We’re Moving!

This will be the final post here at WannabeTVchef.Worpress.com. Why you ask? Because there’s a new site. Hop over to WannabeTVchef.com for a look at the new digs. This blog will remain live for a while so that you can read some of the old posts.

January 16, 2010 at 8:16 pm

“Building the Perfect Cookbook” Contest

The Building the Perfect Cookbook Contest

The winner takes home a package of three cookbooks!

Contest ends June 30th. Click HERE to enter.

Third Coast CuisineSusan Irby the Bikini ChefAmigeauxs

June 9, 2010 at 5:03 pm

FOOD NETWORK CANCELED

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
04/01/10

POPULAR FOOD NETWORK TO BE CANCELED AT MONTH’S END

New York City – The E.W. Scripps Company announced today that after 17 years in production their popular Food Network will cease programming at the end of this month. The move took many in assembly by surprise. The press conference was held at Chelsea Market on 75 9th Avenue, home of the Food Network Studios.

Milton Funderburk, Acting Assistant Vice-Chairman of Cable Programming for Scripps was asked why the media conglomerate was closing the doors on its most popular cable franchise, “The time is right. After all when we purchased TFN back in ‘97 we thought it would fail miserably. That was the plan.

“We acquired the Network as a tax right off. We never dreamed anyone would actually watch it. Our thought was why would anyone want to watch someone else cooking on TV? I mean if they wanted to see someone cook, they could just go cook something. Apparently we under estimated the American public’s desire to live vicariously.”

READ ON

April 1, 2010 at 3:05 am

FDA’s Michael Taylor Promotes Himself

On Jan. 13, 2010 Michael Taylor, who was only recently hired as Food Safety Czar by President Obama, has now promoted himself to the new title Deputy Commissioner for Foods.  He created this position to head his newly created Office of Foods for the US Food & Drug Administration (FDA).

According to an FDA press release Taylor’s new mission is, “to develop and implement a prevention based strategy for food safety, plan implementation of new food safety legislation, and ensure that food labels contain clear and accurate information on nutrition.”  The web site also goes on to suggest that Taylor is a nationally recognized food safety expert.  Of course legitimate nationally recognized food safety experts point out that he is anything but.

As part of Taylor’s credentials the press release cites his previous experience in the FDA and USDA.  It also attempts to add authenticity by mentioning that he has served on several National Academy of Sciences expert committees.  What it fails to mention is that he has spent most of the past 30 years as a lawyer and lobbyist for the nefarious Monsanto Company.  It was Monsanto’s genetically modified corn process that introduced humanity to e coli.  And they used your tax dollars to do it.

So while the FDA’s web site tries to convince people that Michael Taylor is the right person to have governing their food safety, the reality is that he is likely just securing more amnesty and tax dollars for Monsanto.  That, after all, was the result of the his previous tenures in public service.

The Huffington Post has called Taylor, “The person who may be responsible for more food-related illness and death than anyone in history,” and that tends to be the consensus throughout the food safety world.  Only the future knows how many more Americans will have to die before Taylor is done.  One thing is for sure, no good will ever come of this.

January 15, 2010 at 4:29 am 2 comments

Valentine’s Day is Sex on a Plate

The following is from my good friend Jennifer Iannolo, co-founder of the Culinary Media Network®.  Jen has planned the ultimate Valentine’s Day Event this year but I’ll let her tell you more about it.  Read on:

What does your inside voice say when you taste something sublime?

Mine says this.

Youve seen me talk a lot about Sex on a Plate on Twitter and Facebook, but I think its high time we got out of the digital realm to bring the experience to life, so if youre going to be in NYC for Valentines Day, I  hope youll join me for a very special evening.

Instead of the rote table-for-two scenario, I’m inviting you to my cocktail party in the Penthouse of the Roger Smith Hotel. We’ve planned a sultry evening of tastes to evoke your senses with the kinds of aromas, textures  and flavors that will make your mouth water  and prime you for what we hope  is a most sensual evening. It doesn’t matter if you’re a single, double or threesome. Or any other combination.

Step inside my head, and see what Sex on a Plate looks like to me.

Pretty please, with a strawberry on top.

*** EVENT DETAILS***

DATE:         February 14, 2010

TIME:          6:30-10:00 PM

VENUE:      Roger Smith Hotel, Penthouse: Solarium, Lexington Avenue & 47th

EVENT TYPE: Cocktail & Tasting Party

MENU:        A series of delectable small plates and adult beverages

TICKETS:

$100 per person through January 31st

$125 per person after January 31st

Space is limited. 21 and over. Order your tickets here.

Note: Due to the nature of this tasting event, we will unfortunately not be able to accommodate food allergy restrictions. Menu may contain shellfish,
nuts or other allergens.

HOTEL SPECIAL

The Roger Smith Hotel is offering a special Take Monday Off rate on Valentines Day for this event. Please contact Brian Simpson for details on Twitter or via e-mail.

Photos: Kelly Cline

What does your inside voice say when you taste something sublime?

Mine says this.

Youve seen me talk a lot about Sex on a Plate on Twitter and Facebook, but
I think its high time we got out of the digital realm to bring the
experience to life, so if youre going to be in NYC for Valentines Day, I
hope youll join me for a very special evening.

Instead of the rote table-for-two scenario, Im inviting you to my cocktail
party in the Penthouse of the Roger Smith Hotel. Weve planned a sultry
evening of tastes to evoke your senses with the kinds of aromas, textures
and flavors that will make your mouth water  and prime you for what we hope
is a most sensual evening. It doesnt matter if youre a single, double or
threesome. Or any other combination.

Step inside my head, and see what Sex on a Plate looks like to me.

Pretty please, with a strawberry on top.

*** EVENT DETAILS***

DATE:         February 14, 2010

TIME:          6:30-10:00 PM

VENUE:      Roger Smith Hotel, Penthouse: Solarium, Lexington Avenue & 47th

EVENT TYPE: Cocktail & Tasting Party

MENU:        A series of delectable small plates and adult beverages

TICKETS:

$100 per person through January 31st

$125 per person after January 31st

Space is limited. 21 and over. Order your tickets here.

Note: Due to the nature of this tasting event, we will unfortunately not be
able to accommodate food allergy restrictions. Menu may contain shellfish,
nuts or other allergens.

  HOTEL SPECIAL

The Roger Smith Hotel is offering a special Take Monday Off rate on
Valentines Day for this event. Please contact Brian Simpson for details on
Twitter or via e-mail.

Photos: Kelly Cline

January 14, 2010 at 2:56 pm

Attack of the Killer Corn!

I think we have all seen this ad:

The gist of this $25 million PR campaign by the Corn Refiners Association is that since the public doesn’t know the specific dangers of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) then there must not be any.  The commercial even goes so far as to call HFCS natural.  Syrup is a processed food therefore by definition can not be natural.

The ad also states that it is no worse than sugar.  No worse than sugar?  First off sugar is pretty bad.  Secondly it is far worse than sugar.

The amount of research that proves HFCS is harmful to humans can be measured in volumes. The data reveals that this unnatural, processed food-product causes and/or contributes to several serious diseases.  Let’s examine some of the evidence.

From knowthelies.com:

In a recent chemical analysis of eleven carbonated soft drinks sweetened with high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), researchers from Rutgers University found very high levels of reactive carbonyls.

Reactive carbonyls, which have been linked to tissue damage and complications of diabetes, are elevated in the blood of people with diabetes. A single can of soda, however, has five times that concentration of reactive carbonyls. Old-fashioned table sugar, on the other hand, has no reactive carbonyls.

From Health Mad:

Since HFCS’s widespread introduction in the 1980’s North American obesity rates have skyrocketed. Obesity has been linked to many heath issues including heart disease and many forms of cancer. When HFCS is ingested, it travels straight to the liver which turns the sugary liquid into fat, and unlike other carbohydrates HFCS does not cause the pancreas to produce insulin; which acts as a hunger quenching signal to the brain. So we get stuck in a vicious cycle, eating food that gets immediately stored as fat and never feeling full.

Nancy Appleton, PhD, clinical nutritionist & author of Lick the Sugar Habit:

Consumption of fructose causes a significant increase in the concentration of uric acid; after ingestion of glucose, no significant change occurs. An increase in uric acid can be an indicator of heart disease. Furthermore, fructose ingestion in humans results in increases in blood lactic acid, especially in patients with preexisting acidotic conditions such as diabetes, postoperative stress or uremia. Extreme elevations cause metabolic acidosis and can result in death.

The Corn Refiners Association bills itself as a national trade association representing the corn milling industry but being based in Washington DC (where the are no mills) it is clear that what they are is a lobbyist group.  They do not represent farmers, millers or even unions as their name suggests.  They represent large agri-business corporations.  According to their own web site they lobby on behalf of:

Archer Daniels Midland Company (ADM) – ADM has cost the American economy billions of dollars since 1980 and has indirectly cost Americans tens of billions of dollars in higher prices and higher taxes over that same period. At least 43 percent of ADM’s annual profits are from products heavily subsidized or protected by the American government. Moreover, every $1 of profits earned by ADM’s corn sweetener operation costs consumers $10, and every $1 of profits earned by its ethanol operation costs taxpayers $30. ADM is a partner of Monsanto.

Cargill, Incorporated – Cargill has recalled more than 20 million pounds of beef and poultry products tainted with E. coli and Listeria bacteria, respectively since 2000. This recalled meat has been linked to foodborne illness outbreaks, miscarriages, and several deaths. Cargill is a partner of Monsanto.

The list goes on – Corn Products International, Penford Products Co., and Tate & Lyle Ingredients Americas, Inc.  All huge agri-businesses with ties to Monsanto.  Kind of blows that wholesome farmland image the Corn Refiners Association tries to portray.

Now take a look at this HFCS parody ad from Aaron Woolf, Curt Ellis, and Ian Cheney, creators of the documentary film KING CORN, then visit www.kingcorn.net

national trade association representing the corn refining (wet milling) industry

January 13, 2010 at 4:17 pm

Review: The Competent Cook by Lauren Braun Costello

Doing this blog I get to see a lot of books about cooking.  Some are great, some a bit less.  However, The Competent Cook by Lauren Braun Costello really stands out.  It will hold an honored place on my book shelf between McGee and Julia for years to come.

The author, Costello, is a veteran of the kitchen having founded Gotham Caterers in New York.  Additionally she has worked as a private chef, recipe tester (The Joy of Cooking), a food stylist (The Early Show), and a culinary instructor.  She holds a Grand Diploma in Culinary Arts with distinction from The French Culinary Institute in New York City.

Like her popular column at CDKitchen.com, also entitled The Competent Cook, Costello’s book is way more than a collection of recipes.  It is a how-to guide to setting up a functional kitchen from scratch.  Which pots and pans to get, what utensils to buy, the whole nine yards.

In fact, you won’t see the first recipe until page 108.  The early chapters are instructions on the basics – kitchen organization, essential tools and techniques for everyday cooking, baking, grilling, health conscious, et al.  There is even a chapter on how to shop and store food properly.

For you recipe-mongers there are 150 new basics all modern cooks should have in their repertoire. There are four appendices as well including a way-better-than-average glossary and measurement conversions.  The equipment materials appendix spells at the attributes and limitations of glass, cast iron, stainless and other cooking surfaces.  The section on cooking with eggs is McGee-esque with its scientific explanation of every single way to cook an egg.

The Competent Cook is perfect for the graduate just striking out on their own.  It is also a terrific house-warming gift.  And absolutely the best bridal shower present ever.  EVER!

January 13, 2010 at 1:08 am 1 comment

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Stuart Reb Donald

Stuart is a celebrity chef and award winning food writer. Donald performs live cooking demonstrations and penned the cookbook Amigeauxs - Mexican/Creole Fusion Cuisine. He hosts two Internet cooking shows "Everyday Gourmet" and "Little Grill Big Flavor."

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