Friday, July 31, 2009

Way Better than Donating to the Hard Rock Café

By Kimberly Bryden, Associate Director of Marketing for Capital Cooking

Quote from Nora Ephron, director and screenwriter of Columbia Pictures’ latest hit film Julie & Julia, as she gave a speech at the National American History Museum last Wednesday evening, July 29.

Since the renovations at the National American History Museum, commencing in 2002 and reopening in 2008, the new Julia Child’s Kitchen exhibit has been one of the favorite’s and most frequented at the museum. It showcases Julia’s PBS cooking shows, her kitchen, a recent addition of her pots and pans, and now because of Ephron’s film the display will include: Designer Ann Roth’s Julia Child dress for Meryl Streep, an annotated script, director’s plans, and stills from the movie.

Julia Child’s family was also in attendance. Julia’s niece and executor of her estate thanked the American History Museum for celebrating Julia and donated a check to continue preserving Julia’s Kitchen. Director Brent D. Glass commented, “Team Julia” will be very happy.

Ephron closed the donation ceremony by matching the check that the Julia Child Foundation gave to the museum. “I found out about the check price beforehand, it was not a blind check!” Ephron wittily remarked.

After the donation, the reception began – Bon Appetit indeed! Centerpieces of goldfish (a Julia Child favorite) and Butter (a staple in the movie), hors’ d’oeuvre of apricots with goat cheese, crepes Florentine, and lamb with sprigs of rosemary, dining tables filled with beef bourguignon, fondue, quiche, ham and brie sandwiches, and crepes, and a to-die-for dessert platter. Catering was done by Design Catering and they really did a phenomenal job. I especially loved the beef bourguignon, crepes Florentine, and these chocolate morsels that had layers of flavor including hot pepper and cumin!

The night was really something to remember. Nora Ephron said it the best, “When I tell people about the movie I cater it to the audience I’m speaking to…if I’m talking to publishers I said ‘Oh it’s about the power of a book’, if I’m talking to food critics ‘Oh it’s about the power of food’, but really it’s about the power of the American Dream and the possibility of invention.”

Check out the new Kitchen exhibit at the American History Museum between 10am-7:30pm. Julie & Julia opens August 7, Bon Appetit! Check out more photos from the event here.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Fun Filming Weekend: Thrill of the Grill

Thrill of the Grill: Learn the art of grilling peaches topped with homemade mascarpone ice cream and vegetable ratatouille with the help of our special guests Heath Hall and Brett Thompson from Pork Barrel BBQ. We will smoke some tasty BBQ!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Culinary Program: Stock

I recently started the culinary program at L'Academie de Cuisine and I was surprised to see Chef Patrice Olivon, a judge from our Food Bloggers Challenge. We started the class learning knife skills and stocks. I learned some great techniques for the next time I make chicken stock. Stocks need to simmer very slow. I think in the past I had the heat turned up too high causing the stock to be cloudy. You want to simmer it on a really low heat so it is barely bubbling and continue to skim the fat. This is a great tip! Next week we're making soup...I can't wait.
Photo by Shauna Alexander

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Photos from the Moroccan Nights Cooking Class

If you missed the Moroccan Nights class, check out some other classes we'll be offering in September. We had a great time! Thanks to everyone who attended!

Photos by Shauna Alexander

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Chicago: Greek Islands

One of the owners of the charming condo that we stayed in was a lovely Greek woman who recommended Greek Islands located in the heart of Greektown. We sat outside on the beautiful night and enjoyed the welcoming service. The menu features gyros, fresh fish and all the Greek standards, including moussaka, Greek yogurt dip, grilled octopus, etc. Come with a big appetite because the portions are very large. Make sure you specify the size of the dishes you order or they will automatically give you the large. We learned this the hard way.

Greek Islands

(312) 782-9855
West Loop
200 S Halsted St
Chicago, IL 60661

Greek Islands on Urbanspoon

Monday, July 13, 2009

Chicago: Brunch at Little Branch Cafe

Wake up with some delicious coffee at Little Branch Cafe and avoid the long waits at other places like Yolk. We did and we loved finding this hidden gem. Check out this casual and quaint brunch spot. The french toast and egg croissant sandwich will melt in your mouth.

Little Branch Cafe

(312) 360-0101
1251S Prairie Ave.
Chicago, IL 60605

Little Branch Cafe on Urbanspoon

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Chicago: Trattoria No. 10

Chicago is my favorite U.S. city in the summer. The people are wonderful and make me miss living in the Midwest. The city has so much to offer including food. We started off our Chicago dining at Trattoria No. 10. Tratorria No. 10 has a rustic feel with delicious food and an amazing wine list. This basement restaurant is cozy and intimate. Try the orrecchiette with homemade Italian sausage, caprese salad, yellow watermelon salad, ravioli filled with butternut and acorn squash in a sweet walnut butter sauce, and risotto. Delicate and tasty!

Trattoria No. 10

(312) 984-1718 Make a reservation
10 N Dearborn St
Chicago, IL 60602
Trattoria No. 10 on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

A Tactile Dinner

banished? productions cordially invites you to

Marking the 100th anniversary of Futurism,
banished? productions cordially invites everyone
to celebrate the passé-ist glory of Futurist degustation:
a tactile seven-course “meal” of gastronomic revolution!
Pasta Prohibited!

at the Arthur S. Flemming Center (1426 9th St NW)
Sat 07/11: 7p, 9:15p
Sun 07/12: 3p, 6:15p, 8:15p
Mon 07/13: 7:30p
Sun 07/19: 4p, 7:30p

R.S.V.P. or food-related concerns to

Course 1: Polyrhythmic Salad
Course 2: Aural Sensations
Course 3: Aerofood
Course 4: Magic Food
Course 5: Visual Nutrients
Course 6: Totalrice
Course 7: Tactile Vegetable Garden

Tickets on sale today! 4 ways to get your tickets...
*Call 866-811-4111
*Buy Online here!
*Visit the Festival Box Office @ 607 New York Ave NW
*Cash only admissions 1 hour before performance @ Arthur S. Flemming Center, 1426 9th St NW DC

A $5 gratuity is suggested.
More info? Visit or e-mail

Donate to banished? productions via Fractured Atlas!

A TACTILE DINNER is presented as part of the 2009 Capital Fringe Festival
Capital Fringe Festival & the Baldacchino Gypsy Tent Bar
607 New York Ave NW * Washington, DC 20001 *

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Review: Tabaq

I'm embarrassed that I haven't tried Tabaq sooner. We moved to the U Street neighborhood in October and Tabaq has been on my restaurant list since then and we finally made it in for a taste. We sat on the beautiful roof-deck with breathtaking views of the city and fireworks. The Mediterranean tapas offer lots of flavor and fun. The service was quick and the staff was friendly. The Muhammara is a nice way to start the meal and perfect for dipping the bread in the roasted red bell pepper purred with walnuts. We also liked the Beef Kofte which offers the perfect combination of sweet and savory. The yogurt sauce was thinner than expected. Our favorite was the Lamb Kashar. Make sure to try this if you check out Tabaq. It is almost like a Mediterranean lasagna with a creamy behamel sauce. I'd skip the calamari because the olives are overwhelming. Overall, Tabaq gets and A+ for atmosphere and I'd definitely come back for more!

U Street/Shaw
1336 U St NW
Washington, DC 20009
Tabaq Bistro on Urbanspoon

Monday, July 6, 2009


Lauren DeSantis explores the booming cupcake trend with the chefs from MallowDrama

WASHINGTON, D.C. - With cupcake bakeries sprouting up around the country, Lauren DeSantis, the host of Capital Cooking helps her audience bring the trend into their own kitchens. On the newest episode of Capital Cooking, Mary & David Supley Foxworth, the chefs and co-owners of MallowDrama Inc., stop by to help DeSantis whip up two delicious cupcake recipes.

To start the show the Foxworth’s share their recipe for Peanut Butter and Chocolate Cupcakes. A favorite at MallowDrama these cupcakes are made up of peanut butter cake toped with chocolate fudge frosting and garnished with peanuts.

Later in the episode, DeSantis presents her own recipe for S’mores cupcakes. Combining layers of graham cracker and chocolate cake and topped with a decadent marshmallow frosting, these cupcakes bring a favorite campfire treat indoors.

MallowDrama Inc. is an award-winning dessert bakery specializing in creating desserts with a dramatic flair, including cakes, cupcakes, and chocolate truffles. All of their products are made fresh to order using organic, local, and natural ingredients. Mary and David Supley Foxworth enjoy working with their clients to design memorable,
one-of-a-kind special occasion cakes.

For more information about this episode or the Capital Cooking series, please contact Lauren Desantis at

Capital Cooking with Lauren DeSantis is on a mission to highlight the cooking traditions and cuisine from the US and around the world that is featured in the restaurants of D.C. In each episode, DeSantis works with D.C. metro area chefs to create unique recipes using ingredients that viewers can find at local grocery stores and farmers’ markets. For more information on Capital Cooking with Lauren DeSantis, upcoming events, and featured recipes, visit For daily updates from Lauren DeSantis, visit

- # # # -

Capital Cooking Airing Times this Month (July):


Crazy for Cupcakes: Cupcakes have become a national pastime, thanks in part to the now famous Magnolia Bakery. Everyone just can’t get enough of this sweet goodness. Lauren will teach you how to make some fabulous cupcakes at home as well as exploring some of the best places to get cupcakes in the DC area.

Time slot during the 4th week of the month, Mon@1130p, Thurs@930a, and Wed @4am.

KDHX Charter Cable Channel 21 in St. Louis, Missouri

Every Wednesday at 1p.m.

Crazy for Cupcakes: Cupcakes have become a national pastime, thanks in part to the now famous Magnolia Bakery. Everyone just can’t get enough of this sweet goodness. Lauren will teach you how to make some fabulous cupcakes at home as well as exploring some of the best places to get cupcakes in the DC area.

ETV: 1789

NLTV: Crazy for Cupcakes: Cupcakes have become a national pastime, thanks in part to the now famous Magnolia Bakery. Everyone just can’t get enough of this sweet goodness. Lauren will teach you how to make some fabulous cupcakes at home as well as exploring some of the best places to get cupcakes in the DC area.

PCTV: 1789

Photo by DC Hughes

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Greek Eats: Ellis Restaurant

The only hummus we found in Greece was here. After a long day of travel and lost luggage, Hotel Aressana recommended that we eat at Ellis Restaurant which is right across the street from the hotel. We were pleasantly surprised by our first glasses of house wine. I was imagining the Pine-sol flavored Retsina that I've tried at American Greek restaurants, but this was a nice light red wine. In Santorini, much of the island is a vineyard. There are about 10 different varieties of grapes that are native only to the island. Make sure to try Santorini's traditional wine, Vinsanto, which is a combination of the assyrtico and aidani grapes. The location of Ellis Restaurant is on the caldera side of the island with beautiful view even at night. We enjoyed one of the fresh salads with halumi cheese and saganoki. Saganoki is a simple meze that gets its name from the small two-handled pan that it is fried in. Who wouldn't like fried cheese!

Check out more of my Greek posts about:

Blue Note, Santorini
Nikolas Restaurant, Santorini
Dolphins, Santorini
Breakfast at Cafe Stavros, Sifnos
Poseidonas, Sifnos
Sunset, Sifnos
De Claudio's, Sifnos
Mannoli's, Sifnos
Faros Beach Restaurant
and many more...

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Food 2

Scripps Networks -- the leader in lifestyle media and home to Food Network, the leading media brand in food – has launched a new online food experience called Food2. Food2 is a highly interactive, video-centric website that talks cooking, eating, drinking and living. From haute cuisine to hot dogs, knockout cocktails to succulent sides, Food 2 is a web experience that gives a fresh take on everything in the world of food & drink.

Food2 official site:

Food2 on Facebook:

Food 2 on Twitter: