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Mouthing Off

By the Editors of Food & Wine Magazine

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Recipes

Ode to Old Bay

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Today's Washington Post food section has a great story from Jane Black on Old Bay, the classic mid-Atlantic spice blend celebrating its 70th anniversary this year. Black gets some great material from the 84-year-old son of Old Bay founder and inventor Gustav Brunn, a German who emigrated to Baltimore in 1938, a year before he created the blend of perhaps a dozen spices (the formula is a closely guarded secret). As a native DC’er, I'm proud to see Old Bay showing up on menus across the country, from Momofuku's fried chicken in NYC to the crab boil at Nettie's Crab Shack in San Francisco. I don't think the 70th anniversary has much to do with its newfound popularity, though: There's just something comforting as well as addictively delicious about the retro mix.

Here are three of the finest Old Bay-spiced recipes from F&W:
Melissa Rubel Jacobson's ingenious Shrimp Boil Hobo Packs

Marcia Kiesel's simple Crabby Carolina Rice

DeeAnn Budney's Crisp Cayenne-Spiced Crab Cakes

Menus

DB Bistro's Marathoner's Menu

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chef

© DB Bistro Moderne
First-time marathoner and DB Bistro Moderne chef Olivier Muller

 

Olivier Muller, the chef at Manhattan’s DB Bistro Moderne, is known for indulgent French food, not to mention the decadent short-ribs-and-foie-gras-stuffed DB burger. But as the chef is gearing up for his first marathon, the ING NYC Marathon on November 1, he’s decided to create a special dinner menu for his fellow runners based on his own training diet. “I did a lot of reading about which foods give runners the most energy and I’ve designed my menu around them,” says the novice runner. Chef Muller’s three-course, pre fixe Marathon Menu is available during the month of October and includes dishes like avocado salad, housemade whole wheat-and-chicken ravioli and apple-and-raisin clafoutis. Muller is running the marathon to raise funds for and awareness of Malaria No More, which helps African families protect themselves with mosquito nets, and $10 for each $55 Marathon Menu ordered will be donated to the organization.

Events

Tim Love Cooks for Rock Stars

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Chef Tim Love Gets Ready for Austin City Limits

Yesterday I detailed Texas star chef Tim Love's all-out burger grilling for the rain-soaked fans at Austin City Limits Music Festival. But that was just Love’s day job. At night, he cooked dinners for the headlining bands. Which means that on Friday night, after the Kings of Leon show, Love was sitting at a table, eating family-style with KOL (“who by the way, might be the coolest people I’ve met in a long time,” he says), as well as Eddie Vedder (who told Love he’d changed Vedder’s perspective on food), Ben Harper, Perry Farrell and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. What did Love make? Rabbit-rattlesnake sausage; venison and foie gras sliders with gooseberry chutney; crispy pig-ear salad; grilled Australian kobe long-bone rib eyes. “Those guys love meat. It was a meat fest." Okay, it wasn't all meat: Love had mushrooms flown in from Oregon, which he sautéed with a load of garlic. And it wasn’t all food: By the end of each night, when the party invariably wrapped up at the Four Seasons, Love was ordering tequila shots by the dozen (you can ask, but he won't confirm who gets the tequila shot rock star award).  “It was the most insane rock and roll experience I’ve ever had," says Love. "Times a hundred.” Hopefully that wasn't the tequila shot count.

Beer

Trend Report from the Great American Beer Fest

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beer

© Christian DeBenedetti
Brian Simpson of New Belgium Brewing Co., in Fort Collins, Colorado, pulls a sample of unblended Felmish-style sour red ale.

 

An estimated 49,000 craft-beer lovers descended upon Denver last week for the 28th Annual Great American Beer Festival, where they had the opportunity to taste some 2,100 beers in 78 styles from 457 American breweries. Writer Christian DeBenedetti, who recently covered the craft-beer scene in San Diego for F&W, was on the scene.” Here, he shares highlights and a few interesting trends: 

“Brett” beers, named for Brettanomyces (bacteria that impart powerful, earthy flavors considered flaws in wine but boons in certain beers), are quickly gaining ground. Standouts at the festival included Odell’s Brett Barrel Brown and New Belgium’s Le Fleur Misseur. Brewers were also collaborating on pairings: Deschutes Brewery’s The Dissident, a sour Flanders brown beer, was amazing with a confit of pork with sage and macerated peaches. Perhaps most surprising was the growing popularity of sour beer styles, which are usually tricky to produce. These beers, such as Berliner weisse, Flanders red and brown ales, lambic and geuze, tend to be an acquired taste due to their acidity. Click here for a list of the festival's award-winners.



 

Test Kitchen

Two Perfect Cakes

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F&W's testing kitchen assistant, Brian Malik, spent last week baking cakes for a January story. Here, he reports:

For an upcoming story on bakeware, F&W's awesome food intern Molly and I worked our ovens overtime making yellow cakes, 14 in all, to test different baking pans. It’s amazing how different the cakes turned out in each pan, even though we used the same recipe every time. Some were light and spongy, others were dark and crisp, and in one, the cake overflowed, covering the oven floor with a sticky burned mess. The full results will be in a future article, but until then, use your favorite cake pan for these amazing recipes:

Yellow Cake with Vanilla Frosting

Marble Cake with Chocolate-Buttercream Frosting

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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.

Run with chefs and wine experts in the Celebrity Chef 5K and dance all night at Gail Simmons’ Last Bite Dessert Party during the FOOD & WINE Classic in Aspen, June 20-22.