Show 339, August 31, 2019: Cookie Good’s Co-Founder & Baker, Ross Canter Part One

Ross Canter of Cookie Good“You know that feeling when you take your first bite of a cookie? When you crunch through that crisp exterior and get to the chewy often chocolaty center; when the buttery, slightly salty sweetness hits your tongue? It’s just an instant but suddenly your brain is flooded, senses over-loaded and without even being aware, you find yourself smiling. That’s what we call feeling “Cookie Good”.”

“We take that feeling one step further, working hard to make cookies that not only taste amazing but also feed your soul; that make you remember something wonderful – the gooey, toasted, marshmallowy treat you ate around a campfire, that favorite childhood cereal you only got when your dad went to the market, your grandmother’s once-a-year-apple pie…Cookie Good: it’s how you wanna feel.”

“After a few years of baking thousands of cookies at home with only a 6-quart mixer and a single oven, we decided to move to a commercial kitchen. In just 5 hours a day, 4 days a week, we baked and baked and baked. As the business grew, we knew it was finally time to take the biggest leap of all – building our own bakery. We found the perfect spot in Santa Monica – a small, 1930s brick building right across the street from a park with palm trees, lawn bowling, and a duck pond.”

Cookie Good’s (Santa Monica) Co-Founder & Baker Ross Canter joins us with all the sweet details.

Play

Show 339, August 31, 2019: Cookie Good’s Co-Founder & Baker, Ross Canter Part Two

Ross Canter of Cookie Good“For years I was a “writer who bakes”. I’d spend my days in coffee shops writing screenplays, tv shows. Each day was an emotional rollercoaster as I struggled to find self-worth while being mocked by blank pages. But, relief came on weekends and holidays when I’d get into the kitchen and make cookies. I love that you can take lots of different, totally unrelated ingredients, mix them together, nurture them just a little bit and come out with something wonderful, edible and delicious. I realized that I rarely got that feeling of complete satisfaction while sitting at my computer and I knew that I wanted to feel “cookie good” more often.”

As luck would have it, Hollywood writers went on strike in 2007 and now, with no source of income, Melanie suggested it was time for a career change. We perfected my cookie & brownie recipes, sent an email out to family and friends and three minutes later we had our first order (in truth, it was for my best friend but I still think it counts). We’ve been baking, shipping, developing new flavors and feeling “cookie good” ever since.” – Ross Canter, Baker & Co-Founder

“Unlike Ross, the baker who writes, I don’t bake or write. But luckily after 25 years of marriage, 23 years of parenting, birthday parties & holidays galore, I can wrap a mean gift so we make a great team in the bakery.”

“On a deeper note, Cookie Good isn’t just about delicious cookies and pretty packaging. It’s about our family’s struggle to find our passion in life and our ability to survive; it’s about our desire to give back and make an impact on this crazy world – and having lived with breast cancer for the past 21 years, surviving is something our family knows a lot about. So in 2007, when presented with a sink or swim situation, we decided to dive in and combine Ross’ passion for baking and my quest to give back in the hope that Cookie Good might somehow make the world a better place – even if it’s just one cookie at a time. Besides supporting many schools and charities year-round, every October we donate proceeds from our cookies to the Breast Cancer Care & Research Fund, an organization that is very close to our hearts.” – Melanie Canter, Co-Founder

New from Cookie Good is Cookie Corn.” “This just might be the best thing you’ve never had before.”

Cookie Good’s Ross Canter continues…

Play

Show 316, March 23, 2019: Phoenix Bakery with 2nd Generation Baker, Youlen Chan, L.A.’s Chinatown Part Two

Youlen Chan“Founded in 1938, the idea behind Chinatown’s landmark Phoenix Bakery was to create a gathering place for the community producing traditional Chinese pastries and cookies not found locally. At the time, Chinatown was truly the place where Chinese immigrants came together and the iconic architecture and plazas were opening.”

“Using generation-old recipes, the Chan family’s first bakery highlighted their almond cookies. Founders, F.C. Chan and his wife were proud to offer the treats to everyone. Soon thereafter, F.C.’s brother, Lun joined the bakery and their trademark fresh strawberry whipped cream cake became part of the offerings.”

“It wasn’t until the 1970s, however that Phoenix Bakery became famous throughout Los Angeles for being a little Chinese bakery making a “not so Chinese” cake. With business flourishing, in 1977, the Chan family moved from Chinatown’s Central Plaza to a custom-built bakery on Broadway that remains their current location today.”

“Catering both to the local population celebrating birthdays and to the thriving businesses operating downtown, Phoenix Bakery cakes started becoming traditions. Lun’s son, Youlen eventually took over production and Phoenix Bakery continued to thrive as he expanded the offerings of sweets and confections.”

Youlen Chan continues…

Play

Show 198, November 19, 2016: Baker Dorie Greenspan, Dorie’s Cookies Continues…

Dorie Greenspan and her cookbook Dories CookiesOver the course of her incredible baking career, Dorie Greenspan (a 3-time James Beard Award-winner) has created more than 300 cookie recipes. Yet she has never written a book about them—until now. Just in time for the Holidays is Dorie’s Cookies. It’s her 12th cookbook.

Baking phobic…? Dorie gently prods you to get into the kitchen and give it a go. Her suggested starter cookie is Almond Crackle Cookies. The three ingredients are sugar, and egg and sliced almonds.

This is such an exciting book for me. It’s got a whole new look and a cover that’s my favorite color: Purple! Oh, and it’s got recipes, of course. Lots of them. There are cookies of every kind imaginable and some that you might not have imagined. You’ll be surprised at how many of our favorite sweets can be cookie-ized.” – Dorie Greenspan

“There are everyday cookies and cookies for weekends (recipes that take a bit more time), holidays (you’ll be everyone’s fav at this year’s cookie swaps) and celebrations. There are bars and brownies and biscotti and the kinds of cookies that make big batches for parties. And there are all the recipes for the cookies that I created for Beurre & Sel, the cookie adventure that Joshua, my son, and I launched a few years ago. In the front of this beautiful (chubby) book there’s a Cookie-Making Handbook that guarantees that every cookie you make will be perfect, even if you’re new to the craft.” – Dorie Greenspan

Inducted into the James Beard Foundation’s Who’s Who of Food and Beverage in America, Dorie Greenspan is also the author of Around My French Table, a New York Times bestseller that was named Cookbook of the Year by the IACP; Baking Chez Moi; and Baking: From My Home to Yours, a James Beard Award winner. She lives in Westbrook, Connecticut, and Paris.

Play

Show 59, February 1, 2013: Roberta Koz Wilson, Cookies for a Koz

Roberta Koz WilsonIt’s almost Valentine’s Day and what more thoughtful edible gift than absolutely delicious chocolate chip cookies baked in small batches with a lot of heart & TLC! The big plus is that each sale benefits The Starlight Children’s Foundation.

Roberta Koz Wilson (jazz saxophone great Dave Koz’s sister) of Cookies for a Koz joins us to share the inspirational story. The cookies are a tribute to their late mother, Audrey, who created the original cookie recipe. The truth is that these famous cookies opened a lot of doors for Dave in his early days as a struggling musician!

The Red Velvet Cookie was originally created as a Valentine’s Day special. It became so popular that it was added to the year-round line. It’s their take on a moist and delicious Red Velvet Cupcake.

Some intriguing new varieties will be added in 2014 including peanut butter chocolate chip.

Play

December 7: Carla Hall, Barbara Fairchild, Cookies for a Koz, Devon Espinosa, Donald Wressell, Brad A. Johnson, Dean Thomas

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Barbara Fairchild, former long-time Editor of Bon Appetit Magazine, educator, food journalist, and cookbook author Part One
Segment Three: Barbara Fairchild, former long-time Editor of Bon Appetit Magazine, educator, food journalist, and cookbook author Part Two
Segment Four: Carla Hall of ABC’s “The Chew” and Zov Karamardian of Zov’s Bistro in Tustin
Segment Five: Devon Espinosa, Bar Director at The Church Key
Segment Six: Pastry Chef Donald Wressell of Guittard Chocolate Co.
Segment Seven: Brad A. Johnson, restaurant critic for The Orange County Register
Segment Eight: Chef Dean Thomas of Europa Village Winery and The Inn at Europa Village in Temecula

Lechon Porchetta by Susan ParkYou can aid the victims of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines and enjoy some great Filipino food. There is a huge Filipino community right here in Los Angeles County.

In addition to the high profile benefit for typhoon relief at The Church Key on the Sunset Strip on Sunday (which we’ll be talking about later in the show) there is a more populist fundraiser at Bamboo Bistro in Panorama City on Sunday, Dec. 15th from 4 to 8:00 p.m.

Pinoy food will be there in abundance expertly prepared by L.A. chefs including Chef Mayet Cristobal, the Executive Chef of the Getty Museum. She will be serving Beef Short Rib Adobo. The minimum donation is a modest $20 per adult and there will be live music.

Barbara FairchildThe long-time former editor of Bon Appetit Magazine, Barbara Fairchild, is back with us reporting from New York. Barbara is also an educator, best-selling cookbook author, food and travel journalist and much-in-demand speaker.

Barbara has recently had a couple of culinary excursions to the San Francisco Bay Area and will report on dining spots she enjoyed that merit your attention. She will also speak about an unusual evening she was part of honoring San Francisco’s STARS, a long-departed celebrity chef driven restaurant that, in it’s day, was the Spago of San Francisco. The proprietor/executive chef Jeremiah Tower (now a resident of Mexico) was in attendance.

Roberta Koz WilsonIt’s Holiday Time and our thoughts turn to incredible, fresh-baked, small batch, high-quality cookies as special gifts. That can only mean a chat with Roberta Wilson (jazz saxophonist great Dave Koz’s sister) the force behind Cookies for a Koz. Ten per cent of the proceeds are donated to the Starlight Children’s Foundation. Dave Koz is a Global Goodwill Ambassador for them.

Roberta’s and Dave’s late mother, Audrey, perfected the recipe for a great chocolate chip cookie and that’s the legacy of the company. The much-appreciated cookies were a door-opener all over town for the youthful Dave as his career was just beginning.

Carla HallFood fans know Chef Carla Hall as the “Hootie Hoo” lady and fan favorite from multiple seasons of Bravo’s “Top Chef.” She is now the co-host of ABC’s daytime lifetime series, “The Chew.” Last week “The Chew” celebrated their 500th episode and the show continues to gain in popularity. Carla also is the author of Cooking with Love: Comfort Food That Hugs You, newly available in paperback.

Carla is being honored by Zov Karamardian of Zov’s Bistro in Tustin at her Culinary Concert to benefit the James Beard Foundation on Sunday, February 9th. It’s a great holiday gift for that special foodie in your life.

That Sunday Carla and Zov will conduct a highly entertaining cooking class for the guests followed by a lavish lunch. Carla will be available to sign copies of her book and interact with the guests. It all starts at Noon.

For more info and to make reservations please call 714.838.8855 ext. 21

Devon EspinosaDevon Espinosa (a C-CAP graduate) is one of the rising young stars among the master bartenders in the West. He created the cocktail program at ink. and Pour Vous and he’s the bar chef for the new The Church Key on the Sunset Strip. Some of his cocktails are canned for freshness.

Devon is also one of the organizers of a high-profile benefit at The Church Key on Sunday, December 8 from 5 to 9:00 p.m. for Typhoon Haiyan relief efforts. An impressive line-up of chefs and bartenders are coming together to raise the vitally needed funds. Look for celebrity chefs Eric Greenspan, Kris Morningstar, Ray Garcia and Steve Samson among many others.

Donald WressellThere really is no finer pastry chef in America than the pleasantly low-key Donald Wressell. He was the opening executive pastry chef at the Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills. This is the luxury property where the majority of the out-of-town Academy Award nominees stay. Every year Chef Donald would create incredible individual chocolate show-pieces celebrating each of the “Best Picture” nominees. These elaborate pieces where then featured, via photography, in the Oscar coverage beamed across the globe.

Donald has competed in the most prestigious international pastry competitions and, most recently, has coached, too. He’s judged pastry chefs for competition shows on Food Network.

He’s currently the pastry chef for the proudly American chocolate company, Guittard Chocolate Co. Guittard is based in Burlingame but Chef Donald has a test kitchen and research facility here in Los Angeles. He also teaches classes for professional pastry chefs and candy makers.

In January he’ll create the sure to be dazzling Birthday Cake for The City of Beverly Hills’ 100th Anniversary. He created another cake spectacular for Beverly Hills’ Diamond Jubilee 25 years ago while he was at The Four Seasons.

Blossom Restaurant at the Aria in Las VegasA few weeks ago Brad A. Johnson, the James Beard Award-winning restaurant critic for the Orange County Register, was with us to talk about his first 4-Star review. It’s Blossom restaurant at Aria Resort in Las Vegas.

Brad is back with us to explain his criteria for a 4-Star restaurant review and also talk about the new crop of ultra-luxe Chinese restaurants on The Strip. It’s some of the most elegant Chinese fine-dining outside of China and designed for highly discriminating (and wealthy) Chinese guests!

Dean ThomasChef Dean Thomas is the Executive Chef de Cuisine for the Europa Village Winery in Temecula and also serves as the Innkeeper for the Inn at Europa Village (along with his wife, Nicole.) His multi-course breakfasts, reserved exclusively for guests at The Inn, are unrivaled in the Valley. Many of the ingredients actually come from the vineyard property and change with the season. Chef Dean has extensive credentials as an executive chef for luxury hotel properties.

Chef Dean is the unofficial executive concierge for Wine Country Temecula. When it comes to directing guests to the wineries and restaurants best suited to the visitors’ wishes Dean’s advice is the gold standard.

Chef Dean shares with us the specifics on an independent restaurant in Temecula as well as a winery restaurant that are both on his highly recommended list. He also talks about a Slow Food event he is hosting on December 12th featuring local artisan food products and cooking demonstrations.

Podcasts

Segment One: Host Jet Tila and Producer Andy Harris
Segment Two: Barbara Fairchild, former long-time Editor of Bon Appetit Magazine, educator, food journalist, and cookbook author Part One
Segment Three: Barbara Fairchild, former long-time Editor of Bon Appetit Magazine, educator, food journalist, and cookbook author Part Two
Segment Four: Carla Hall of ABC’s “The Chew” and Zov Karamardian of Zov’s Bistro in Tustin
Segment Five: Devon Espinosa, Bar Director at The Church Key
Segment Six: Pastry Chef Donald Wressell of Guittard Chocolate Co.
Segment Seven: Brad A. Johnson, restaurant critic for The Orange County Register
Segment Eight: Chef Dean Thomas of Europa Village Winery and The Inn at Europa Village in Temecula

Show 16, February 9, 2013: Rachel Klemek of Blackmarket Bakery at The Camp in Costa Mesa and Irvine (continued…)

Rachel Klemek of Blackmarket Bakery and the CampIn early January, Klemek debuted a new 1,800-square foot retail location and bakery at The Camp in Costa Mesa (with indoor and patio seating) located just a bit south of South Coast Plaza. On the extensive menu are breakfast pastries, cookies, buttercream cakes, tarts, and retro breads and rolls. Part of the funding for the equipment there was raised on Kickstarter.

Also in the mix are brioche buns, oatmeal stout rolls, shortbreads. Her signature Marche Noir Cabernet brownies (made with wine flour,) bars, cobblers, incredible marshmallows with natural flavors, and open faced ice cream sandwiches.

On Monday, February 11th from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Blackmarket Bakery at The Camp is celebrating it’s Grand Opening. 15 percent of all sales during the festivities will go to Share Our Selves.

The Camp location has already been so successful that you can expect other Blackmarket Bakery retail bakery locations on the horizon.

Play