Show 87, September 6, 2014: Travel Writer Michelle Winner, President, IFWTWA

Michelle Winner of IFWTWA and Culinary TravelerFood, wine & travel writer Michelle Winner is the President of the International Food, Wine & Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA.). She will be talking to us from Hawaii.

Over Labor Day Weekend Michelle was part of the Kaanapali Fresh – A Culinary Experience on Maui and right now she is in the middle of the 4th Annual Hawaii Food & Wine Festival on Oahu.

At Kaanapali Fresh, Michelle was a judge for the “Kaanapali Range to Sea.” Each competing chef was paired with a farmer and utilized his produce or product. The winning dish (vegetarian) was Ti Leaf Wrapped Corn Tamale with Syl’s Produce, corn truffle salsa in a smoked tomato emulsion. The winning chef was Raymond Nicasio of the Sheraton Maui Resort.

Michelle also talked about the revitalization of the well-known Maui Gold pineapple brand. These coveted pineapples are only grown on Maui. It’s an agriculture success story of quality over quantity.

The Hawaii Food & Wine Festival event Michelle attended Thursday evening was the sold out “A Lucky Modern Buddha Belly” at The Modern Honolulu. The event put a spotlight on Hawaii’s unique location as a culinary hub of the Pacific where East Meets West. 14 esteemed chefs (including Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto) showcased dishes inspired by the Lucky Buddha who is known for happiness, plenitude, and wisdom of contentment.

Ti Leaf Wrapped Corn Tamales with Corn Truffle Salsa and Smoked Tomato Emulsion

Recipe yield:   6 x 4” tamales or 12 x 2” tamales
Recipes for Corn Tamales

1 ½ cups Fresh Corn kernels
½ cup Vegetable Shortening
1 cup Masa harina (Tamales flour)
2/3 cup yellow cornmeal
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp Salt
3/4 cup Corn Stock or water
3 each Ti leaf
1/2 cup Corn Truffle Salsa (separate recipe below)
1 cup Smoked Tomato emulsion

Procedure:

  • Clean and remove husk from the corn. Using a knife scrape the corn kernel off the cob and reserve corn cob to make corn stock. Place ¾ cup of fresh corn kernel in a blender or food processor and grind the corn until almost smooth, set aside.   Place vegetable shortening in an electric mixing bowl with a wire whip attachment. Set mixer on medium high and whip the shortening until light and fluffy.
  • On a separate mixing bowl place Masa Harina, cornmeal, cayenne pepper, ground cumin, baking powder, and salt. Mix thoroughly until well incorporated. Heat up corn stock or water to lukewarm and gradually stir stock or water to the flour mix until it forms a thick dough.
  • Change the whip attachment to dough hook attachment. Transfer the dough to the mixing bowl and add the grinded corn and the rest of the corn kernels mix thoroughly. The dough will be quite sticky.
  • Remove the spine off the ti leaf wash, pat dry and line on a flat suface. Using a pastry piping bag, pipe dough on to the leaf and proceed to roll the dough on the leaf making sure it is completely wrapped.
  • On a steamer or pot with a wire rack with boiling water, steam the tamales for 45 minutes. Cut to desired length. Remove the tamales from the leaf and serve with corn truffle salsa and smoked tomato emulsion.

Corn Truffle salsa recipe

1 can Corn truffle or Cuitlacoche (4 oz) can be found in latin specialty store
1 cup Fresh corn kernels
1 1/2 tbs white balsamic vinegar
1 tbs Red bell peppers, small dice
1 tbs Maui Onions, small dice
2 tbs Olive oil

  • Put cuitlacoche in a blender and puree until smooth.
  • Heat saute pan, saute onions and bell pepper until tender
  • Add corn to the pan and sauté until it is tender and has slight caramelized color.
  • Add pureed corn truffle. Stir until completely coated.
  • Remove from heat and add white balsamic vinegar. Stir until well incorporated.

Smoked Tomato salsa

4 ea Vine riped tomato, cut in half
1 ea Maui onion, cut in half
1 ea Jalapeno, cut in half and seeds removed
1 ea Red Bell Pepper, seeds removed and cut in half
4 cloves Garlic, peeled
2 Tbs Liquid smoke
3 Tbs Olive oil
1 ea juice of lime
1 tbs Cilantro, chopped
1 Tbs Salt
1 Tbs Chipotle in adobo sauce, use only the sauce

  • In a mixing bowl, place cut tomato, onion, peeled garlic, jalapeno, bell pepper, olive oil, and liquid smoke. Mix well until well coated with olive oil and transfer to a baking sheet or pan. Season with 1 tablespoon of salt.
  • Pre heat oven to 350 degrees F, place the mixture in the oven and roast for about 30 minutes or until vegetables have a slight char.
  • Transfer to a food processor bowl and add the chipotle adobo sauce, lime juice and cilantro. Process the mixture to a slight smoothness.
  • Season with the remaining salt.

September 6: Andrew Gruel, Carolyne Styne, McConnell’s Ice Cream, Michelle Winner, Melissa’s Produce, Geeta Bansal, 12 Bottle Bar

Podcasts

Segment One: Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel and Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris preview the show
Segment Two: LA Loves Alex’s Lemonade
Segment Three: McConnell’s Fine Ice Cream
Segment Four: Travel Writer Michelle Winner, President, IFWTWA
Segment Five: Corporate Chef Ida Rodriguez, Melissa’s Produce
Segment Six: Executive Chef Andrew Gruel
Segment Seven: Chef Geeta Bansal of Clay Oven
Segment Eight: The 12 Bottle Bar

Guest Host Executive Chef Andrew Gruel, CEO of Slapfish Restaurant Group and Producer Andy Harris preview the show.

The 5th Annual L.A. Loves Alex’s Lemonade culinary cookout returns this year on Saturday, September 20th. When it comes to having the most impressive roster of nationally-known celebrity chefs cooking locally for charity this Benefit is the clear standout. It’s hosted by Chef Suzanne Goin, her business partner Caroline Styne (Lucques, A.O.C., Tavern) along with Chef David Lentz (The Hungry Cat.)

McConnell’s Fine Ice Cream is a 70-year old iconic brand of super premium ice cream which is still based where it was founded in Santa Barbara. Michael Palmer (winemaker) and his wife Eva Ein (chef) purchased this heritage brand in 2012. A McConnell’s scoop shop recently opened in the Grand Central Market in Downtown Los Angeles.

Food, wine & travel writer Michelle Winner is the President of the International Food, Wine & Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA.). She will be talking to us from Hawaii. Over Labor Day Weekend she was part of the Kaanapali Fresh – A Culinary Experience on Maui and right now she is in the middle of the 4th Annual Hawaii Food & Wine Festival on Oahu.

Ida Rodriguez is the long-time Corporate Chef for Melissa’s / World Variety Produce. Until the end of the month it’s Hatch Chile season. Over Labor Day Weekend Chef Ida was in Hatch, New Mexico for the annual Hatch Chile Festival. It gets crazy there. Chef Ida is with us to give us the flavorful report.

Executive Chef Andrew Gruel is CEO of Slapfish Restaurant Group with locations in Huntington Beach, Laguna, Dubai, and soon – Newport Beach. Chef Andrew is a guest judge on Food Network’s upcoming “Food Truck Face-Off” series, was a participant on Sept. 5th at OC Weekly’s 11th Annual Decadence 2014 Tasting Event, and has a new video our explaining the secrets of preparing Slapfish’s Clobster Roll to the Orange County Register’s distinguished food writer, Cathy Thomas.

It’s a singular honor as a chef & restaurateur to be invited to prepare and present a meal at The James Beard Foundation in New York. Chef Geeta Bansal of Clay Oven has that distinct honor on September 27th. On Monday, Sept. 15th Clay Oven will be previewing that same grand five-course, wine-paired menu for a small group of lucky locals. Not one to miss…

David Solmonson and Lesley Jacobs Solmonson have penned a new kind of cocktail book, The 12 Bottle Bar. Just twelve bottles create over 200 distinct and seasonal cocktails, including beer and wine cocktails. When we first interviewed the Solmonsons we ran out of time before we could discuss the clever “Acknowledgements” section of their book. We’ll resume the conversation…

All of this and lots more absolutely incredible deliciousness on Saturday’s show!

Caroline StyneThe 5th Annual L.A. Loves Alex’s Lemonade culinary cookout returns this year on Saturday, September 20th. When it comes to having the most impressive roster of nationally-known celebrity chefs cooking locally for charity this Benefit is the clear standout. It’s hosted by Chef Suzanne Goin, her business partner Caroline Styne (Lucques, A.O.C., Tavern) along with Chef David Lentz (The Hungry Cat.)

The new location is Wilson Plaza at UCLA in Westwood.

The 5th Annual Benefit invites food and wine lovers from all corners of the globe for an afternoon of fantastic fare, cocktails for a cause, children’s activities, silent and live auctions, and a whole lot more. The incredible chef brigade includes big name cooks ranging from Giada De Laurentiis to Tom Colicchio.

Michael PalmerMcConnell’s Fine Ice Cream is a 70-year old iconic brand of super premium ice cream which is still based where it was founded in Santa Barbara. Michael Palmer (winemaker) and his wife Eva Ein (chef) purchased this heritage brand in 2012. A McConnell’s scoop shop recently opened in the Grand Central Market in Downtown Los Angeles.

The late Jim McCoy owned McConnell’s from 1963 until he needed to sell the business due to ill health in 2012. It was very important to him that this be maintained as a family business based in Santa Barbara.That was his legacy.

75 per cent of McConnell’s ingredients come from within 60 miles of Santa Barbara.

Food, wine & travel writer Michelle Winner is the President of the International Food, Wine & Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA.). She will be talking to us from Hawaii.

Over Labor Day Weekend Michelle was part of the Kaanapali Fresh – A Culinary Experience on Maui and right now she is in the middle of the 4th Annual Hawaii Food & Wine Festival on Oahu.

The Hawaii Food & Wine Festival event Michelle attended Thursday evening was the sold out “A Lucky Modern Buddha Belly” at The Modern Honolulu. The event put a spotlight on Hawaii’s unique location as a culinary hub of the Pacific where East Meets West. 14 esteemed chefs (including Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto) showcased dishes inspired by the Lucky Buddha who is known for happiness, plenitude, and wisdom of contentment.

Chef Ida Rodriquez of Melissas World Variety ProduceIda Rodriguez is the long-time Corporate Chef for Melissa’s / World Variety Produce. Until the end of the month it’s still Hatch Chile season.

Over Labor Day Weekend Chef Ida was in Hatch, New Mexico as a participant for the annual Hatch Chile Festival. It gets really crazy there. Chef Ida joins us to give us the flavorful chile report.

Weekend Hatch chile roasting continue through this month at select supermarkets. Check the Melissa’s website for the schedule, times, and locations.

Andrew GruelExecutive Chef Andrew Gruel is CEO of Slapfish Restaurant Group with locations in Huntington Beach, Laguna, Dubai, and soon – Newport Beach.

Chef Andrew is a guest judge on Food Network’s upcoming “Food Truck Face-Off” series, was a participant on Sept. 5th at OC Weekly’s 11th Annual Decadence 2014 Tasting Event, and has a new video out explaining the secrets of preparing Slapfish’s Clobster Roll to the Orange County Register’s distinguished food writer, Cathy Thomas.

Geeta Bansal of Clay Oven in IrvineIt’s a singular honor as a chef & restaurateur to be invited to prepare and present a meal at The James Beard Foundation in New York. Wolfgang Puck was the very first chef to do so.

Chef Geeta Bansal of Clay Oven has that distinct honor on Saturday evening, September 27th. On Monday, Sept. 15th Clay Oven will be previewing that same grand five-course, wine-paired menu for a small group of lucky locals. Not one to miss…

At Clay Oven, chef/owner Geeta Bansal updates traditional Indian recipes with modern culinary techniques and vibrant California bounty. Incorporating the changing colors, flavors, and aromas of each season into her rotating menus, she honors Ayurvedic principles while bringing haute Indian cuisine to the forefront of Southern California’s dining landscape.

David and Lesley Jacobs SolmonsonDavid Solmonson and Lesley Jacobs Solmonson have penned a new kind of cocktail book, The 12 Bottle Bar. Just twelve bottles create over 200 distinct and seasonal cocktails, including beer and wine cocktails. When we first interviewed the Solmonsons we ran out of time before we could discuss the clever “Acknowledgements” section of their book. We’ll resume the conversation…

On Saturday, September 13th at 10:30 a.m. the Solmonsons will present “Sin and the Silver Screen: The Age of the Hollywood Nightclub.” It’s a free program in the Mark Taper Auditorium at the Los Angeles Central Library.

To celebrate the release of The 12 Bottle Bar the Solmonsons will lead two Los Angeles-based barhops in September (Sept. 7th ) and October (Oct.5th.,) each one stopping at three bars over one evening. Each event includes one spirit-focused mini-cocktail at each location, appetizers/small plates, a copy of The 12 Bottle Bar book, and more!

Podcasts

Segment One: Guest Host Chef Andrew Gruel and Producer & Co-Host Andy Harris preview the show
Segment Two: LA Loves Alex’s Lemonade
Segment Three: McConnell’s Fine Ice Cream
Segment Four: Travel Writer Michelle Winner, President, IFWTWA
Segment Five: Corporate Chef Ida Rodriguez, Melissa’s Produce
Segment Six: Executive Chef Andrew Gruel
Segment Seven: Chef Geeta Bansal of Clay Oven
Segment Eight: The 12 Bottle Bar