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Episode #75 – Katrina Blair

51x8WiW6pCL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_This week I’m joined by Katrina Blair author of The Wild Wisdom of Weeds, the only book on foraging and edible weeds to focus on the thirteen weeds found all over the world, each of which represents a complete food source and extensive medical pharmacy and first-aid kit. More than just a field guide to wild edibles, it is a global plan for human survival.

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Episode #74 – Brisket King & Skin Cleanse

Today we talk two things that fit perfectly together – brisket and skin care! First, I chat with Adina Grigore, author of Skin Cleanse. Skin Cleanse helps readers diagnose and understand the underlying causes of their individual skin problems and offers all-natural recipes—using inexpensive ingredients that can be found at the grocery store to treat them effectively. Later, she’s joined by Chef Brian Perrone and Jimmy Carbone who recap Brisket King 2015, an event where 20+ chefs competed for the glory of beef!

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Episode #73 – Chef Brian Alberg

Anne & I begin the show by discussing health concerns and cholesterol, after upsetting news from my doctor is revealed. Then, guest Chef Brian Alberg of The Red Lion Inn discusses the customers, food, and the age demographics they want to attract in the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts. Brian gives us insight into how he started cooking and his love for his profession.

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Episode #72 – Sam Saverance & The Jazzy Vegetarian

Sam SaveranceThis week on Sharp and Hot we interview Laura Theodore aka “The Jazzy Vegetarian,” musician, actor, chef, and lover of vegetables. Laura first tells us about her grandmother who inspired her to cook, she talks about her grandmother’s method of making food not only taste, but look beautiful as well. To transition into the break Laura sings a song that she recorded with guitarist Joe Beck. After the break, Sam Saverance of the new Bunna Cafe. The cafe is centered around Ethiopian cuisine, Sam tells us about some of the work he did in Ethiopia and how Bunna Cafe started.

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Episode #71 – Author Leanne Brown

Good & Cheap

Good & Cheap

This week producer Anne Hogan (while sending her best wishes to yours truly on the beach somewhere) interviews Leanne Brown, the author of Good and Cheap: Eat Well on $4/Day. She tells us about the inception of Good and Cheap, and how she didn’t want the book to have a stigma of “cooking for poor people.” Leanne then tells us some of her favorite ingredients and how we can improve our cooking skills in some of the easiest ways.

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Episode #70 – Mardi Gras in Bushwick


Growing up, Paul Prudhomme’s Louisiana Kitchen was my father’s culinary bible. I’ve eaten my way through the book many times over and love the retro food photography of an era when a publisher would see a sausage skirt on a cover and say, “green light!”

Here for you is a recipe for jambalaya, a creole classic, with which to celebrate the fattest of Tuesdays. If you compare recipes, you’ll see I rely heavily on Chef Prudhomme’s, but have streamlined the steps to make it way easier to follow along.

If you make it, post a pic to instagram #sharpandhot and I’ll try to send you a cookbook with a fancy bookplate in it, courtesy of The Southern Letterpress!


Makes ~8 cups

Seasoning Mix:

2 bay leaves

2 tsp salt

2 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp black pepper

1 tsp white pepper

1 tsp dried thyme

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

2 tablespoons rendered lard or butter

1 cup chopped tasso or diced ham

1/2 cup diced andouille sausage

1 1/2 cup diced onions

1 cup diced celery

1 cup chopped green bell pepper

2 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, diced

2 tsp minced garlic

1 14-oz can petite diced tomatoes, drained, liquid reserved for bloody mary’s or other use

1 small can tomato sauce

2 cups fish or chicken stock

1 bunch green onions, chopped

2 cups Uncle Ben’s converted rice

1/2 pound peeled shrimp (salad sized ideally, or I like the langoustine tails from Trader Joe’s)

18 oysters, shucked, with their juice


1. Combine the seasoning mix ingredients. Set aside.

2. Heat the oven to 350ºF.

3. Melt the fat/butter in a large rondeau or pot, large enough to hold all the ingredients. If you have a matching lid, fantastic, otherwise foil will suffice.

4. Into the hot fat, add the ham and sausage and cook over medium-high until crisp. The key is not to stir it too often, once or twice during the crisping process, which will take about 5 minutes.

5. Add the holy trinity (onions, celery and bell pepper) and cook 5 min more, until veg starts to soften.

6. Add the chicken and cook through, a minute or two and scrape up the bottom of the pan.

7. Add the spice mix, the garlic, tomatoes, & tomato sauce. Cook until hot and fragrant, 5 minutes or so.

8. Add the stock and bring to a boil, then add the green onions, rice, shrimp & oysters. Give a stir to evenly combine. Top with lid or foil and carefully transfer to the oven until the liquid is absorbed, about a half hour. I give it a stir 20 minutes in. Don’t let anyone eat the bay leaves.

Episode #69 – Carole Morison & Edible Impacts

This week on Sharp & Hot, I’m joined by Carole Morison, the chicken farmer who, after letting her industrial farm be filmed by the producers of Food, Inc., had her contract terminated with an enormous national chicken brand. She’s now collaborating with Barnraiser to raise funds to turn her former factory barns into housing for her pasture-rasied egg layers who produce thousands of eggs a week for Whole Foods – which she hands washes herself! After the break, I’m joined by Alex Monroe and Brooke Sunness, the team behind Edible Impacts. Edible Impatcs invokes curiosities that challenge the way we think about food. They are currently spearheading the #30DAYStoSHINE social media movement – a challenge to implement 30 days of eating @ $5-6 per day, all organic. Sound impossible? Tune in and find out why it’s not!

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Episode #68 – Drunk Debate

2571261975_6fe2177638_bThis week on Sharp & Hot, I recap my week which included an eventful Super Bowl party, book plates, and Settlers of Catan. Later in the show, I take a listener question about knife sharpening, Anne makes her vegetarian confession and I try my very best not to suck her teeth on air.

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Episode #67 – Farm Fork Food with Chef Eric Skokan

On today’s show, Chef Eric Skokan talks the seasonality of food! I had the pleasure of eating at Chef Skokan’s restaurant Black Cat Bistro in Boulder, CO back in 2009. It was innovative, comfortable and beautiful. His new cookbook Farm, Fork, Food | A Year of Spectacular Recipes by Black Cat Farm brings his innovation into your home kitchen.

This week’s recipe for you to try at home is Black Cat Bistro’s Carrot Cake! Snap and pic and post to instagram with the #sharpandhot hashtag. Looking forward to seeing your tasty work!

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Carrot Cake with Carrot Confiture & Mascarpone 

Reprinted with permission

Carrots are a mainstay of the farm. They find their way into our wintertime desserts when fresh fruits are harder to come by. Here is a fun variation on carrot cake that takes notes from the flavors in gingersnap cookies.

Serves 8

1 teaspoon plus 2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
4 drops white vinegar
2 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons sugar
sea salt
12 baby carrots, sliced thinly
1 cup mascarpone cheese
1/2 vanilla bean split and scraped
1 teaspoon plus 3 tablespoons molasses
freshly grated nutmeg to taste
1 pound carrots, trimmed and washed
4 large eggs
1 cup sunflower oil
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon ground clove

In a small saucepan over high heat, combine 1 teaspoon if the ginger, the vinegar, 1/2 cup of the sugar, a pinch of salt, and the baby carrots with 1/4 cup water. Boil until the carrots are just tender. Set the confiture aside to cool.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, combine the mascarpone, vanilla, 1 teaspoon of the molasses, the nutmeg, and 2 tablespoons of sugar. Beat on high sped until light and fluffy. Transfer to a container and chill in the refrigerator.

Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Grease the inside of a 10-in cake pan.

Using the small side of a box grater, grate the carrots into a large bowl. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of ginger, 3 tablespoons of molasses, the eggs, 2 cups sugar, the oil, and 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt and mix well.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and spices. Add to the carrot mixture and stir until just combined. Do not overmix.

Fill the prepared cake pan with the batter and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 20 minutes.

Remove from the oven and cool. Once cool, cut the cake into eight slices.

Divide the cake slices among eight dessert plates. Garnish with the mascarpone and carrot confiture and serve immediately.


Episode #66 – I Like Pig!

On this episode, Heritage Radio’s own Jimmy Carbone, host of Beer Sessions on Heritage Radio Network and owner of Jimmy’s No. 43, comes to the studio to talk about his new book I Like Pig! With him is BBQ grand champion and official judge Sam Barbieri, chef-own of Waterfront Ale House in New York City.

We talk BBQ, head cheese and the changing nature of the cookbook publishing world. I downloaded my copy of I Like Pig and I can’t wait to make every recipe. I say that without hyperbole. Each recipe is written with Rachel Wharton (editor of Edible Brooklyn) who worked with an array of chefs who participate each your in Pig Island, a food event that highlights the porcine foodshed of the NYC growing region.

Continuing our new family tradition of posting a recipe for you to make, here’s one for Sam’s Head Cheese. Now, I know the first ingredient is a pig head. I’ve worked with several and they are awesome! Delicious and spooky at the same time, I’ll be whipping batch of head cheese on Saturday so keep an eye on Instagram #sharpandhot. I’ll give you a play-by-play.

*Special thanks to Nugent’s Prime Meat Market for letting me order a pig head live on air. Now you can too!

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Sam’s Head Cheese

//// makes 2 loaf pans ////


1 pig head, split in half if possible, brains and eyes removed
3 tablespoons sea salt
2 tablespoons freshly ground white pepper
1 tablespoons hot red pepper flakes
4 tablespoons herbs de Provence
1 onion, sliced
1 carrot, sliced
1 leek, sliced
3 garlic cloves, crushed
2 cups white wine
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped cornichons
2 tablespoons white vinegar
Salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste


Rub head with sea salt, white pepper, red pepper and 1 tablespoon herbs de Provence. Let cure, refrigerated, for two days. Rinse head, remove the tongue and refrigerate for later use, and then place the head in a large soup pot. Add wine, herbs de Provence, vegetables and then water to cover. Bring to a boil, and then simmer several hours until the meat is fork tender.

Remove head from pot and let it cool. Strain and reserve the poaching liquid. When the head is cool enough to handle, separate it into fat and meat from the jowls, ears and other parts. Roughly chop the meat and ears, and then take the gelatinous fat and pulse it briefly in a food processor until it is almost creamy in texture. It might require two batches, depending on the size of your head.

Meanwhile, poach the tongue and the diced red pepper in some of the braising liquid until the tongue is cooked through. Roughly chop the tongue. Then place all ingredients — meat, pulsed fat, tongue , cornichons and vinegar — together in a large bowl, adding just enough braising liquid to cover the mix. You may also add a few of the carrots from the braising liquid, roughly chopped as well for color. Mix well with a spatula and season with salt, pepper and more vinegar to taste.

Place the mixture in terrine molds or loaf pans and chill overnight. Gently unmold, running a warm knife around the edge of the pan, and slice to serve.