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

Archive for June 13, 2010

FATHER’S DAY: A Gift Of Whiskey Stones

Switch ice cubes for stone cubes and you
won’t dilute your drink. Photo courtesy
Sur La Table.

Whiskey stones, you ask?

Talk about “on the rocks!” For those who want to chill their whiskey, but not dilute it, whiskey stones are the elegant answer. (You don’t want to plop plastic ice cubes into a single malt, do you?)

The concept was popularized in Scandinavia, where people have chilled whiskey with granite rocks for hundreds of years.

These all-natural, handcrafted Vermont soapstone whiskey stones have superior thermal properties to granite, and won’t scratch the glass. They reside in the freezer until they’re called upon to do their job.

Stones are nonporous, so they won’t impart any flavors or odors to the drink. The perfect cube shape of the stones also allows for a better and more even chilling.


Give a set for Father’s Day to your favorite lover of Bourbon, Irish Whiskey, Scotch or other fine whiskey. Nine stones in a muslin storage bag—enough to chill three drinks—are $19.95 at Sur La Table.

Need to learn the differences among these and other types of whiskey? See our Whiskey Glossary.)

Comments off

RECIPE: Raw Corn & Herb Salad

Every day at THE NIBBLE, we have a staff lunch to taste the foods we’re considering. To get our daily intake of fresh fruit and vegetables, we always serve a salad—although not necessarily a classic recipe.

Side salads are an opportunity to combine fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs with a less-common lettuce (or lettuce substitute—here, arugula). Try this flavorful and refreshing Raw Corn and Herb Salad at lunch or dinner. It goes with just about anything, but pairs especially well with pork, ribs, grilled steak, grilled fish or roasted chicken.

This recipe serves 4-6 people. It was developed by Chef Eric Dantis for THE NIBBLE.

• 4 ears raw corn
• ½ bunch large cilantro leaves
• 1 handful baby arugula
• 1 tablespoon yuzu juice (an Asian citrus)* or ½ teaspoon lemon juice mixed with ½ teaspoon lime juice
• 2–3 tablespoons blood orange-infused olive oil (we enjoy Sonoma Farm’s) or plain extra virgin olive oil
• 2 poblano chile peppers
• Salt and Pepper to taste
• Optional romaine for “lettuce cups”

This salad can be served as a side salad or a
first course. Photo by Katharine Pollak | THE NIBBLE.

*Buy a large size of yuzu; it’s an exciting citrus flavor that can be used in cocktails, seviche, sorbet and anywhere you use citrus juice. The flavor has often been described as a cross between grapefruit and lime; but people who don’t like grapefruit love yuzu.

1. Roast the poblanos on a grill or directly on the stove fire until the skin has blackened. (Alternatively, you can roast the chiles under a broiler or in a 400°F oven until tender.) After the skin has blistered and blackened, place them in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Set aside until they are cool enough for you to handle them.

2. Cut the kernels off the corn cobs; run your fingers through the kernels to break them apart. You can use frozen corn if fresh corn is unavailable—but there’s nothing better than fresh corn!

3. Pull cilantro leaves from the stems. They’ll be serving as a lettuce-like component.

4. Pour yuzu and olive oil into a medium bowl, season with salt and pepper and whisk the mixture together to make a vinaigrette.

5. When poblanos are cool enough to handle, peel off the blackened skin. Cut in half and discard seeds, ribs and stems. Then cut into small squares, about the same size as the corn (this cut is called a brunoise, broon-WAHZ).

6. Mix all ingredients well in a large bowl and toss with the vinaigrette. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

7. If serving as a first course, serve in romaine lettuce “cups” (fill a medium-size leaf of romaine with the corn salad). You can also use the lettuce cup as an attractive presentation alongside the main protein.

You can create easy variations of this recipe by adding 1/2 cup cooked black beans (or other beans) and/or 1/2 cup diced tomato.

Find more salad recipes in our Gourmet Vegetables section.


Comments off

TIP OF THE DAY: Summer Cheese Course

Charm your guests with special summer cheese plates.

This individually-plated cheese course is made by slicing four-inch rounds of cheese into eight wedges, and adding a visual counterpoint of a square-cut cheese and a sautéed mushroom stuffed with herbed goat cheese.

While a simple garnish would be fine—a sprinkling of nuts and fruits—the delight here is in the decoration. Work with an assortment of:

• Apple slices (a crinkle cutter makes the pale slices stand out)
• Blueberries
• Champagne grapes
• Citrus peel
• Currants
• Diced canteloupe and/or honeydew
• Dried currants and berries
• Edible flowers
• Green or red grape halves
• Nut halves
• Raisins and sultanas


Create charming cheese plates for special
dinners. Photo courtesy Wisconsin Milk
Marketing Board.

The fruit-and-nut decoration turns the cheese plate into a festive dessert. Choose three or four different rounds—for example, Camembert or a baby Brie; a goat cheese like Selles-sur-Cher; a triple-crème like Brillat Savarin; pecorino tartufo, a sheep’s milk cheese filled with black truffle pieces; and a pungent washed-rind cheese like Crave Brothers Petit Frère or Cowgirl Creamery’s Red Hawk. The square piece can be a firm cheese (Cheddar or pepper jack), a blue cheese or anything that appeals to you.

Find cheese recipes, our favorite cheeses and our Cheese Glossary in THE NIBBLE’s Gourmet Cheese Section.

Comments off

© Copyright 2005-2017 Lifestyle Direct, Inc. All rights reserved. All images are copyrighted to their respective owners.