THE NIBBLE BLOG: Products, Recipes & Trends In Specialty Foods
Also visit our main website, TheNibble.com.

Archive for February, 2008

PRODCT REVIEW: Maple Leaf Farms Duck

Maple Leaf Farms sells a variety of succulent Pekin duck products, some of which are pre-cooked and ready to eat in just two minutes! It’s some of the best pre-cooked duck we’ve ever tasted; the raw duck breasts we cooked from scratch were also superb. But we love being able to have duck more often, just heating and eating without the heavy aromatics of roasting duck from scratch. If you love duck—and would love to enjoy it more often if only someone would cook it for you and serve it to you in your own home—see what Maple Leaf Farms has to offer. Read our review of their duck products. It will also unravel the mysteries of all those duck terms—the “m” words (muscovy, magret, mallard and moulard), the difference between Pekin duck and Peking duck, and what exactly is a confit.   Confit Of DuckDon’t have an entire day to make confit of duck? Buy it ready-made from Maple Leaf Farms, heat and eat!
 

Comments off

TODAY IN FOOD: It’s Surf & Turf Day

The classic Surf and Turf is a lobster tail and
a filet mignon. Photo courtesy
MackenzieLtd.com.

 

Now, we must ask: Why would anyone make Surf &Turf Day fall on February 29th? Should we celebrate this tasty holiday only once every four years?

Perhaps it’s put on Leap Day because of its ostentatiousness—it is, after all, a dish that combines the two most expensive dishes on the menu, lobster tail and filet mignon.

Of course, mankind has been combining meat and seafood in meals since the dawn of plenty. Fine dining establishments served both lobster and steak on the same plate in the last quarter of the 19th century. Diamond Jim Brady was just one of many gourmands whose table was laden with both beef and lobster.

But the disk known as Surf and Turf (or Surf ‘n’ Turf, to be even more vulgar), is an American invention.

 

The earliest earliest print reference found by FoodTimeline.org was published in the Eureka [California] Humboldt Standard of August 14, 1964: “An entrée in restaurants in Portland [Oregon] is called surf and turf—a combination of lobster and steak.”

However, there is a second claim, without printed proof, that the same dish by the same name was served at the Sky City restaurant, in the Space Needle, at the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair.

The dish is called “Reef and Beef” in Australia. Evidently, ostentatious displays are not limited to the U.S.

Modern Riffs On Surf & Turf

Don”t be constrained by lobster and steak. Pick your favorite seafood and meats: crab cake, crab legs, scallops or shrimp with lamb chops or pork chops, for example.

Or, enjoy a hot dog in a bun paired with lobster, shrimp or tuna salad in a bun, a clam roll or lobster roll.

Fish and chips with a tasty sausage also has its appeal. As does crab cake and ribs.

We could fill the Leap Days for the rest of our life with different options, and not run out.

Happy Surf & Turf Day!

[Updated February 2012]

  

Comments off

TIP OF THE DAY: Make Rosemary Pepper Bacon

Winter days beg for hearty breakfasts and brunches, and this tasty bacon recipe is sure-to-please. Put strips of bacon on a baking sheet. Strip leaves from one sprig of rosemary per half pound of bacon and sprinkle them over the meat. Add fresh-cracked pepper to taste and roast at 400°F until crisp, about 10 minutes. Or, you can start with Nueske’s delicious pepper bacon. Either will make your eggs or BLT sing an exciting new tune.- Read about more of our favorite pork products in THE NIBBLE online magazine.   Pepper Bacon
You’ll love your homemade pepper bacon, but treat yourself to some from a top producer, too.
 

Comments off

TODAY IN FOOD: It’s National Clam Chowder Day

Creamy New England clam chowder. Photo
courtesy MackenzieLtd.com.

 

We’re happy as a clam that today is National Clam Chowder Day. (Although as our colleague Philip has always asked, why is a clam so happy? It sits immobile on the ocean floor, waiting to be scooped up for someone’s dinner.)

You can celebrate with New England Clam Chowder (sometimes called Boston Clam Chowder), Manhattan Clam Chowder or even Rhode Island Clam Chowder; restaurants tend to serve one or the other. New England Clam Chowder is the oldest version.

According to the book 50 Chowders by Jasper White, the oldest-known printed chowder recipe is for fish chowder, printed in the Boston Evening Post on September 23, 1751. It calls for onions, pork, salt, pepper, parsley, sweet marjoram, savory, thyme and a biscuit (later replaced by oyster crackers or saltines served with the soup instead of cooked into it)—ingredients that are still used today.

Types Of Clam Chowder

  • New England Clam Chowder. If you like creamy soups, the New England style may be more of your cup of soup. It’s milk- or cream-based (with flour as a thickener), and splattering it is unlikely to permanently ruin that shirt or tie.
  •  

  • Manhattan Clam Chowder. If you want to save calories or cut back on cholesterol, Manhattan Clam Chowder is based on broth and tomatoes. It is actually an Italian clam soup, arriving on these shores with Italian immigrants in the late 1800s. It tends to be seasoned with oregano, from its Italian heritage. The original Italian soup achieved broader appeal with the name of New York Clam Chowder, which evolved to Manhattan Clam Chowder.
  • Rhode Island Clam Chowder. This variation, found chiefly in Rhode Island, is made with clear broth.
  •  
    What’s A Chowder?

    All chowders tend to be made with potatoes, onions, and of course, clams. If you have a shellfish allergy, you can opt for Fish Chowder, which substitutes shredded fish, often cod, for the clams, and throws in corn kernels for good measure.

    The word chowder has its roots in the Latin word calderia, which originally meant a hearth for warming things and later came to mean a cooking pot. The word evolved to cauldron, which in French became chaudiere, a heartbeat from chowder.

    The first chowders in our culture were fish chowders, made in cauldrons in fishing villages along the coast of France and in the Cornwall region of Southwestern England. When the fishermen came to the New World, they found clams in huge supply along the northern Atlantic coast, and clam chowder was born.

    Here’s a review of one of our favorite New England Clam Chowders, available by the can from Bar Harbor Foods.

    How Many Types Of Soup Have You Had?

    Check out our delicious Soup Glossary.

      

    Comments off

    FOOD TIP OF THE DAY: Make Your Own Flavored Waters

    If you can’t find the flavored water you want in a store—or if you want to save the amount of plastic you consume—you can make it yourself and save both money and the environment. Refill a 16-ounce water bottle with water and start by adding 5 drops of flavor extract (from the spice department) with a clean medicine dropper. We love making mint water this way! If you want to sweeten your water, add a few drops of low-glycemic agave syrup (you’ll find it in the supplements department of natural food stores), or use a liquid non-caloric sweetener. Read about the water that inspired us to make our own, Hint Water, a NIBBLE Top Pick Of The Week. Find more of our favorite waters in the Bottled Water Section of THE NIBBLE online magazine.   Mint Water
    We made mint water with mint extract, and added a spring of fresh rosemary and a lemon wheel to layer the flavor. Great taste, zero calories.
     

    Comments off



    © Copyright 2005-2016 Lifestyle Direct, Inc. All rights reserved. All images are copyrighted to their respective owners.