You know how the rest of the country likes to make fun of California, but how much would they miss us if we were gone? You can certainly bet the weeping and wailing would be off the charts at dinner time.
According to the latest statistics compiled by the California Department of Food and Agriculture, the state produces almost half of all the fruits, nuts and vegetables grown in the country, as well as a whopping share of the livestock and dairy.
All told, the state’s farms earned almost $45 billion in 2012, the last year for which statistics are available – that’s more than...
Is Irish cooking finally ready to emerge from its corned beef and cabbage purgatory? It’s a cuisine that has been bubbling just under the surface for years, thanks to the work of writers such as Darina and Myrtle Allen of Ballymaloe, and the island’s natural bounty of meat, cheese and seafood.
But finally it seems that it may be reaching something of a critical mass. Three Irish cookbooks have come out in the last couple of months, and joined with Colman Andrews’ wonderful “The Country Cooking of Ireland” from 2009, we may now be approaching something like a...
Stonyfield has taken eco-friendly packaging to the next level with a new froyo dessert with edible packaging. The small yogurt balls, called frozen yogurt pearls, feature scoops of yogurt encased in edible, protective skins.
The organic yogurt maker collaborated with WikiFoods Inc. to develop the skins. Made from organic fruit by Harvard professor and WikiFoods founder David Edwards, the skins are similar to grape skins. They can be placed straight into your grocery bag, washed and handled, without being damaged.
"We've long dreamed of the day that after you eat the yogurt, you eat the cup...
Coffee is no small part of our daily lives. If you need more evidence of just how vital it has become, UC Davis has opened a coffee-centric training center to give scientists a place to study every aspect of coffee production and global trade.
"We think there is sufficient interest given the fact that so many people have consumed coffee so regularly across the world, for so long," J. Bruce German, director of the UC Davis Foods for Health Institute told the Sacramento Bee. "Coffee is not an insignificant contributor to the agricultural footprint."
Casey's Irish Pub is in the midst of getting ready for its fourth annual St. Patrick's Day street festival, which takes place Monday and is expected to draw 10,000 to 12,000 people to downtown's Grand Avenue for Guinness and green beer.
"We just got 120 cases of Jameson delivered," said Jeff Marino, Casey's general manager. "Tomorrow we'll have about 300 kegs of Guinness delivered." The entire Casey's staff will be working, Marino said. "Nobody gets the day off."
Casey's, located in a 1916 building that originally housed a general store upstairs and a Turkish bath house downstairs, will open...
It's Gluten-Free Wednesday. When you're looking for easy on-the-go solutions, you can't go wrong with a wrap. Keep it gluten-free using lettuce or cabbage. And keep it fun -- and calorie-conscious -- with tempting beef, shrimp and Philly cheesesteak ideas. Each of these options comes in at 225 calories or less per serving.
Beef lettuce wrap: Tender beef is flavored with a combination of soy sauce and Thai chili sauce, then tossed with crunchy water chestnuts and fresh mint, cilantro and green onions for a dinner that comes together in only 25 minutes.
San Diego has long been a nexus of innovation and excitement in the craft beer industry, and with the explosion of popularity in L.A. and Orange counties, Southern California is quickly becoming America’s hottest craft beer region. There’s a lot to keep up with, but a new guidebook provides comprehensive coverage of the best craft beer in the Southland.
"Beer Lover’s Southern California" is the newest entry in a series of craft beer-focused travel guides from Globe Pequot Press, and the first to tackle the rapidly expanding craft beer scene from Santa Barbara to San Diego.
Caffeine is an essential at the Natural Products Expo West in Anaheim — thousands and thousands of food and personal care products and crowds as big as nearby Disneyland. Which is what led me to one of my favorites of the 2014 show last week.
Blue Bottle Coffee and Clover organic milk — together. In a little school-size milk carton, with chicory and sugar. I can hardly wait for these to get to markets, which should happen this year.
Blue Bottle founder James Freeman said he had tried other ready-to-drink coffees on the market and rated them "from terrible to horrible." His New...
Europe is getting territorial with its Parmesan. In recent trade talks, the European Union has asked that certain European names for cheese not be used on varieties made in the United States, reported the Associated Press.
If its requests are granted, only Parmesan from Parma, Italy, would be called Parmesan. The effort is being fueled by the belief that American varieties of European cheeses are saturating the market and affecting sales.
So those familiar green Kraft cylinders of grated Parmesan cheese would have to be called something else. The same would apply to Gruyere, feta, Asiago,...
Having to take shorter showers and conserve water isn't the only thing we'll need to worry about with the drought currently plaguing California. The lack of water will also have an effect on the availability and price of the fruits and vegetables we eat every day, if it hasn't already.
And the amount of water it takes to produce just one vegetable is alarming. Mother Jones recently released an infographic showing how much water certain fruits and vegetables require to grow to maturity.
A head of broccoli requires 5.4 gallons of water, one walnut will take 4.9 gallons, a head of lettuce...
I can remember when $100 for a California Cabernet seemed excessive. This year, though, if you’re on the list for Screaming Eagle, the poster child for cult Cabernet, you'll pay $850 a bottle, including tax and shipping. And Harlan Estate is now released at $800 a bottle.
But that seems like chump change compared with the prices top wines fetched at the Napa Valley Vintners’ 18th annual Premiere Napa Valley barrel tasting and auction last week. According to a story by W. Blake Gray on wine-searcher.com, “last weekend, a dozen different 60-bottle lots of Napa wines sold for...
Frida Kahlo, the cult-figure Mexican artist whose collection of photographs will be shown in a new exhibit at Long Beach’s Museum of Latin American Art, was also a cook. And to celebrate the opening of the show, MOLAA has asked Luis Navarro, proprietor of the popular local restaurant Lola’s Mexican Cuisine, to lead a cooking class based on her recipes. As a bonus, Navarro has convinced Kahlo’s nephew, an old friend of his, to participate in the event via a Skype Q
Looking for a simple weeknight dinner solution? A satisfying meal that won't take all night to prepare? It doesn't get much easier than salmon, which cooks up quickly and can be used in a variety of dishes.
Salmon bisque: With the depth of flavor in this rich and creamy soup from Robin's Restaurant in Cambria, you'd never guess it came together in less than an hour. Butter, leeks, mushrooms and garlic form the base to this soup, layered with crushed tomatoes, chopped fresh herbs and cubes of fresh salmon. The salmon cooks in just minutes, the fragrant soup thickened at the end with cream. Yes,...
The happy hour: “Communal Hour” at this new Culver City “fraiche Vietnamese” restaurant is every day from 6 to 9 p.m. Also, Sunday to Wednesday 9 p.m. to close and Thursday to Saturday 9:30 p.m. to close. Half a dozen dishes on the menu include daikon rice cake frites ($4), fried pork and taro spring rolls ($5), kale salad with toasted coconut and pickled mango ($6) and grilled pork banh mi ($5). The booze: bottled beer (or “bia”) such as imports Saigon Expert and Beerlao Dark are $4; craft beer including Modern Times’...
Dozens of Los Angeles' top pastry chefs are pooling their talents for the 2nd annual Bakers Will Bake Sale on Sunday, April 13, at the Hollywood Farmers Market.
Founder and pastry chef Roxana Jullapat of Cooks County says the sale's mission is "to bake and sell a ridiculous amount of baked goods and donate the money to a good cause." Proceeds from this year's sale will benefit the Garden School Foundation, a local organization that develops garden-based programs at under-served schools in Los Angeles.
So far, more than 20 local bakeries and restaurants are participating in this year's Bakers...
I’m still trying to wrap my head around the story of the guy who claims he eats only pizza — and always just cheese and tomato — morning, noon and night. Oh, for 25 years. Twenty-five years? Evidently, in all that time, pizza with Italian sausage or artichokes or even pepperoni didn't tempt him.
That got me thinking: Even if you’re going to eat the exact same pizza over and over again, you can at least change out the wines.
Around here, as opposed to New Haven, Conn., home of the clam pizza, we don’t tend to eat many seafood pizzas. Our favorites tend more to...
Regulars at Chengdu Taste, the Alhambra Sichuan restaurant famous for its toothpick lamb and its two-hour wait for a table, know they can order specials off the menu. Stop in for dinner, and servers regularly carry platters of lion fish -- a "secret menu" special of intricately sliced and deep-fried whole fish -- across the dining room to in-the-know customers. At least until the kitchen runs out.
The secret menu might have remained elusive for non-Chinese speakers, but organizers of the Chinese Cuisine Festival -- an event that takes place at 15 restaurants in the San Gabriel Valley through...
Ever wonder what a pig does all day? Well, now you can watch a live feed of nothing but pigs, 24-7 with the ham cam.
In celebration of Pig Week, which is devoted to all things pig, Modern Farmer magazine has launched a ham cam. It's set to capture a 24-hour live feed of Fannie the Sow and her six offspring from the Pettitoes backyard farm in Warwick, Mass.
It's not exactly the puppy cam, the camera that captures the lives of a group of adorable puppies all day as they play and nap. The ham cam looks at a caged area with a lot of hay, a little snow and a small house for the hogs.
Police are investigating an incident involving a Tampa, Fla., family who reported having hallucinations after eating meat found to be tainted with LSD last week.
The family of four, including Rosado Morales, who was nine months pregnant, and husband Ronnie Morales bought the packaged bottom round steak, supplied by Cargill, from a Wal-Mart in Tampa.
"We know our customers expect safe, quality food and we require our suppliers to meet the highest of food safety standards," said the store in a statement. "It’s unclear where and how the food was tampered with or if the tampering occurred...
Wood & Vine, a small-plates kitchen and wine bar in Hollywood, has a new chef: Marc Johnson. The Los Angeles native graduated from the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco and has worked at Lincoln Steakhouse in Santa Monica, the Avalon Hotel and La Seine in Beverly Hills, Culver City's Waterloo & City, Haven Gastropub in Pasadena and West Hollywood's STK. At Wood & Vine, he has revamped the menu with lots of terrines, pâtés and salumi. "Working at Waterloo & City really turned me on to making charcuterie," he says. Also on his new menu: roasted cauliflower with peanuts, salsa verde...
Are restaurants that thrive on insulting their customers a dying breed?
It seems the Chinese restaurant dubbed “London’s rudest restaurant” is giving up the insults and promising to reopen with kinder, gentler service. BBC News Magazine reports.
According to writer Jon Kelly, the patrons of Wong Kei in London’s Chinatown “were cajoled, bullied, insulted and mocked by waiting staff. Perversely, many diners loved it. Each night scores would queue up at the 500-cover restaurant to be verbally abused over the chicken satay and pork fried noodles.” Doesn’t...
Want to be a winemaker? With the new Miracle Machine, it's easier than you think.
There's no need to buy a winery. All you need are a few ingredients, the soon-to-launch Miracle Machine smartphone app and the Miracle Machine. It's a tabletop device that turns grape concentrate, yeast and a couple other ingredients into wine.
To make the wine, add a pre-packaged kit of ingredients to the machine. Each kit corresponds to a type of wine. Then plug into the app which type of wine you'd like to make.
You'll be able to choose from six wine types that include full-bodied Cabertnet Sauvignon, rich...
Mama Musubi, maker of onigiri (Japanese rice balls), pops up at Aburiya Toranoko downtown for one week, through March 15. On the menu are rice balls ($3.75) made with fillings such as 24-hour Berkshire pork belly with "umami sauce"; miso chicken; Angus beef rib eye with caramelized onion; Oregon Bay shrimp, crab and yuzu aioli; miso with grilled scallions; spicy kelp; and cooked tuna with cucumber and truffle oil. Made with Japanese short-grain rice and wrapped in nori and sprinkled with furikake, the rice balls also are available as part of a lunch or dinner ($9.50 and $19.50 respectively)...
With winter fading, a crop of new craft brews has begun to spring up from some of California’s best breweries. In addition to the new core brew from Stone that we told you about, here are three exciting new beers from some landmark California breweries.
Last month Anchor Brewing introduced a new year-round IPA, the aptly-named Anchor IPA, and the seminal San Francisco brewery has followed up with a new seasonal brew for spring -- Anchor Saison.
Light and dry with a vibrant effervescence, saisons are a natural match for springtime, and the Belgian “farmhouse style&...
True lovers of asparagus are a devout bunch, united in their passion for spring's first green spears and resolute in their refusal to be seduced by the siren song of out-of-season impostors. But within this flock lies a deep division. Meet another asparagus devotee and the first question they will usually ask is: "Thick or thin?"
Spear size, it seems, has become an ideological issue.
Believers in skinny spears claim that theirs is superior because it doesn't need to be peeled. It is delicate and crisp. Its very slenderness is evidence that it truly is the first spear of spring.
A worm from Southeast Asia has found its way into France and is threatening the country's supply of escargot.
The New Guinea flatworm is one of the most dangerous invasive species in the world. The worms were spotted at the botanical gardens in Normandy, setting off alarm bells around the country.
"All snails in Europe could be wiped out," Jean-Lou Justine, a professor of parasitology from the National Museum of Natural History in France, told Discovery News. "It may seem ironic, but it's worth pointing out the effect that this will have on French cooking."
McDonald's really wants to be your neighborhood coffee shop. The fast food chain has started testing a line of breakfast pastries to go along with its McCafe coffee drinks.
Certain locations in San Diego are selling raspberry and cinnamon cream cheese petite pastries. The pair of sweets is selling for $1.99 or for $1.29 if you also buy a coffee.
The public relations team behind the San Diego County McDonald's locations wrote a tweet letting people know they could stop by participating locations to try a pastry free March 6 to 8 from 6 a.m. to 11 a.m.
An almost 80,000-calorie sandwich made by Arnold Schwarzenegger? We must be talking about Epic Meal Time, the popular YouTube show with the sole mission of making the most epic meals ever.
The Governator teamed up with the show's Harley Morenstein to create what they're calling the steak and egger sandwich. And the best part? They cook parts of the sandwich on Schwarzenegger's M47 Patton tank.
Yes, it's an actual tank, with Schwarzenegger's name written across the side.
"What more do you want, Internet?" asks Morenstein in the video.
The two men layer slices of cheese, a loaf of baked...
If you're one of those coffee lovers who needs their minimum three cups of joe a day, a new app could help make sure your daily caffeine buzz doesn't affect your sleep.
Up Coffee by Jawbone Labs is a free app for download on your smartphone or tablet. It's designed to figure out how much caffeine you can handle before you feel wired, and when you should cut yourself off before bedtime.
Once you download the app, you fill out a short form that asks your sex, weight, height, how sensitive to caffeine you are and your regular bedtime.
When you have a cup of coffee, tea, an energy drink or...
Beachwood BBQ and Brewing is one of the most decorated craft breweries in Los Angeles, and it has built a fervent following that often lines the Long Beach Promenade on bottle-release days and packs the restaurant during special events.
And there are plenty of those. Beachwood makes so many different house beers in its tiny brewery that it had to release a calendar so its fans could keep up.
Brewmaster Julian Shrago has won the hearts of L.A.’s hop heads with his numerous fantastic IPAs, but he’s just as adept at stouts, Belgian-style ales, and about every other style that he brews...