Article: March, 2012

Easter Ham: A Feast for All the Senses

Along with the first blooming crocus, the sighting of the first robin, pro baseball training camps, and the tapping of maple trees for their sap, an Easter ham is one of the most celebrated and classic signs of spring.

In days gone by, hams were cured, smoked, and dried by hanging in the fall, wintering over until early spring when the first emerging hams were brought to table.
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Are you ready to bring back the flavors of spring?

It’s that time of year again—that stretch when the calendar says it’s spring, but there’s still a chill in the air. Half the country is breaking out their flip-flops, while the other half is still bundled up in warm coats.

It’s the time of year when we’re hankering to bring our barbecues out of storage—just on the cusp of grilling season.

We like to transition into spring by mixing some indoor cooking methods with light, refreshing springtime flavors. Here are some of our favorites. (more…)

Coq au Vin: From Humble Origins to Haute Cuisine

Born of frugality, Coq au Vin is a slow-cooked classic French recipe that combines poultry and wine into a braised dish of delectable proportions. Traditionally, the recipe is highlighted by its inclusion of button mushrooms, pearl onions, and lardons—matchstick-sized pieces of bacon.

Coq au Vin is the second cousin to Boeuf Bourguignon, which is essentially the same recipe, except that cubes of beef are used instead of pieces of poultry.

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Irish Cuisine: An Ode to Land, Sea and Frugality

As in most developing ancient European societies, the transition from Stone Age to the Bronze Age had a dramatic affect on what the people of Ireland ate and how they prepared it.

The development of malleable, heat-tolerant materials meant that foods could be cooked in a vessel using moist-heat methods, rather than solely by dry heat over or in an open fire. The most primitive method of moist heat cooking is boiling—meat and or vegetables cooked in water until palatable.

In ancient times, the cauldron—a large three-legged pot suspended over a fire—was the most common cooking vessel, and it can be traced to the origins of so many traditional Irish soups, stews, and braises we know and love today. The earliest ovens were simply cauldrons turned upside down and placed over a fire.

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How To: Pan-Broil a Steak Video

Customers are always asking us what the secret ingredient of a perfectly cooked steak is. The answer is simple: An incredible steak. You don’t even need a grill. If you’re cooking indoors, you can still achieve an unbelievably juicy, perfectly cooked steak. Pan broiling is a two-stage method that uses your broiler for searing and finishing to your preferred degree of doneness. In this video, Stanley Lobel takes you step-by-step through the technique of pan-broiling a steak.
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