SMORGASBORD: Kimchee chronicles . . . Soup starters . . . Dave's Hot 'N Juicy . . . All wrapped up
Kimchee chronicles Marja Vongerichten's new cookbook and public television travel/culture/cooking series share the same name: "The Kimchi Chronicles." The choice of kimchee in both titles was easy. "Kimchee is so distinct to Korea," Vongerichten ...
Marja Vongerichten's new cookbook and public television travel/culture/cooking series share the same name: "The Kimchi Chronicles." The choice of kimchee in both titles was easy.
"Kimchee is so distinct to Korea," Vongerichten said. "It's the first thing people think of. It's a great attention-grabber."
The condiment stars in Vongerichten's book, "The Kimchi Chronicles: Korean Cooking for an American Kitchen" (Rodale, $32.50). A self-described "staunch" traditionalist, she likes kimchee as a side dish, stirred into stews and spooned over noodles.
Marja Vongerichten believes it's time for kimchee to be discovered and enjoyed by more people. "I think it's got huge potential," she says. "People just don't really have knowledge of it."
Made year-round, kimchee has hundreds of variations that depend on the season and the available produce, which can include cabbage, radishes, green onions and cucumbers. Many kimchees are fiery in flavor and color, thanks to the liberal application of red chili powder. It can also be stinky, but Vongerichten notes the same can be said for a number of fine French cheeses.
"Be adventurous," she urges. "Close your eyes and eat it."
Use your noodle and nicely seasoned pho (say: fuh) Soup Starters from Pacific Natural Foods to help put the Vietnamese soup on your table in minutes.
The organic soup bases (chicken, beef or vegetarian) only need rice noodles cooked al dente, some chicken, beef or tofu plus garnishes (basil, cilantro, green onions, chilies, etc.).
The suggested retail price: $3.49 to $3.69. For a store locator, go to pacificfoods.com.
Dave's Hot 'N Juicy
When Wendy's decided to remake its 42-year-old hamburger, the chain agonized over every detail. A pickle chemist was consulted. Customers were quizzed on their lettuce knowledge. And executives went on a cross-country burger-eating tour.
The result? Dave's Hot 'N Juicy, named after late Wendy's founder, Dave Thomas. The burger -- with extra cheese, a thicker beef patty, a buttered bun and hold the mustard, among other changes -- has been on the menu for about two weeks.
"Our food was already good," said Denny Lynch, a Wendy's spokesman. "We wanted it to be better. Isn't that what long-term brands do? They reinvent themselves."
All wrapped up
Wrap yourself in vintage-style charm with colorful patterned cotton aprons from Sur La Table. They come in six different patterns including red rooster toile, retro stripes and pink poodle; matching towels and potholders available. The aprons are $29.95 each.
For store locator or to buy, go to surlatable.com.