Items tagged with 'cooking'

Pick-your-own blueberry season 2015

box of blueberries at samascott

We are into the thick of blueberry season around the greater Capital Region. And as we've mentioned before, blueberries are just about our favorite pick-your-own crop because they're easy to pick (on bushes about waist high), relatively cheap (usually between $2-$3 per pound), and they freeze beautifully, so you can stock up for later in the year.

There are a handful of farms around the Capital Region that offer pick-your-own blueberries. Here's a list with some info. And, of course, if you know of a place that should be on the list, please share.

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It's cold and snowy... so, what's cooking?

winter cooking 2015 composite

By Deanna Fox

The doldrums of winter have settled in. I've got cabin fever, and these long, freezing days are starting to wear on me.

Winter is great in that I can snuggle in front of the fire in fleece-lined leggings, ugly (but cozy) sweaters, and put whiskey in my tea with reckless abandon.

But the best way to beat winter is from the inside out. I've been wondering what other cooks in the area have been eating to get through the winter. So I asked! Here's what winter tastes like a handful of kitchens around the Capital Region.

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Cider donut bread pudding

cider donut bread pudding serving

By Deanna Fox

We saw that Deanna had made this for a party and it looked like an idea that needed to be shared. So, we asked her how to make it.

I recently hosted a group of foodies at my house for brunch to celebrate a good mutual friend. Hosting brunch can be intimidating. Hosting brunch for people who seriously know their food? Even more so.

This was no time to hold back. This is when the big kitchen guns come out: the no-holds-barred, all-stops-pulled kind of cooking.

This was the time for cider donut bread pudding.

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Food media bootcamp in Rensselaerville

food media bootcamp 2014There's a "Food Media Boot Camp" in Rensselaerville July 17-20. The camp is billed an "intensive retreat in which people can learn to expand their writing, photography, interviewing, and recipe development skills," and it's in a converted barn space. Blurbage:

The cast of characters include: the fabulous Lee brothers who have written the James Beard award winning cookbook The Lee Bros. Southern Cookbook; Molly O'Neill, the famed James Beard award winning author; Diva of America Pie, Kate Lebo (whose cookbook Pie School: Lessons in Fruit, Flour and Butter will be coming up this September); writer, photographer and genius behind Local Food Milk Blog, Beth Kirby; and Kristen Miglore, the executive editor of the website Food52.

The price is steep -- $1,250, which includes all meals and dorm-style housing, or $900 if you arrange housing separately. (We also hear you might be able to swing a discount by posting about the camp on social media outlets -- be sure to ask.) But if you're interested in writing about food, and making something more out of what you're writing, it might be worth considering.

If you have questions or would like more info, email Ali Rea-Baum: ali@cooknscribble.com.

Entertaining, canning, swapping with the author of the The Hip Girl's Guide

kate payne

Author Kate Payne will be in town next weekend for a series of events related to her new book, The Hip Girl's Guide to the Kitchen:

June 6: Affordable Entertaining Class at Healthy Living Market
"This demo-style class will feature a menu of Spring Loaded Risotto, Radish Bites, Seasonal Shrub, and a special added demo on DIY Bitters for all your summer cocktail needs." 6 pm - $15

June 6: From Scratch Club Food Swap at Healthy Living Market
An FSC food swap following that class. (This will almost certainly fill up -- they usually do -- so registration now if you'd like to attend.) 7 pm - free (registration required)

June 7: Demo & Book Signing at Healthy Living Market
Signing books and demonstrating recipes with Christina Davis. 11:30 am-3 pm - free

June 8: Pressure Canning 101 Class at Oakwood Community Center in Troy
"Learn how to line your pantry shelves with homemade stocks (and make more room in your freezer)! Participants will learn methods for making various stocks and safely preserving them using a pressure canner. You'll learn proper methods for how to safely seal jars for shelf storage with ingredients that are not safe to simply waterbath can." 1 pm - $35

June 8: From Scratch Club Food Swap at Oakwood Community Center
Again, this will probably fill up. 4 pm - free (registration required)

photo: Jo Ann Santangelo

Cooking classes at Market Bistro

Price_Chopper_Market_Bistro_01.jpgPrice Chopper has started a series of cooking classes at the fancy pants new Market Bistro in Latham, which includes a large instructional kitchen.

The schedule posted includes a range of topics, including baking, grilling, and a few different cuisines, as well as a mix of demonstration and hands-on classes.

Larry Schepici -- the exec chef at Jack's in Albany -- is teaching a "Chef Larry's Signature Dishes" demo class (with wine) on May 28. It's $60. (He's one of the few instructors' names listed -- it'd be helpful to see who's teaching some of the other classes.)

Cooking classes seem to be pretty popular in this area. A few other places that offer them: Different Drummer's Kitchen at Stuyvesant Plaza, Gio Culinary Studio in Voorheesville, Spoon and Whisk in Clifton Park, the Arts Center of the Capital Region in Troy, Honest Weight in Albany, and Healthy Living in Wilton.

America's Test Kitchen Live at The Palace

christopher kimball america's test kitchen

Christopher Kimball

The Palace announced today that America's Test Kitchen Live -- a stage show from the popular PBS TV cooking show -- will be at the theater April 13 at 3 pm. Tickets go on sale to the general public Friday (February 28) -- they're $35 and up.

America's Test Kitchen is produced by the same people behind Cooks Illustrated, the popular magazine devoted to careful testing of recipes, cooking techniques, and kitchen gadgets. Event blurbage:

As host of America's Test Kitchen for the past 14 seasons, as well as editor of the popular Cooks Illustrated magazine, Christopher Kimball will share his strong and entertaining opinions on culinary trends and cooking equipment. He'll take questions from the audience as well as test their knowledge of unusual ingredients in an interactive segment during the live show. America's Test Kitchen Live with Christopher Kimball will deliver a fun and informative evening for fans and foodies around the country.
Dan Souza is a senior editor of Cook's Illustrated and an on-screen test cook for America's Test Kitchen. In addition to his work on Cook's Illustrated, Dan has contributed content to a dozen America's Test Kitchen cookbooks, most recently executing and editing the test kitchen experiments for The Science of Good Cooking (October 2012). Dan cut his culinary teeth as an apprentice in Hungary before graduating first in his class from the Culinary Institute of America (CIA). After cooking in restaurants in New York City and Boston, however, he found his true calling: applying good science to create great recipes for the home cook.

(This NYT Mag article from a few years back is an interesting look at Kimball and the Cooks Illustrated empire. )

The Palace event also has a VIP ticket that includes a book and meet-and-greet with Chris Kimball's bowtie. It's $85.

photo: America's Test Kitchen FB

Hey there, chef Sarah Fish

Sarah Fish

Chef Sarah Fish

Sarah Fish taught herself to cook.

The owner of The Hungry Fish Cafe in Troy always thought she'd be a writer, until health issues and financial hardship changed her path.

Since then, Fish has been named a Rising Star Chef at the Albany Wine and Dine for the Arts Festival, her cafe is gaining popularity, she's getting ready to buy her own building, and she's teaching cooking classes at The Arts Center in Troy. Fish is committed to using local ingredients in her cooking for health, flavor and strengthening the local community.

This week, Fish took time to talk with us about a planned appearance on The Food Network, why breakfast is more exciting than you realize, and how a garden led her to the kitchen and changed her life.

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Winter cooking: ancho pinto beef chili

ancho chili nachos

Sure, you could eat this chili from a bowl. But why would you do that when you could have nachos?

By AOA Greg

Because it's the weekend and the middle of winter -- and a bunch of people mentioned that cooking helps them shake off the January gloom -- here's a recipe for ancho pinto beef chili.

It's warm and rich and meaty -- even though it's mostly beans. It's also easy to make. And it makes the house smell fantastic.

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Cookie decorating at The Confectionery

confectionery interior muralThis could be fun: The Confectionery is offering a holiday cookie decorating party hosted by its pastry chef, Starla Bradshaw. The event is Sunday, December 15 from 4-6 pm. Tickets are $20 ahead (available at The Grocery) / $25 at the door.

Blurbage: "Cookies and decorating supplies will be provided, as well as your choice of a glass of mulled wine or sipping chocolate."

Getting together with some friends to decorate cookies and have some wine could be fun wherever you do it. But we suspect there could be some interesting twists for these cookies. Bradshaw has been using some unusual flavors in her creations for the Confectionery. Example: macarons in flavors such as pine (ground pine needles and sugar), bee pollen, charcoal and smoked vanilla bean, and spirulina.

Oh, and the Confectionery's patio now has a retractable glass roof.

Earlier on AOA: Checking out The Grocery in Troy

The Confectionery was a stop on the AOA Historic Bad Boys, Broads, and Bootlegger tour.

A sampling of cooking classes, fall 2013

kitchen tools in holderWe've pulled together a list of upcoming cooking classes that look interesting or fun a few times before and people seem to like it.

So, here's a new batch of classes for the next few months -- from hard cider, to cooking basics, to gourmet cheese, to food allergies, to desserts on fire, to finding your soulmate in the kitchen...

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Let's get ready to crumble

blueberry crumble in bowl

Blueberry crumble.

By AOA Greg

We interrupt our regularly scheduled programming (whatever that is) for this moment of cooking bloggery.

One of the great things about this time of year is the almost overflowing bounty of good local produce. There are all the vegetables, sure. But the thing I really associate with summer is the fruit. Strawberries early in the season, cherries, peaches, blueberries and raspberries -- and then just as summer's ending, apples.

And when we have an abundance of summer fruit, it's time for crumble. It's easy to make. Here's how.

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Couples cooking classes?

knife cutting board peppers flickr bhamsandwichAnonymous emails:

I'd love to do a couples cooking class but don't know who might offer classes, and especially for couples? Let me know if you or your readers have any tips!

There are a lot of cooking classes around the Capital Region -- more than you can shake a whisk at. We haven't noticed any recently that were couples classes, per se -- but maybe some could work that way.

Also: places that offer cooking classes -- hey, maybe this is an idea for you.

So... got a suggestion for Anonymous? Please share!

Earlier on AOA: A sampling of cooking classes, fall 2012

photo: Flickr user bhamsandwich (cc)

The Scoop

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