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Mouthing Off

By the Editors of Food & Wine Magazine

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Chicken Dance

Pass the Talking Peas, Please

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Braised Chicken

© Jonny Valiant / Braised Chicken

A recently-publicized study may distress compassionate plant-eaters. Several months ago, scientists from Israel's Blaustein Institute for Desert Research at Ben-Gurion University published evidence that pea plants in a drought can send warning signals through their roots to other pea plants via shared soil. The alerted plants then prepare for the environmental stress. This information inspired a New York Times Opinionator post this weekend about the ethics of eating intelligent plant life. Unsurprisingly, many commenters are not amused by the premise that we could one day empathize with certain plants like we do animals. Plus, what would even the most cautious diner eat? Until more research suggests otherwise, we'll continue to respect vegetables by preparing them in delicious ways. Lovable peas star in this simple vinegar-braised chicken recipe. Combining leeks, fresh herbs and luxurious crème fraîche, the dish is elegant but fast enough to make for a weeknight dinner.

Related: Delicious Recipes for Peas
Great Spring Recipes
Weeknight Wine Pairings

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Jose Andres’s Pepe Truck Stars at Sweetlife

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Chicken Thighs

© Con Poulos / Chicken Thighs

While the first Austin Food & Wine Festival gets started today in Texas, The Sweetlife Food & Music Festival begins tomorrow in Columbia, Maryland. Billed as a sustainable celebration, the event will host both local and national artists and a “Food Forest” with a few of the best indie restaurants in the northeast making appearances including NYC’s Roberta’s and Momofuku Milk Bar. Representing DC: celebrated chef José Andrés, whose Pepe Truck will peddle Spanish-inspired sandwiches like the Pepito de Iberico with seared Iberico and Serrano ham, roasted green peppers, onions and aioli. For a dinner at home with Andrés’s deeply flavorful Spanish food, opt for his Roast Chicken Thighs with Lentil Stew and a really great playlist.

Related: More Recipes from José Andrés
Delicious Spanish Recipes
Great Food Trucks

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Food for the new Austin Food & Wine Festival

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Jonathan Waxman

© Fabrizio Ferri

The inaugural Austin Food & Wine Festival starts tomorrow and among the fantastic chefs who will be leading panels, demonstrations and events is Jonathan Waxman of Barbuto and Top Chef Masters fame. On Saturday, the man who brought California cuisine to NYC will share a few guilty pleasures at a demo called Junk Food Personified. At Barbuto, however, he focuses more on seasonally-driven Italian dishes like this Chicken al Forno with Salsa Verde. The simple roast chicken gets its flavor not from fat but from fresh lemons, frequent basting and a pungent garlicky salsa verde.

Related: Recipes from California Chefs
Healthy Italian Dishes
Delicious Roast Chicken

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America Loves Kimchi

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Bulgogi-Style Chicken

© Kana Okada / Bulgogi-Style Chicken

Kimchi, the pungent Korean pickled condiment, is making its way into the American mainstream, National Restaurant News reports. Chefs across the country have embraced kimchi as a versatile ingredient that can be used in many different dishes–from tacos to tempura. Not only is kimchi delicious, it is also loaded with beneficial probiotics. Before you try it on a hot dog, taste the garlicky pickle alongside Ginger-Marinated Bulgogi-Style Chicken, F&W's healthy take on a classic Korean dish.

Related: Great Korean Recipes
Grilled Chicken Recipes
Healthy Asian Dishes

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Asparagus Industry-Friendly Salad

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Grilled Chicken Salad

© David Malosh / Grilled Chicken Salad

The U.S. asparagus industry is finally bouncing back. The AP reports that after decades of decreased production due to competition from South American imports, American asparagus farmers are expecting much better business this year due in part to healthy eating trends and increasing demand for locally grown vegetables. Asparagus season typically lasts just through June, so help support the hopeful farmers today with a Grilled-Chicken-and-Asparagus Salad with Parsley Pesto. Garlic, lemon juice, oil and a lot of parsley are all it takes to make the flavorful dressing for this fast and easy early summer salad.

Related: More Chicken Salad Recipes
Great Asparagus Dishes
Delicious Grilled Chicken

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Potato Chip-Crusted Chicken for Picnic Day

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Hoosier Chicken

© James Baigrie / Hoosier Chicken

Though the word picnic has French origins (pique-nique), Americans have embraced the outdoor practice more enthusiastically than baguettes and Bordeaux wine, and today is even National Picnic Day. This crispy fried Hoosier Chicken with Potato Chip Crust is an ideal main for a picnic since it’s delicious both hot and at room temperature. Serve tucked into some French bread or sliced over an easy-to-eat chopped salad.

Related: Great Picnic Recipes
Stylish Picnic Baskets
Picnic Pairings

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Mission-Style Tacos for SF's Outside Lands

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Grilled-Chicken Tacos

© Con Poulos / Chicken Tacos

Today, tickets go on sale for San Francisco's eclectic music festival Outside Lands, which will take place in Golden Gate Park, August 10-12. The line-up includes rock gods Metallica, dubstep innovator Skrillex and the legendary Stevie Wonder. 2012 food vendors have yet to be announced, but if last year's options are any indication, mission-style Mexican food will definitely make an appearance. These San Francisco-inspired Grilled-Chicken Tacos are easy to make at home. After an overnight marinade, the chicken takes just 15 minutes to cook and you can even leave the assembly up to guests for a fast and fun DIY dinner party.

Related: Great Tacos
San Francisco Chef Recipes
Grilled Chicken Recipes

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Meet Jacques Pepin in San Francisco

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Essential Pepin

Courtesy Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Though you can see him whenever you please in how-to videos on foodandwine.com, it's not every day that you get to meet Jacques Pépin. Today, San Franciscans had that opportunity at Ominvore Books, where the French master chef chatted about his new book, Essential Pepin. Those seeking digital instruction at home can try his inventive Chicken Bouillabaisse, inspired by the tomatoey-fennel flavors of the traditional seafood stew, but filled with chicken, kielbasa and potatoes.

Related: More Recipes from Jacques Pépin
French Main Courses
Dishes from the French Masters

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Babbo’s First Lunch

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Chicken Thighs

© Lucy Schaeffer / Chicken Thighs

For the first time in its 14 years of existence, Mario Batali’s Babbo opened for lunch today. Dinnertime reservations are notoriously hard to secure at the New York restaurant, which, according the menu obtained by Eater, served Turkey Porchetta and Orecchiette with Stinging Nettles and Salami this afternoon, along with a $49 four-course prix fixe —$20 less than the cheapest tasting served in the evenings. While the new daytime hours will make it easier and more affordable to try Babbo, this recipe for crispy Chicken Thighs with Garlicky Crumbs and Snap Peas is the fastest and cheapest way to taste Batali's food. Anchovy fillets mixed into the bread crumbs adds a salty, complex flavor to the quick-cooking dish.

Related: More Great Dishes from Mario Batali
Great Grilled Chicken Recipes
Anchovy Recipes

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Ana Sortun's Chicken Shawarma for the Boston Marathon

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Chicken Shawarma

© Kana Okada / Chicken Shawarma

Today's record heat in the Northeast made the Boston Marathon—held annually on Patriot's Day—especially grueling. While last year’s winner was the fastest in history, this year’s victor, Wesley Korir, finished the 26.2 miles with the second slowest time since 1985. Residents who have the day off, however, are surely enjoying the nice weather the area's great restaurants like Ana Sortun's Middle Eastern takeout spot Sofra in Cambridge. Her Chicken Shawarma with Green Beans and Zucchini would make a terrific healthy meal for anyone recovering from exercise or just a case of the hot Mondays.

Related: More Recipes from Boston Chefs
Middle Eastern Dishes
Healthy Sandwiches

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Congratulations to Nicholas Elmi, winner of Top Chef: New Orleans, the 11th season of Bravo's Emmy-Award winning, hit reality series.

Already looking forward to next year (June 19-21, 2015)? Relive your favorite moments from the culinary world's most sensational weekend in the Rocky Mountains.