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Archive for the ‘Food News’ Category

Todays Food News-5 things servers will not tell you, Michelle Obama’s food message is working, cool celebrity cook book , hate cilantro, and Banning of HFCS.

Posted by chefmax on April 14, 2010

Hello every body…How’s about a little food news

If you hate cilantro it may not be your fault. From the NYT, by Harold Mcgee. A really good reason why you may not like cilantro… your brain thinks you are trying to poison it. According to Professor Mcgee, if you keep trying it in low grade amounts you will develop a taste for it. Makes sense. Remember the first beer you had or fist sip of Cabernet. My brain told me that it sucked then it learned that I was not trying to poison it and allowed me to acquire a taste for the nectar. Ha, the jokes on my brain, it is a form of low grade poison.

A very cool celebrity cook book that I have never seen. Recipes form Helen Keller, Salvador Dali, Katharine Hepburn..Very cool, must find it. From the NYT by Florence Fabricant.

Food company are responding to Michelle Obama’s message of health in food. From Bloomberg, by Kate Anderson Drower. Sugar and sodium contents will be reduced by some of the biggest producers of junk foods. From Pepsico inc. to Kraft Foods Inc. they are responding to the soft pressure of the White House. Good for them. Step by step. Thank you Michelle.

Banning of HFCS in New York, Can it happen? From Food Nav, by Caroline Scott-Thomas. It is a long shot.

New Huffinton post section on food. Good for you Huffpo! From HuffFood, by Divya Gugnani. The 5 things servers will not tell you.

-I agree with the 10 minute walk in at the the end of the night.

-The fruit in the drink was wrong in the places I have worked. We always washed the fruit for garnish. It is true that it is usllay the least talented cook doing the prep on this item.

-Fish on Monday can be true depending on where you live and what kind of restaurant it is. if it is a seafood restaurant near the coast they are getting fresh stuff all the time. It is still fist in first out. Tuesday is a more dangerous day since it is usually the slowest and the Chef may try to get through without new product.

-Restaurant’s do remember you. Tip well. Now with new reservation software they can really remember everything about you.

-Bar nuts. You are on your own with this one. Doesn’t Alcohol kill germs?

Hope you have a great day!

Chef Max


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Jamie Oliver’s TED prize wish-Please watch this!

Posted by chefmax on February 13, 2010

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Food News-Monkey Bread, Smart Choices “health washing”, cookie diet, Buddha’s Hands.

Posted by chefmax on October 23, 2009

DSC_0397Lemon Thyme in my garden. Winter is slowly creeping in and the garden is still producing some good things. My peppers are still going strong and I am getting a tomatoe or two every other day. Nice. The rain has caused some of the tomatoes to burst but if I catch them early they are still very flavorful. The arugala is just starting to peak and the carrots are doing great. I will probably have to pull them all out within a week. It has been fun and the girls have liked seeing were food comes from. I highly recommend planting one next year.

Now on to todays food news.

From the LATIMES, By Jenn Garbee, Monkey Bread– The story. Nice history lesson.

The FDA may be stepping up on the front label Smart Choices “health washing” of products that have no nutritional value whatsoever. From FoodNav, By Caroline Scott-Thomas. It is about time that they do something about an industry program that is trying to use a marketing technique that may mislead the customer looking for healthy choices for their families. Nice to have the grownups back in charge instead of the profit driven forces.

The cookie diet, from the NYTIMES, By Abby Ellin. A questionable quick fix diet that is doing really well in profits. Eat 6 special cookies a day and one sensible meal and lose weight. Basically it keeps you around a 1,000 calarie a day consumption rate and therefore you lose weight. What is in the cookie you say? Who cares I can eat cookies and lose weight you say… B level Celebrities have lost weight on this plan and it really does not require any hard work on your part so it must be good for you.

My friend and mentor Catherine Brandel loved Buddha’s Hands. Here is a good article about them in todays LATIMES. By David Karp. Great citrus food.

Have a great weekend and talk to you next week.

Max 10-23-09

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Todays Food News-Gourmet, making of Bao, Bored to tears, gluten-free products, flu season.

Posted by chefmax on October 13, 2009

DSC_0396I am already starting to miss summer. This is what my chives looked like just two weks ago. They are not looking so good today. Oh well. Time to winter garden.

Here are some of todays food related news stories that I found interesting.

From the LATIMES, By Andrea Nguyen. A great article on the making of Bao. This is one of my favorite Chinese dishes and I have always wanted to make them at home. I have made them when I was at the CIA and I eat one every time I go by the Slanted Door in San Francisco (the Vietnamese version) This article has the whole lot of information and technique. It is a good one to keep in your library. Thanks Andrea.

In a question to the some local Chefs in Arizona the ARIZONA REPUBLIC, asked ” What menu item bores you to tears? and why? I think my answer would be the stagnate menu itself. If it is not changing daily I get bored. I love opening restaurants and getting new programs started but I do not like to do the same ting over and over again.

Christopher Kimball has an op-ed article in the NYTIME on the demise of Gourmet magazine. Mr Kimball does a good historic deconstruction of the beginning to the end of the iconic food magazine and seems to enjoy (with what I imagine is a sly smile on his face) the fact that his magazine, Cook’s Magazine, and website are still going strong and Gourmet has gone the way of the dodo. Cook’s was purchased in 1990 by Condé Nast, the publisher of Gourmet, and cannibalized for its subscribers. Mr. Kimball restarted the magazine again in 1993 from the bones discarded by Condé Nast and has had great successes since.  The thesis that Mr. Kimball eludes to in this op-ed is that we need to charge for our intellectual property. Advertising dollars are not focused and free content is pushing several good businesses into bankruptcy. I am dealing with this myself with A Flash in the Pan . We would love to give away all of our great recipes and planning tools but then we will be around 6 months. For a small monthly fee all your dinners are planned and all the tools you need to save time and money are at your fingers. For me, the end of Gourmet is not surprising. I used to love the magazine until I got my monthly issue and there was a perfume ad in it. The last thing I want to smell as I am reading about foie gras is flowery perfume. I hated that so much I canceled my subscription and never went back.

GFF building a united front with food manufactures and marketers on gluten-free products. Great info on GFF from Foodnav, By Caroline Scott-Thomas.

From CNN, By Val Willingham. You are what you eat. Start eating healthy to give yourself a good chance a staying healthy this flu season.

I hope you have a great day.

Chef Max 10-13-09

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Friday Food News-Judith Jones, Avant-garde, market watch, culinary schools, advertise junk-food in schools, Sustainable Innovation.

Posted by chefmax on September 25, 2009

CUESAThere are still a few tickets for the up coming SUNDAY SUPPER on October 4, 2009 . It is 30 of the top bay area Chefs cooking family style with local farmers. Great event. Go to CUESA for information and tickets.

Todays Food news;

From the NYTIMES, By Christine Muhlke. Great article on editor Judith Jones.

Avant-garde or contemporary art? From the Washington Post, By Black Gopnik.

This weeks market watch from the LATIMES, By David Karp. Habanero peppers, Lychees, Peaches, and apples.

The uptick in culinary schools. The economy is helping with job training programs within the bay area culinary non credential classes. From SFGATE, By Carey Sweet. When I worked for the CIA at Greystone, I saw allot of job changers in the backing and pastry classes. The common thought with several of these students was that they wanted to do something easy like cooking. 10 hours on their feet later and…

Food industry is fighting to advertise junk-food in schools. From CSPI. Go figure.

Proctor and Gamble on the other hand has tabbed a billion dollars to Sustainable Innovation Products. From Progressive Grocer. By Meg Major.

I hope you have a great weekend and thanks for reading.

Chef Max 9-25-09

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Tuesday Food News-Coconut Rice, food and health, ouch review, Fast food at home, USDA local food programs.

Posted by chefmax on September 22, 2009


This is a heirloom strawberry pop corn from my garden. Very small bright red kernels and the cob is about 4 inches long. Cute. I have not popped them yet so I will let you know how it taste.

A great article on food and health insurance by Michael Pollan in the New York Times.

From the NYTIMES, By Melissa Clark, a good article on Coconut Rice. I love coconut rice and this is a example of it.

I enjoy a good review as much as the next Chef but the ones that cover a restaurants flop are timeless. I do not take pleasure in other chefs problems and I am the first to want all Chefs to succeed but when you read a bad review there is just something in it that triggers a deep response. First it is probably ” Thank God that is not my review”! Then I usually re-read to see if the critic is being too harsh. This one has some ouch moments-From NYTIMES, By Pete Wells.

From the WashingtonPost, By Sally Sampson. An article on making fast food at home and the cost being cheaper. Sally does a good job here breaking down the cost and portions of the fast food equivalent of home cooked meals. I like her idea and she is correct in the assumption that it just taste better made at home. The biggest problem is people have forgot how to cook.

The USDA program to promote local foods. From SFGATE, By Miriam Morgan.

Have a great day.

Chef Max 9-22-09

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Thursday Food News-State of the Culinary Worlds Future, White House Farmers Market, turnover in restaurants, hidden toxins, and brownies.

Posted by chefmax on September 3, 2009

Thai Basil in my garden

Above is a picture of Thai Basil from my garden. I love it in curries, pastas, salad rolls, and with garden tomatoes.

From Grubstreet NY, By Ben Leventhal, A great question and answer article on the State of the Culinary Worlds Future. This is a cool article asking questions of some great minds in the culinary world.

9 hidden toxins lurking in food. From Mercola.

Obama and his White House Farmers Market. I am sure there will be a death panel involved some how. Maybe they will sell Soylent Green. Alert Glenn Beck!!! From OCA, A serious article on the FDA and President Obama’s promotion for local foods.

The turnover in restaurants in New York. From the NYTIMES, By Florence Fabricant. The restaurant business is one of the hardest adventures that one can undertake. It is soooo volatile and back breaking and has a very small profit margin. You can do everything perfect and have a great following but if a new spot opens up down the street, you could lose a big percentage of your cliental over a period of weeks maybe months. The margin is so thin that if something like that happens, you could lose staff, not be able to pay purveyors on time and start cutting corners. The quality then goes down, you get a bad review and welcome to the death spiral. Been there. Not pretty.

Boudin Bakery’s brownies. From LATIMES, By Noelle Carter. I liked the picture and it made me hungry for a brownie. Here is their recipe for their brownies. Time to go preheat the oven.

Have a great day,

Chef Max


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Tuesday Food News-Australians Truffles, rice, Mediterranean Diet, climate change and the impact on US crop yields, and Twitter food.

Posted by chefmax on September 1, 2009

startupnationPlease vote for me for Startup Nations home based business of the year award. Vote here–STARTUP NATION COTEST. Thank you!

Australians Truffles, from LATIMES By Krista Simmons. A nicely written article on hunting the Périgord truffle in the southern forest of Manjimp Australia. I wish I was there.

From the Chicagotrib, By Judy Hevrdej a brief overview of rice and rice related terms. Kind of introductory but if you have any questions about rice this is not a bad place to start.

The Mediterranean Diet may be the best option to help out type 2 Diabetes. From Healthday, By Serena Gordon. Eating healthier under this type of structure has been shown to reduce the need for some of the medications and also is associated with lower heart diseases and cancer rates. Very hopeful.

Will climate change hurt the US crop yields? From foodnav, A study by two economist on the effect of the rising temperatures in the US and a reduction of 30-46 percent of current yield because of this weather. Instead of fighting about whether it is real, man made, or just natural accruing cycles in the earths history, could we just plan for this to happen and take steps to prevent or reduce the impact now? If you have ever been to LA in the summer time and your lungs hurt so bad it is hard to breath, then you understand that humans do have an impact on the earth.

Twitter food. Do you have a favorite twitter Chef you are following? What would you like to see more of from a food blog? I am @chefmax on twitter and would love to be more informative and helpful to my friends and followers. I have a recipe website A Flash in the Pan and you are reading my blog so you know about that. Is there anything that you really want ot know about  food, wine, Napa Valley, cooking schools, ect…Thank you for you feed back.

Have a great day,

Chef Max 9-1-09

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Wednesday Food News-Farmer Joel Salatin, Schrute Farms for real, Local Food Hub, preserving this year, and Chocolate and the concept of Zero.

Posted by chefmax on August 26, 2009

Just sitting at my desk waiting for a call back from My Web Grocer a possible strategic partner for our company A Flash in the Pan. They set up all the functionality for grocery stores e-commerce sites and we fit in perfectly with our menu planning service. We could send our customers to their member sites for fulfillment. We can contact all these grocery stores ourselves, and we have started with Raley’s who is interested in us, but it would be much more economical to work with My Web Grocer and share some of the wealth. We will see. Any way onto todays food news.

From Chelsea Green, A really good article on the farmer Joel Salatin and what his philosophy of farming is. If you have seen FOOD INC., Joel was the farmer talking about sustainable farms while he was cutting up chickens. He seems like a great guy and has a very strong understanding of biomimicry.

Schrute farm anyone? From NYTIMES, By Kim Severson a story about how to go a be a farmer for your vacation. I hope Mose will do his carving demo for us. $300 a night to wake up early and milk a cow? Would you do this?

I was just thinking about this the other day. A broker between home/ organic farmers and companies that produce products for schools or senior living facilities. Cool article by Jane Black for the Washpost. This company looks like they are doing a great job and it is a non profit. The company is called the Local Food Hub. There are a couple more in the article.

I am really interested in preserving this year,well not the year exactly, but the harvest. This is a story from the LATIMES, By David Mas Masumoto. No recipes but a great story. I can almost taste the raisins myself.

Here is a nice article on the 10 Maya foods that changed the worlds eating habits. It is by Christine Delisol and is at SFGATE. You got to listen to the guys that brought us Chocolate and the concept of Zero.

Time to move along. I need to revise the revision of my business plan. The life of an Entrepreneur  is so glamourous.

Write to you later,

Chef Max 8-26-09

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Friday Food News- A great menu planning site, stuffed squash blossom, Root Beer recipe, NASA food, Hudson Valley farmers market

Posted by chefmax on August 14, 2009

A great menu planing service!

A great menu planing service!

Running out of time to sign up for a free account. We are going to start to offer 1 menu a week for free starting September first but is is only $14.95 a month for full access to all the menu sets including diabetes, gluten free, kid friendly, and our blue plate special. Goto A FLASH IN THE PAN and starting cooking healthier meals today.

From NPR, a really good set of stuffed squash blossom recipes.

Here is a cool Root Beer recipe form Chelseagreen. If you can find the ingredients, let me know.

NASA food. From LATIMES, By Karen Kaplan. This is a cool article on foods for space.

Hudson Valley farmers market article from NYTIMES, By KATHRYN MATTHEWS.

Have a great weekend and talk to you on Monday.

Chef Max 8-14-09

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