In Dandelion & Quince, author Michelle McKenzie explores the uses of some non-standard herbs, fruits, and vegetables. Here, she tells The Splendid Table's Noelle Carter about her tomatillo-inspired green fish stew and the unexpectedly sweet use she's found for fig leaves.
What should you be looking for when you're buying zucchini, and what should you do with it once you have it? Taste of Home's Mark Hagen tells Noelle Carter what to do and why you should think beyond another loaf of zucchini bread.
"Working completely seasonally, and working with a vegetable garden, what you tend to have is a feast or a famine," says chef Skye Gyngell of the restaurant Spring and author of a book by the same name.
Did you know you can make non-dairy milk from ingredients like coconuts, oats or even tiger nuts? "They're really, really easy to make -- especially the nut, seed and tuber milks," says Dina Cheney, author of The New Milks.
In the middle of her successful music career, Kelis Rogers decided to go to culinary school. "It seemed like the right thing to do," she says. "I’m definitely an all-or-nothing person, so I enrolled." She is author of the cookbook My Life on a Plate.
Toni Tipton-Martin is the author of The Jemima Code, which presents 150 rare black cookbooks dating to 1827. "The idea that these cookbooks stand as a representation for so, so many others that didn't have the ability to record what they were doing is pretty phenomenal," she says.
For the project "To Live and Dine in L.A.," Josh Kun combed through the Los Angeles Public Library's collection of 9,000 menus dating back to 1875. The resulting book and exhibit show the transformation of the city's restaurant culture.
Popular since its invention in the early 20th century, commercial baby food was seen as a product of convenience for women. "They were advertised as safe, modern and better than you could prepare at home," says Amy Bentley, author of Inventing Baby Food.
Don't call sake rice wine. According to Gordon Heady, a sake brewer based in Japan and Portland, Oregon, "It's even more complicated than wine." He explains what sake is, how it's brewed and what to look for in stores.
What do the fermented meat condiments of fifth-century China and the foam, scents and smoke used in molecular gastronomy today have in common? They are all sauces. Maryann Tebben, head of the Center for Food Studies at Bard College at Simon's Rock and author of Sauces, explains.
Chef Sean Brock, author of Heritage, grew up in a town where seed saving was a way of life. "You just saved these seeds not because you were poor, but because you really loved the flavor of a particular tomato or a particular bean," he says.
Andrew Schloss, author of Homemade Liqueurs and Infused Spirits, says fresh fruit, vegetables and herbs can be transformed into amazing-tasting liqueurs that are perfect for the summer cocktail season.
Some say one man's vision is responsible for putting chardonnay on tables across America: Jess Stonestreet Jackson of the Kendall-Jackson wine empire. Edward Humes is the author of the Jackson biography A Man and His Mountain.