by the Covid-19 crisis. Listeners have been asking what impact the fast-evolving health crisis will have on the current and future wine business in both Italy and Spain. Will global sales of these popular wines be altered? We’ll gain the accurate perspective from Kyle.

It’s Ojai Pixie Tangerine season. They may be small in size but Ojai Pixie Tangerines are bursting with sunshine sweet flavor and chin-dripping juiciness. Grown in the pleasant costal climate of Ojai, California, Pixie Tangerines are picked at the peak of perfection for optimum flavor. Not only are Pixie Tangerines seedless, but their bright colored rind is very easy -to -peel and their segments separate neatly making them the perfect on-the-go, healthy snack! Melissa’s Michelle Grow (their resident expert on Ojai Pixie Tangerines) peels the 411 on Ojai Pixie Tangerines for us.

Green Flash Brewing Co. has been crafting innovative award-winning beers in San Diego since 2002. We obsess over every detail, because we believe each green flash beer should be as remarkable as the last. Green Flash was one of the original breweries in San Diego with a focus on big but approachable beers with tons of flavor and aromas.”

In 2014, Alpine Beer Company merged with San Diego’s Green Flash Brewing Company, increasing production and distribution of its ales.

“Celebrated by craft beer fanatics as “The Home of Pure Hoppiness,” Alpine Beer Company was established in 1999 by husband and wife team, Pat and Val McIlhenney, with the creation of McIlhenney’s Irish Red. Shawn McIlhenney (Pat & Val’s son) now leads brewing operations in the small town of Alpine, located in the hills at the eastern edge of San Diego County. The brewery includes a tasting room and outdoor beer garden. Just a few blocks away, Alpine beers are on tap at the Alpine Beer Company Pub and served alongside barbecue dishes.

Chef Bill Bracken, the Founder of Bracken’s Kitchen, is no stranger to the “SoCal Restaurant Show.” In response to even more economic and social restrictions due to the coronavirus, Bracken’s Kitchen, a growing non-profit that recovers food and feeds those in need, is stepping up its meal production to a goal of at least 25,000 meals a week. That’s nearly four times their average! They cannot do this alone. They are seeking donations to keep moving forward. They’ve changed their meal production at Bracken’s Kitchen to meet the demand in our community. Chef Bill Bracken is our guest detailing the community need.

All of this and heaping helpings of extra deliciousness (with proper Social Distancing) on this week’s not-to-miss show!

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