Category Archives: Celeb Chef Moments

Chefs for Farmers

I’m a bit late on this post, as I tweeted the heck out of it while there and uploaded to Facebook in real time, but here are even more in-depth pics of the glorious event.

I attended Chefs for Farmers last month, thanks to a thoughtful invite by Randy Potts, and man did we have a good time!  This was the 3rd annual, but my first time at the event.  It was held at Highland Park Cafeteria – and we literally took our tray thru the line and had 17 chefs load it up with some of the best food I’ve ever seen and eaten!  Everyone was given a ballot to vote on the best dish, and Diane and Justin Fourton of Pecan Lodge won for their “burnt ends” – bits of smoky, crunchy, charred brisket, so amazing!

I can’t wait for the next one!

Modern Dallas Review – Komali

My latest review for Modern Dallas is up, this time I wrote about Abraham Salum’s second restaurant, Komali.

The lamp shade wraps are Abraham's grandmother's pattern shipped from Mexico - so beautiful!

You’ve got to try one of his many mole offerings, and his fresh tomatillo salsa is outta’ this world!

Is there a cookbooks anonymous?

Because I need it!  I also need another cookbook like a hole in the head!  And yet, I continue to buy them…I buy them a LOT.  And why?  Well, why not?  They make me happy, and they’re always there for me on a rainy day, or a day when I’m bored, or even better, as a literal reference library for when I need to feel inspired to make something new.

They’re kinda’ like shoes.  They ARE my shoes.  Well…they’ve become my shoes.  Like every other flippant gal in her 20’s, I loved my shoe collection just as much as the next gal…ten years ago!  I collected them like crazy, hit up every clearance sale I came across, tried them all on and strutted around my apartment on rainy/bored days.  (Are you seeing a pattern here?)

Then, something happened when good ole’ mother nature rolled the clock over three-oh.  Like, omigod, she made me realize my feet hurt, a lot, like totally.  And so began the shoes to cookbooks replacement therapy.  And I shall blame it on Nigella Lawson.  Yup, her How to be a Domestic Goddess cookbook was one of my firsts.  Bought it on a whim, in my 20’s, because I liked the cover art and the title.  But even though I read it cover-to-cover, I wasn’t completely hooked even then…see, I was still on the shoes.

I bought a few cookbooks here and there along the way, but it wasn’t until I went to work part-time at Sur La Table almost 4 years ago that I really got bit.  That’s when the Nigella cookbook I had became my first signed cookbook!  Yup…she came to Dallas for a book signing for Nigella Express and signed her new cookbook for me, as well as my Domestic Goddess one.  “For Kerrie: Happy Baking!”  And get this, I wasn’t even there, I was on vacation, so I didn’t even get to meet her!  Crazy, I know…I’ve always regretted it.  But I’d left the books for her with a sweet note thanking her for coming “across the pond” to see us, which my manager later told me she read and tucked away in her purse.

So, I can honestly say, because of Nigella, I have an entire section of my bookcase dedicated to signed cookbooks!  lol  I have many, many others that aren’t signed, but there is a special place for those that are, and she kicked it all off – love her.  Oh, and here’s what I’ve picked up in the last month and am reading now:

I’ve got a couple of canning books in here to read up before the summer-ripe fruits and veggies arrive, the quintessential guide by Ball, and a new book about Canning for a New Generation – that’s me!  A few baking staples w/ the Magnolia Bakery cookbook and Jim Lahey’s My Bread masterpiece about his rise to fame with Sullivan St. Bakery, and his amazing 12-18 hour proofing technique!  Edible, a great cookbook to have if you follow the Edible communities/magazines for your area, or even if you don’t, it’s a beautiful book.  If you’re into eating local and the Slow Food movement, this book is for you.  The SLT Art & Soul of Baking is a given…we put out some great books, and I wanted to learn more about souffles. Memorable Recipes was on clearance at SLT, had some yummy looking things when I skimmed it, so why not?  Maxine Clark, her books are just great, she is definitely a go-to for Italian cooking.  Click the link and look at the cover, how could you pass up a book like that on clearance!?  And of course, my lovely Beekman Boys, Josh and Brent, whom I follow so dearly and enjoy immensely.  The Bucolic Plague is their latest, run out and get it for an amazing story – and follow their new 2nd season on Planet Green which starts tonight!  I promise, you’ll love me for it.

Okay, I gotta get to bed so I can take a stab at this stack of books on my nightstand…night peeps.

I met The Pioneer Woman, again!

Ree Drummond was in Dallas again last night to sign her new book, Black Heels to Tractor Wheels, which is her personal account of her “transition from city life to ranch wife.”  I can’t wait to dive into the book, but I am more excited that Ree remembered the gift basket I have her in Dec. ’09 when I went to her cookbook signing!

I was relaying to her my story of coming from a small town in Oklahoma, now living in the big city in a high rise condo, yet still staying true to my roots by making things my grandma taught me, even relaying to her my passion for my canning hobby.  I mentioned my plum jam that was in the gift basket, and that she probably wouldn’t remember it because she gets so many gifts from her fans, and she said, “No!  I ate that jam!”  That made my day, week, month!  :)

Here’s some pics of Julie and I with Ree, and a shot I snapped on the way out of her cute hubby, Marlboro Man!  :)

Dallas Mozzarella Company Cheese Class

Holly Cow!  (and goat)

Before I went on my trip mid-September I took a cheese class at Dallas Mozzarella Company.  I attend cooking classes all the time, but I have to say this one was a lot of fun, and I really learned new techniques I’d never even attempted before.  If you’re like me, when you pay for a cooking class, you want to be fully hands on and learn new techniques.  You don’t want to pay good money for a demonstration, or to watch someone else cook.  If I wanted to do that, I’d clean out my DVR of Food Network shows! 

Dallas Mozzarella Company’s class is definitely hands on, Paula Lambert, the owner, teaches it herself!  She began by telling us where her cow and goat milks were sourced (Oklahoma and Texas).  Then she explained the process of making cheese, from separating the curds and whey, to turning that into ricotta and bases for cheeses, and the curing process associated with different cheeses.

In the class we made ricotta, hand stretched mozzarella rolls and balls,  bocconcini, and Queso Oaxaca.  We got to see the prized “cheese room”, which is a  HUGE walk-in full of all the varieties they make and sell – it was glorious.  I asked Paula if she ever gets tired of eating cheese, to which she replied, “Nope, I eat it every day!”  The class is wrapped up w/ a wine and cheese tasting, and you get to take home all the fruits of your labor.

If you’re interested in a class I will caution you to call 1-2 months in advance.  They usually only have 1-2 classes per month which tend to fill up quickly as they only max to 20 people.  It will be one of the best classes you attend, I assure you!

I met The Pioneer Woman!

Last night Ree Drummond, (The Pioneer Woman), was in town for her Dallas book signing, and I was FOURTH in line people! There’s a lot to be said for arriving at Borders at 9am on the morning of the signing to get your gold (first color group) wristband! (Thank you Shawn!) :) Especially considering it was a “sell out”! Borders had 700 books, which meant they had 700 wristbands…SEVEN HUNDRED. Gosh, I hope we weren’t too much for Ree!? Texans do it up big!

She was too-too cute, and she brought along the girls – AND gave us t-shirts! It was a GREAT time, something Julie and I had been looking forward to for MONTHS. We had a blast talking to all of the folks waiting in line, and then went for pizza while all the other poor, miserable souls waited it out! And I called the Borders at Preston/Royal this morning, and found out that Ree stayed until 2:00AM signing those books for those patient folks – TWO AM people! Trooper, trooper I tell ya’!

(Click on pics to enlarge, l-r:) crowds gathering for Ree, Ree arrives w/ her girls and speaks to us for a bit, me passing off my gift basket (which after being there I feel turned out embarrassingly huge! lol), Julie with Ree, and the beautiful t-shirts (Wild Olive Tees) she gave each and every one of us! So sweet!


Ree Drummond book signing 2mrw!

I’ve been SO excited about Dec. 1st for about 3 months now! Food, farm, & photography blogger Ree Drummond, AKA, The Pioneer Woman, will be in Dallas signing her 1st cookbook, The Pioneer Woman Cooks!

You may recognize her name from this blog, as I’ve mentioned her several times & linked her recipes. I also have her listed to the right there, under my fave blogs. If you haven’t checked her out yet, do it! Please? :o)

I am so pumped, & in the spirit of the season, I made Ree a gift basket full of “my faaavorite things” (sing w/ me now). All foodie related, & all fabulous. Oh, I can’t wait to meet her!

Central 214 the whole kit and caboodle!

There was some yummy AND naughty food to be had @ Central 214. The atmosphere was a bit hectic & it seemed @ times that the restaurant crew was somewhat “in the weeds”. But that most certainly could have been due to the fact that filming for The Naughty Kitchen, (premiering this fall on the Oxygen network), was going on during the busiest week of the year for Dallas chefs & restaurateurs!

I counted no less than 3 camera guys, a few audio/grip guys, a few production peeps & a boom mic operator (gawd their arms must hurt!)

Everything had good flavor…we especially loved the pimento cheese & smoked trout spreads that came w/ the bread…SO good! I’m uploading these from my Crackberry, so the descrips may be out of order, but you’ll drool all the same. :o)

Fried green tomato, Maytag bleu cheese wedge salad, roasted chick w/ gb’s, ribs w/ beans & cole slaw, grilled scallops, strip steak w/ peach & mixed greens, choc trifle cake, peach turnover, bread w/ spreads & chef Blythe shooting table interviews.

Central 214 pt. 3

Cayenne shrimp deviled eggs…Mmmm!

Central 214 pt. Deux

Chef Blythe Beck overseeing her dishes go out.