|Big news on the
Frontera Farmer Foundation
front. We've just announced the recipients of this year's
grants. There were 15 grants awarded for a total of
$160,971. For the past few months I've been working on compiling
information on all the farms this program has helped since the
foundation's inception in 2004. The foundation has awarded 84
grants and we're getting close to $1 million in awards in just 8
years. The really interesting fact however, is that of the 50
farms that have received grants through 2010, all but one of them are
still in operation. The only farm no longer around was sold when the
owner passed away. As we gear up for this year's events, we hope
that these numbers will inspire you to go out and continue supporting
this worthy cause.
other big foundation news is that we have planned a recipe contest as
part of this year's festivities. To enter the contest, all you
need to do is submit an original recipe, along with a
tax-deductible $10.00 donation
to the foundation. You could be one of two Grand Prize Winners
whose recipe Rick will demo at the Fiesta portion of the day, plus get 2
tickets to attend the event, an autographed apron and book and your
recipe will be posted on the web site. The complete contest rules
are on the web site. Deadline for submissions is May 27th.
We'll also have the on-line auction again this year. I'll give you details on that next month.
This year's Frontera Farmer Foundation event is June 12th.
"Behind the Scenes" in Baja
Rick and company start filming Season 8 of Mexico - One Plate at a
Time, get a BTS look at the food, flavors, culture and exotic locations
of the Baja coast. They'll start in Cabo San Lucas and continue up
the coast to Tijuana. Some of the stops along the way are
Ensenada's legendary fish market, watch cheeses being made in Valle de
Ojos Negros, small batch wine making in Valle de Guadalupe, a taco tour
in Tijuana and watch olive oil being made on a 150-year old crushing
These segments will run from April 5th to April 21st. Season 8 is scheduled to start airing in September.
Meet our Team: Richard James - Part Two
Richard's now our Chef de Cuisine/Executive Sous Chef for Frontera, Topolobampo and XOCO.
Who was the first person to inspire you to cook?
That would be my grandmother. I used to love to hang out in her kitchen and watch her cook.
One piece of kitchen equipment you couldn't live without?
12-inch non-stick skillet
What's your favorite gadget?
I'd have to pick three, my VitaMix blender, a high heat spatula and my tongs.
Favorite market in Mexico and the coolest thing you've ever found in a market.
would have to be my top choice. It's huge, however surprisingly
easy to navigate. I've actually put together a demo kitchen,
including all the equipment and food out of that one market. The
coolest thing would have to be the turtle molcajete I found for my wife
there. My wife collects turtles and I couldn't pass it up even
though I swore I'd never bring home a molcajete.
Pick five people you'd like to invite for dinner and what would you serve?
That's a no brainer, I'd pick my family and the menu would have to be BBQ. (Five was a flexible number - right?)
What's your favorite junk food?
Payday candy bars - I won''t tell you how many I can eat at one time, Garrett's caramel corn.
If you weren't a chef, what would you be?
A handyman, I love building and fixing things. It's how I unwind, I can tinker for hours in my workshop.
Aquaranch Industries, Broad Branch Farm, Centennial Farm, Faith's Farm,
Inc, Harrison Market Garden, Knutsons Country Harvest, Montalbano Farm,
Nature's Choice Farm, Peasants' Plot, Wellhausen Farm
In Indiana: C & D Family Farm and Iron Creek
In Michigan: Fat Blossom Farm and Kismet Organics
In Wisconsin: Kinkoona Farm
know you're probably expecting one of the new gadgets that I saw last
month at the Housewares show, but many of those products aren't
available in stores yet, so I'm going back to basics. Last weekend
in my cooking frenzy, I realized that I've overlooked a critical piece
of cooking equipment in my quest for sharing my favorite gadgets ... the
can opener. I've had many can openers come into my kitchen, but
the only one left is my favorite. It's called the Lock-n-Lift and
it's made by
It has a slim profile, so it fits easily in my drawer, it locks onto a
can and doesn't lift off until you release it. It turns smoothly
with very little effort and opens wide for easy cleaning. You'll
find it at
Bed, Bath and Beyond and
Sur La Table for $14.95 or any retailers that carry the Zyliss line.
Recipes from Deb's Test Kitchen
is here or it's supposed to be anyway and it's time to think about what
you're planting in this year's garden. Rick has published many
recipes over the years that feature hoja santa. It's a plant that
grows wild in Mexico and the Southwest and is used as a flavoring
component in many dishes. It's not readily available in the market
so in order to use it in recipes, you need to grow it yourself.
I've found two internet nurseries that sell the plants so I decided to
include a recipe for Mole Amarillo that I've used to create my
Grilled Shrimp with Mole Amarillo recipe.
The second recipe makes use of a springtime vegetable - watercress, which I used to create my chilled
my last recipe, I make use of mangos, which are at the height of their
season. I've used an easy cream cheese dough to make free form
Mango Tarts with a pecan crumb top, which is pictured above. Enjoy.
See you next month.
Test Kitchen Director/Web Site Culinary Director
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