For the past twenty years Dana Cowin has been Food & Wine's editor in chief, but has keep a secret from her readers. Despite being surrounded by food nearly every single day, she never learned how to cook. But with the help of her friends, many of them famous celebrity chefs, Dana has mastered her mistakes in the kitchen and learned some invaluable life skills along the way.
We're also joined by Tony Abu-Ganim, one of the world's leading mixologists. He's seen the profession go from being a secondary job to a respected career during his 30 years behind the bar and joins us to talk about the hardships he's encountered along that journey.
And for a set of bakers with roughly five years of experience on their hands, the crew at Bellegarde Bakery is making quite a name for themselves. We'll join Graison Gill and Brett Guadagnino at their Broadmoor bakery for an early morning baking session.
Picture some friends sharing and sampling a progression of small plates and you have a very modern portrait of casual dining. But, in another example of how new trends at the dinner table often reflect old customs, you can assemble that same scene around Turkish flavors and see a very traditional view of social dining. That’s one on display in New Orleans these days at an Uptown eatery called Mezze.
Sadly, we also lost some very good friends of ours. Michael Mizell-Nelson and Rudy Lombard both championed Louisiana's foodways and worked hard to preserve many of our customs and traditions. We'll revisit them one as time before we turn the page to another calendar year.
Scholar Michael Twitty says that during the holidays, "everybody's stuff is all mixed up." He speaks from experience: Michael's connected to Hanukkah, Christmas, and Kwanzaa celebrations that keep him busy this time of year. He's one of the many guests who'll sit at our table to discuss how their holiday traditions are kept alive and why food is often at the center of those traditions.
Kathryn Parker has been at the helm of the Crescent City Farmers Market for just one year. Taking over from the organization's original leader, Richard McCarthy, who went on to become the Executive Director of Slow Food America, Kate says it’s been a year that has flown by so quickly, one with a never-ending learning curve.
“I thought I knew a lot about growing seasons,” she says. “But the more time I spend with the market, the more I am learning."
Originally published on Thu December 18, 2014 10:58 am
Second Harvest Food Bank is the largest in Louisiana, serving over 200,000 people each year. Three quarters of clients at the pantries Second Harvest supplies say they regularly rely on the food they get there to make ends meet. In the same survey, over a third of pantry clients say they have a family member with diabetes. So Second Harvest is starting to pay closer attention to the nutrition of the food they distribute.
At one point in their lives, each of our guests had to choose whether or not they would inherit a family business. The answer didn't always come quickly, and most of them had to change the business to make it their own, but each decided to carry their family's tradition to the next generation.