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DESCRIPTIONWhat’s Cookin’! is the area’s most elegant and lasting showcase of dining establishments featuring full restaurant menus and dozens of recipes from local chefs. It includes a comprehensive, informative guide of eateries by category and location and an easy-to-use index.
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Features4 Alton Brown A Whats Cookin! exclusive interview
8 Winter, Spring, Summer & Fall Beer and cuisine pairings for each season
10 Shake it Up, Seasonally A professional mixologist offers specialty cocktails for throughout the year
12 To Your Health A candid chat with a clinical dietitian
14 Instructions, Methods and an Array of Flavors for You Recipes from the kitchens (and homes) of your favorite local chefs and restaurateurs
WHATS COOKIN! IS PUBLISHED YEARLY AND IS DISTRIBUTED THROUGHTOUT THE TRI-STATE. FOR INFORMATION ABOUT ADVERTISING, SUBSCRIPTIONS, DISTRIBUTION OR GUIDES & LISTS, CALL (812) 429-3907, TOLL FREE AT (866) 684-7574, SEND US A FAX AT (866) 463-9748, OR WRITE US AT P.O. BOX 14131 EVANSVILLE, IN. 47728, WHATS COOKIN! IS PUBLISHED BY ATOMA PUBLISHING, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. REPRODUCTION WITHOUT PERMISSION IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED. DISTRIBUTION OF THE MAGAZIENE DOES NOT NECESSARILY CONSTITUTE ENDORSEMENT OF PRODUCTS, SERVICES OR OPINIONS WITHIN. ADVERTISERS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE CONTENT OF THEIR ADS.
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Resources30 Area Restaurant Guides In Alphabetical Order By Location With Enhanced Features
52 Choice Menus from our Favorite Eateries
PUBLISHER Bashar Hamamibashar@atomapublishing.com
BUSINESS Sharon Tindlesharon@atomapublishing.com
DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS Amanda Smithamanda@atomapublishing.com
EDITORIALManaging EditorDylan Gibbseditor@atomapublishing.comStaff WriterAlison Sigman
SPECIAL CONTRIBUTORSStephen DennisonTom FischerTed Thompson
SALESCarolyn CummingsNick DoerterKeith LaCrosse
PRODUCTIONProduction SupervisorJaqulyn Woolseyart@atomapublishing.comGraphic ArtistAisha BorelPhotography by Daniel Knight, Studio BCourtney Metzger,Mark McCoy,Matt Presley,Ashley Underhill
ON THE COVER 2010:Alton Brown(Bee Squared Productions)
Page 19 Zucchini Carrot Muffins Courtesy of Cates Farm Photo by Daniel Knight, Studio B
Page 27 Mahi Mahi Napolean with Grilled Bell Peppers, Onion, Marinated Artichokes & Cream Sherry Glaze Courtesy of Just Rennies Photo by Daniel Knight, Studio B
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One of the most respected, entertaining and enlightening personalities in not just the world of food, but in media, Alton Brown has distinguished himself as a television host, author, lecturer, inventor and guru of the great American road trip (see: Feasting on Asphalt). His work on the now-classic Good Eats on Food Network has inspired people who may not have otherwise tried their hand at making a killer grilled cheese sandwich or a rack of lamb to do so, and with gusto. His books similarly inspire and educate. And his somewhat quirky personality makes him a prime interviewee, as we found out:
Interview by Dylan Gibbs
Photos by Bee Squared Producti ons
WC!: What are you? A chef? A scientist? An entertainer?AB: I actually have no idea; it scares me to even ponder that question. If Im trying to secure a loan, I put Television Producer, because first and foremost I run a television production company and Im the Executive Producer of Good Eats. My vocation is as a writer. A year of my time and so-called billable hours, so to speak, are spent writing, and the next portion is spent directing, and the next portion is spent in front of a camera. But from the standpoint of when people ask what I am I say Im the worlds grooviest Home Ec teacher.
Thats as good a job description as any.I dont do sewing, not yet anyway. But I am trying to pick that up I am. It s part of Home Ec, but I dont think I could produce a show about sewing. I dont think it would be worth watching.
Do you have a favorite episode of the show?For a long time, I did. We did a garlic episode once that was shot through the eyes of a vampire who had hired me to get over his fear of garlic. I really liked that show for some strange reason. But it s been a few years since Ive upgraded my favorite. I think I have favorite moments rather than favorite shows. I do have least favorites, which are a lot easier to pick out than favorites.
We dont need to talk about those, though. Kind of in that line, is there a food you cannot or will not deal with on the show?I wouldnt do a show on food that Im politically against.
What do you mean?Well I dont like the way veals produced, so I probably would never do a veal show.
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I see, okay.I ve worked a spring slaughter before; I ve killed lamb myself. I know what it s like to take a life in order to eat, and I dont disagree with it, but I do disagree with taking an animal in such a way that it makes it more miserable. And Ill probably never do shows on foods that Food Network doesnt think anybody wants to know about. For instance, theyd never let me do a show with rabbit involved. People would be upset by that.
Do you really have a box filled with sand in your refrigerator for your root vegetables?Yes. In one of the two refrigerators I have two and that s in one of them.
Youre well known for adapting tools from other trades for use in cooking. Do you have a research and development team that works on that stuff?Hacking no that is all me.
How do you figure out what works?I dont know. You know what? It s because when I start examining a problem, so much of the time I dont have the right tool for it. So I look around: what do I have? There are some people who think that I do it just for gadgets sake but there really is a purpose, to me, in looking at a job and f iguring out what needs to happen in such a way that it kind of redefines the whole process. I m really into beef jerky, and I like to make it. So this came out of a way I came up with to make dried herbs, which is strapping furnace f ilters onto the front of a box fan with a bungee cord. And it works really well. So why would I buy a food dehydrator when I can do this? I mean, in this day and age, were sold so much stuff. I m sick of stuff. I m sick of having stuff I dont need, I m sick of having stuff I dont want. I mean, people who get their kitchens remodeled, nine times out of ten, are doing it so they can have more cabinet space for all the crap they have.
It s more satisfying to make it yourself.It brings a sense of adventure to it. It really does. When I was a kid, I loved movies about mad scientists and Flubber, you know, and the whole idea that a guy, or a girl, I m not being sexist, can take their imagination and make something out of nothing. To me, I dont invent things out of nothing. I dont design something on a piece of paper and go to a machinist. I m more like Sanford & Son.
I live in the Midwest and there are those who think that I live in a culinary wasteland. What would you say to those people? I would say they need to move out of New York. I get really irritated with New Yorkers who think that there is no life and no intelligence outside the f ive boroughs.
In your experience, can you think of exciting or unique foods to come out of the Midwest?Dear Lord, that would be like saying the list would be too long to enumerate. I dont even know how to begin to answer that. The Midwest is as valid a culinary proving ground as anywhere else in the United States. No, it is not as rich a stew of cultures, perhaps, but that doesnt mean anything.
Well said. In this part of Indiana, people like to eat brain sandwiches. Other than frying, which is how theyre prepared here, can you think of another way to prepare a brain?Well, brain requires high heat on the outside and relatively quick
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cooking. It gets nasty fast otherwise. You can pan-fry it. You can saut it. You can pan roast it. But I think that frying is probably the best, as it is for most glandular matter, most organs are very good fried. You know what, I want to say another thing about brain sandwiches: they are important. How so?Because they are regional. And in a day and age when our food is being homogenized and pasteurized to death, thank God there is still a regional specialty that people can cling to. Be proud of it and cling onto it. Believe me, if McDonalds had its way, there would be nothing but Quarter Pounders for everyone. I just despise the homogenization of American cuisine, almost more than anything else.
Do you have a tried and true grilled cheese sandwich recipe?I use two cast iron skillets, and I get them really hot. I turn one of them upside down and put the sandwich in the bottom of one and then sandwich the other pan on top of it. Pressure is important, because it s like a Panini, you want it squeezed some. You want heat to move to the sandwich very quickly. The goal is to have the outside essentially fried. Youve got to put some butter on it; youve got to have some mayonnaise on the inside so the cheese has boundaries of where it can go, because fat makes a great boundary.
Im the worlds grooviest Home Ec. teacher
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If theres one underlying
principle to cooking,
what would it be?
That there are about
principles to c