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Mouthing Off

By the Editors of Food & Wine Magazine

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News

New Sullivan Street Bakery Outpost

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Jim Lahey is opening a new branch of Sullivan Street Bakery.

There we were at the second Monday Night Movie Night at NYC's Co. pizza, watching Les Blank’s 31-minute Yum Yum Yum!, an ode to everything Cajun (in the fun film: lots of music, lots of cooking and a youngish Paul Prudhomme). We were also sampling a Cajun menu inspired by the movie, including superb beef-tongue toasts (you see some major beef tongue in Yum Yum Yum!) and spicy andouille-and-cockle pizza with green-pepper puree and Gruyère (no pizza in the movie, but there is graphic sausage-making). And then, there we were getting a tour of what will be an outpost of the excellent Sullivan Street Bakery, a door or two up from Co. on Ninth Avenue. (What with the expansion of Txikito down the block, this could become the best block to eat in the city.) Jim Lahey, the genius baker and co-owner of both Sullivan Street and Co., has taken over a bakery that once produced cheap cakes (and still carries the pervasive sweet smell of bad buttercream). Hopefully he'll be baking bread there by Halloween, as well as introducing a snack that will be even more addictive than Sullivan Street's pizza bianca.

Restaurants

Talisker's New Public Restaurant

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John Murcko

© Photo Courtesy of Talisker
Chef John Murcko

Until very recently, most visitors to Park City, Utah (me included) could only get a passing glimpse at the luxurious world of Talisker. Created by a high-end real-estate developer, Talisker is made up of three private communities whose members enjoy exclusive access to clubhouses at many of the area's ski resorts. But that all changed earlier this year with the opening of Talisker on Main, a new restaurant that's open to everyone. I visited the place recently and found it a sophisticated alternative to downtown's many rustic spots, with pressed-tin ceilings, crystal chandeliers and sheepskin chairs. Chef John Murcko, a 15-year Park City veteran, has some outstanding meats on his menu, like seared Utah elk served over glazed yams, but even though I'm a carnivore, my hands-down favorite dish was the salad of thinly sliced, roasted brussels sprouts with toasted hazelnuts and a touch of Jerez sherry vinegar. I only wish I had been there a few weeks earlier, during the Sundance festival, when I could have spotted Adrian Grenier, Paris Hilton and Joan Rivers.

Wine

Berlin's Big Food Trend

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Michael Hoffman

© Photo Courtesy of Restaurant Margaux
Chef Michael Hoffman

I’m in Berlin this week, and in between business meetings I’ve had some extraordinary meals. One surprise: In a city I normally associate with Wiener schnitzel and currywurst, tons of restaurants are offering really interesting vegetarian options. Chef Michael Hoffman of the Michelin-starred restaurant Restaurant Margaux is perhaps the city’s biggest vegetable champion; he even has a cookbook dedicated entirely to cooking with herbs (an English version is in the works) and a second vegetable-centric cookbook in the pipeline. He and his lovely wife, Kathrin, who runs the front of the house at Margaux, recently planted gardens in nearby greenhouses so they can source vegetables and herbs year round. Hoffman promotes his seven-course vegetarian tasting menu with equal, if not greater, enthusiasm than his regular tasting menu. I was truly impressed with dishes like a seaweed salad with candied lemon and ginger, jus of pumpkin and lime and a savory baked “sushi” of pumpkin and couscous (pumpkin and couscous wrapped sushi-style in a superthin layer of phyllo dough). And his sommelier was up to the tricky challenge of finding perfect vegetable-friendly wines (the remarkable 600-plus-bottle wine list is nearly 70-percent German) with choices like the 2006 Weingut Bernhard Eifel Barriques Weisser Burgunder from the Mosel.

Restaurants

War on Salt

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Brooklyn assemblyman Felix Ortiz thinks that New Yorkers are ingesting too much salt. So, as a favor to us, he's proposed a bill that would ban the use of all salt in the preparation of food at restaurants. (Even Mayor Bloomberg is only aiming for a 25 percent reduction over the next five years, as Eater reminded us.) Now, even the most salt-happy among us—and I put myself in that group—recognize that some restaurants consistently serve over-salted food. But, if Mr. Ortiz has his way, we can all say goodbye to some now-quintessential NYC foods: the sweet-salty City Bakery chocolate chip cookie, Locanda Verde's creamy ricotta finished with flecks of sea salt, even street-vendor pretzels. While I am certain restaurant-goers would be shocked at the amount of salt that goes into their food, I cannot imagine a world without these dishes. Can you? I hereby declare this bill utterly ridiculous. Who is with me?

Here, F&W recipes that celebrate the power of salt:

Salt Cod Croquettes

Salt-Baked Trout

Salt-Roasted Shrimp

Smoky Pork Pappardelle

Gadgets

Apps for Healthy Kids

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When I was a kid, Mario Bros. was my video game of choice. I would spend hours sitting in front of my parents’ big TV, ignoring my mother’s pleas to set the table, trying to get Mario (or Luigi, depending on my mood) to the next level. These days, though, kids can’t play video games just for the fun of it—that is, if Michelle Obama has her way. Yesterday, the First Lady and the USDA announced the Apps for Healthy Kids competition, a challenge to software developers, game designers—anyone with a good idea—to develop tools and games to help conquer childhood obesity. Michelle Obama wants to help kids and their parents “eat better and be more physically active,” and she knows just how to get a kid’s attention: with flashy, fun and engaging video games, preferably with a catchy tune.

Until they announce the winners—$40,000 in prizes are at stake—these superquick and healthy F&W recipes will help anyone eat better. 

Bulgur Salad with Lightly Roasted Vegetables

Caesar Salad Spears

Chicken Smothered in Gravy

 

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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.