Episodes by year

Journalist Michael Ruhlman, author of The Soul of a Chef, takes us behind the scenes of the Culinary Institute of America's grueling Certified Master Chef exam. It's the Iron Man challenge of the food world and not for the faint of heart.

Jane and Michael Stern are eating artisan breads at the Red Hen Bakery in Chicago, and we'll hear from a scientist who has the lowdown on white salmon, the twenty-dollars-a-pound fish chefs fight over. Remember the Smothers Brothers? Jon Kalish pays a visit to the Smothers' Winery where Tommy has been making some highly regarded boutique wines for nearly as long as the brothers have been making people laugh. Alice Waters of Chez Panisse is back to tell us about her dream for the White House. If we ever get out of the election mess, her idea promises help with great spin potential for the new president.

In the second half of the show the phone lines are open for your calls and Lynne has some trivia about a runcible spoon she might use to serve her Oven-Roasted Canned Tomatoes.

Saturday, December 2, 2000Saturday, December 29, 2001

Jay McInerney, the acerbically witty author of that blockbuster novel of sin and debauchery, Bright Lights, Big City, has turned his considerable talents to the subject of wine. An unabashed oenophile who calls himself a "grape nut," Jay's irreverent wine columns for House & Garden magazine have been culled for his latest book, Bacchus & Me. Fasten your seat belts and tune in for a serendipitous and highly-informed romp through the world of wine.

Jane and Michael Stern are hanging out at the Shortstop Diner at Exit 148 off the Garden State Parkway. John Willoughby, whose latest book with co-author Chris Schlesinger is How to Cook Meat, wants us to think beyond turkey when we're serving a crowd. Their recipe for Crown Roast of Lamb with Saffron Rice and Apricot-Mint Sauce should do the trick. Nach Waxman of New York City's Kitchen Arts & Letters bookstore stops by with a list offood and wine reference books just in time for holiday gifting. Lynne recently returned from Salt Lake City, and tells of a delightful bed and breakfast find and "the best fish taco I've ever had!" And, finally, she reveals her sources for Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, her favorite gift to give at the holidays.

Saturday, December 16, 2000Saturday, December 22, 2001

It's our annual holiday show, and we've assembled a team of experts on cooking, entertaining, and gift giving. Sally Schneider, author of A New Way to Cook, has entertaining wrapped up with three easy menus and recipes guaranteed to wow your guests. Sally's food tastes great, it's stylish, it's healthy—it's how we want to eat now.

The Sterns are eating pancakes and enjoying the spectacular holiday lights display at Clifton Mill in Ohio. Chef Gray Kunz, co-author of The Elements of Taste, reveals a new way to approach cooking and shares his recipe for luscious Pork Tenderloin with Bourbon Mustard Brine and Tangy Pears. Steve Beaumont has seasonalbeers for Santa, it's stocking stuffers from gadget queen Dorie Greenspan, and Lynne has more gift ideas for the cooks on your list.

Saturday, December 15, 2001

Chef and author Anthony Bourdain described his first book, Kitchen Confidential, as an "obnoxious and over-testosteroned" account of his life in the restaurant business. Still, the book remained on the New York Timesbestseller list for weeks. Now the food world's outrageous bad boy is at it again with his new book, A Cook's Tour, the chronicle of his planet-circling jaunt in search of the ultimate meal. Mr. Bourdain likes his adventure with a generous dose of risk and an occasional touch of the bizarre—like dodging Cambodian minefields to have cocktails in Khmer Rouge territory and eating poisonous blowfish in Japan.

By comparison, the normally over-the-top Jane and Michael Stern are simply eating pie at the Coffee Cup Cafe in Sully, Iowa. Steve Jenkins returns to talk about goat cheese, which inspired Lynne to create a recipe for Aged American Goat Cheese with Salad of Honey-Piquant Greens and Apples. Reporter Scott Haas checks out the secret of Belgium's sensational frites, we'll hear from a dairy farmer who practices Reiki on his cows, and Lynne shares her mail-order source for exquisite dried fruits for holiday gifts.

Saturday, December 8, 2001Saturday, January 4, 2003

Restaurant critic John Heckathorn takes us to Honolulu, one of Lynne's favorite food cities, for an insider's dine-around and guide to eating like a local. In a town notorious for high prices, John's advice and restaurant picks guarantee great eating for little money.

Jane and Michael Stern investigate the Frontier restaurant in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where the legendary cinnamon rolls are a foot wide! The definitive winner of The Washington Post's canned chicken broth tastingis revealed by food editor Jeanne McManus. Lynne used it in her Modena's Spiced Soup of Spinach and Cheese and agrees this broth is good! Reporter Mary Stuckey has a lesson in self-sufficiency and sustainability from the island of Cuba. Mary Ewing Mulligan talks wine glasses, we'll have a report on yak cheese, and Lynne takes your calls.

Saturday, December 1, 2001Saturday, February 1, 2003

Diana Kennedy, the British woman who introduced America to authentic Mexican cooking and started our love affair with the chile pepper, joins us this week to share the Mexico she knows so well. Diana's latest book,The Essential Cuisines of Mexico, is a treasure. So is her recipe for tortillas filled with mushrooms Empanadas De Hongos.

The always original Jane and Michael Stern are in Charleston, South Carolina, eating at The Wreck, a restaurant that's hard to find because it's housed in an old bait locker and has no sign. Joshua Wesson, wine maverick and seeker of the unexpected, has been tasting wines from Canada and stops by with a report. Our favorite "slightly neurotic" foodie, Scott Haas, recently traveled to New York City to dine at Restaurant Daniel where deep pockets are de rigeur. He tells us if it was worth the trip.

When we heard of a new spa at the Hotel Hershey where they use chocolate in the treatments Lynne rushed to the phone to get the details. She was intrigued by the chocolate fondue body wrap. We'll listen in on her conversation with spa director Jennifer Whaland Smith.

Saturday, November 25, 2000Saturday, November 24, 2001

It's our annual Thanksgiving show and we're celebrating with one of America's most beloved authors: poet, novelist, and screenwriter Jim Harrison. You may remember him from Legends of the Fall. We'll be talking with Jim about food and its role in our lives, a subject he covers with passion and wit in his book, The Raw and the Cooked: Adventures of a Roving Gourmand.

Jane and Michael Stern are eating seven sweets and seven sours at the Dutch Kitchen in Frackville, Pennsylvania. We'll hear about hard apple cider, an old-time American alternative to wine, from Steve Wood of Farnum Hill Ciders. British writer Jim Crace looks charity square in the eye in a story from his book The Devil's Larder. Gourmet magazine editor Ruth Reichl tells us what the holiday might be like in New York City this year, we have a guide to brining turkey from Cook's Illustrated magazine, and Lynne shares Thanksgiving cooking tips and her recipe for Moroccan-Inspired Turkey.

Saturday, November 17, 2001

This week we're off to a region of Italy only 20 minutes outside Venice—yet known and visited by few. The wonderful cuisine here could be called a fusion of "Northern Italian Soul" meets the Arabian Knights. The greatest varieties of wines in all of Italy come from the area, and the scenery is pretty good too. It's Friuli-Venezia Giulia, and our guide is none other than culinary explorer Fred Plotkin, author of the new book La Terra Fortunata. Fred shares a few undiscovered wine bargains from the region and a recipe for Polenta With Five Flavors, a dish containing most of the classic foods of central Friuli.

Jane and Michael Stern are across the pond as well, eating Couscous Royale at Relais des Six Boules, a French version of the truck stop. Who but the Sterns goes looking for road food in France? Beer expert Stephen Beaumont, author of Premium Beer Drinker's Guide, reports on Lambic, an eccentric style of commercially made beer. Movie critic Rex Reed reminisces about eating with Tennessee Williams. Lynne has a trivia question about baby food and cotton candy and leaves us with her recipe for Dark and Moist Gingerbread.

Saturday, November 10, 2001Saturday, December 28, 2002

This week we'll meet the family responsible for the modern-day espresso machine. Dr. Ernesto Illy, head of the family's coffee dynasty in Italy, explains Italy's coffee culture and tells us what a really fine cup of espresso should taste like.

Jane and Michael Stern are in Milwaukee eating soul food at Mr. Perkin's Family Restaurant where the turnip bottoms are "better than any vegetable should be." To help us determine what kind of turkey to buy for the holidays Christopher Kimball, editor of Cook's Illustrated, stops by to report on the results of the magazine'sturkey taste test. We'll go to Ketchum, Idaho, for a Basque sheep festival, and from Appalachia we have a story of cornbread and biscuits. In the second half of the show Lynne takes your calls and gives us her recipes for Three-Generation Thanksgiving Turkey and Herman's Cornbread Stuffing.

Saturday, November 18, 2000Saturday, November 3, 2001

Her father wanted her to be a diplomat. She had other ideas. We'll hear the story of how two passions came together to define the life of legendary cook and actress Madhur Jaffrey. You've seen her in Merchant-Ivory films as well as her own productions, and her books introduced Americans to authentic Indian food. Her latest work, Madhur Jaffrey's Step-By-Step Cooking, takes readers from India to Thailand, Indonesia to Malaysia, and has her recipe for Lamb Cooked in Dark Almond Sauce.

A sign at a LaGrange, Texas, gas station alerted Jane and Michael Stern to the top-notch kolachkes at Weikel's Store and Bakery. We'll stop by a four-star restaurant near "ground zero" in New York to find out how the workers are doing and get the recipe for Chicken Breasts Stuffed with Curried Couscous, a staff favorite from Chef David Waltuck's book Staff Meals from Chanterelle. Tea merchant Bill Waddington talks scented teas, Phil Silverstone has tips for finding good cheap wine, and Trish Telesco helps us prepare for Halloween with the recipe for Rose Geranium Punch from her book A Kitchen Witch's Cookbook.

Saturday, October 27, 2001Saturday, November 30, 2002

We're traveling and eating in Spain this week with journalist Anya Von Bremzen. Anya says Spain is the most exciting place in Europe to eat these days. The chefs there are rethinking the very foundations of food and a culinary revolution is happening. Along the way we'll stop off in Bilbao to visit the new Guggenheim Museum, the site of an architectural revolution.

Jane and Michael Stern are in the California desert eating apple pies at theJulian Pie Company. Jewish-food authority and writer Matthew Goodman is back to tell us of the surprising origins of fish and chips and leaves us with the recipe for Fish & Chips from London's Upper Street Fish Shop.

Still have that old fondue pot from the 1970s lurking in the attic? Dust it off and get ready for a fondue lesson from Switzerland with our hungry reporter Scott Haas. We'll meet food sculptor Peter Anton, a man with a different take on the hungry artist theme, and the phone lines will be open for your calls.

Saturday, December 9, 2000Saturday, October 20, 2001

The kitchen of tomorrow is on scientists' drawing boards today at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Media Lab, and we love what they're cooking up. Are you ready for a kitchen table that cleans itself and a coffeemaker in your car? We are! How about dial-a-smell that sends the tantalizing scent of tonight's dinner wafting over the telephone line to family and friends? It's the new kitchen science, and we've got the scoop.

Jane and Michael Stern are eating saltwater taffy and fairy food at Fralinger's on the Atlantic City Boardwalk, and wine maven Joshua Wesson explains the fuss over old vine wines. Soybean Queen Dana Jacobi, author of Amazing Soy, talks edamame and shares her recipe for Brunswick Style Sweet Soybeans. Our hungry reporter Scott Haas takes us truffle hunting in Italy with a dog named Diana, and Lynne's recipe for Classic White Truffle Pasta celebrates this rare and expensive jewel from Italy's Piedmont region.

Saturday, October 13, 2001Saturday, November 16, 2002

This week we meet Bob Giraldi, producer and director of the new film Dinner Rush. This movie, about a night in a happening New York City restaurant of the moment, captures the frantic trendiness and atrocious pressure that drives so many places these days. It's no warm and fuzzy Babette's Feast. Bob leaves us with his mother Minnie's recipe for Baked Ziti with Ricotta, perfect for Sunday dinner.

In contrast, Jane and Michael Stern are at laid-back El Gallito in Cathedral City, California, eating mole and buying second-hand Pucci dresses. Master of Wine Mary Ewing Mulligan talks decanting, and writer Jim Leff of Chowhound.com takes on the political side of dining out. Comedienne Cathryn Michon, author of The Grrl Genius Guide to Life, reports on competitive cooking at the Santa Barbara Fair and gives us her recipe forLow-Fat Technicolor Tater Salad. It's not the all-American classic. Lynne's trivia question has a medical theme, and she's finally agreed to put her recipe for Pork Steaks with Chile Orange Sauce into print!

Saturday, October 6, 2001

This week it's high drama and intrigue from the candy aisle as our guest, Joel Glenn Brenner, former Washington Post reporter and author of The Emperors of Chocolate, takes us into the highly secretive and cutthroat world of America's corporate candy giants, Mars, Inc. and Hershey Foods. It's a revealing expose that may leave you looking at Kit-Kat's and M & M's in a different light.

Jane and Michael Stern have been eating tacos at pharmacies in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Matthew Goodman tells of a new wave in the world of Jewish food introduced to the United States by Bukharan immigrants. Lex Gillespie has a report on the wonderful Vietnamese soup called pho, and Lynne gives us the recipe for her outrageous Double Dark Chocolate Excess.

Saturday, February 5, 2000Friday, September 28, 2001

Award-winning journalist Russ Parsons, food editor of the Los Angeles Times, joins us to explain what goes into making a leading newspaper food section and shares three simple tips to make life in the kitchen easier. His new book, How to Read a French Fry, explores the science behind basic cooking techniques and includes recipes, such as his Seafood Rice Salad, that illustrate cooking principles.

Jane and Michael Stern have found licorice coal and chocolate hairdryers at Mootz's in Pottsville, Pennsylvania. Wine wizard Josh Wesson suggests good sipping from unlikely places, chef Jerry Traunfeld talks bay leaves and gives us his recipe for Bay Leaf Crème Brûlée, and we'll hear the saga of six convicts and the bologna sandwich that was their undoing.

Saturday, September 22, 2001Saturday, October 19, 2002

Do you ever wonder whom Lynne, Julia Child, and other pros in the food business turn to when they're stumped with a culinary question? They call our guest, food scientist Shirley Corriher, author of CookWise. Shirley's unique ability to translate complex food chemistry into simple language, combined with her natural warmth and sense of humor, make her a favorite with our listeners. Try her wonderful recipe for Mixed Greens with Walnuts—it's no ordinary salad.

Jane and Michael Stern have the scoop on a great breaded steak sandwich, cheese maven Steve Jenkins talks great "melters," and kitchen designer Deborah Krasner opens her online address book to share sources for kitchen equipment on the Web.

Saturday, January 22, 2000Saturday, July 14, 2001Saturday, September 15, 2001

We say, forget martinis—what we want now is a summery American vermouth, perfectly chilled, straight up and just right for lazy-day sipping. California winemaker Andrew Quady, one of the country's vermouth pioneers, introduces us to Vya Extra-Dry Vermouth, a fresh and vibrant wine, delicious solo or paired with spicy-sweet foods.

Jane and Michael Stern tell of a former Pittsburgh "techy" turned biscotti maker, John Willoughby is back with the word on some extraordinary dried red peppers, and herb maven Jerry Traunfeld gives us his recipe for Scented Geranium Lemonade. We've another installment in the saga of life behind the restaurant kitchen door and Lynne will take your calls.

Saturday, July 15, 2000Saturday, September 1, 2001

"We journey to Vietnam this week with our guide Mai Pham, author of Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table. We'll hear about street life, street food, and home cooking as she tells of a country at peace for the first time in a century and of a cuisine that's perhaps the freshest and brightest in all of Southeast Asia. We can't wait to try Mai's recipe for Lemongrass Beef on Cool Noodles.

Back home, Jane and Michael Stern take us to Ralph 'N' Rich's in Bridgeport, Connecticut, where it's like being in an episode of The Sopranos. Travel writer Anya Von Bremzen may generate a bit of controversy when she names the place that has the best pizza in America, and Jon Kalish takes us into the Vermont woods for the Feast of Edacious Souls.

Saturday, August 25, 2001Saturday, August 24, 2002

It's a real variety show this week with controversies over apes with Dr. Frans de Waal, one of the world's leading primatologists and author of The Ape and the Sushi Master. Dr. de Waal theorizes that apes are more like us than we think, and it's demonstrated in how they deal with food.

Jane and Michael Stern are eating breakfast old-California style at the Ramona Café. The outrageous Joe Queenan, author of Balsamic Dreams, tells a tale of yuppies, rat hunting, and balsamic vinegar. Jewish-food authority Matthew Goodman reports on Toronto Blueberry Buns, gadget guru Dorie Greenspan evaluates salad spinners, and Lynne has a recipe forGreek Parsley Potatoes.

Saturday, August 18, 2001Saturday, July 27, 2002

It's a bargain hunter's guide to the Napa Valley wine country this week with valley insider Antonia Allegra, author of Napa Valley: The Ultimate Winery Guide. Antonia assures us we don't have to cash in the IRA and take out a bank loan to visit this pricey destination. She takes us where the locals go for superb budget dining, to a winery offering free classes, and shares her sources for good wines at reasonable prices. Would you believe bottles for less than $7? Tune in and we'll tell you where to find them.

Jane and Michael Stern are relishing Big Butts in Robertsdale, Alabama. Herb genius Jerry Traunfeld is back talking mint and sharing his recipe for Zucchini Strands with Mint. We'll find out how to banish house and garden pests with Slug Bread & Beheaded Thistles, and the phone lines will be open for your calls.

Saturday, August 19, 2000Saturday, August 11, 2001

If you know the food scene in Washington State, you know about the wildly popular Herbfarm Restaurant. You also know that getting a reservation there is all about the luck of the draw. They open their phone lines only twice a year for bookings and within hours every space for the next six months is filled! The reason is executive chef Jerry Traunfeld's cooking. Chef Traunfeld, author of The Herbfarm Cookbook, unveils some new tricks for getting maximum flavor from herbs and flowers, some of which you've probably never heard of. His recipe for Lemon Verbena Sorbet showcases the herbal spin this talented chef gives his food.

Jane and Michael Stern are eating stellar Italian sausages in West Virginia, of all places. Grilling guru John Willoughby (of License to Grill fame) is back with a recipe for Asian Spice Rub that supports his claim that sometimes it's better to rub than soak. Our food scientist Shirley Corriher, author of Cookwise, has the final word on flavored oils. Are they safe? We'll find out. We'll learn how a Cherokee farmer is bringing her people back to their food traditions, Lynne finds a great place to eat in New York, and she'll also take your calls.

Saturday, May 27, 2000Saturday, August 4, 2001

We're talking with scholar, explorer, and beer anthropologist Alan Eames, author of The Secret Life of Beer. Alan has tracked down beers in Amazon jungles and Egyptian temples, and survived being held at gunpoint by guerrillas in his quest to discover beer's origins. He believes it's at the heart of nearly every culture and he claims beer is, and always was, about women! Jane and Michael Stern have found cheeseburger heaven in upstate Connecticut. Minimalist cook Mark Bittman has had a life-changing experience with chickpeas. He stops by to tell all and give us his recipe for Chickpea Soup with Sausage.

Reporter Jon Kalish takes us into the food world of mystery writer Kinky Friedman, where we'll hear from one of his Village Irregulars, Mike McGovern, who shares the recipe for Steve Rambam's Jailhouse Chili. Mike is the author of Eat, Drink, and Be Kinky, a delicious companion to Friedman's latest novel, Spanking Watson. Plus, Lynne has a recipe for Brussels Pork Carbonnades, a classic Belgian stew.

Saturday, February 12, 2000Saturday, July 28, 2001Saturday, August 17, 2002

The hot chef of the moment, Jean-Georges Vongerichten, tells us how he got there, while Chef Anthony Bourdain has tales of horrors in the restaurant kitchen (DON'T ORDER FISH ON MONDAYS!). The Sterns are tracking down stuffed quahogs, tea merchant Bill Waddington talks iced tea, and cheesemonger Steve Jenkins takes us back to France for one of his all-time favorites—gaparon.

Saturday, July 10, 1999Saturday, June 17, 2000Saturday, July 21, 2001

Do you ever wonder whom Lynne, Julia Child, and other pros in the food business turn to when they're stumped with a culinary question? They call our guest, food scientist Shirley Corriher, author of CookWise. Shirley's unique ability to translate complex food chemistry into simple language, combined with her natural warmth and sense of humor, make her a favorite with our listeners. Try her wonderful recipe for Mixed Greens with Walnuts—it's no ordinary salad.

Jane and Michael Stern have the scoop on a great breaded steak sandwich, cheese maven Steve Jenkins talks great "melters," and kitchen designer Deborah Krasner opens her online address book to share sources for kitchen equipment on the Web.

Saturday, January 22, 2000Saturday, July 14, 2001Saturday, September 15, 2001

The next time you open your refrigerator door, consider that, centuries ago, cold was a mystery—something seemingly without a source, often associated with danger and death, and altogether too fearsome to explore. Tom Shachtman, author of Absolute Zero and the Conquest of Cold, examines the subject that baffled ancient mankind before it brought conveniences like refrigeration and air conditioning that we take for granted today.

Jane and Michael Stern are in truck-stop heaven at one of their "Top 10 Favorites"—a tiny shack in Smyrna, Delaware, called Helen's Sausage House. The Food Network's David Rosengarten recently taste-tested mail-order barbecue ribs. He'll share his top picks and a recipe for the perfect side—Mustard Slaw. Reporter Scott Haas is on the Belgian beer beat, sorting out the Trappists from the Triples; grocery guru Al Sicherman is back for a supermarket salsa tasting, and Lynne has a recipe for Bellinis.

Saturday, July 7, 2001Saturday, June 22, 2002

Americans are crazy for olive oil. It's had a major impact on our cooking, but buying and enjoying it can be complex and confusing. Why does one bottle cost $6 while another costs $60? Peggy Knickerbocker, author of Olive Oil: From Tree to Table, has traveled the Mediterranean researching how olive oil is made and what makes a quality oil. She answers that question and more, names her favorite California oils, and gives us her recipe for Tattooed Potatoes With Rosemary.

Jane and Michael Stern tell us where they found "turkey sandwich perfection" in Seattle. Cheesemonger Steve Jenkins explains the art of the affineur and has a trick or two up his sleeve that we can use at home to improve our own cheeses. Pickling season is here, so John Willoughby shares his delicious recipes for Easy Cucumber Pickles and Sweet and Hot Curried Zucchini Pickles. Finally, we ll learn secrets to shopping for East Indian foods with Linda Bladholm, author of The Indian Grocery Store Demystified.

Saturday, September 9, 2000Saturday, June 30, 2001

Just a generation ago American wines were dismissed by Europeans as pedestrian and of little consequence. Thirty years later things changed, and the best French wines began falling behind American varietals in international competitions. Our guest Paul Lukacs, author of American Vintage, traces the rise of American wine and tells the story of the famous blind tasting that started the revolution. From teetotalers to bootleggers, Paul introduces an array of interesting characters who contributed to America becoming a formidable leader in the wine industry.

Jane and Michael Stern are in Mobile, Alabama, hometown of Jimmy Buffet and the Dew Drop Inn, the inspiration for Jimmy's song "Cheeseburger in Paradise." John Willoughby wants us to toss a little fruit on the grill along with the chops and gets us started with his recipe for Grilled Double-Thick Pork Chops with Grilled Peaches and Molasses-Rum Barbecue Sauce. Beer-obsessed Steve Beaumont has the word on pairing beer with spicy food, and seafood authority Jon Rowley introduces us to Mediterranean mussels—they've made their way to Seattle's Puget Sound, and they're prime summertime eating.

Friday, June 22, 2001Saturday, June 15, 2002

We're visiting the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to hear about the kitchen of the future coming from the scientists working on the Counter Intelligence Project. Are you ready for talking oven mitts that tell you when the roast is done, a kitchen counter that keeps track of your favorite recipes, or a coffee maker that knows you like extra milk in your latte?

Gray's Ice Cream in Tiverton, Rhode Island has been voted best homemade ice cream in the state for 11 years running. Jane and Michael Stern went to investigate and have a report. Master of Wine Mary Ewing Mulligan is just back from Portugal where she discovered delicious and undervalued Portuguese red wines. We'll find out what it's like to have the editor of Gourmet magazine over for dinner, and we'll learn about the chiltepin, America's first protected chile pepper.

Saturday, September 2, 2000Saturday, June 16, 2001

Polar explorer Ann Bancroft, who recently skied 1,700 miles across Antarctica with her partner Liv Arnesen, joins us this week with tales from her third expedition. She also tells of a lavishly outfitted Arctic expedition from 150 years ago and the food that doomed the members to starvation and insanity.

Our road food duo, Jane and Michael Stern, went searching for chocolate turtles and found anatomically correct ones at Turtle Alley in Gloucester, Massachusetts. Cheese expert Steve Jenkins is back with simple and delicious ideas for our kind of summer entertaining—pairing cheese with other easy foods for great eating with no cooking and little work. It's tricks with Asian ingredients from Seattle chef Tom Douglas, who shares recipes for Miso Vinaigrette and Hoisin Barbecue Sauce, and fruit authority David Karp reveals some luscious peach and nectarine discoveries.

Friday, June 8, 2001Saturday, June 1, 2002

We're going way beyond burgers and brats on the barbie this week with grilling guru Steven Raichlen, author of Barbecue! Bible Sauces, Rubs and Marinades, Bastes, Butters & Glazes. Steve roamed five continents to bring a global perspective to the flavor boosting recipes in his latest work. His Korean Barbecue Sauce is just one tasty example.

Jane and Michael Stern are in Kentucky "fried-chicken heaven" at the Bon Ton Mini Mart. Gadget queen Dorie Greenspan talks cheese graters, our Parisian correspondent tells of the latest food trend in the City of Light, and we'll hear how top chefs in France and America are opening their kitchens to amateur cooks atl'École des Chefs. We have Lynne's recipe for Portobello "Steaks" with Holy Oil and she'll be taking your calls.

Saturday, July 8, 2000Saturday, June 2, 2001

We're traveling this week and food, of course, is the highlight. Richard Sterling, author of the Vietnam and Spain guides for the new Lonely Planet World Food series, stops by with tales from a Saigon restaurant and advice on choosing a guidebook.

Jane and Michael Stern report from the Akron Restaurant in Pennsylvania Dutch country where they're eating stuffed pig stomach! Fish expert Jon Rowley takes us to Alaska for Copper River salmon. To celebrate this luscious fish, Lynne concocted a recipe for simple pan-roasted salmon. Then we'll go to Japan with chef Anthony Bourdain, author of Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly and a man with a mission ­ an American opening a French bistro in Tokyo. Finally, we're off to Los Angeles with Marcia Reed, curator of rare books at the Getty Research Institute, for a peek at The Edible Monument exhibition at the Getty Center.

Saturday, May 13, 2000Saturday, May 26, 2001

This week it's an unusual take on botany and the issue of control—plants vs. humans—with our guest, journalist and gardener Michael Pollan. In his new book, The Botany of Desire, Michael claims that plants manipulate us by taking advantage of our basic desires. Tune in for an interesting look at who's really in charge in the garden.

Jane and Michael Stern have found old-world Czech food in Omaha. Travel writer Anya Von Bremzen reports on exotica from one of the ancient food centers of the Middle East. Herb genius and chef Jerry Traunfeld talks sorrel and gives us the perfect recipe for a spring brunch: Smoked Salmon Benedict with Sorrel Sauce. Gourmet magazine editor Ruth Reichl reads from her memoir, Comfort Me With Apples, and Lynne shares her recipe for Roasted Asparagus Potato Salad.

Saturday, May 19, 2001Saturday, May 18, 2002

This week it's a private tour of Seattle's Pike Place Market, the gold standard among farmers markets. Our guide is none other than award-winning chef and restaurateur Tom Douglas, who was just named Best Chef in the Northwest by the James Beard Foundation. Tom reveals some of his favorite market vendors and shares his recipe for Sake-Steamed Sockeye Salmon with Sake Butter. His new book, Tom Douglas' Seattle Kitchen, is a celebration of the city's rich and diverse culinary heritage and wealth of fresh local ingredients.

Jane and Michael Stern are in the California desert chowing down among the dinosaurs at the Wheel Inn. They leave us with a recipe for Highway Patrol Succotash, a fresh take on this often maligned vegetable mix. Wine maverick Joshua Wesson returns with some excellent but overlooked bargain French white wines that deserve more respect. Calvin Trillin, author of The Tummy Trilogies, gives us his unique take on eating in Japan, and we'll talk with the farmer behind those packaged ready-to-eat salads. We wonder what keeps them fresh.

Friday, May 11, 2001Saturday, April 13, 2002

This week it's a look at Thai food traditions with Su-Mei Yu, chef/owner of Saffron Restaurant in San Diego and author of Cracking the Coconut: Classic Thai Home Cooking. Su Mei tells of the rather curious way she researched her heritage, and leaves us with etiquette tips for dining in Thai restaurants and a recipe for sticky rice.

Jane and Michael Stern report from Nick's Nest in Holyoke, Massachusetts, where they're eating wienies the way they were served in mid-century New England. Jewish-food authority Matthew Goodman wants us to try the spicy cuisine of Yemen. His recipe for Yemenite Fish in Tomato Sauce is a fine introduction. We'll hear how TV chef Sara Moulton juggles two jobs and a young family, and we'll meet a beekeeper who tends his hives on the rooftops of New York City.

Friday, May 4, 2001Saturday, April 27, 2002

Mexican food authority and TV chef Rick Bayless, author of Rick Bayless's Mexican Kitchen, is back this week and he's talking salsa. It's the new ketchup these days and we're putting it on everything from tacos to take-out. With summer's bounty just around the corner, we asked Rick to explain a bit of salsa culture and give us some tips for making fresh and fabulous salsas at home. It's a snap, and Rick's recipe for Essential Roasted Tomatillo-Serrano Salsa will get you going.

Jane and Michael Stern are back from the Appalachian region with an unusual find in Cumberland, Maryland. Kitchen designer Deborah Krasner tells us what to consider when shopping for a dishwasher. We'll hit the open road when Biker Billy roars through on his Harley. He's fanned the culinary flames in his latest work, Biker Billy's Freeway-A-Fire Cookbook, a collection of sizzling vegetarian recipes. Sara Baer-Sinnot of the Oldways Preservation & Exchange Trust tells us what's behind the rumor that we may have to start stockpiling Parmigiano-Reggiano, and the phone lines will be open for your calls.

Saturday, June 3, 2000Saturday, April 28, 2001

This week it's a look at the culinary heritage of Israel, a place where nearly every era has left its mark. From biblical times to the new millennium, it's all still there, and you can see it, touch it, and taste it. Joan Nathan, an authority on Jewish food and the author of The Foods of Israel Today, takes us beyond recipes and into the life of this complicated country. Joan's quick and simple recipe for Israeli Carrot Salad is good to know when you need a tasty and colorful side dish in a hurry.

Jane and Michael Stern are eating shrimp boats in New Orleans. Wine maverick Joshua Wesson of retailer Best Cellars has some white burgundieswe can actually afford. Reporter Scott Haas is back from a cow pasture in Switzerland where he found out what makes Swiss milk so special, and Joey Green, author of Clean Your Clothes with Cheez Whiz, gives us reasons to stock up on the stuff.

Saturday, April 21, 2001

We're traveling and eating out all over the map this week. Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page, authors of Chef's Night Out, reveal where America's top chefs eat when they have a night off. One goes looking for a hot dog with a "caviar crunch," another wants a better meal in a Chinese restaurant and knows how to get it. Tuck the chefs' "bests" list in your carry-on the next time you travel. From sushi to hamburgers and oysters to pizza, you'll be guaranteed good eating.

Jane and Michael Stern report from Milwaukee, where they've had a vanilla ecstasy experience at Kopp's Custard. For good old-fashioned soft-serve at home, give the Sterns' recipe for Abandon Ship Ice Cream a try. Food and travel writer Anya Von Bremsen, author of Please to the Table, takes us to Copenhagen, a city she says is now the hottest place in the world for design and some wonderfully innovative food, too. She'll tell us where to find it. Erika Warmbrunn, author of Where the Pavement Ends, rode a bicycle from Russia to Vietnam, a journey that took eight months. She'll share some things she learned about hospitality from the Mongolian nomads she met along the way. Dana Cowin, editor of Food & Wine, explains how the magazine picks its annual top ten new chefs, and Lynne's trivia question has something to do with her favorite classic Jewish delicatessen.

Saturday, April 14, 2001Saturday, March 30, 2002Saturday, August 30, 2003

Remember that adage "tell me what you eat and I'll tell you who you are?" According to neurologist Alan Hirsch, M.D., Director of the Smell & Taste Treatment Research Foundation in Chicago and author of Dr. Hirsch's Guide to Scentsational Weight Loss, the notion might not be so far fetched. In his research on snack food, Dr. Hirsch discovered there are physiological reasons why our food preferences reveal our personality, so be discreet the next time you reach for a potato chip instead of a cheese curl. Someone could be watching.

We'll visit California's wine country where Jane and Michael Stern are having breakfast at the Diner in Yountville. On down the road, we stop in at the French Laundry Restaurant, which has been called the most exciting place to eat in America, to meet legendary chef Thomas Keller. This week's recipe, "Clam Chowder" Sautéed Cod with Cod Cakes and Parsley Oil, comes from Chef Keller's French Laundry Cookbook, which recently won the IACP Cookbook of the Year award.

We'll take a cheese discovery vacation to France with Steve Jenkins, and Master of Wine Mary Ewing Mullingan drops by to talk Chilean wines. Lynne's found a good mail-order source for organic peaches and nectarines so we suspect she's whipping up Bellinis these days. It's the season, after all.

Saturday, July 22, 2000Saturday, April 7, 2001

This week it's out with Chardonnay and Cabernet and in with lager and ale, as we look at pairing food with beer. From grilled chicken with ale to chocolate cake with stout, bold-tasting premium beers are what to drink now. Stephen Beaumont, author of Premium Beer Drinker's Guide, joins us with tips for matching these unusual beers with what you're having for dinner tonight.

Jane and Michael Stern are in the Texas hill country where they're eatinggood Texas barbecue for dinner. Herb genius Jerry Traunfeld is back and he's talking dandelions. With his recipe for Dandelion Petal Sorbet, you could be eating from your lawn this spring. Art and dining historian Carolin Young takes us back to 18th-century France and Marie Antoinette's pleasure dairy at Rambouillet. If you'll be in New York City next fall, attend Carolin's lecture series at Sotheby's Institute of Art. As always, Lynne will have a trivia question and take your calls.

Saturday, March 31, 2001Saturday, March 2, 2002

Food and travel writer Anya von Bremzen takes us to Shanghai with an eater's guide to China's born-again boomtown. The city is reinventing itself these days and a cosmopolitan restaurant scene is emerging.

Jane and Michael Stern are bound to stir up debate and controversy with what they say is the best fried chicken on earth. Gadget goddess Dorie Greenspan has the word on hand-held blenders, those magic wands among kitchen toys. We'll eavesdrop as John Willoughby and Chris Schlesinger test recipes. The delicious Molasses-Glazed Pork Tenderloin resulted from one of their kitchen sessions.We like to explore all manner of dining venues (the car counts nowadays), so we called upon Bob Markovich of Consumer Reports to give us an evaluation of car cup holders. As always, the phone lines will be open for your calls."

Saturday, April 29, 2000Saturday, March 24, 2001

Journalist Eric Schlosser, author of the New York Times best-seller Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal, says the fast-food industry should be exposed to the same scrutiny given tobacco and drug companies. We'll take a look at what's become the All-American Meal — a take-out burger, fries and soda — and find out what's really in those "goodies" that will have us shelling out over $110 billion this year.

On a brighter note, Jane and Michael Stern are eating old-fashioned apple dumplings at Southern Kitchen in Charleston, West Virginia. Our cheese guy Steve Jenkins is back with advice on picking American Cheddars, Stephanie Curtis talks food in the movies, and Lynne has a TV-Tray Menu for Academy Awards night.

 

Saturday, March 17, 2001Saturday, February 16, 2002

Reporter, author, and humorist Calvin Trillin gives us his unique take on European travel with kids and the state of eating in America. Trillin's beloved book Travels With Alice is the very funny account of his family's journeys abroad. Jane and Michael Stern flunked bull-riding school but did manage to file a report from the Hitching Post in California cowboy country, and minimalist cook Mark Bittman is back to talk dipping sauces.

Chicken reaches new heights with Mark's recipe for Steamed Chicken with Scallion-Ginger Sauce. We'll join writer and restaurateur George Lang, author of Nobody Knows the Truffles I've Seen, at his legendary restaurant, Gundel, in Budapest for a ball in honor of Elizabeth Day. Gundel's has lured everyone from the Pope to Madonna and it's considered one of the best restaurants in the world. Tea merchant Bill Waddington tells of his recent trip to China, and the phone lines will be open for your calls.

Saturday, March 11, 2000Saturday, March 10, 2001

If a snooty wine dealer has ever treated you badly, tune in this week for advice and anti-intimidation tactics you can use the next time it happens. Our guests, Dorothy Gaiter and John Brecher, write The Wall Street Journal's "Tastings" column and are the authors of The Wall Street Journal Guide to Wines. They have definite opinions about what we should expect from a wine shop and tips for finding bargains.

Jane and Michael Stern are eating Spiedies at Sharkey's in Binghamton, New York. Matthew Goodman says the Jewish specialty kreplach doesn't get the respect it deserves and hopes to change that with his recipe for Sweet Potato-Stuffed Kreplach. Meat expert John Willoughby is back to talk mystery meats and give us a recipe for Lime-Soaked, Cumin-Crusted Grilled Skirt Steak with Green Olive-Chile Relish, and we'll visit a public school cafeteria in Boston where Chef Paul Correnty revamped the food, threw out the deep fryer, and the kids love fresh vegetables.

Saturday, March 3, 2001

Dan Leone tells us how to eat out and eat well for under $10 in San Francisco, a city known for restaurants with break-the-bank prices. He knows where you'll find the perfect bowl of noodles, or a turkey dinner at midnight, and leave with your credit card intact. Dan is the author of Eat This, San Francisco and the popular "Cheap Eats" column in the San Francisco Bay Guardian.

The Slow Food Movement recently concluded their annual Salone Del Gusto in Italy. Reporter Scott Haas was there, and has news of the vast array of artisan foods from around the world that tempted the thousands of participants. Jane and Michael Stern deliver their highly-researched dissertation on onion rings, kitchen gadget queen Dorie Greenspan talks juicers, and we'll hear from a competitive eater who is the current Carnegie Pickle Eating Champion.

Friday, February 23, 2001

Asian-food authority Nina Simonds joins us this week with remedies and relief for those of us suffering the miseries of a cold or flu. Nina, author of A Spoonful of Ginger and star of the public television special by the same name, tells us how the Chinese use food as medicine. Her recipe for Ginger-Scallion Root Tea is the elixir you'll want when sniffles and chills set in.

Jane and Michael Stern are feeling warm and fine and eating dates in the California desert. Our cheese guy, Steve Jenkins, has never led us astray when it comes to good eating but this time he's come up with a hard sell. He says sour milk leads to an array of good stuff. We're skeptical, but keeping an open mind. Reporter Carol Shapiro talks eating French and speaking English in Paris, and we'll check out what's happening with the Bubble Tea trend on the West Coast.

Friday, February 16, 2001Saturday, January 26, 2002

Brush the snow off the Weber! Steven Raichlen is back and he's talking winter grilling. Never mind that the wind chill is 10 below. Steven's Green Lightning Shrimp, from his book BBQ USA, will warm you to your toes.

The Sterns get a jolt from the Tabasco Ice Cream at Robin's Restaurant in Henderson, Louisiana. "Bright Lights, Big City" guy Jay McInerney wants us to think Rose Champagne for Valentine's Day. It's what we'll be sipping with Lynne's Double Dark Chocolate Excess.

Tea expert Bill Waddington brings us his guide to pairing tea with food. Monique Truong takes us back to Paris in the 1920's with a peek into a very private dinner, and some marketing folks want us to smell like Bombay Sapphire Gin!

Saturday, February 14, 2004Monday, February 12, 2001Tuesday, February 15, 2005

After this week's show, you may decide to rethink your Valentine's Day dinner menu. We're looking at food and love with Dr. Alan Hirsch, a neurologist and psychiatrist who's researched the link between food aromas and arousal. Dr. Hirsch is the author of Scentsational Sex: The Secret of Using Aroma for Arousal and the forthcoming What Flavor is Your Personality? Forget the Chanel perfume and bring on some pumpkin pie!

It's root beer and carhop service in Salt Lake City for Jane and Michael Stern. They'll report from Hires Big H. Wine maverick Joshua Wesson says it's time for Merlot to step aside to make room for Syrah. He claims it's the next wine sensation. Calvin Trillin has advice on how to have a successful marriage, we'll hear about the new Museum of Burnt Food, and the phone lines will be open for your calls.

Friday, February 9, 2001

Mexican food authority Rick Bayless, who latest book is Salsas That Cook, is with us this week and we're talking tequila. It's not just for margaritas anymore. In fact, Rick says lose the lime and salt and move on to a different tequila experience. He means those types (especially artisan-made ones) so classy and smooth you'll want to sip them neat. In a nod to tradition, though, Rick shares his recipe for Honest-to-Goodness Margaritas for a Crowd. These are the real thing ­ pure, fresh, and tasting of good tequila.

Jane and Michael Stern are in layer-cake heaven at the Pie Kitchen in Louisville. John Willoughby talks single-flower honeys, Joel Rose takes us to New Orleans for Mardi Gras and King Cakes, and Ishan Gurdal has a report on the cheese cave at Formaggio Kitchen in Cambridge. Our grocery guru Al Sicherman sets Lynne up for a bottled water tasting, and we'll open the phone lines for your calls.

Saturday, March 4, 2000Saturday, February 3, 2001

This week we're off to the Spice Coast of southern India where the air is fragrant with cinnamon and pepper, the people are gracious, and the food is grand. It's the family home of our guest, Maya Kaimal, author of Savoring the Spice Coast of India, and hospitality is a way of life. Maya's recipe for Steamed Mussels in Coconut Milk is an example of the exotic fare you'll encounter here.

Jane and Michael Stern have stumbled upon a family feud at Manganaro's, one of their favorite places in New York City. Food expert John Willoughby is back with some good news about sea scallops, and sculptor Kiko Denzer says you can build your own wood-fired oven for little money by using mud! His book, Build Your Own Earth Oven tells us how. The idea has Lynne so excited we hear she's attempting to thaw the earth in her backyard and start construction. In the second half of the show, it's open lines for your calls, and Lynne tells us how to cook Effortless Polenta.

Saturday, January 27, 2001Saturday, January 12, 2002

It's a look at the unusual, the unexpected, and the extraordinary aspects of food and food culture this week with Alan Ridenour, author of Offbeat Food: Adventures in an Omnivorous World. From how Betty Crocker has changed through the years to the dangers of Pez dispensers and a history of pie throwing, we promise an entertaining look at popular culture that we hope sparks a dinner table conversation or two.

Jane and Michael Stern got lost in Texas but found great New Mexican Soul Food. Wine Maverick Joshua Wesson wants us to try the unfamiliar but luscious Eiswein, and Chinese scholar Li Ping Wang gives our hungry reporter, Scott Haas, a lesson on celebrating Chinese New Year and a recipe for New Year's Feast Fish. New York Times columnist Amanda Hesser reports on restaurant surveillance, a new privacy issue that should give you the willies.

Saturday, January 20, 2001Saturday, February 2, 2002

We're taking a look at the politics of wine in America with our guest Bruce Cass, author of The Oxford Companion to the Wines of North America. Bruce says it's easier for a 13 year-old to buy a gun on the Internet than it is for an adult to purchase a bottle of wine.

Polar explorers Ann Bancroft and Liv Arnesen are making history as they attempt to ski some 2,400 miles across Antarctica. They'll join us by phone from their tent near the South Pole and tell us what they've been eating on their journey and share the recipe for Liv's Mother's Kentucky Cake. Jane and Michael Stern are in sunny San Diego eating authentic Hawaiian food at Da Kine's Plate Lunches. Cheese monger Steve Jenkins is back and this time he's talking butter. It's in style again, especially the flavorful cultured butter Steve loves.

Saturday, January 13, 2001

This week it's the history of popcorn with Andrew Smith, author of Popped Culture: A Social History of Popcorn in America. It's been around for thousands of years and it's America's favorite snack food. Andrew debunks some popcorn myths and explains why it has such staying power. His recipe for Popcorn Canapés is one of the more unusual ones we've featured here at The Splendid Table.

Jane and Michael Stern are eating with the locals at Hopkin's Boarding House in Pensacola, Florida. They'll tell us why it's one of their Top 10 Picks. Kitchen designer Deborah Krasner evaluates range hoods. It's a case of the good, the bad, and the downright ugly. Barbara Flores, author of The Great Book of Pears, has a tale about how devout monks and showy aristocrats of days gone by turned the small, bitter pear into the voluptuous and luscious treat now give as holiday gifts. We think Barbara's recipe for Moraga Pear Pie is a fine way to use this succulent fruit.

Saturday, January 6, 2001