Show 542, September 9, 2023: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris

Hungry Games 6.0 benefiting the worthy activities of Bracken’s Kitchen in Garden Grove is back better and bigger than ever before. The Hungry Games event benefits the less fortunate and food insecure in Southern California! Please join Chef Bill Bracken and Bracken’s Kitchen at their very own busy kitchen on Thursday, September 14th 2023 at 5:30 p.m. for a wonderful evening together! It will be full of great food, fun, and of course, friendly competition.” The defending champion, Chef Michael Rossi (The Beach Club, Santa Monica,) will be there. This year’s ambitious fundraising goal is a cool $500,000. “Come hungry for some yummy hors d’oeuvres, incredibly delicious meals, and beverages that you will love as the chefs battle for first place! Guests help vote for their favorites throughout the night. The Pinch Me! band returns to play some incredible live music!” Culinary Director of Bracken’s Kitchen, Bill Bracken, joins us with whisk in hand.

“Helmed by long-time Fairfield Restaurateur Molly Tou (ex-Sticky Rice) and Chef Joey Jaraba, Two60 Kitchen + Bar is a great new addition to Fairfield’s dining scene. It opened in 2020 at 260 Pittman Road. Over the last 23 years, Chef Jaraba has developed a career out of fusing his own background from the Philippines with his dishes. Two60 blends modern American cuisine with global influences to create a menu deeply rooted in sourcing ingredients from local farms. Besides traditional American fare such as hamburgers, steak and salads they feature items with Asian and Italian influences such as Shanghai Lumpia, Ahi Poke Towers and Pastas.” Restaurateur Molly Tou is our guest.

“The Orange County Asian and Pacific Islander Community Alliance (OCAPICA) brings back its Tastemakers of Orange County fundraising event on Wednesday, September 13 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Julianne and George Argyros Plaza at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa. More than two dozen local chefs will celebrate the Asian and Pacific Islander community, culture, and heritage by giving guests the opportunity to indulge in one-of-a-kind Asian and Pacific Island-inspired dishes. Proceeds from tickets sold for this event benefit OCAPICA’s numerous programs and services in mental health and health, youth development, housing assistance, policy education and combating anti-Asian racism throughout Orange County.” Baker Tarit Tanjasiri of Crema Café and Chef Kristen Nguyen of Garlic & Chives join us with all the tasty details.“

The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar presents MAUI STRONG, a fundraiser on Sunday, September 17 at its waterfront location in Newport Beach to benefit the Maui Strong Fund. Guests will have the opportunity to attend a “Maui Strong Tasting Event” from 2 to 5 p.m. and “Taste of Hawaii Dinner” from 5 to 8:30 p.m., both supporting relief efforts through the Maui Strong Fund, organized by the Hawai’i Community Foundation and committed to distributing 100% of funds donated to local aid groups who are responding to community needs.” The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar’s Managing Partner, JC Clow, is our guest providing all the details.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel, the menu-maker behind the full-service Calico Fish House (in the Sunset Beach area of Huntington Beach) and also the founder and pizzaiola of the fast-casual Big Parm (New Jersey-style pizza) located in the Mess Hall in Tustin provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where he responds to listeners’ thoughtful inquiries. Has the restaurant business really fully recovered from the Pandemic? What are the present concerns of chefs and restaurateurs? Some restaurants are really struggling in urban San Francisco. We’ll “Ask the Chef”.

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

Show 542, September 9, 2023: Chef Bill Bracken, Culinary Director and Founder, Bracken’s Kitchen, Garden Grove Part One

Bill Bracken of Brackens Kitchen

Hungry Games 6.0 benefiting the worthy activities of Bracken’s Kitchen in Garden Grove is back better and bigger than ever before. The Hungry Games event benefits the less fortunate and food insecure in Southern California! Please join Chef Bill Bracken and Bracken’s Kitchen at their very own busy kitchen on Thursday, September 14th 2023 at 5:30 p.m. for a wonderful evening together! It will be full of great food, fun, and of course, friendly competition.” The defending champion, Chef Michael Rossi (The Beach Club, Santa Monica,) will be there. This year’s ambitious fundraising goal is a cool $500,000.

“Come hungry for some yummy hors d’oeuvres, incredibly delicious meals, and beverages that you will love as the chefs battle for first place! Guests help vote for their favorites throughout the night. The Pinch Me! band returns to play some incredible live music!”

“As Bracken’s Kitchen celebrates their tenth anniversary of serving healthy and delicious meals to those in need, the Bracken’s Kitchen Team is humbled by and grateful for what they have been able to accomplish. Bracken’s Kitchen is still striving to meet the needs of their community – after pandemic high numbers of 1.7 million meals in 2020 and 2021, they served 1.5 million meals last year, 2022. For 2023, Bracken’s Kitchen is on pace to serve 2 million meals in and around Orange County. In addition to their community feeding program, they are in the middle of their third culinary training class helping those in need with a hand up out of poverty.”

Culinary Director of Bracken’s Kitchen, Bill Bracken, joins us with whisk in hand.

Show 542, September 9, 2023: Chef Bill Bracken, Culinary Director and Founder, Bracken’s Kitchen, Garden Grove Part Two

Bill Bracken of Brackens Kitchen

Hungry Games 6.0 benefiting the worthy activities of Bracken’s Kitchen in Garden Grove is back better and bigger than ever before. The Hungry Games event benefits the less fortunate and food insecure in Southern California! Please join Chef Bill Bracken and Bracken’s Kitchen at their very own busy kitchen on Thursday, September 14th 2023 at 5:30 p.m. for a wonderful evening together! It will be full of great food, fun, and of course, friendly competition.” The defending champion, Chef Michael Rossi (The Beach Club, Santa Monica,) will be there. This year’s ambitious fundraising goal is a cool $500,000.

“Come hungry for some yummy hors d’oeuvres, incredibly delicious meals, and beverages that you will love as the chefs battle for first place! Guests help vote for their favorites throughout the night. The Pinch Me! band returns to play some incredible live music!”

“As Bracken’s Kitchen celebrates their tenth anniversary of serving healthy and delicious meals to those in need, the Bracken’s Kitchen Team is humbled by and grateful for what they have been able to accomplish. Bracken’s Kitchen is still striving to meet the needs of their community – after pandemic high numbers of 1.7 million meals in 2020 and 2021, they served 1.5 million meals last year, 2022. For 2023, Bracken’s Kitchen is on pace to serve 2 million meals in and around Orange County. In addition to their community feeding program, they are in the middle of their third culinary training class helping those in need with a hand up out of poverty.”

Culinary Director of Bracken’s Kitchen, Bill Bracken, continues with us.

September 9: Hungry Games 6.0, Two60 Kitchen + Bar, Tastemakers of Orange County, The Winery Restaurant and Wine Bar

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef Bill Bracken, Culinary Director and Founder, Bracken’s Kitchen, Garden Grove Part One
Segment Three: Chef Bill Bracken, Culinary Director and Founder, Bracken’s Kitchen, Garden Grove Part Two
Segment Four: Restaurateur Molly Tou, Two60 Kitchen + Bar, Fairfield, CA Part One
Segment Five: Restaurateur Molly Tou, Two60 Kitchen + Bar, Fairfield, CA Part Two
Segment Six: Tastemakers of Orange County Benefiting OCAPICA With Baker Tarit Tanjasiri and Chef Kristen Nguyen
Segment Seven: The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar’s Benefits for Maui Strong (Newport Beach)
Segment Eight: Co-Host and Chef Andrew Gruel with “Ask the Chef”

Andy Harris, Executive Producer and Co-host previews the show.

“Hungry Games 6.0 benefiting the worthy activities of Bracken’s Kitchen in Garden Grove is back better and bigger than ever before. The Hungry Games event benefits the less fortunate and food insecure in Southern California! Please join Chef Bill Bracken and Bracken’s Kitchen at their very own busy kitchen on Thursday, September 14th 2023 at 5:30 p.m. for a wonderful evening together! It will be full of great food, fun, and of course, friendly competition. The defending champion, Chef Michael Rossi (The Beach Club, Santa Monica,) will be there. This year’s ambitious fundraising goal is a cool $500,000. Come hungry for some yummy hors d’oeuvres, incredibly delicious meals, and beverages that you will love as the chefs battle for first place! Guests help vote for their favorites throughout the night. The Pinch Me! band returns to play some incredible live music!” Culinary Director of Bracken’s Kitchen, Bill Bracken, joins us with whisk in hand.

“Helmed by long-time Fairfield Restaurateur Molly Tou (ex-Sticky Rice) and Chef Joey Jaraba, Two60 Kitchen + Bar is a great new addition to Fairfield’s dining scene. It opened in 2020 at 260 Pittman Road. Over the last 23 years, Chef Jaraba has developed a career out of fusing his own background from the Philippines with his dishes. Two60 blends modern American cuisine with global influences to create a menu deeply rooted in sourcing ingredients from local farms. Besides traditional American fare such as hamburgers, steak and salads they feature items with Asian and Italian influences such as Shanghai Lumpia, Ahi Poke Towers and Pastas.” Restaurateur Molly Tou is our guest.

“The Orange County Asian and Pacific Islander Community Alliance (OCAPICA) brings back its Tastemakers of Orange County fundraising event on Wednesday, September 13 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Julianne and George Argyros Plaza at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa. More than two dozen local chefs will celebrate the Asian and Pacific Islander community, culture, and heritage by giving guests the opportunity to indulge in one-of-a-kind Asian and Pacific Island-inspired dishes. Proceeds from tickets sold for this event benefit OCAPICA’s numerous programs and services in mental health and health, youth development, housing assistance, policy education and combating anti-Asian racism throughout Orange County.” Baker Tarit Tanjasiri of Crema Café and Chef Kristen Nguyen of Garlic & Chives join us with all the tasty details.

“The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar presents MAUI STRONG, a fundraiser on Sunday, September 17 at its waterfront location in Newport Beach to benefit the Maui Strong Fund. Guests will have the opportunity to attend a “Maui Strong Tasting Event” from 2 to 5 p.m. and “Taste of Hawaii Dinner” from 5 to 8:30 p.m., both supporting relief efforts through the Maui Strong Fund, organized by the Hawai’i Community Foundation and committed to distributing 100% of funds donated to local aid groups who are responding to community needs.”

The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar’s Managing Partner, JC Clow, is our guest providing all the details.

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel, the menu-maker behind the full-service Calico Fish House (in the Sunset Beach area of Huntington Beach) and also the founder and pizzaiola of Big Parm (New Jersey-style pizza) located in the Mess Hall in Tustin provides another timely and informative “Ask the Chef” segment where he responds to listeners’ thoughtful inquiries. Has the restaurant business really fully recovered from the Pandemic? What are the present concerns of chefs and restaurateurs? Some restaurants are really struggling in urban San Francisco. We’ll “Ask the Chef”?

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

Bill Bracken of Brackens Kitchen

Hungry Games 6.0 benefiting the worthy activities of Bracken’s Kitchen in Garden Grove is back better and bigger than ever before. The Hungry Games event benefits the less fortunate and food insecure in Southern California! Please join Chef Bill Bracken and Bracken’s Kitchen at their very own busy kitchen on Thursday, September 14th 2023 at 5:30 p.m. for a wonderful evening together! It will be full of great food, fun, and of course, friendly competition.” The defending champion, Chef Michael Rossi (The Beach Club, Santa Monica,) will be there. This year’s ambitious fundraising goal is a cool $500,000.

“Come hungry for some yummy hors d’oeuvres, incredibly delicious meals, and beverages that you will love as the chefs battle for first place! Guests help vote for their favorites throughout the night. The Pinch Me! band returns to play some incredible live music!”

“As Bracken’s Kitchen celebrates their tenth anniversary of serving healthy and delicious meals to those in need, the Bracken’s Kitchen Team is humbled by and grateful for what they have been able to accomplish. Bracken’s Kitchen is still striving to meet the needs of their community – after pandemic high numbers of 1.7 million meals in 2020 and 2021, they served 1.5 million meals last year, 2022. For 2023, Bracken’s Kitchen is on pace to serve 2 million meals in and around Orange County. In addition to their community feeding program, they are in the middle of their third culinary training class helping those in need with a hand up out of poverty.”

Culinary Director of Bracken’s Kitchen, Bill Bracken, joins us with whisk in hand.

Molly Tou of Two60 Kitchen and Bar

“Helmed by long-time Fairfield Restaurateur Molly Tou (ex-Sticky Rice) and Chef Joey Jaraba, Two60 Kitchen + Bar is a great new addition to Fairfield’s growing dining scene, opened in 2020 at 260 Pittman Road.”

“Over the last 23 years, Chef Jaraba has developed a career out of fusing his own background from the Philippines with his dishes. Two60 blends modern American cuisine with global influences to create a menu deeply rooted in sourcing ingredients from local farms. Besides traditional American fare such as hamburgers, steak and salads they feature items with Asian and Italian influences such as Shanghai Lumpia, Ahi Poke Towers and Pastas.”

“The restaurant is family friendly, including a children’s menu with grilled cheese sandwich, chicken strips and fries, simple pastas and grilled chicken and vegetables. There are two separate dining areas one in the main room and a bar/ seating area off to the back for people who enjoy a bustling bar atmosphere.” There is also patio seating.

“The completely renovated space in Cordelia is the perfect place to grab an innovative bite and a nice cocktail with house-made syrups. You’ll notice the cocktails are named after some streets in Green Valley and Cordelia. They are also serving local favorites including Tolenas Vineyards, Wooden Valley, Caymus Vineyards and Heretic Brewing.”

Proprietress Molly Tou is our guest.

Kristen Nguyen of Garlic and Chives

“The Orange County Asian and Pacific Islander Community Alliance (OCAPICA) brings back its Tastemakers of Orange County fundraising event on Wednesday, September 13 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Julianne and George Argyros Plaza at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa. More than two dozen local chefs will celebrate the Asian and Pacific Islander community, culture, and heritage by giving guests the opportunity to indulge in one-of-a-kind Asian and Pacific Island-inspired dishes. Proceeds from tickets sold for this event benefit OCAPICA’s numerous programs and services in mental health and health, youth development, housing assistance, policy education and combating anti-Asian racism throughout Orange County.”

“In addition to the food tastings, guests will have the opportunity to enjoy beverages by Brewery X and Bondle Wines. The celebration at Argyros Plaza will also include entertainment, a silent auction and opportunity drawing for guests to enjoy. Tickets are available to the public for $250 for VIP, which allows early entry at 6 p.m.; and $195 for General Admission from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. More information and tickets can be found here.

Baker Tarit Tanjasiri of Crema Café and Chef Kristen Nguyen of Garlic & Chives join us with all the tasty details.

JC Clow of the Winery Restaurant and Wine Bar

The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar presents MAUI STRONG, a fundraiser on Sunday, September 17 at its waterfront location in Newport Beach to benefit the Maui Strong Fund. Guests will have the opportunity to attend a “Maui Strong Tasting Event” from 2 to 5 p.m. and “Taste of Hawaii Dinner” from 5 to 8:30 p.m., both supporting relief efforts through the Maui Strong Fund, organized by the Hawai’i Community Foundation and committed to distributing 100% of funds donated to local aid groups who are responding to community needs.”

“We have hosted many fundraising events, but this one is near and dear to our hearts, as many of us at The Winery have a deep connection to Maui,” commented JC Clow, Founding Partner at The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar, who revealed that the restaurants have raised approximately $599,300 to date for various charities. “The goal of the event is to make a positive impact on the lives of those affected by the fires in Maui by raising significant funds for the Maui Strong Fund.”

“Tickets for both MAUI STRONG events are limited and a portion of each ticket is tax-deductible. Tickets for the “Maui Strong Tasting Event” from 2-5 p.m. are $150 per guest and may be purchased in advance online. The “Taste of Hawaii Dinner” from 5-8:30 p.m. is $175 per guest and reservations may be made by calling 949-999-6622 or online.”

The Winery Restaurant and Wine Bar’s Managing Partner, JC Clow, is our guest providing all the details.

Chef Andrew Gruel of Big Parm and the Calico Fish House

Our own Chef Andrew Gruel, the menu-maker behind the full-service Calico Fish House (in the Sunset Beach area of Huntington Beach) and also the founder and pizzaiola of the fast-casual Big Parm (New Jersey-style pizza) located in the Mess Hall in Tustin provides another timely and informative Ask the Chef segment where he responds to listeners’ thoughtful inquiries.

Has the restaurant business really recovered from the Pandemic? What are the present concerns of chefs and restaurateurs? Some restaurants are really struggling in urban San Francisco. We’ll “Ask the Chef”?

Podcasts

Segment One: Show Preview with Executive Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris
Segment Two: Chef Bill Bracken, Culinary Director and Founder, Bracken’s Kitchen, Garden Grove Part One
Segment Three: Chef Bill Bracken, Culinary Director and Founder, Bracken’s Kitchen, Garden Grove Part Two
Segment Four: Restaurateur Molly Tou, Two60 Kitchen + Bar, Fairfield, CA Part One
Segment Five: Restaurateur Molly Tou, Two60 Kitchen + Bar, Fairfield, CA Part Two
Segment Six: Tastemakers of Orange County Benefiting OCAPICA With Baker Tarit Tanjasiri and Chef Kristen Nguyen
Segment Seven: The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar’s Benefits for Maui Strong (Newport Beach)
Segment Eight: Co-Host and Chef Andrew Gruel with “Ask the Chef”

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.

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.

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.

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.

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!