Show 528, June 3, 2023: Salt & Straw’s “The Upcycled Food Series” for June Part One

Tyler Malek of Salt and Straw

“To kick off the summer season, Salt & Straw ice cream is launching one of their most renowned and innovative monthly menus of the year to highlight creative and delicious solutions to help rescue wasted food: The Upcycled Food Series. With 229 million tons of food going unsold or uneaten each year, Salt & Straw was able to rescue over 38,000 pounds to use in the creation of these special flavors. To help craft this menu, they have partnered with five thoughtful brands that are dedicated to reducing food waste in the USA. Each ice cream flavor uses groundbreaking recipe development tactics and tells a unique story about different ways brands and people alike can rescue wasted food. Salt & Straw is proud to announce this menu and each flavor is officially Upcycled Certified®, awarded by the Upcycled Food Association (UFA).”

“Upcycled foods use ingredients that otherwise would not have gone to human consumption, are procured and produced using verifiable supply chains, and have a positive impact on the environment. The food Salt & Straw uses to Upcycle is what we would have considered to be “wasted food”. It’s the perfectly delicious bread or donuts that were baked this morning, but the grocery store can’t market as tomorrow’s “fresh” batch. Or the pulp left over from nut, oat, or soy milk that tends to be overlooked. Wasted food is happening on an individual and a brand level, and Salt & Straw is here to prove there is something that can be done about it. As a side note it can be incredibly delicious.”

Nico Nordin of Urban Gleaners

One of Salt & Straw’s partners in the Upcycled Food Series is Portland’s Urban Gleaners. Their featured flavor creation is: Day-Old Bread Pudding & Chocolate Ganache. In 2006, Urban Gleaners founder Tracy Oseran began a local movement that has grown into a vibrant volunteer-powered organization feeding thousands of families every week by rescuing fresh, unsold food—made up of the region’s best ingredients, from hand-roasted coffee and organic produce to fried chicken, gourmet deli sandwiches, and gluten-free cookies. Urban Gleaners now feeds over 8,000 people every week through school pantries, summer free farmers markets, and Mobile Markets at low-income housing communities.

All of portfolio of five incredible “The Upcycled Food Series” ice cream flavors are available at your local Salt & Straw Scoop Shop by the scoop or in pints for the Month of June

Salt & Straw’s Co-Founder, Tyler Malek, and Urban Gleaners’ Nico Nordin (Executive Director) are our guests.

Show 524, May 6, 2023: Honoka’a Chocolate Co., Hawaii, with Founder Mike Pollard

Mike Pollard of the Honokoa Chocolate Company

Mike and Rhonda Pollard’s Honoka’a Chocolate Co. is located on the Hamakua coast of the Big Island of Hawai’i at Kahi Ola Mau Farm. Their farm has a rich history in Hamakua district town of Honoka’a. Located mauka (towards Mauna Kea) from Honoka’a in an area known as Ahualoa, the 5 acres the Pollards call home was first purchased by the sugar plantation doctor sometime in the 1920s. They are the fourth resident and keeper of this beautiful property and have transformed it into a working farm.” Two and one-half acres are planted in cacao.

“Starting in January 2018, Honoka’a Chocolate Co. began offering farm tours and tastings of their artisan chocolates that are made right there on the farm. In February of this year most of the production shifted to their new state of the art production facility and retail store on Mamane Street in the heart of Historic Honokaa Town. Honoka’a Chocolate Co has received a total of 29 international awards for their premium chocolates over the last two years.”

“Their current tastings on the farm include five of their signature products, including chocolates from Hawaii as well as other regions from around the world.  Guests will experience how a particular region’s climate, soils and terrain affect the taste of the chocolate, “the terroir” as winemakers have so famously coined the term. The state of Hawai’i is the only place in the US where cacao grows fruitfully, some calling it the “North Pole” of the cacao growing region.” The farm tour at Kahi Ola Mau Farm concludes with a visit to their nearby, new production facility located on the main street of historic Honokaa Town.

Mike Pollard is our guide to some of the best chocolate in the World.

Show 523, April 29, 2023: Pastry Chef and Chocolatier Stephane Treand, The Pastry School, Tustin, CA

Stephane Treand of the Pastry School

Master Pastry Chef and Chocolatier Stephane Treand is again participating in the Big Island Chocolate Festival on Saturday with the creation of a magnificent all chocolate showpiece designed to stun party guests and serve as a stunning buffet centerpiece at the Saturday Night Gala. Tréand’s prestigious Pastry School in Tustin, California instructs students of all abilities in the pastry and baking arts. The finished creation will be a key feature at the Saturday Gala from 6-10 pm.

Chef Stéphane Tréand debuted, The Pastry School in 2012, in San Clemente. In 2015, he moved his school to Costa Mesa along with his new pâtisserie (pastry) shop, ST Pâtisserie Chocolat, to the Soco Collection! Chef Tréand wanted to bring something unique and different to Southern California. He wanted people to come and buy pastries, chocolates, viennoiserie (baked goods such as croissants), and gelato / sorbet at his shop. But he also wanted to show others, “you can learn and create beautiful items such as these, right-next-door as me (Chef Stéphane Tréand) as your teacher!” Having an M.O.F. chef teaching hands on, one-on-one experience, in a small intimate environment is truly a treasure. There are only 4 M.O.F. chefs currently residing in the United States. Tustin is now the home of “The Pastry School”.

Show 516, March 11, 2023: Big Island Chocolate Festival Preview with Stephanie Beeby, Event Chair

Stephanie Beeby of the Big Island Chocolate Festival

“The delicious flavors and aromas of chocolate will “Indulge the Senses” at the Big Island Chocolate Festival April 28-29 at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort & Spa. The “Indulge the Senses with Chocolate” theme marks the festival’s 10th anniversary.”

“In-person activities include culinary demonstrations for the home cook, cacao growing and processing seminars by industry experts, a new VIP-PLUS pre-gala Sunset & Pupu Pairing and a festive evening gala with culinary booths, chocolate fountain, entertainment, dancing, a silent auction and some surprises! Guests can enjoy unlimited wine, beer and a custom spritzer by Ola Brew, iced tea and coffee.”

“We are returning to our original gala format with chefs staffing sweet and savory culinary booths,” says Stephanie Beeby, event chairperson. “This year we are debuting a VIP-PLUS package (very limited availability) with entry Saturday night to both a Sunset & Pupu Pairing plus VIP gala section with table seating and exclusive wine and beer bar.”

In its 10th year, the celebration of chocolate is presented by the non-profit Kona Cacao Association (KCA).

A general admission gala ticket is $99 while a VIP-PLUS ticket is $189. Also available are specially priced event room packages at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort. Educational activities and prices are detailed on the website. All event tickets are sold online and include additional tax and ticketing fees apply.

Event Chair Stephanie Beeby joins us with all the indulgent details.

Show 514, February 25, 2023: Preview of 10th Annual Big Island Chocolate Festival at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort, Hawaii

John Dominguez of the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort

“The delicious flavors and aromas of chocolate will “Indulge the Senses” at the Big Island Chocolate Festival (Hawaii) April 28-29 at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort & Spa. The “Indulge the Senses with Chocolate” theme marks the festival’s 10th anniversary.”

“In-person activities include culinary demonstrations for the home cook, cacao growing and processing seminars by industry experts, a new VIP-PLUS pre-gala Sunset & Pupu Pairing and a festive evening gala with culinary booths, chocolate fountain, entertainment, dancing, a silent auction and some surprises! The acclaimed (and long-time) Executive Chef of the host Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort, Chef Jayson Kanekoa, will be presenting a culinary station at the Saturday night chocolate gala. Guests can enjoy unlimited wine, beer and a custom spritzer by Ola Brew, iced tea and coffee.”

A general admission gala ticket is $99 while a VIP-PLUS ticket is $189. Also available are specially priced event room packages at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort. The VIP package options include both one-night and two-night stays with various event tickets. The special accommodation packages are limited so please make your getaway plans now.

The Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort’s John Dominguez (Director of Sales and Marketing) joins us with the details of the Hotel Package.

Show 499, November 12, 2022: Chef Ted Hopson, Vice President, Gourmet Imports

Chef Ted Hopson

We know Chef Ted Hopson from the fondly remembered The Bellwether in Studio City which was an unfortunate victim of the pandemic. The better news is that Chef Ted is now the very busy Vice President at Gourmet Imports in Alhambra.

“Gourmet Imports is a Los Angeles area-based importer and distributor of specialty foods that has been serving Chefs and culinary professionals since 1989. The company was built on a commitment to service, quality and integrity. Gourmet Imports carries over 300 cheeses as well as nearly 2,000 other culinary items including: caviar, charcuterie, pâté, oils, vinegars, chocolate, baking and pastry ingredients and much, much more.”

“Ingredients & traditions matter. Working to preserve & promote them is something Gourmet Imports is deeply passionate about. They believe that food & dining are integral to our social fabric and in these times where nearly everything is synthesized, automated, expedited, and/or truncated, they are thankful to the passionate farmers & artisans that produce the goods that Gourmet Imports carries. They are equally grateful to their clients for their support, for their insistence on authenticity & excellence, and their work to provide experiences around which we can all connect over a shared meal (even if the mid-meal Instagram post has become all but inevitable).”

We’re catching up with Chef Ted Hopson.

Show 488, August 27, 2022: Persian Pastries Class at Guittard Chocolate Studio with Chefs Donald Wressell and Sahar Shomali

Donald Wressell of Guittard Chocolate Company

Under the direction of Guittard Chocolate Company’s acclaimed Executive Pastry Chef Donald Wressell, the “Guittard Chocolate Studio in Culver City offers hands-on workshops with prominent chefs, chocolatiers and bakers for a unique opportunity for cooking professionals and serious home cooks to learn new skills, finesse techniques and expand on their chocolate knowledge.”

The next class is Persian Pastries with Chef Sahar Shomali on September 13th from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. “In Persian Pastries, participants will learn all about the foods of Iran: its history and cuisine, how its climate and geography affects cooking / baking trends, and how to replicate them, as well as the art of Persian sweets and pastries. Chef Sahar will also discuss chocolate and it’s place in Iranian cuisine, and together make different variations of classic sweets using chocolate.”

“In 2018 Chef Sahar established Kouzeh Bakery, a cottage bakery, dedicated to the art of Iranian Bread. Her goal is to research, recreate and document the many different bread and baked goods of Iran, and introduce them to the bread lovers of the world.”

Chef Donald Wressell and Chef Sahar Shomali are our guests with all the salivating details.

Show 350, December 7, 2019: Chef George Geary on Celebratory Cheesecakes for the Holidays

Cookbook Author George GearyCheesecake! The Emmy award winning show The Golden Girls made eating cheesecake a nightly ritual on the hit television series. The pastry chef who made those luscious and delicious cheesecakes and many other foods for hit sitcoms is George Geary. He later became the first award winning pastry chef for the Walt Disney Company at Disneyland.

Geary’s cheesecakes became one of his most popular culinary calling cards so he then published his favorite recipes in his first cookbook, 125 Best Cheesecake Recipes in 2002, and it was such a hit that a follow up book, The Cheesecake Bible was published in 2008 and became a best-seller.

Now Geary has expanded his cheesecake repertoire even more with the highly anticipated 2nd Edition of The Cheesecake Bible: 300 Sweet & Savory Recipes for Cakes and More George provides home cooks with extensive how-to instructions, tips and techniques to make the perfect cheesecake.

Recipes in the book range from holiday favorites, savory and citrus cheesecakes, no-bake cheesecakes, to bars, pies, toppings and sauces, and breakfast items. Some of the delicious recipes in the book include:  Artichoke Cheesecake, Maine Lobster Cheesecake, Passover Honey Cheesecake, Blood Orange Spiced Cheesecake, Eggnog Rum Cheesecake, Italian Zabaglione Cheesecake Bars, Blood Orange Cheesecake Crępes, Cheesecake Bonbons and many more unique flavored desserts.

Chef George is our encore guest offering decadent ideas for the best in holiday cheesecakes (Eggnog Nutmeg Rum Cheesecake, Peppermint Chocolate Cheesecake and New Year’s Champagne Cheesecake) and pro’s tips for stress-free holiday baking.

Show 312, February 23, 2019: Kim Jensen, Ingeborg’s Danish Chocolates, Solvang

Kim JensenLocated in Solvang, California, the Danish capital of America, Ingeborg’s Danish Chocolate Factory was first opened in 1961. The traditional chocolate recipes were first brought to Solvang by Ingeborg Larsen, a chocolate dipper in one of Denmark’s largest chocolate factories. Ingeborg’s is now safely in the hands of caretakers Kim and Carol Jensen (only the 3rd owners) who have preserved the tradition of Danish artisan chocolate making with some contemporary touches.

“A perfect accent for fine wines, champagnes, and coffees, Ingeborg’s chocolates are made with absolutely the finest, fresh ingredients and no preservatives or additives. As the seasons change, the boxes and wrappings may vary, but never their commitment to quality.”

“No matter what the season, or the occasion, Valentine’s Day, Easter, Mother’s Day, Christmas, or any day, Ingeborg’s specialty Danish chocolates are sure to delight the palate of the most discriminating chocolate lover. Their light and dark chocolate Cornucopias make stunning centerpiece displays, elegant for any time of year, and are filled with their handmade luscious soft centered Truffles and now our new award-winning “Sea Salt and Butterscotch Sea Salt Caramel Chocolates.””

“Ingeborg’s also features a wide variety of unique molded chocolate items as well as our Orange and Peppermint chocolate sticks. All items are individually boxed and beautifully wrapped. Please note that we now also feature an expanded array of sugar-free chocolates, sweets, and assorted candies.”

Kim joins us in sweet conversation.

Show 223, May 13, 2017: Pam Cooper, Co-Founder, Original Hawaiian Chocolate Factory, Hawaii

Pam CooperThe Big Island of Hawaii’s first tree-to-bar chocolate producer is The Original Hawaiian Chocolate Factory established in 1999. In Kailua-Kona they grow cacao on their own plantation, ferment it, dry and process the beans and then create premium, single origin chocolate of the highest quality in a multi-step process.

“Welcome to Kona on the Island of Hawaii, home of Original Hawaiian Chocolate – the only chocolate of its kind in the world!”

“Beginning in 1997 we have dedicated ourselves to creating the most delicious and unique of chocolates – 100% Hawaiian made and grown. There is something about our volcanic soil, Island showers and tropical Hawaiian sun that blesses the cacao trees with a unique flavor that is world renowned.”

“We are the first producers to grow and process 100% Hawaiian cacao chocolate anywhere on earth. We process only Big Island grown cocoa beans. Our processing factory is completely self-contained, assuring total quality control from the fields to the final chocolate bars.”

“We invite you to experience our exceptionally unique chocolate, grown, harvested, processed and packaged in Hawaii – America’s own. And remember, Chocolate is Aloha!

Plantation tours (highly recommended) are available Wednesday and Friday mornings. The on-site Chocolate Shoppe (with unique specialty items) hours are 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Tuesday through Fridays. Most of their artisan, single origin chocolate products (Individual Bars, One Pound Bars, Large & Small Plumerias and Roasted Cacao Nibs) are also available via their Website and shipped FedEx.

Founder Pam Cooper joins us.