Blog of Award-winning authors
ANDREW DORNENBURG & KAREN PAGE
Named one of GourmetFood.About.com's "Top 10 Food Blogs"
Named one of The Fifty Best Links for Epicureans
Named to MUG 400 for "distinctive contribution to life in New York"
"Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page monitor the pulse of the food world like nobody's business. There's a fantastic database of restaurant reviews, too."
— Babbo pastry chef Gina DePalma
"Page and Dornenburg also write one of the most informative and engaging food/wine blogs on the planet. Check it out."
— Bestselling author Michael Gelb
"If you asked me what I came into this world to do,
I will tell you: I came to live out loud."
— Critic and novelist Emile Zola (1840-1902)
"There is nothing under the sun better for man than to eat, drink, and be merry. Go, therefore, eat your bread with joy and drink your wine with cheer.”
— Ecclesiastes 8:15
Sunday, March 29, 2009 — We've resisted...and resisted. But after learning that we already had 10 people following us on our inactive Twitter account even though we had never posted a single tweet, we have started a new one and have finally committed to experimenting with Twitter — so you can follow us at Twitter.com/KarenAndAndrew.
We'll give credit where credit is due — thanks to our 10 initial Twitter followers who inspired us to finally take the plunge: Glutenfreegirl, RCBjornson (Rachel Bjornson), MollyOrangette (Molly Wizenberg), ChefMendez (Mark Mendez), Docsconz (John Sconzo), CNaha (Carrie Nahabedian), LennDevours (Lenn Thompson), PhillyBear (Phil Johnson), JeeWPark (Jee Won Park), and Marliese.
A great review of THE FLAVOR BIBLE from a great new Blog:
"Hallelujah! Celebrating the Good Book: THE FLAVOR BIBLE ($35, Little, Brown), that is. That other Bible is very interesting, but Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg's book (which I wrote about when I was a reporter for the Chicago Tribune's Good Eating section) is much newer and you probably haven't heard quite as much about it. I explain it in more detail in my Trib piece. You should definitely read it to see how the book works, because it will change your life no matter what your level as a cook. And it will give you back your courage as a cook, especially if you have been discouraged in previous culinary endeavors....I like to pick up THE FLAVOR BIBLE (subtitle: The Essential Guide to Culinary Creativity, Based on the Wisdom of America's Most Imaginative Chefs) often, for inspiration; I also like to read it in bed, which is a bit odd since it has no plot. Just look up the ingredient you're obsessed with (for me, right now, it's apples), and take it from there. By the way, the sandwich in the Tribune piece was inspired by Ina (and don't pretend you don't know which 'Ina'), and the salad, which is fabulous, is my own invention. Karen and Andrew are charming and brilliant; with good reason, they are particularly proud of the fact that Grant Achatz, the enigmatic and exquisitely innovative Chicago chef who created the restaurant Alinea (and whom I interviewed in his kitchen a couple of years ago for Men's Vogue), has called the precursor to this book, Page and Dornenburg's CULINARY ARTISTRY, 'My most used cookbook.' Already, this morning, I've used THE FLAVOR BIBLE to decide what to do with my slightly raggedy apple surplus. I opened the book to Apple, of course (Season: autumn Taste: sweet, astringent Function: cooling. . . . Techniques: bake, caramelize, deep-fry, etc); checked out the dishes that a few famous chefs mention as favorites (Caramelized Apple Sundae with Butter Pecan Ice Cream, from Emily Luchetti, of Farallon, in San Francisco, for instance); then decided that I'm going use the apples to make a dense buttery cake, or maybe a sour cream cake, with a bit of chopped candied ginger and chopped apricot. At least, I think I am. I have all the ingredients here (which I'll admit influenced my decision). I may be barking up the wrong tree, but those ingredients are complementary, so I know the flavors will be nice. There is not a single recipe in this book, which is part of its charm — the possibilities seem more endless — so the vehicle is up to me...."
—Emily Nunn, Cook the Wolf (March 20, 2009)
Wednesday, March 25, 2009 — We were thrilled and honored to learn this week that THE FLAVOR BIBLE has been named a Finalist for a 2009 James Beard Book Award. Our sincere thanks to the James Beard Foundation and its Book Awards Committee for this recognition of our eight-year labor of love!
For a complete list of nominees for this year's James Beard Awards, which will be announced at Lincoln Center's Avery Fisher Hall in New York City on Monday, May 4th, click here.
We were very happy to have an opportunity to celebrate our long-time friend Laura Day's birthday (as well as her adorable son Samson's birthday) on Sunday. Laura has a wonderful new version of her book The Circle: How the Power of a Single Wish Can Change Your Life available that features a workbook that allows readers to work through the nine steps of The Circle. Highly recommended.
"Here We Go! ... And speaking of inspired, when is the last time you felt that way in the kitchen? Our guide to creative cooking will give you the confidence to play with flavor — and open yourself to a delicious new experience (page 148)."
—Oprah Winfrey, O magazine (April 2009)
Thursday, March 12, 2009 — You might want to pick up a copy of the April 2009 issue of Oprah Winfrey's O magazine for the eight-page feature that starts on page 148. "The Creative Cook" by Celia Barbour was inspired by our latest book THE FLAVOR BIBLE, and is filled with tips for learning to cook more creatively and intuitively. You'll even find a couple of pages of recipes on pp. 184-186 for dishes that were inspired by flavor pairings mentioned in the book.
Cynthia Penney with Andrew Dornenburg
Restaurateur Danny Meyer, Karen Page,
Citicorp's Terri Dial, EMP chef Daniel Humm
Host chef Daniel Boulud flanked by other participating chefs
Chef Daniel Humm of Eleven Madison Park's lobster course
Wednesday, March 11, 2009 — Readers of our Blog know that Citymeals-on-Wheels is the charitable organization nearest and dearest to our hearts. So we were thrilled to be invited as guests to a dinner on Sunday night at the four-star restaurant nearest and dearest to our hearts — Daniel — entitled "Black Truffles, Burgundy, Blue Jeans & Blues" benefiting Citymeals. Raising nearly a half-million dollars to help feed the homebound elderly, the evening's menu featured:
Black Truffles, Burgundy, Blue Jeans & Blues
Selection d'Hors d'Oeuvre d'Hiver
Bacon-Wrapped Bay Scallop with Black Truffle
Tuna with Black Truffle Coulis and Celery Confit
Lettuce-Wrapped Hamachi Tartar with Black Truffle
Beaufort Gougeres with Black Truffle
Spinach, Mozzarella, Black Truffle Barbarjuan
(Champagne Henriot Blanc Souverain Pur Chardonnay NV)
Flocons de Chataignes aux Brisures de Truffe Noir
Flaked Chestnuts with Crushed Black Truffle
by Chef Michel Troisgros, Maison Troisgros, Roanne
(Hanzell, Chardonnay Sonoma 2005)
Homard de Nouvelle Ecosse
Pommes de Terre, Celeri et Truffe Noir
Nova Scotia Lobster
Potato, Leeks, Celery and Black Truffle
by Chef Daniel Humm, Eleven Madison Park, NYC
(Beaune 1er Cru "Beaune du Chateau", Bouchard Pere Et Fils, Burgundy 2006)
Poularde Demi- Deuil
Riz Pilaf a la Truffe Noir
Four Story Hill Farm Poularde "Demi-Deuil"
Crosnes, Rice Pilaf, Black Truffle "Bouchee"
Sunchokes, Salsify, Prawns and Albufera Sauce
by Chef Daniel Boulud, DANIEL, NYC
(Gevrey-Chambertin, Louis Jadot, Burgundy 2006)
Truffe al la Noisette
Glace au Caramel Truffe
Hazelnut-Chocolate Truffle with Chestnut Mousse and Caramel-Black Truffle Ice Cream
by Pastry Chef Domique Ansel, DANIEL, NYC
(Champagne Moet & Chandon Nectar Imperial NV En Magnum)
Our table was having so much fun we hardly noticed that we were among the last to leave the dining room! It's no wonder when the evening offered the pleasure of crossing paths with the likes of Cathie Black & Tom Harvey, Daniel Boulud, Terri Dial & Brian Burry, Gael Greene & Steven Richter, Bob Grimes, Daniel Humm, Suri Kasirer, Danny Meyer, Cynthia & Jeff Penney, Myron & Marcia Stein, Bill Telepan, and Donald Tober.
For more photos of "Black Truffles, Burgundy, Blue Jeans & Blues," visit:
New York Social Diary
While Andrew has been cooking up a storm himself these past several weeks, including baking his own whole wheat breads, we've made it out to take advantage of a few extraordinary restaurant deals around town worth knowing about. Don't miss:
Zak's lamb at the new Fatty Crab on Broadway & 77th St.
* Fatty Crab, 2170 Broadway (near 77th Street). The original downtown location had been on our list of places to try since its opening, but we never made it in. So we were happy to visit the new uptown location on its 3rd night in business, and were instant converts to the pleasures of chef Zak Pelaccio's Asian-influenced (and gently-priced) dishes.
Start with an array of compelling salads at 'inoteca
* 'inoteca, 323 Third Ave. (at 24th Street). We sang its praises in its incarnation as Bar Milano, but its newly-revamped dining room and value-priced menu is even sweeter music to our ears. We dined with Insatiable Critic Gael Greene and intrepid photographer Steven Richter, whose delicoius writing and photos can't be beat, so we'll just link to theirs here.
Black truffle rice balls at Lever House
* Lever House, 390 Park Ave. (on 53rd Street). Run, don't walk, to take advantage of the extraordinary $35 three-course prix fixe dinner offered every night the restaurant is open. We're long-time fans of chef Bradford Thompson's food (from Daniel to Mary Elaine's at The Phoenician), and there are few wine directors as knowledgeable or as charming as Arnaud Devulder (whom we first met at DB Bistro Moderne) . Tell them we sent you!
P.S. Re: Lever House: Our photos didn't turn out nearly as well as we hoped, so instead of doing an injustice to the restaurant with our shots, we're already planning our return visit to shoot more....
Tuesday, February 24, 2009 — Quotation of the Day, courtesy of daily Good, a free daily enewsletter that — without cost, advertising, or agendas — delivers "a little bit of inspiring goodness" to more than 100,000 readers, including us:
"Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle."
Sunday, February 15, 2009 — Here's wishing the Mayor of Central Park Alberto Arroyo (the subject of our July 8, 2007 Blog) a very Happy Birthday! There's a heartwarming article by Charles Wilson in today's New York Times entitled "Helping Hands Keep a Jogging Icon Going" chronicling nonagenarian Alberto's stroke this past August, and how the running community is helping him visit his beloved Central Park several days a week. The Times reports that Alberto is turning 93 on Sunday.
Saturday, February 14, 2009 — Andrew writes, "I wanted to write something special this Valentine's Day — and not just in Karen's Valentine's Day card.
When we came out with our first book in 1995, we agreed to list our names alphabetically, never realizing that Karen's name as the second-listed author would get dropped repeatedly.
We also never realized that people would assume I was the primary aruthor of our books because my name came first.
And we never realized that even though Karen's name finally comes first on THE FLAVOR BIBLE, that my name would still be listed first on many bookstore Web sites and blogs.
In our last two books, I went so far as to thank Karen for being the primary author of all our books in the Acknowledgments.
So on this Valentine's Day, I wish to acknowledge not only my love for my best friend, wife and co-author, but to stop short of jumping on Oprah's couch to say, "I love this woman who is the lead author and visionary of all of our work — not simply books, but newsletters, Blogs and speeches."
I have not been sitting by idly. We do work together, bringing different strengths and different points of view, and I am proud of my contributions to our work. But let's get serious; I am a dyslexic former chef with a great love of cooking and writing (and please take note of the order of the last part).
None of this should come as a surprise to those who know Karen, who studied journalism at Northwestern and has an MBA from Harvard. Despite having ideas for other topics, somehow her muse became the culinary world and the incredible people who are a part of it. In fact, the reason for her initial foray into this world was to help one particular aspiring chef: me.
So, on this Valentine's Day, I wish all of you who have benefited from and found inspiration in our books to join me in raising a glass and a toast to the person primarily responsible for all of them. For those who found BECOMING A CHEF the inspiration for joining our field, for those who've found CULINARY ARTISTRY their favorite or "most-used" cookbook, and for those who have found the perfect pairing in their glass or on their plate in WHAT TO DRINK WITH WHAT YOU EAT or THE FLAVOR BIBLE — I can't think of a better Valentine than to once again remind all of you that if our work has earned a place in your heart, you should have a place for Karen right next to it.
Happy Valentine's Day, Karen."
We joined "Living Today" host Mario Bosquez at Martha Stewart Living Radio at Sirius yesterday afternoon, and talked about some great dishes and pairings for Valentine's Day.
With the exquisite Ayala Rose Majeur Champagne (about $50), we paired Wild Edibles smoked salmon and blini.
With both 2007 Jackson-Triggs Proprietors' Reserve Vidal Icewine ($25) and the 2006 Inniskillin Vidal Gold Icewine ($75), we paired Dieter Schorner's unbeatable Tarte Tatin (from the recipe in CULINARY ARTISTRY).
Talk about matches made in heaven!
Shad filet with bacon, and shad roe, at the Oyster Bar
Tuesday, February 10, 2009 — Karen had her first delicious taste of shad roe several years ago thanks to chef Terrance Brennan of Picholine in Manhattan, and she's been a fan of this seasonal delicacy ever since. So it was with not a little excitement that we learned yesterday that it's shad and shad roe time again!
The Grand Central Oyster Bar served its first shad of the season yesterday — and when we stopped by for a taste, General Manager Jonathan Young let it slip that British actor Terence Stamp shares our fondness for it. This week's shad is flown in from Georgia, but as the shad swim upstream they will be flown in from other cities along their journey.
While the shad filet is prepared very simply, requiring a squeeze of lemon and a sprinkle of salt to finish it off, the Grand Central Oyster Bar kitchen accents the nutty, slightly liver-like taste of shad roe by serving it with bacon, and we heartily endorse the flavor pairing of shad roe and bacon. But the real triumverate here is the flavor of shad roe + bacon + a good pinot noir, like the glass of 2006 Highland "Seco Highlands" Pinot Noir our amiable waiter suggested that elevated the flavor synergy to a whole new level.
Grand Central Oyster Bar is on the lower level of Grand Central Terminal near 42nd Street and Park Avenue. (212) 490-6650. Web: www.oysterbarny.com Enjoy the first catch of the shad season all week long, and enjoy this delicacy for the next few weeks.
"A truly unique fish that is related to herring, the American shad is classified as 'anadromous' because it spends the majority of its life in salt water but returns to its birthplace to breed in freshwater. Because the shad loses body fat as it labors upstream, the most prized are those that have journeyed the least. The Oyster Bar monitors the movement of shad schools through its suppliers."
—Grand Central Oyster Bar in Manhattan
El Bulli chef Ferran Adria with Karen Page at MadridFusion
Monday, February 2, 2009 — We hope you are weathering cold and flu season more successfully than we've been able to: Karen's been knocked out for more than a week now. She reports that her culinary highlights of late have been Andrew's homemade oatmeal drizzled with maple syrup in the morning and his roast chicken with lots of veggies later in the day —
alternated with Sarge's chicken soup!
So we haven't yet been able to report on our recent trips to Belgium (where we co-keynoted The Flemish Primitives, the first-ever global conference on Foodpairing in Brugge) and Spain (where we attended MadridFusion). Soon!
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