When winter winds nip at the nose, when the clouds spit snow and puddles freeze – that is the time for comforting meals of stew in steaming bowls accompanied by chunks of crusty bread.
Stews are an elemental food, harkening back to dim times when a single earthen pot simmered over a fire, the repository for whatever was hunted and gathered that day. Most cultures that eventually coalesced from our first ancestors kept this primordial food memory, and at the heart of most cuisines are many and varied stews, whether they are called pot au feu, goulash or râgout, boeuf bourguignon, bigos or burgoo, cassoulet, cholent or cioppino, feijoada, hasenpfeffer or hot pot.
The practical value of the stew concept is neatly summarized by The Oxford Companion To Food, with a description that cuts to the heart of the ubiquity of stew in so many cultures: “The mixture of ingredients in a thick and opaque sauce casts a veil of uncertainty over the proportions of expensive ingredients to cheap ones.” Stews stretch what is available to sate many stomachs; the flexibility of the concept allows for the satisfying of varying tastes; and the use of available native ingredients permits endless variations on a theme.
Continue reading Cooking with Ron—Stews to Chase the Winter Blues
Tailgating is always a fun occasion to get friends together to cheer on your favorite teams. In the winter months football is still in season with the Big Game coming in February, and basketball is just getting started. We thought we’d invite some of our favorite chefs over to share what they like to serve when they’re “homegating.”
Continue reading Easy Entertaining—Tailgating in the Comfort of Your Own Home
Many Derby visitors hope to dine on regional delights like country ham on beaten biscuits, Benedictine sandwiches, beef tenderloin served with Henry Bain’s sauce (if someone offers you a jar as a gift, take it with thanks and be sure to get the story behind it), and, of course, Derby Pie. If they are fortunate enough to attend an informal brunch out in the countryside, they might even be treated to burgoo. Continue reading Burgoo — A Kentucky Original
There’s not much good about a bad economy.
Many of us are paying now for pleasures we enjoyed months or even years ago, when we had no idea the brakes were on and we went ahead and bought that house, boat or flat-screen TV. Continue reading Chimichurri and Baked Cheese Grits Recipe
Holidays can be stressful. End-of-year entertaining can present special challenges that don’t plague your average host during less hectic seasons.
With the never-ending parade of office celebrations, neighborhood gatherings and family functions, holiday parties often seem more of a chore than a pleasure – to both host and invitee alike. Continue reading Home for the Holidays
Though you can’t tell it by the Toyotas and the UPS trucks, perhaps, Kentucky is an agriculture state.
Though manufacturing, services, mining and other industries contribute their part, Kentucky ranks fifth in the country in the number of farms. Continue reading Here’s the Beef — Eat local (recipe included)