Show 210, February 11, 2017: Melba and Steve Artea, Crown City Toffee

Melba ArteaWe love inspirational entrepreneurial food success stories. For Melba Artea of Crown City Toffee it all started with a family recipe for toffee (with chocolate & nuts) and a pressing need to provide more financial resources for her Family. Husband, Steve, provides added guidance on the business side.

“Our English toffee is made with the freshest ingredients available. It is crispy with a wonderful buttery crunch and topped with a coat of creamy chocolate (milk or dark) with fresh-roasted almonds sprinkled on top.”

“Our Peanut Butter Drizzle is a huge favorite of many of our customers. It’s roasted peanuts topped over melted Peanut Butter Morsels and drizzled with milk chocolate.”

Crown City Toffee is part of the Pechanga Wine Festival. We’ll get the full story from Melba on her popular toffee line that started in her home kitchen. Based on demand they have graduated to producing in a commercial kitchen.

Update: About an hour and one-half into the 9th Annual Pechanga Wine Festival, Crown City Toffee was about sold out.

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January 12: Robert Wemischner, Josef Centeno, Deborah Schneider, Javier Plascencia

Podcasts

Segment One: Robert Wemischner, cookbook author, pastry chef, and culinary instructor Part One
Segment Two: Robert Wemischner, cookbook author, pastry chef, and culinary instructor Part Two
Segment Three: Josef Centeno, owner/executive chef of baco mercat and Bar Ama in Downtown Los Angeles
Segment Four: Deborah Schneider, executive chef and partner, SOL Mexican Cocina, Newport Beach
Segment Five: Chef Javier Plascencia of Mision 19, Tijuana’s superstar celebrity chef and culinary goodwill ambassador for the food and wines of Northern Baja
Segment Six: Chef Javier Plascencia of Mision 19, Tijuana’s superstar celebrity chef and culinary goodwill ambassador for the food and wines of Northern Baja (Continued…)

We’re cooking and baking with tea and then talking about a promising new Tex-Mex establishment in Downtown LA, with some flair from a young chef who does it his way. We’re then on to Newport Beach Restaurant Week and finally a taste of Northern Baja!

Robert WemischnerAcclaimed pastry chef and culinary educator Robert Wemischner has always been intrigued by the flavor potential of ingredients, from turmeric to tea and from cumin to coffee.

He is the author of four well-received cookbooks, including his most recent effort, The Dessert Architect. For the last 18 years he has headed the respected baking and pastry program for Los Angeles Trade-Tech College in Downtown Los Angeles.

Chef Bob joins us to present Tea 101 and guidance on cooking and baking with tea.

He also shares his delectable recipe for Chocolate Assam Tea Torte which he served at the “Getting Our Just Desserts” Benefit for C-CAP last November.

Josef Centeno

Josef Centeno is part of a group of risk-taking, young chefs who are going out on their own and making names for themselves. He created quite a splash when he designed the original menu and concept for Lazy Ox Canteen in Little Tokyo in Downtown LA.

After that was up and running he ventured out on his own in a more urban area of Downtown and launched baco Mercat at the corner of 4th & Main. He even makes his own soft drinks there from quality ingredients.

In December he debuted his 2nd Downtown spot, Bar Ama, which is a tribute to his Grandmother’s style of Tex-Mex food.

Newport Beach Restaurant Week is January 18th to 27th. Participating restaurants have special pricing for lunch and/or dinner. It’s a chance to experience the best in Newport Beach dining at very affordable prices.

Deborah SchneiderDeborah Schneider, the executive chef & partner of SOL Mexican Cucina joins us to tell us about what SOL is doing for Restaurant Week.

One of the most prominent and distinguished chefs cooking in Mexico today is Javier Plascencia who makes his home in Tijuana. He’s cooked for Mexico’s president, Felipe Calderon. His family also has a fine restaurant on the US side of the Border in Bonita.

Javier PlascenciaChef Javier is also an unabashed cheerleader for the foods and premium wines of Baja. The finest wines in Mexico come from the region and are just now finding their way into US distribution channels.

Last year when Anthony Bourdain of Travel Channel’s “No Reservations” visited Northern Baja, Javier was a prominent part of this at his latest venture, Mision 19.

On Monday evening, January 14th Chef Javier has recruited the best chefs and winemakers in Northern Baja to join him in preparing a 7-course, wine-paired meal at Romesco as a benefit for the San Diego Chapter of The American Institute of Wine and Food.

It’s sold out with a waiting list but this is a chef you should really know.

Podcasts

Segment One: Robert Wemischner, cookbook author, pastry chef, and culinary instructor Part One
Segment Two: Robert Wemischner, cookbook author, pastry chef, and culinary instructor Part Two
Segment Three: Josef Centeno, owner/executive chef of baco mercat and Bar Ama in Downtown Los Angeles
Segment Four: Deborah Schneider, executive chef and partner, SOL Mexican Cocina, Newport Beach
Segment Five: Chef Javier Plascencia of Mision 19, Tijuana’s superstar celebrity chef and culinary goodwill ambassador for the food and wines of Northern Baja
Segment Six: Chef Javier Plascencia of Mision 19, Tijuana’s superstar celebrity chef and culinary goodwill ambassador for the food and wines of Northern Baja (Continued…)