Central Texas Barbecue
Barbecue is one of the most beloved food items Texas. Texas barbecue has a number of variations that range between different regions of the state. Texas barbecue can be divided into four basic regions, central Texas, East Texas, West Texas and South Texas. In the center of the state, barbecue is known for the high quality of the meat, and is considered by some to be the best barbecue in the state of Texas.
Barbecue holds a special place in the heart of the people of Central Texas. Cities like Lockhart, Taylor and Luling serve some of the best barbecue at some very famous long standing barbecue restaurants. The tradition of serving Central Texas barbecue started way back in the 19th century. Original settlers of the region from Germany and other European countries started the tradition of Central Texas barbecue. The meat markets in those periods used to serve cooked meat on butcher papers.
The Battle Between Food Trucks And Restaurants
The food truck phenomenon that is sweeping across the United States might seem like a one hundred percent positive movement, but to a small group of business owners these new culinary delights are causing problems. Small business owners who operate permanent restaurant locations are concerned that the increase in the number of food truck permits being handed out in many cities and towns is begging to affect their business.
The main concern among restaurant owners is whether or not they can compete with new food trucks that are offering gourmet meal selections at a lower price than a permanent location can offer because of the lower overhead that comes with operating a food truck. Some of the ways that food trucks save money over brick and mortar locations are no property taxes, food truck owners do not pay rent once they have paid off their trucks, and many food trucks employ only part time employees so they do not provide extensive benefit packages. These factors all make the restaurant owners argument valid.
The First Annual Flavor of Napa
by Chef Len Elias
The “Flavor of Napa” was a world class celebration of food and wine highlighting some of Napa's best-known chefs and winemakers. Events took place up and down the Napa Valley over 4 days in November and included culinary demonstrations, multi course dinners, wine tastings, and a closing brunch. Proceeds from the festival benefited the scholarship fund at the Culinary Institute of America. Participating Chefs included Thomas Keller, Bob Hurley, Christopher Kostow, Masaharu Morimoto, Tyler Florence, Michael Chiarello, Cindy Pawlcyn, Richard Blais, Todd Humphries, Jeff Jake, Christophe Geurad and dozens of others. The main purpose of my visit was to lend a hand and support the culinary team at the Dolce Silverado Resort.
WALL STREET INVESTS LUNCH MONEY AT VERONICA'S KITCHEN
Like many women of her generation in her native Trinidad, Veronica Julien grew up learning how to cook under the watchful instruction of her parents and grandmother. "This was something every girl learned," she remembers, "but in my household, everyone had to learn how to cook and clean and keep a house, not just the girls." Julien, now a grandmother herself, credits her childhood training for the award-winning fare she serves from Veronica's Kitchen, as she calls her stainless-steel cart. Found on the streets of New York's Financial District, the cart is a popular mainstay among the lunch crowd for its Trinidadian dishes and punches.
Like the various forms of Caribbean cooking, a tasty, colorful hybrid of the many cuisines and cultures that left their imprint on Caribbean history, Julien is from a multinational household (her grandmother and mother were "born and raised Trini"; her father was an Englishman originally from Grenada). "Trinidadian [cuisine]," she explains, "is a little of everything— African American, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese. And a lot of Trinidadian dishes are Eastern Indian staples, like roti, curry, and pilau."
FROM OAHU TO VEGAS, ELENA'S WINS FANS
Beautiful, lush Hawaii is a siren call heard around the world, one Theo and Elena Butuyan found impossible to ignore. In 1969, they left behind the comfortable life they had built for themselves and their two children in Dagupan City, of the Pangasinan Province in the Philippines, where Elena was a teacher and Theo an accountant. "We had read in the newspapers and heard from other people who left that Hawaii was the paradise island of the United States of America," Theo Butuyan says dreamily. "So we left the Philippines for greener pastures."
The Butuyans settled in Waipahu, Oahu, where they opened Elena's Home of Finest Filipino Food, a small lunch counter with six seats, and served home-style Filipino cooking. "You want to know why we named it after Elena?" Theo jokes. "So she would work hard."
Work hard they both did, quickly building a steady and loyal stream of customers – the majority of which were not, as might be expected, from the Philippines. Theo explains: "Filipino immigrants like to cook their own food at home [so] we cooked for the local people Japanese, Chinese, Tongans, Americans, Samoans, and Filipinos born in Hawaii."
DESSERT TRUCK: BRINGING GOURMET SWEETS TO THE STREETS
America is a country of pioneers, and Jerome Chang, born to Taiwanese immigrants, can justifiably be considered one of them. In 2007, Chang became one of a handful of trailblazers forging the way for a new class of gourmet food carts, with Dessert Truck. The now-iconic vehicle, painted with the brand's whimsical logo, serves delicious, epicurean sweets of a caliber typically found only in top-tier restaurants.
A mouth-watering sampling of the sophisticated desserts offered on the truck includes Warm Molten Chocolate Cake with an olive oil ganache center, roasted pistachios, and vanilla ice cream; Goat Cheese Cheesecake with rosemary caramel and quince; and Espresso Panna Cotta with coffee-lavender ice cream, Nutella, and caramelized almonds. The crowning achievement, though, is the Chocolate Bread Pudding with Bacon Crème Anglaise, recently featured on an episode of Throwdown with Bobby Flay. Dessert Truck's version was declared the winner in a blind taste-test by the public.