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Archive | August 11th, 2011

Chef Curtis Stone Here to Dish on Local Fare

Chef Curtis Stone Here to Dish on Local Fare

Celebrity chef Curtis Stone swapped food stories with San Antonio fans at the Hotel Indigo downtown Wednesday. Foodies of all ages lined up to tell the chef about their favorite dishes in San Antonio restaurants. The talk ranged from mom-and-pops to high-end  restaurants, tacos to steaks, and what they liked most about their home town dining scene.

Curtis Stone talks to a fan, Amy Sanchez, staff sergeant in the Air National Guard.

Tall and rangy, the Australian native is a best-selling author, television personality and entrepreneur based in Los Angeles. As the resident chef at NBC, Curtis can be seen on the hit series “The Biggest Loser” and as a regular contributor on the “Today” show. He recently appeared as host of the reality competition series, “America’s Next Great Restaurant” and the third season of “Top Chef Masters” on Bravo.

The event was part of Hotel Indigo’s Locals Know Best – Dish on the Dish campaign.  Now through Oct. 15, foodies across the country can enter for the chance to win a VIP trip for two to New York City.  (For complete rules and entry details, click here.)

On Tuesday, Stone’s staff showed up at Rosario’s Cafe y Cantina for dinner. Then, he came along to the restaurant on Wednesday for an impromptu interview and cooking demo with chef Michelle Montemayor. “He was muy impressed with our Tacos Callejeros and ceviche,” said spokeswoman Diana Marin. The interview at Rosario’s will appear at some point on Stone’s Facebook or blog site, Marin said.

While we mentioned the new restaurant Gwendolyn, and the unusual purslane salad we had there recently, our favorite local (as in close to our house) dish was the lengua taco plate at Julio’s Mexican Restaurant on Fredericksburg Road. Stone might an Aussie, but he knew what lengua was —and that was impressive!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Stuff It!

Stuff It!

Stuffed Peppers with tuna or chicken salad.

It’s always great having an easy recipe on hand that’s both filling and refreshing.

For a recent party, Sue Nunnery wanted to serve up something cool. So, she hollowed out a number of green bell peppers and filled with them with tuna salad before topping them with diced tomatoes.

It was a satisfying treat, and it looked great on the plate. It was also fairly easy to assemble, which is even more welcome in this heat. Nunnery, who works at Randolph Air Force base, said the trick is to make sure the peppers are dry on the inside before inserting the salad, which can get soggy from the moisture in the salad. So, you can have the three parts done ahead of time and assemble just before serving.

Use your own tuna salad or chicken salad or try it with a store-bought version.

These stuffed peppers can be a main course, while our second recipe, for Olive- and Pecan-Stuffed Tomatoes can be a cool appetizer. Both can be put together without having to turn the oven on any time near serving.

Stuffed Peppers

6 green bell peppers
3 cups tuna or chicken salad or more, as needed
Diced tomatoes

Remove the stems from the bell peppers and clean out all of the seeds. Dry the interior with a paper towel to remove any excess moisture. When ready to serve, fill with about 1/2 cup of tuna or chicken salad, until full. (The amount needed with vary with the size of the pepper.) Top with diced tomato.

Makes 6 servings.

From Sue Nunnery

Cascarones — Olive- and Pecan-Stuffed Tomatoes

2/3 cup pecans, toasted and ground
36 cherry tomatoes, about 1 1/2 inches in diameter
1-2 tablespoons snipped cilantro
1/3 cup black olives, finely chopped
1 teaspoon lemon peel, finely shredded
Lemon pepper, to taste
Salt, to taste

Toast pecans at 250 degrees for 15-20 minutes, until aromatic, and grind when cool. Cut 1/4-inch slice from bloom end of tomatoes. With tiny spoon or melon baller, scoop out and discard seeds and membranes. Combine ground pecans, cilantro, olives, lemon peel, lemon pepper and salt in a small bowl. Fill tomatoes, mounding slightly and chill before serving.

Makes 36 appetizers.

From “The San Antonio Herb Society Cookbook”

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