Articles from pete

  1. A "No Turkey" Thanksgiving-Roast Pork

    It’s the beginning of  November and we are just a few weeks away from Thanksgiving, which means the foodie blogosphere is abuzz with all things Thanksgiving related. There are hundreds of recipes for turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, sides, and all manner of desserts, but you don’t see a whole lot about alternatives for turkey. Sure they are out there, but they are certainly overshadowed by the number of turkey recipes available.

    I know that there are people out there that won’t be eating...
  2. A Brief Tour of American Barbecue

    Barbecue, barbeque, BBQ, or Bar-B-Que, no matter how you spell it America has developed an insatiable appetite for the stuff.  Restaurants specialize in it, competitions abound, and backyard grill jockeys brag about their deftness at creating perfectly tender, spicy, smoked meats.  But with all this hullaballoo, I would bet that, if you asked the average person to describe barbecue the first thing they would mention is baby back ribs slathered with a sweet and spicy tomato based sauce. ...
  3. A Duo of Beef Jerky Recipes

    A few years ago I received a food dehydrator that I wrote a review for, here on Chef Talk.  While it isn't a piece of equipment that I pull out often I do pull it out occasionally, usually to make fruit leather for my daughter, but has my wife is a big fan of jerky I do occasionally pull it out to make something for her.

    This weekend I got a chance to play around, again, with making jerky, and I have to say, I was rather pleased with the results. It sure beats out most of the big name brand...
  4. A Guide To Substitutions For Herbs And Spices

    Written By Chef Peter Martin
    As foodies, we are very lucky that we live in today's world.  Never in the history of mankind have we had access to so many foods and cuisines.  It's not uncommon to eat Chinese food one night, Italian the next, and Mexican the following night.  Even in the smallest of towns you can find at least 1 or 2 of these more common ethnic cuisines.  In major metropolitan areas, the choices are even vaster, with choices ranging from Thai, Ethiopian and Peruvian to...
  5. A Pair of Peach Preserves

    This past Fall my wife was out and about and had stopped at this little Amish farm that also runs a bakery out of their house. She loves to stop there to pick up their Bacon-Cheese Bread, Pecan Sticky Buns and their soft Pretzels. This day they had a number of boxes of peaches sitting outside with a sign telling people that they were free. Word was that they had gotten partially frozen and now weren’t any good for what they needed them for. Well Wanda picked up a box and brought them home....
  6. A Return To Taste

    America has lost its way when it comes to purchasing food.  We can walk into virtually any supermarket or megamart and purchase just about any food we desire regardless of the season.  Our modern transportation system allows us to ship fresh foods from all over the world to be delivered, for our enjoyment, even when those foods are out of season locally.  Unfortunately there is a price to be paid for this convenience and that price is a loss of flavor and texture.  What is even more...
  7. A Simple How-To Guide to Making Risotto

    Risotto.  The mere mention of the word often strikes fear in novice cooks.  Only stir the risotto clockwise.  Don't scrape the bottom of the pan.  Don't add boiling liquid. Don't add cold liquid.  Don't add the liquid too fast or too slow.  Don't overcook it.  Don't under cook it.  The list of do's and don'ts go on and on and on.  With all of these stipulations, and more, it's amazing that anyone can turn out perfect risotto at all.  Luckily, risotto is not nearly that finicky.  Yes, there...
  8. A Small, Quiet Thanksgiving

    It's that time of year when food sites and food blogs turn their attention to the holidays and offer up all sorts of wonderful dishes for your holiday celebrations.  Unfortunately, the vast majority of these sites tend to focus on large gatherings and forget that, for many people, the holidays won't be filled with large family gatherings or parties  For many, it may just be them and their significant other, or just the few people in their immediate family.  Maybe they don't have any extended...
  9. A Warming Welcome

                For many people, maybe even most people, Christmas is a time of tradition.  We gingerly pull out Christmas decorations that have been handed down from generation to generation.  We bake the same cookies our mothers used to bake for us.  We listen to the same recordings of Christmas songs that we grew up with and watch the same Christmas movies year after year, and, for many families, we prepare the same Christmas feast as it has been done for generations.  Tradition even dictates...
  10. An American Classic-Biscuits and Gravy

    This country is facing a huge problem. Yes, I know, we are facing a lot of problems; the financial crisis, civil unrest, another election where we will have to chose the lesser of 2 evils, etc. The list goes on, but I’m not talking about these front page issues that take up most of our time. I’m talking about something more insidious. An issue that has seemed to have slipped past the media’s attention and yet no one noteworthy has taken up its cause. Yes, I’m talking about the fact that it...
  11. Antipasto Panini

    America has a passion for grilled cheese sandwiches. From the standard home fare of American cheese stuffed between white bread to the exotic creations dreamt up in fine dining establishments across this country, we can’t seem to get enough of this humble sandwich. Of course, in finer dining establishments they aren’t called grilled cheese sandwiches, but rather they are called paninis. No one in their right mind is going to drop $8 or $9 or more for a “grilled cheese”, but give it an...
  12. Apple Butter

    Apple butter is one of those foods that seem so daunting to those not in the know, but really apple butter is very easy to make. Nor does it take a lot of “special” ingredients. I’ve even made passable apple butter using store bought applesauce as the base, though starting from fresh apples will give you a much better product.

    While apple butter is time consuming to make-it cooks for a couple of hours over low heat and needs to be stirred regularly or else it will burn-it also is very easy....
  13. Apple Cranberry Leather

    I’ve recently be playing around with dehydrating as a form of preserving food, and making tasty treats thanks to my new dehydrator from Chef Talk. You can find the review of that dehydrator here  Nesco Fd 1018 Gardenmaster Food Dehydrator​ In the past, dehydrating hasn’t held a lot of allure for me, but I am the curious sort (for both better and for worse) and am always looking to try new things and experiment with new, at least to me, techniques.

    Of course, one of the first things I’ve...
  14. Apple Pancakes with Maple-Cider Syrup

    I don’t eat breakfast a lot. I think I’ve said that before, but it is worth repeating. Sometimes I grab a quick bowl of cereal or a piece of fruit on my way out the door, or if I have to stop for gas I might grab a donut and a coke (healthy I know!!!!), but that is pretty much it during the weekdays. On weekends we a much more likely to cook a breakfast even though that doesn’t happen regularly, but since we have the time and it is not something we do often we usually go all out and make up...
  15. Apricot, Almond and Pumpkin Seed Granola

    For far this year it has been a lousy winter.  Yes, I'm one of those people that actually like snow and it's been way too warm for that.  But we've also had more than our fair share of grey days and precipitation, and since it hasn't been that cold, that means rain, and lots of it. It’s been good weather to bundle up with a cup of coffee or spiced cider, spiked with bourbon or rum, of course and to read or watch a movie or two. It has also gotten me in the mood to whip up a big batch of...
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