Foodie Blog

WGBH Kitchen Crew: Roasted Chicken with Beer

By Cathy Huyghe   |   Friday, August 6, 2010
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"The instructions for this recipe were very simple:

Turn on the oven.

Put a whole chicken in a pan and surround it with carrots, celery, onions, garlic and sage leaves.  Sprinkle everything with salt.

Pour a bottle of beer over it all, put it in the oven, and pull it out when it looks done.

This will be one of the easiest and most delicious meals you’ve ever had.  And, okay, there was one more step in there, namely to baste the chicken every 20 minutes. I didn’t even use a formal baster, just a ladle I normally use for soup. It worked great.

But that really was all there one to it. The beer was definitely the key ingredient, because it added to the color of the chicken on the outside and basting with it kept the meat moist on the inside. The surprising aspect of including beer with a roasting chicken was that the beer cooked down from its original consistency to an almost gravy-like density that added depth and a very appetizing sheen to the vegetables.

This was one of the simplest and most satisfying recipes I have tried in some time. It is definitely a keeper!

Cathy Huyghe writes for the WGBH Daily Dish blog. Read new WGBH Daily Dish posts every weekday, where you can explore myriad ways and places to experience good food and wine."

Local, homemade barbecue sauces

By Ann Trieger   |   Friday, August 6, 2010
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"For many of us, when we fire up the grill it’s time to slather on the barbecue sauce. A sauce’s tangy and zesty flavors can embolden chicken or steak and give a distinctive character to hunky beef ribs.

There’s a myriad of barbecue sauces on store shelves, but many have unsavory ingredients to give the sauce thickness and fake smoky flavors. When you have the time, make your own. But when you don’t, here are two recommendations, both produced by local residents who took their homemade barbecue sauce to the next level: Bootsy BBQ Everything Sauce and Our Favorite.

When Medford native Dan Brown was a kid, his grandfather and great uncle had a secret barbecue sauce they’d use for family gatherings. When Brown came of age, the secret was passed down to him. In remembrance of his grandfather, Al Bootsy Brown, a saxophone player in his own band who passed away in 1975, Brown further developed the recipe and founded Bootsy BBQ Everything Sauce. The label honors his musicianship.

The sauce, rich and zingy, is packed with spices like chili pepper and cloves, and made with natural ingredients including tamarind, agave nectar, anchovies, and molasses and omega3 oil. Because of its ingredients, the sauce has appealed to the buyers at Whole Foods Markets. The stores stock the sauce and some are even selling Bootsy Burgers in the meat case — a ground beef patty mixed with Bootsy sauce.

“That’s why we call it an everything sauce. You can also use it straight up for cooking or dipping or create your own sauces based on Bootsy,” says Brown, who now lives in Revere and like his grandfather, is also a musician.

His musical contacts have also helped launch Bootsy. Recently, Johnny D’s, a music club and restaurant in Somerville, held a Bootsy night. They served Bootsy burgers and pulled-chicken sliders drenched in Bootsy sauce.

A similar kitchen-to-market thing has been happening more recently in Dedham. Dave Sheehan’s barbecue sauce and salad dressing were so delicious his family and friends told him for years he should market them. Although he and his wife, Cherylann, both have full time jobs, they finally did about a year ago.

Dedham residents, they rented the kitchen at the Italian-American Club in their town, took a food safety course, got a food-processing license and forged ahead with their side venture. Their company, Our Favorite, was born.

Not long ago, Cherylann took the day off from work — she’s a lawyer — and showed the sauces to six different retailers. When they tasted them, five out of the six said “yes.” They loved the dressing and the barbecue sauce that’s made with tomato paste, balsamic vinegar and herbs, like dill and oregano, and spices, including celery seed and allspice.

“It’s a tangy sauce, not hot and spicy. I use it mostly for grilling,” says Dave, who works at Northeastern University.

Now you can find the sauces at Allandale Farm in Brookline, Russo’s in Watertown and various markets in Dedham.

Ann Trieger is a member of WGBH’s Kitchen Crew, testing our Daily Dish recipes and posting the results. "

The Daily Drink: Wok Stirred Maitakes with Blood Oranges

By Cathy Huyghe   |   Friday, August 6, 2010
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"Chef Tsai’s team recommends the 2007 Mas de la Dame Rosé as the pairing for this dish. It tastes, they say, of “subtle flavors of fresh berries and fennel with a flowery finish” and has an aroma of “fresh strawberries, peaches and roses,” all of which I love, especially since we’re talking about a rosé that’s likely served chilled on a hot summer evening.

But the added bonus of this particular wine is its label. Mas de la Dame means “Farm of the Woman.” Currently the winery and its olive grove are owned by Anne Poniatowski and Caroline Missoffe, granddaughters of Auguste Fay, a Burgundian wine merchant who founded the property in 1903. The land, and the wines, have a storied history. In 1889 Vincent van Gogh painted the farmhouse, located near the village of Les Baux de Provence in the Apilles Mountains. And Simone de Beauvoir drank the wine on her first trip to the south of France. She arrived at night, she wrote; the wind was blowing hard and lights twinkled in the valley. “A fire was crackling in the grate at the Reine Jeanne, where we were the only guests. We had dinner at a little table close to the fireplace, and drank a wine the name of which, Le Mas de la Dame, I recall to this day.”

If it’s good enough for van Gogh and de Beauvoir, it’s good enough for me.

Wok Stirred Maitakes with Blood Oranges
By Ming Tsai

Friday, August 6, 2010
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One of the things I love best about cooking is beating the bushes for hidden treasures—ingredients that are unfamiliar or underutilized. Today I bring you two terrific ingredients that are now readily available in supermarkets across country, but you may not know how to use them: Maitake mushrooms and blood oranges. They go beautifully together in my Wok Stirred Maitakes with Blood Oranges- an all in one veggie dish you can use as an entr&3234;e or a side dish. Let’s get cooking.

Serves 4

1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon minced ginger
1 large head of white Maitake mushroom, florets broken off and stem julienned
2 tablespoons oyster sauce (can be vegetarian oyster sauce too)
5 blood oranges, segmented, 2 zested first, juice from supreming reserved
Chopped chives for garnish
House rice for serving (white/brown combo)
Canola oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

In a wok over medium-high heat lightly coated with oil, add garlic and ginger and saute. Add maitake stems and saute, adding florets a few moments after. Add oyster sauce and saute until cooked down. Add zest and deglaze with juice and orange segments. Check for flavor and season, if necessary. Serve on steamed house rice and garnish with chopped chives.

Drink pairings
Mas de la Dame Rose du Mas 2007
—Provence, France

Taste: Subtle flavors of fresh berries and fennel with a flowery finish
Aroma: Fresh strawberries, peaches and roses

—Pairs nicely with barbecue, pesto pasta, salads, fish and grilled meat.
—50% Grenache, 30% Syrah, 20% Cinsault
—Certified organic (Agriculture Biologique) by Qualite France

Chef Ming Tsai is the host and executive producer of public television series Simply Ming. Each week, Simply Ming brings mouthwatering recipes inspired by the combination of East and West into homes across the nation.

The Daily Drink: Asian Pistou Dumplings in Lime Broth

By Cathy Huyghe   |   Friday, August 6, 2010
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Dumplings, as Chef Tsai points out, make for great hors d’oeuvres. And what’s great about hors d’oeuvres is that they’re usually just one or two bites, delivering a powerful and concentrated shot of flavor. As a beverage pairing for today’s dumplings, try a few drinks that pack a similar punch one sip at a time. A mango “coolatta,” for example, blends fresh mango, lime juice, coco cream, and rum (if you like), served over ice. A classic lime-ginger drink mixes ginger beer, concentrated lime cordial and mint leaves, and is also served over ice. Or for a twist on the most traditional sipper ever — a martini — try mixing vodka with Canton Ginger liqueur and some lime juice. Powerful and concentrated shots of flavor, indeed.

The Daily Drink: Spicy Wok Clams and Leeks

By Cathy Huyghe   |   Friday, August 6, 2010
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Certain wines are reliable stand-bys when it comes to pairing with Asian food, and Chef Tsai’s recommendation for this dish — 2003 Hopler Gewürztraminer — is no exception. If your local wine shop doesn’t have that specific wine, however, know that the characteristics of Gewürztraminer that make it so appealing with Asian food also present themselves in other grapes such as Riesling, Pinot Gris and Muscat. A personal all-time favorite is Trimbach Muscat ($15-$20, depending on the vintage) because it’s exceptionally aromatic on the nose, clean and almost limpid on the palate, but finishes bone dry. That’s quite a lot to get out of one glass (or even one sip) of wine! But the complexity matches nicely with the spice and the layers of flavors in today’s dish.

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