Archive for August, 2010
This week was the Foster Farms Washington Regional cooking contest finals. There were over 1,000 entries from Washington cooks and I am sure the job of narrowing it down to 5 was a tedious task!
After the tasty job of sampling the five Washington cooking contest finalists dishes, judges Cynthia Nims, Jamie Peha and I turned in our ballots.
Jamie, myself, and Cynthia just about ready to start our taste testing!
My Food Studios crew cooked up all the dishes
After all the sampling, I want to congratulate both Marci Adelsman of Kent and Monica King of Vancouver! They each won $1,000!
They will now compete at the Finals in person on September 17, 2010, at the Culinary Institute of America at Greystone, in California’s Napa Valley. A $10,000 grand prize and one-year supply of fresh Foster Farms chicken will be awarded to the contest’s grand prize winner.
The two top dishes that are moving on to the finals are Adelsman’s Brown Rice Chicken Salad
and King’s Balsamic Mushroom Chicken with Honey Goat Cheese. The recipes featured fresh Foster Farms chicken and were inspired by local ingredients.
For more than 70 years, Foster Farms has been working closely with more than 40 local, family-owned farms throughout Washington and Oregon to provide chicken to Washington families.
I hope you enjoy the finalist’s recipes as much as I did!
Brown Rice Chicken Salad
Recipe by Marci Adelsman, Kent, WA
Kathy’s Note: The colorful and tasty salad needs a snazzy name. Don’t let the plain name fool you – the salad is chock full of flavor and color!
This recipe makes about 8 – 10 cups and would serve 6 or more .
1 1/4 pounds Foster Farms chicken tenders
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
4 cups cooked brown rice
1 cup diced celery
1/2 cup diced red onion
1/4 cup chopped green onion
1 cup diced red bell pepper
1/2 cup toasted almonds, chopped
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
1/3 cup chopped Italian parsley
1/2 cup olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbls apple cider vinegar
2 Tbls honey
2 Tbls Dijon Mustard
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
In medium size skillet over medium-high heat, warm olive oil. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper, add to pan and sauté 4 minutes per side, until cooked through. Remove chicken from pan and set aside. When chicken is cooled, dice into 3/4” cubes.
In large serving bowl, combine brown rice, celery, red onion, green onion, red bell pepper, almonds, Parmesan cheese, cranberries, basil and parsley. Stir well to combine. In small bowl, combine olive oil, garlic, apple cider vinegar, honey and mustard. Stir well to blend. Add chicken to rice mixture. Slowly add dressing to cover, tossing to coat well. Sprinkle with salt and pepper; toss again to combine.
Balsamic Mushroom Chicken with Honey Goat Cheese
Recipe by Monica King, Vancouver, WA
Kathy’s note: An easy but elegant recipe for entertaining. This would be lovely made with wild chanterelle mushrooms this fall when they are in season.
6 Foster Farms chicken breast halves, boneless and skinless
1/4 cup canola oil
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 tsp chopped fresh thyme
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1 Tbls butter
1/2 cup goat cheese (4 oz package)
1 tsp honey
2 Tbls canola oil
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme
In large skillet over medium-high heat, warm canola oil. Add mushrooms, salt and pepper and sauté, stirring, until mushrooms have given up liquid, about 7 minutes. Remove mushrooms from skillet and place in medium bowl. Add thyme, stir and cover with foil to keep warm.
Prepare chicken by warming canola oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle chicken on both sides with salt, pepper and fresh thyme. Place in pan and cook, turning, about 7 minutes per side, or until done throughout. Remove from pan and place on plate; cover with foil to keep warm.
Lower temperature on stove to medium-low. Add balsamic vinegar to the same skillet; deglaze pan, scraping up all browned bits. Reduce heat to low and cook until vinegar reduces, about 3 minutes. Stir in butter. Pour glaze through a strainer and into small bowl. Break up goat cheese into small crumbles, add honey and stir to combine.
To serve, place chicken breasts on platter and top with mushrooms. Drizzle balsamic glaze over chicken and add honey goat cheese crumbles on top of mushrooms.
Check out all the finalist recipes from Washington, Oregon and California at Foster Farms Cooking Contest.
August 27th, 2010
Well, it’s been a super, crazy, busy summer here at Kathy Casey Food Studios®-Liquid Kitchen™. I’ve been filming, traveling, and shaking up a storm the past few months. If you want to stay updated with all kinds of super-tasty tidbits of what’s been going on, be sure to follow me on Twitter and check out my blog.
Food Network Canada — yea! I’m their new “Ask an Expert” mixologist!
I am so honored to be working with Food Network—so click, and ask away everything you wanted to know about crafting a great cocktail, throwing a libacious party or what the newest imbibing trend is. Click here to check it out!
The Liquid Kitchen™ has been shaking up some new products …
At our online store we have our logo’d Boston shaker tin sets and our house-made Golden Era bitters as well as our Liquid Kitchen Cocktail Kit with all the barware basics. Look forward to other tasty cocktail concoctions soon, too, such as unique handmade marmalades and preserves—that will be excellent to shake into your favorite spirit—as well as our Liquid Kitchen No. 5130 backyard honey from our very own bee hives!
Speaking of honey … we are all abuzz about the very first batch of No. 5130 Honey
The end of July had things buzzing here at the Food Studios — it was time for the 1st honey harvest from our hive! Bee Master Corky Luster spun the first batch, and is it d’lish! With a dark amber hue, our honey is rich and complex tasting. Honey is a great sweetener and can be used in a plethora of recipes. I love it drizzled over sexy cheeses, lush summer fruits or in cocktails such as my newest fav — the Maker’s Honey Hum Collins (recipe follows). This cocktail combines the new Maker’s Mark 46, honey syrup, fresh lemon and HUM liqueur made by my friend and extraordinary mixologist Adam Seger.
Above is a finished comb filled with honey that has been capped with wax
It’s on the way to become Liquid Kitchen™ #5130 Honey!
Maker’s Honey Hum Collins
featuring Liquid Kitchen™ No. 5130 Honey
Makes 1 drink
1 1/2 oz Maker’s Mark 46
1/4 oz Hum Botanical Spirit*
3/4 oz Liquid Kitchen Honey Syrup (recipe follows)
3/4 oz fresh lemon juice
1 oz soda
Garnish: hibiscus flower and honey comb on a pick
Measure Maker’s Mark 46, Hum, honey syrup and lemon juice into a cocktail shaker. Fill with ice, cap and shake. Add splash of soda to the shaker and pour into a tall Collins glass. Add additional ice if needed.
To make Liquid Kitchen™ Honey Syrup: Measure 1 part HOT water and 1 part Liquid Kitchen™ No. 5130 honey into a container. Stir until honey is completely dissolved. Store in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
*Check out the HUM site for stores that carry it, or visit Drinks over Dearborn to order online if your state allows.
Recipe © 2010 by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – Liquid Kitchen™
Pur’ly Refreshing Cockails
Most recently I have been working with Purity Vodka, a complex character vodka. Unlike many neutral-tasting vodkas, Purity has a subtle, yet complex taste, which is best when embraced and highlighted rather than masked by overly sweet ingredients and powerful flavors. These cocktails are not only refreshing to sip this summer, but are also ideal when “watching your waistline.” Check out my blog on Amazon’s Al Dente site for the full read and the recipes.
Purity Vodka’s Berry Purity H2O and the Frisk
Libatious Tales from The Big Easy
In July, my Executive Chef Cameo, my Account Manager Jill and I kicked off our “summer conference frenzy” with a trip to New Orleans for the annual Tales of the Cocktail. The attendees of this conference are what I endearingly refer to as the cocktail “geeks” (which I humbly place myself among), who are super into the Art of Mixology.
Cameo and my seminar Creativity and the Power of Brainstorming was picked for the Pro “line-up” which was so much fun! A portion of the presentation was hands on: each table of attendees had to create a cocktail in 5 minutes using a unique bar tool and whatever they could grab in 1 minute from a “pantry” of ingredients. (There were 80 people doing this at once! Can you say crazy!!) I’ll have to say we were pretty impressed with what the teams came up with in such a short period of time. The winning drink was called “Morris Day and the Thyme” and was a tasty blend of cucumber, Catdaddy Carolina Moonshine, gin, lime and a touch of simple syrup.
Attendees choosing from the “pantry” of ingredients.
Ms. Franky, Cameo, and I with the hard task of picking a winner!
After the seminar was over, we had time to enjoy the rest of the conference! I participated in the Cointreau Tasting Room & Bar Star Mix-Off where I was a “mentor” for a mixologist. The rest of our time in the Big Easy was split between eating and drinking, more seminars, parties and avoiding the heat! We hit all our favorite restaurants: Lunch at Napoleon House, famous for their Muffaletta and Pimm’s Cup; Cochon Restaurant for Pork Ribs with Watermelon Pickles; and Mother’s Restaurant for Grits with Debris.
If you missed Tales and want to shake up some of this year’s cocktails, check out the Tales of the Cocktail eBook — it is available online. This is a great deal for just 10 bucks (my recipe entry for the Planter’s Punch contest is also included along with our other seminar recipes). For more information, click here.
To read more, check out Cameo and my blog on Amazon’s Al Dente.
Then it was on to California for the 2010 Flavor Conference
After only a few days back in Seattle, Cameo and I were re-packed and ready to head to sunny Newport Beach, California, for the annual Flavor Conference. While we never see much more than the inside of a kitchen and the back side of a banquet table, it’s a great event that brings together restaurant, hotel, cruise line, resort, and food and liquor industry professionals from all over the US. It’s a three-day eat-and-drink-a-thon showcasing popular food trends, flavors and new products.
We were in attendance with our friends at Monin, shaking up some cocktails and appetizers we adapted from my book, Sips and Apps. At the welcome reception I signed copies of my book and Cameo served up Blue Thai Mojitos, 1800 Spiced Margaritas with a Mango Ginger Grilled Shrimp Garnish, and a delicious Clover Club with raspberry foam.
From left to right, Blue Thai Mojito, Clover Club with raspberry foam and 1800 Margarita
I headed back to Seattle the next day for a Seattle Sip Around (read more below) while Cameo held down the fort for the second night at Flavor for the “Chef’s Showcase.” Cameo was on hand poolside to serve up some sweet and spicy ceviche to a crowd of hungry conference-goers. This time we paired shrimp with pineapple and mango with a hint of chipotle, and a fresh halibut ceviche with hints of habanero, lime and orange. We added a fun twist to the margarita by offering a trio of foams and a sprinkling of black lava salt. Along with the beautiful and delicious sangria that Monin served, we were quite a hit at the sunset pool party!
Now we’re home and the dust has settled, we can relax for a minute or two before the next big thing … BlogHer Food 2010. Stay tuned for more info.
Things are Jammin’ at the Studios
Right now it’s Jam Time! It’s that time of year again when summer fruits are in abundance (despite this crazy weather!). We’ve been hooking up with City Fruit, a cool non-profit organization that gathers excess fruits from neighborhood yards then delivers them to food banks and restaurants. We love supporting them and are donning our sexy hairnets to cook up lots of great tasty treasures, which we will feature at Kathy Casey Food Studios annual open house this December … yes, we are thinking ahead!
Travis, myself and Cameo in our sexy hairnets!
Mmm … Strawberry Lavender Jam
Sip Around Seattle
This is a great new event we hosted for Beam Global and is something we for sure want to host again. We started out with Senior Mixology Associate Keith Waldbauer and fellow Mixologist Andrew Bohrer’s presentation on cocktail history, classic and new bartending techniques, and some new trends we are seeing in mixology bars across the country. Andrew carved up a slew of ice balls, Keith flamed some rosemary, and both mixed up some fantastic drinks for the guests.
Sr. Mixologist Associate and owner of Liberty Bar, Keith Waldbauer
The following day I conducted a major mixology session and drink tasting featuring 16 new drinks! Whew! After my seminar, we were off to the Sip Around tour. Seattle has so many great mixologists and bars that truly are on the cutting edge of all the nations’ trends, we thought we should show our guests what Seattle has to offer. So 30 of us piled onto a party bus and headed out.
First, we saw Jay Kuehner at Sambar, where we sipped his fruit-forward creations in the back garden patio.
Jay Kuehner, hard at work
The drink is Cruzan Single Estate Rum, grapefruit, grapefruit bitters,
Tahitian vanilla bean, sassafras and Cremant de Limoux — YUM!
Next, on to Oliver’s Twist. Robert Rowland and Kim Bruso each made a fantastic drink while we snacked on oxtail sliders and anchovy deviled eggs. We grabbed our treats of garlic truffle popcorn and hopped back on the bus to head downtown. At Vessel, Jim Romdall served us the signature “Vessel 75” made with two types of bourbon and Peychaud’s bitters poured over luscious maple syrup foam. Stop #4 was at Tavern Law, where we snuck up the secret staircase to the upstairs private room and Nathan Weber whipped up two delicious cocktails, served in their beautiful vintage glassware collection.
Nathan Weber’s “Chancey” cocktail
For our final stop we zipped over to Barrio where we tried Casey Robison’s ever-popular “Sexy Sadie,” a jalapeño-spiced tequila drink with a touch of sage. Then it was on to Liberty for last call, where co-owner Keith mixed up some drinks “on the fly” for us.
One of Liberty’s many concoctions, Rum Pineapple White Tea
… if you ask nicely, Keith might make you a special drink with it!
All-in-all it was a booze-a-licious and spectacular couple of days; everyone learned — and drank — a lot!
Save the Date for a delicious event — the Seattle Food & Culinary Arts Show!
I am so excited to be the emcee at the Culinarium live stage for this year’s Seattle Food Show. We are going to have a great line up of chefs! For years, foodies of all ages have devoured their way through Seattle’s specialty chocolate, artisanal coffee, craft brews, regional wine, scratch-made cupcakes, farmstead cheeses, fine restaurants and retailers. On November 20 and 21, you’ll find them all tempting you under one roof, at the Seattle Key Arena, and just in time for holiday shopping. Advance general admission is $20; details available here.
And stay tuned to see who wins $10K in the Foster Farms Chicken Recipe contest!
This next week we are hosting the Washington recipe finals here at the Food Studios. See all the semi-finalists’ recipes from Washington, Oregon and California here.
I hope you have had a delicious summer and I look forward to an excting fall. Stay tuned on Facebook and Twitter for news about all my tasty travels and projects.
XXO – Kathy Casey
August 27th, 2010
Today is National Lemonade Day, so celebrate with a tall glass of your favorite variety of fresh-squeezed lemonade! I have a superr fun receipe below, just for the occasion. My friends at Paramount Citrus sent us these super cute aprons to wear today, so of course my staff put them on for an impromptu photo shoot!
My assistant, Jill, loving lemons and loving life
Be sure to go to Paramount Citrus’ “Squeeze the Day” Facebook page – Paramount Ctirus will donate $1 (up to $10,000!) to Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation for each person who “likes” the page over the next month.
For a delicious variation, toss in a pinch of dried lavender or a couple of flowering sprigs of fresh lavender when you cook the syrup. This ’ade’s also fabulous with some gin or vodka added.
Makes 1 drink
2 ounces Raspberry-Lemon Syrup
4 ounces chilled soda water
Fill a tall glass with ice. Measure in the syrup and soda water. Stir. Garnish with a lemon wheel and a few fresh Raspberries.
Makes 1 1/2 cups, enough for about 6 servings
1 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup fresh raspberries, or substitute frozen
1 tablespoon thinly sliced lemon zest (see Tip)
1 cup fresh-sqeezed Paramount Citrus lemon juice
Combine the ingredients in a small heavy saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, and boil for 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Strain through a very fine strainer, pressing out as much liquid as possible. Discard the solids and let the syrup cool to room temperature. If not using immediately, cover and refrigerate, for up to 7 days, until needed.
Tip: With a potato peeler, cut off only the yellow part of the lemon skin. Peel it off in long strips, then cut the strips into thin slivers (julienne).
Recipe adapted from from Sips & Apps, © 2009 by Kathy Casey
August 20th, 2010
With their crisp, cool and refreshing qualities, melons evoke the essence of summer pleasure. We enjoy them simply chilled and eaten as hand-to-mouth wedges, as colorful melon-ball skewers for utensil-free eating at outdoor barbecues, or injected with tequila, vodka or rum for libationary delight.
When I asked friends and coworkers for some fun melon-eating stories, there were plenty: half-cantaloupes filled with vanilla ice cream or cottage cheese for an old-fashioned lunch; family picnics where rotund green watermelons were cooled in nearby streams; and seasoning rituals, such as a Mexican friend’s lime, salt and chili powder.
Ripe, juicy and cold melons are of course delicious when eaten just naked—but they perform well when starring in recipes, too. For those of you who have never tasted pickled melon, here’s a recipe for Sweet, Sour & Spicy Melon Balls. For a nice light supper on a hot day, pair these with some thinly sliced prosciutto, a green salad dressed with a fruit-vinegar vinaigrette, and a great loaf of bread.
There’s nothing like summer’s fresh melons to cool you off. Enjoy them while you can!
Sweet, Sour & Spicy Melon Balls
Makes 3 pints
3 cups cantaloupe balls (see Chef’s Notes)
3 cups honeydew melon balls
3 large sprigs fresh basil
2 Tbsp chopped fresh mint
3/4 tsp red chili flakes
1 1/2 cups water
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup white wine vinegar
1 Tbsp kosher salt
Toss melon balls together. Fill three 1-pint, wide mouth jars with the melon balls, tucking a basil sprig into each jar.
In a non-aluminum saucepan combine all the remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil over high heat and boil for 2 minutes, then remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
When mixture is cool, evenly pour over the jars of melon balls, filling to top and being sure to cover the fruit completely. Cover with lids and refrigerate for at least 24 hours before eating. The melon balls will keep for about 2 weeks, refrigerated.
- Use ripe but firm melons.
- To make melon balls: Cut melon in half and scoop out seeds. With a melon ball gadget, scoop out balls. (I used the large size baller.)
© 2010 Kathy Casey Food Studios – www.kathycasey.com
August 19th, 2010
There is no event that brings together such talent in one industry as the Tales of the Cocktail. Held in the firm grip of summer in New Orleans, at the legendary Hotel Monteleone, Tales is a frat party for cocktail geeks, a platform for new and interesting spirits, a culmination of the great minds in the industry, and an excuse to drink cocktails in class. Seminars range from “Creativity and the Power of Brainstorming” (our own contribution) to “Old Tom Gin,” “Self-Publishing,” and the “Fine Art of Negotiation.” The subject matter covers professional series and introduction for newcomers, but all are geared toward the spirit soaked, and the spirit forward.
Continue reading on Amazon’s Al Dente Blog
August 17th, 2010
Every year around mid July, Kathy and I are in a flurry in what I consider ‘Conference tour 2010!’ It’s a whirlwind of activity during the hottest months of the year. While the rest of the world sits poolside sipping blended cocktails ( we probably helped develop), we are schlepping boxes from airport to airport hoping our luggage doesn’t get searched. (Often times, it’s a little difficult to explain the contents of our bags to the TSA official.) We spent the first part of the month hob nobbing in New Orleans at Tales of the Cocktail. With a slight pit stop in Minneapolis-St. Paul because of cancelled flight, Kathy and I made a night of it playing Zilch ( a great dice game we have both become addicted to), eating delivery pizza and sipping possibly turned wine. We were off again to California for the annual Flavor Confrence held in Newport Beach. While we never see much more than the inside of a kitchen and the back side of a banquet table, it’s a great event that brings together national account representatives from pretty much every chain, supplier and distributor in the industry. It’s three days of a eat-and-drink -a-thon showcasing popular food trends, flavors and new products.
We were representing our friends at Monin by shaking up some cocktails and appetizers we adapted from Kathy’s book Sips and Apps. At the welcome reception, Kathy signed copies of ‘Sips & Apps’ and I served up Blue Thai Mojitos, 1800 Poppy’s Margaritas with a Ginger Mango Grilled Shrimp garnish, and a delicious Clover Club with raspberry foam.
The second night of Flavor was the Chef’s showcase and we were on hand poolside to serve up some sweet and spicy ceviche to a crowd of hungry conference goers. This time we paired shrimp with pineapple and mango with a hint of chipotle, and a fresh halibut ceviches with hints of habanero lime and orange. We added a fun twist to the margarita by offering a trio of foams (strawberry, peach and mango) and a sprinkling of black lava salt. Along with a beautiful and delicious sangria, the Monin gang was quite a hit at the sunset pool party.
Now we’re home and the dust has settled; we can relax for a minute or two before the next big thing… Is it already Jam time?! ….but we’ve got it on our calendar and its 360 days and counting till ‘Conference Tour 2011’ gets us off and running again. – Cameo McRoberts, Executive Chef Kathy Casey Food Studios® – Liquid Kitchen™
Spicy cocktails are hot! The counterbalance of sweet, sour, spice, and salt achieves a mouthwatering result. Garnish with tropical Ginger Grilled Shrimp for a perfect Sips & Apps paring.
Makes 1 drink
Kosher salt for rimming glass
1 ½ – 2 ounces Gran Centenario Reposado Tequila
1 ½ ounces Spicy Lime Sour (recipe follows)
1/4 ounce triple sec or other orange-flavored liqueur
For garnishing: Lime wheel with a straw inserted through the middle
Tropical Ginger Grilled Shrimp on a pick (recipe follows)
Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Measure in the tequila, Spicy Lime Sour, and triple sec. Cap and shake vigorously. Pour into glass. Insert straw into a lime wheel and place in drink. Garnish with a skewered Tropical Ginger Grilled Shrimp.
Spicy Lime Sour
½ cup Monin Chipotle Pineapple Syrup
1 cup simple syrup
1 ½ cups fresh lime juice
Combine the syrups and lime juice. Transfer to a pretty bottle. Chill before using. The sour will keep for up to 2 weeks, refrigerated. Adapted from a recipe from Kathy Casey’s Sips & Apps, Chronicle Books
Tropical Ginger Grilled Shrimp
Makes about 20- 25 pieces
1/2 cup Monin Mango Puree
2 Tbsp Monin Chipotle Pineapple Syrup
1/2 cup fresh lime juice
3 Tbsp fresh minced ginger
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 tsp Kosher salt
1 Tbsp chili paste (Sambul Olek)
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 lb large shrimp , peeled and deveined
Whisk marinade ingredients together in a large bowl.
Add shrimp and toss to coat well. Refrigerate marinated for 4 hours.
Preheat grill to med-high and grill shrimp on each side until scored and just cooked through – but not overcooked. Chill until ready for service.
Recipe © 2010 by Kathy Casey
August 13th, 2010
Summer heat has us drinking slimmer, or at least thinking about it! Vodka definitely comes to mind in that category. But though vodka is typically a neutral tasting spirit, I had the pleasure of tasting an amazing vodka recently. Yes, that’s right–tasting!
Purity Vodka is an organic brand of vodka that is still new to the US markets (available only in California, Georgia, New Jersey, and New York so far). But don’t let its “new” status fool you! Made from estate grown wheat and barley mixed with the purest water from an artesian well, Purity Vodka is full-bodied, complex, and loaded with character–a front-runner in the new, and what I like to coin as the “Complex Character,” genre of vodkas. Vodka with taste!
Continue reading on Amazon’s Al Dente Blog.
August 4th, 2010