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Insights, tips, and restaurant reports from CHOW editors and Chowhound.

Overheard on the General Topics Boards

"I'll suggest Liberté's (Quebec) Méditerranée Coconut, more a dessert than ‘subsistence' yogurt it has a great coconut flavour and some cream (17 grams fat per 6 ounces/170 grams). This is a great daily dessert, I regularly mix it with fruit, cereal, or have it just on its own." - steinpilz

"Navarro's Gewürtzraminer is the only non-alcoholic wine I've had that was worth buying—it actually tastes like a Gewürtztraminer, and not simply grape juice." - Caralien

"Love macadamia nut oil! Try in any kind of mash/purée/mousseline. Mmm, parsnip purée, for example! Or just mashed potatoes. Experiment in any dish you'd use oil or nuts!" - globalgourmand

File Under “Cool Promotion”

Everybody Loves Free Stuff reports on what is among the coolest promo items ever conceived. Journalists and other key influencers relevant to the TV show Prison Break were mailed a cake. Inside that cake—wait for it—was an actual metal file printed with the premiere date of the show for New Zealand broadcaster TV3. The photos are worth checking out.

Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding Is In

No longer just a way for restaurants to use up stale rolls, bread pudding is appearing on dessert menus with a lot more creative love. Essentially just bread soaked in milk and eggs then baked so it turns into custard, it's easy to embellish and riff on depending on the type of bread you use (croissants, baguettes, stale cake, etc.) and the mix-ins you add.

Chocolate chip banana bread pudding with whiskey gelato is on the menu at Chicago's Uncommon Ground, and in Brooklyn, Buttermilk Channel is serving roast apple bread pudding, with warm butterscotch sauce and whipped cream. You'll find it on almost every menu in New Orleans, but arguably the most rad is the Krispy Kreme bread pudding at Boucherie.

Boucherie's chef Nathanial Zimet hails from North Carolina where the doughnut company is based. In his New Orleans restaurant, he combines 24 doughnuts, 3 pounds of pound cake, 1 1/2 quarts of cream, and 9 eggs, soaks it all for about 20 minutes, then bakes it. "It's, like, disgustingly awesome," he says. "We make pans of it, and the staff eats the little edges. One of the servers, she's really skinny, calls them her 'hips.' She eats them and says 'I'm just trying to get my hips!’”

Make one of's bread puddings:
Croissant and Armangac Bread Pudding
Bread Pudding with Orange Caramel Sauce

Caramelizing Versus Sweating Onions

Play Video

One method results in golden brown onions, the other results in translucent onions. ... WATCH THE VIDEO

Street Food: Not Just for LA Hipsters

Germany has brought us sausages and beer. Now we give back.

In true American-mixing-pot fashion, Laurie Isola learned some secrets of Mexican cooking while living in Los Angeles' Koreatown. And now, resident in Berlin, she spreads the joy of carnitas tacos from a weekend stand at the Flohmarkt am Mauerpark.

She details the process—from sourcing masa to finding a way to transport the food by bike—on her blog. But seriously, no Twitter feed: How will Germans find you, Laurie?

Love Pabst Blue Ribbon? Buy Part of the Company.

What began as a joke between two buddies in the advertising biz is rapidly snowballing into reality: an attempt to purchase the Pabst Brewing Company via crowdsourcing. And let's be clear here: What's "real" about this is the attempt, not the actual purchase. Pledges of about $120 million toward the company's asking price of $300 million have been made at since the guys' respective ad agencies, Forza Migliozzi and the Ad Store, launched the site on November 10, 2009.


Overheard on the Los Angeles Boards

"Let's hope the trend continues to push out all the rest of the existing Museum Square restaurants, and that they are replaced with restauranteurs that know and understand what good, simple, DELICIOUS fresh food is." - Mr Taster

"In Korea there is a street food sandwich that has a sweet egg as its main ingredient. Isaac Toast successfully made the move from street food to restaurant." - trojans

"Our server was really attentive and any attempts for us to try and cook any of the food ourselves was met with the tongs being taken away [from] us." - pleasurepalate

The New Fish Taco Tour

streetgourmetla put together an all-star taco-truck touring team, with some of the big names in the LA food-blogging scene. They toured the five most popular and highly touted fish-taco spots in town. And they found a clear winner: Ricky's Fish Tacos, the top pick for all four judges.

This is slightly unusual for a strictly authentic Baja fish-taco experience, says streetgourmetla. Instead of giving you a naked tortilla and fried fish and letting you top on your own, Ricky Pina hands you a fully dressed fish taco. He uses quality Vietnamese catfish, and assembles his tacos to order.

"The pico de gallo is vibrant, the mustard accented batter is made from imported Mexican wheat flour, the cabbage is fresh and razor thin, and the homemade crema is a veritable blend of mayo and 1 percent milk," explains streetgourmetla. "These are delicious fish tacos, and despite not being made from dogfish or angel fish as they are in Baja, you really don't miss a thing. His frying technique and the perfect consistency of the batter deliver satisfaction."

Ricky moves around a lot, but is most often found at the Sunset Junction in Silver Lake. To find out where he is, follow his Twitter feed.

Ricky's Fish Tacos [Silver Lake]
No formal address; for location info, see Ricky's Twitter feed
No phone available

Discuss: Taco Task Force: LA's Best Fish Taco

Tempest in a Milk Glass

An Atlantic blog post titled "The Real Price of Milk" looks at the dark underbelly of Vermont dairy farms, namely the collapsing price of milk and the demanding (and often dangerous) working conditions experienced by migrant workers.

The post is eye-opening, but a comment signed "New England Farmer" is a zesty rejoinder:

"Every one of the people in VT and NH that hires foreigners does it because that lifestyle is dead or moribund in America. There simply aren't children interested in the craft of agriculture. The foreigners that are hired tend very strongly to be farmers or farm laborers back home. They know exactly what is entailed. They are simply not shocked (as your WASPy readership seems to be) by the nature of what occurs on farms."

Best line of the page goes to the same commenter:

"I'll not tell you how to arrange your ikea, how to structure your 401(k) or what montesori school to select, but in return please concede that you really ought not explain to me the labor principles of my 7 thousand year old craft."

Mumbai Street Food

The newest addition to Artesia's lineup of provincial Indian food: Mumbai Ki Galliyon Se, a specialist in the street food of Mumbai, the capital of the Indian state of Maharashtra. "This cuisine is rarely found outside of Maharashtra, let alone India," explains losfelizhound.

You can get masaale bhaath, spiced rice, a traditional Maharashtrian specialty. "This dish demands spice, not heat, and that's exactly how it was," says losfelizhound. Sabudana vada, deep-fried tapioca balls, are a classic Maharashtrian snack. Here they're on the mark, and not at all greasy.

Sabudana khichadi, shallow-fried spiced tapioca, is an excellent balance of green chiles, cilantro, and fried stuff. It's terrific, like Mom's cooking at its finest, says losfelizhound. And puneri misal, another quintessential Maharashtrian snack, is a soupy broth of pulses and grams, with a twist of buffed, beaten, spiced rice. If you can take it, ask for it hot.

The dabeli is sort of like a vegetarian slider. It's a Gujarati snack, uncommon anywhere except the Gujarati areas of Mumbai (formerly Bombay). The potato patty filling is spicy and soft, with a topping of pomegranate seeds and spiced peanuts. It's a fabulous snack, says losfelizhound.

Mumbai Ki Galliyon Se [South Bay]
17705 Pioneer Boulevard, Artesia

Discuss: Mumbai Ki Galliyon Se: A Street-side Home-style Story.
Mumbai Ki Galliyon Se!