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ALWAYS IN GOOD TASTE

THE INTERNATIONAL ISSUE

THEDISHMADISON.COM | SPRING 2015


Jane Roberts editor in chief

in the kitchen editor no reservations editor marketing director copy editor layout editor layout staff

Noelle Lebow Meghan Horvath Sidney Anderson Chapin Blanchard Rachel Wanat Kara Evenson Andy Holsteen Justine Jones Jessie Rodgers Emily Zellers


What's on the menu 4

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letter from the editor

stuffed peppers all around the world

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australia's most iconic dessert

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diy popcorn with a global twist

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in town: sujeo

palmyra meditarranean grill

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himal chuli

cento's classic cuisine

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o.s.s. on regent

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school lunch: france vs. U.S.

food market tips


follow @dishmadison on instagram


From the Editor’s Desk

Dear readers,

It is a bittersweet moment as I write to you for the last time as editor-in-chief of The Dish. Even with graduation right around the corner, it’s hard to imagine myself without the publication I’ve been a part of for the last three years. Starting as a ‘Food for Thought’ writer before moving on to become a section editor for ‘No Reservations,’ The Dish, as well as the entire WUD Publications Committee, has been a big part of my life here at UW-Madison. As a student-run organization, I’m so proud of what we’re able to accomplish. For this issue, I wanted to bring to life an idea I’ve had since I first got involved with The Dish and that is to focus on Madison’s international food scene. From Himal Chuli on State Street to Cento near Capitol Square to Sujeo off of East Washington, the campus area and beyond is full of restaurants that can take you anywhere in the world you want to go. In addition to highlighting the best places for dining out, our ‘In The Kitchen’ writers share some international recipes you can make right at home. Whether you’re craving Lamington’s from your time studying abroad in Australia or looking to spice up your movie night popcorn, we’ve got just the thing for you. Our ‘Food for Thought’ writers also share their insight, with tips for navigating London’s food market scene and a look at how French school lunches compare to their American counterparts. Ever since I arrived in Madison as a freshman, I’ve made a point to be involved in the international community on campus. Participating in the BRIDGE organization for six semesters, I got to know students from all around the world and can happily say that many of our interactions involved food. From taking a trip to Asian Midway Foods on Park Street with Stephanie from China to trying out the Surco food cart on Library Mall with Romi from Peru, I’ve come to appreciate the incredible range of cuisines we have available here in Madison. While this issue is a bit shorter than usual, I hope it will inspire you to try something new and take advantage of your time spent in this amazing city. Trust me, it’ll fly by!

Foodie love,

Jane

THE DISH | SPRING 2015

4


IN THE KITCHEN

A World of Stuffed Bell Peppers Story and Photos By Noelle Lebow

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an you guess the origin of stuffed bell peppers? Italy? Spain? Turkey? To be honest, I do not know. However, I do know that stuffed bell peppers are one of the most versatile dishes around the world. Almost every country has its own unique recipe. When I first brought up the idea of stuffing bell peppers for dinner, I was sitting at home with my family. My dad immediately rejected the suggestion by pretending to vomit. Encouragement at its finest. What’s not to like about a stuffed bell pepper? Apparently, it sounded too healthy. Challenge accepted. I was going to change my dad’s mind about stuffed bell peppers even though I had never actually tried one myself.

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s I started looking for the “best” recipe, I soon realized that just about any combination of ingredients would work. Indian stuffed bell peppers contain meat, potatoes and spices. They are fried on the stove or baked in the oven. In Spain, it is common to find beef or cod and cheese in a stuffed bell pepper. The Guatemalan recipe typically contains an egg batter in addi-

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tion to pork and vegetables. It’s a Bulgarian tradition to add a side of yogurt to the stuffed bell pepper.

used rice to be on the safe side, but you could also experiment with beans, quinoa, tempeh, scrambled eggs, mashed potatoes, cheese, or a combination. Next, you can start adding in items for more flavor. If you have veggies or leftover meat, simply chop them up and add them to your base. For vegetables, you can add onions, peppers, tomatoes, corn, zucchini, olives, or anything else you find appetizing.

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o how do you choose a recipe? Consider your favorite foods, what leftovers you have, or what country you want to celebrate. Although the recipe varies by country, the basic structure of a stuffed bell pepper remains the same.

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THE DISH | SPRING 2015

ll stuffed bell peppers require a base to hold the ingredients together. I

on’t forget to add spices, otherwise your filling might taste bland. If you’re going for an Indian-style stuffed bell pepper, try adding cumin, turmeric, or cardamom. If you’re going for a Spanish theme, try adding paprika, chili powder, parsley, or garlic. You get the point. As long as you add in your favorite veggies and spices, your stuffed bell peppers are going to taste great. Just by understanding the basics of stuffed bell peppers, I was able to put together a delicious recipe that included my dad’s favorite foods. Proudly, I can report that my dad and I are supporters of the stuffed bell pepper.


________________________ ITALIAN-STYLE BRATWURST STUFFED BELL PEPPERS ________________________ Servings: 4 Prep time: 1 hour, 10 minutes ----------- Ingredients ----------• • • • • • • • • •

1 cup brown rice 5 bell peppers, any color works 1 onion, diced 2 tomatoes, diced 1 tbsp olive oil 2 bratwurst, precooked ¼ cup grated mozzarella cheese 1 tsp garlic powder ½ tsp oregano ½ tsp basil

----------- Directions -----------

1 2

Cook the rice following the instructions on the packaging.

While the rice is cooking, dice one of the bell peppers, the onion, the tomato and both of the brats. You can also prepare the other 4 bell peppers by cutting off the top and hollowing out the inside.

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Once the rice has finished cooking, heat the olive oil with the diced pepper, onion, brats and rice in a large skillet for about 8 minutes on medium heat until the veggies start to soften. You can also add the spices and salt and pepper while the mixture is sautéing.

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Remove the skillet from the stovetop once the veggies have softened and stir in the diced tomato with the rice mixture.

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Fill each hollowed bell pepper with ¼ of the mixture (should be about 1 cup each) and garnish the top with cheese.

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Place the peppers in a 8x8 greased baking pan. If the peppers do not stand up on their own, you may need to place aluminum foil in the pan to help prop them up.

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Bake the peppers at 375 degrees for about 30 minutes or until the peppers have softened. n [Recipe adapted from Kalyn at www.kalynskitchen]

THE DISH | SPRING 2015

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IN THE KITCHEN

Australia's favorite dessert

Lamingtons

Photo by Jane Roberts

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By Haley Henschel

tep into a cafe virtually anywhere in Australia and you’ll be greeted by bakery display cases filled with Lamingtons. Originally made for Lord Lamington, a governor of the sunny state of Queensland in the 19th century, the delicate, traditional and iconic Aussie dessert is comprised of a slab of sponge cake dipped in chocolate sauce and coconut. Biting into a Lamington takes me back to the place where I first sampled the dense, sticky-sweet treat: on a boat idling directly above the Great Barrier Reef in Australia’s warm coastal waters.

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THE DISH | SPRING 2015


Ingredients

my first TASTE...

The lamington was wonderful! It was a vanilla sponge cake dipped in chocolate and rolled in coconut. The chocolate kind of soaked into the sponge cake at the edges which made the outsides very moist and delicious! Jessica BRAND study abroad spring 2015 university of queensland

Cake

2 cups.............................all-purpose flour 4 teaspoons.......................baking powder 1/8 teaspoon.......................................salt 1/2 cup.............butter (room temperature) 3/4 cup...................................white sugar 1 teaspoon..........................vanilla extract 2........................eggs (room temperature) 1/2 cup...............................................milk

Icing

4 cups...........confectioners’ sugar (sifted) 1/3 cup...................cocoa powder (sifted) 2 tablespoons....................butter (melted) 1/2 cup.....................................warm milk 1 pound.........unsweetened dried coconut

Directions

1

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease and flour an 8x12-inch pan.

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Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt.

Beat 1/2 cup butter and 3/4 cup sugar with an electric mixer in a large bowl until light and fluffy. The mixture should be noticeably lighter in color. Add the eggs one at a time. Beat in the vanilla with the last egg. Pour in the flour mixture alternately with the milk, mixing until just incorporated.

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Pour batter into the prepared pan. Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the

cake comes out clean, which should be about 30 to 40 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes. Wrap with plastic wrap and store overnight at room temperature to give the cake a chance to firm up before slicing.

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For the icing: In a large bowl, combine confectioners’ sugar and cocoa. Add the melted butter and warm milk and mix well.

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Cut the cake into 24 squares and place on parchment paper or waxed paper.

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Dip each square into the icing, coating all sides, then roll it in the coconut. recipe take n from [allrecipes.com]

THE DISH | SPRING 2015

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In The KITCHEN

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Make it at home! DIY flavored popcorn

mmmm popcorn. The perfect snack. I am a major popcorn junkie. Whether I’m watching a movie with friends, playing games with the family, or just craving something to mindlessly munch on (admit it, we all have those times), popcorn always seems to fit the bill.

While I usually opt for the classic flavor route—a bit of olive oil or butter with a pinch salt—I also love a good cup of kettle corn. But why stop there?A few months ago, I was strolling the aisles at the grocery store and came upon the popcorn section. INTERNATIONALLY INSPIRED DIY POPCORN Time: 10 minutes Serves: 4–6 || Yields: 12–16 cups ------------------Ingredients-----------------• ½ cup popcorn kernels • 2 tbsp coconut oil (can sub canola or peanut oil)

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Story and Photos by Jenni Wolf Not only were there bags of kernels and boxes of microwave popcorn lining the shelves, but there were also bags upon bags of pre-popped popcorn in all sorts of new-to-me flavors. Lime & Sea Salt. Maple-Bacon. Pomegranate. Who knew!

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his got me thinking, and I quickly realized that if they can sell it, I bet I can make it. I was inspired by all of the different types of cuisine. What could be cooler than getting to travel the world in a single day, just by eating popcorn? So one Friday night, I got creative in the kitchen. I slung my apron around my waist, busted out the big ol’ stock pot and got to popping. I raided the spice cabinet in an attempt to capture some of the most classic cuisine flavors around the world and started experimenting. By the end of the night, I had five delicious batches of popcorn inspired by Mexican, Italian, Indian, Chinese and Japanese cuisine. Perhaps you could say I went a bit overboard—good thing I had friends coming over later.

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ow back to the popcorn. Each one of the following recipes begins the same way: popping some corn the good, old-fashioned way. Then, once you have your freshly popped corn, add one of the flavor combos below, give it a good mix, and say so long to plain, boring butter-flavored popcorn. Try making a batch of each, like me, to share with friends and get a taste of the world, all in one night. Let me tell you, these recipes don’t rival the crazy store-bought flavors or microwave packs of popcorn—they are so much better. Now let’s get popping!

--------------------------------------------Directions---------------------------------------------

1

Coat a large pot with coconut oil, toss in two or three kernels and cover. Place pot over medium-high heat. Listen for kernels to pop.

2

When you hear the pops, add in the remaining kernels, cover and shake pot over heat until popping sounds

THE DISH | SPRING 2015

subside to less than one per second and all of your corn is popped.

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Remove pan from heat and pour popcorn into a large bowl. Next, choose a flavor combo from the next page.


Pick an international flavor combo... Mexican-Spiced Popcorn: In a small bowl mix together 1 tsp each of cumin, smoked paprika, and dried oregano, ½ tsp each of chili powder and salt, and the juice of half a lime, plus the zest of a whole lime. Pour mixture over hot popcorn and stir well to combine. Italian-Spiced Popcorn: In a small bowl combine 2 tbsp powdered parmesan cheese, 2 tsp dried oregano, 1 tsp garlic powder, 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes, and ½ tsp salt. Drizzle hot popcorn with 2 tbsp olive oil, stir to evenly coat. Sprinkle spice mixture over popcorn and mix well to combine. Indian-Spiced Popcorn: In a small bowl, mix together 1 tsp garam masala, ½ tsp each of cumin and salt, and ¼ tsp each of turmeric and cayenne pepper. Melt 2 tbsp butter over medium heat or in the microwave. Drizzle butter over hot popcorn. Mix to coat. Sprinkle spice mixture over popcorn and stir well. Chinese-Spiced Popcorn: In a small bowl combine 2 tsp black sesame seeds, 1 tsp each of ginger and garlic powder, ½ tsp salt, and ¼ tsp cayenne pepper. Melt 2 tbsp butter over medium heat or in the microwave. Stir in 2 tsp toasted sesame oil into melted butter. Pour butter mixture over hot popcorn, tossing to coat. Sprinkle spice mixture over popcorn and mix well. Japanese-Spiced Popcorn: Melt 2 tbsp butter over medium heat or in the microwave. Stir 3 tsp wasabi paste (or 1 tsp wasabi powder), plus 1 tsp each salt and sugar into butter. Drizzle butter mixture over hot popcorn and mix well until evenly coated. [Recipe from: http://www.themanlyhousekeeper.com/2012/09/21/get-international-flavors-with-six-different-popcorn-seasonings/.]

THE DISH | SPRING 2015

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NO RESERVATIONS

Sujeo

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rom Tory Miller, head chef and co-owner of the much acclaimed and beloved Madison restaurants, L’Etoile and Graze, comes a new Asian-fusion eatery, Sujeo. Although Graze draws inspiration from traditional farm-to-table American cuisine, its menu has long included Asian-inspired items such as the Korean Bibimbap and Chinese pork buns. At Sujeo, these dishes, which are included on the menu in slight variation, finally have a place to shine. Sujeo’s menu draws upon a range of Asian flavors, sampling from Vietnamese, Chinese,

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THE DISH | SPRING 2015

By Helen Matsumoto

Photos by Meghan Horvath Korean and Japanese cuisines. However, don’t expect your local Asian take-out favorites here. Chef Miller has created dishes that utilize ingredients and flavors unlike any other restaurant in Madison. One of Miller’s standouts is the General Tso’s Chicken Liver with beef sweet breads, chicken thighs and chili sauce, a striking take on the familiar General Tso’s Chicken. Other plates incorporate ingredients seldom seen in American restaurants and grocery stores, like the kimchi (Korean pickled cabbage), lap cheong (Chinese Sausage) and shrimp pastrami in the bokkeumbap.


A separate area of the restaurant, called The Noodle Bar, serves various types of noodles from across Asia. The choices, which are also available in the main dining room, include several styles of ramen and Vietnamese pho, among others, each with their own unique and intensely flavorful ingredients, such as katsuobushi salt in the shio ramen and Thai sausage in the bun cha. Across the menu, the produce and ingredients are fresh and locally sourced, in accordance with the ethos of their predecessors L’Etoile and Graze. Sujeo also upholds the sleek décor and relaxed upscale feel of its two counterparts, ideal for a dinner out with friends or family. However, the restaurant, located at 101 N Livingston St., is approximately a 15-minute cab ride from campus. But if you’re in the mood to go on an adventure through your palate, Sujeo is definitely worth the trip. n

THE DISH | SPRING 2015

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NO RESERVATIONS

Story And Photos By Emme Beggan

Palmyra

Mediterranean Grill

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ast week, I had the pleasure of dining at Palmyra Mediterranean Grill on State Street. I have to admit, I was a little skeptical at first, as I’m usually a very picky and plain eater. Don’t get me wrong, I love the occasional ethnic dish, but I’m an American/Wisconsin girl at heart. In other words, I love my cheese curds. However, I was very surprised at how delicious, healthy and authentic the food at Palmyra was. When I first walked in, I noticed that Palmyra isn’t a very extravagant restaurant. Its interior design scheme follows no particular theme and is quite simple. The walls are painted a very bright turquoise, which can be a little blinding at times. The restaurant, given the amount of customers, is a decent size. The ordering process follows the same style as Noodles & Company or Short Stack—you order

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at the counter. As I made my way to the menu, I realized how culturally sheltered I was. The only meal on the menu I could pronounce was “cheeseburger,” which I really wanted, but if I was going to write this article I knew I had to go all out and try something a little different. My friends laughed at me when I asked the cashier what the plainest meal Palmyra offered was. He replied with “Chicken Shawarma.” Needless to say, I butchered that name a few times. However, the menu offered a wide variety of options that ranged from American style foods, like cheeseburgers, to authentic Mediterranean foods, like baklava and kebobs. I had no idea what to order so I opted for the cashier’s suggestion and ordered the Chicken Shawarma. Although the wait was a little long, I completely understood when I saw how much food came with


my meal. The plate was filled with hot yellow rice, seasoned chicken, fresh Greek salad, warm pita bread and tangy hummus. To say I walked out of there in a food coma would be an understatement, but I just couldn’t help myself. It was just so good! I had previously read reviews that the rice had been cold or the chicken was overcooked, but that was not my experience at Palmyra. My rice was steaming and the chicken was incredibly tender. The food was just plain enough to not scare my taste buds, but seasoned enough to give them a little spark. I thought the Greek salad was very fresh but, in all honesty, I’ve tasted better. However, I think it was the hummus that deserved the most praise. On top of the generous dollop they gave me, they also provided vinaigrette dressing that soaked into the hummus, giving it a unique and pungent flavor. That, coupled with the pita bread, was enough to make me want to come back again and again. I had my friend, who is a very simple eater and normally a hummus-hater, try it and even she was pleasantly surprised by how flavorful it was. The chicken, rice, salad and side of hum-

mus was a perfectly satisfying meal. All in all, my dining experience at Palmyra was definitely something to write about. If you want to switch it up from Roast, Jimmy John’s and Chipotle, you might want to try venturing over to Palmyra and trying one of their delicious dishes. Even though the service and ambiance was subpar to say the least, I thought the fresh and delicious food definitely made up for it. I do have to warn you though, if you are going there, prepare to take a nice nap afterwards because I promise you won’t want to put your fork down. n

THE DISH | SPRING 2015

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NO RESERVATIONS

HIMAL CHULI From the summit of the Himalayas to snowy State Street comes steaming samosas, delicate momocha, the flakiest roti and savory Takari Cauli stew.

STORY AND PHOTOS BY TALIA MALKIN 15

THE DISH | SPRING 2015


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ith snow covering my boots and the wind whipping at my face, I trudged along with my friends, determined to reach Himal Chuli, State Street’s authentic Nepali restaurant. Little did I know that Himal Chuli has been around since 1984 and originated as a food cart. None of us had eaten Nepali cuisine before, let alone experienced any aspect of Nepali culture. A trip to Himal Chuli was a great way to start. Jamuna Shrestha and her sister both work at the restaurant and are originally from Nepal. Jamuna explained that she and her sister were simply cooking in their kitchen and realized they were actually pretty good at crafting delicious Nepali food.

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ood-nepal.com is a website that reviews Nepali cuisine for those looking to experience tasty, authentic Nepali cuisine. According to this website, “Himal Chuli” means “summit of the Himalayas.” Even the name is exotic. The space reflects this and is decorated with Buddhas and other symbols representing the cultures of Buddhism and Hinduism. Interestingly, the symbol on the front of the restaurant and also on the menu showcase Buddha’s eyes, a common symbol seen in Nepal. We were the only ones in the restaurant, as our determined (and hungry) natures led us to an early dinner. The waitress was friendly and very understanding that we were first-timers. She suggested that we try the Himal’s combination platter.

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he first presented us with a hot cup of dal, a vegan mixed bean soup. It was delicious; the perfect combination of broth and cream, with a little kick to it. Next, the waitress brought out the rest of the platter. The first element I decided to explore was the momocha,

which sat on a bed of tomato coriander sauce. These little steamed veggie dumplings are stuffed with peanut paste, then married with an assortment of Nepali herbs and spices. By the time I tasted the dumplings, they were slightly cold, so unfortunately I wasn’t able to appreciate the taste whole-heartedly, and my friend felt the same. The sauce was meant to be cold however, and I definitely enjoyed that.

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o the right of the platter was a samosa. I’ve actually had samosas before, and this one did not disappoint. Filled with peas, potatoes and onions, along with Nepali herbs and spices, the samosa was scrumptious. It was perfectly crispy and fried on the outside, yet still soft and stuffed with mentioned goodness on the inside. There to absorb every crumb and drop falling from either the momochas or the samosa was my loyal friend roti. Roti is a pita-like bread that was served in the center of the platter we had ordered. It was buttery, fluffy and so tasty. You can expect this quality in every visit because Himal Chuli makes their roti fresh everyday.

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y friend went a different route in her selection and ordered the special of the night: Tarkari Cauli. This flavorful vegetable stew combined with garlic, ginger, cumin, turmeric, coriander, and of course, cauliflower, gave my friend a truly authentic feel for the cuisine. She also used the roti to clean the delicious remnants off her plate. And so went another freezing day in Madison. The next time you’re walking down State Street and want to warm up and add a little spice to your life, make a pit stop at Himal Chuli and prepare for authenticity at a whole new level. P.S. Make sure to bring cash—they don’t accept credit cards. n

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No Reservations

Photos courtesy of Chris Hynes Photography

Cento: A new cornerstone of Italian cuisine By Erica Perlmutter

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ento is one of the latest additions to Madison’s growing Italian food scene, but with its upscale atmosphere and Chef’s Table offering, it is quickly becoming one of the most popular. Walking into Cento, one almost immediately notices its modern yet inviting ambiance. Most people wait by the predominantly grey-hued and steel casted bar area before being seated in the comfortable booths downstairs or smaller seating space upstairs. Either way, the staff is both extremely attentive and knowledgeable, particularly with wine pairings. Now onto the important stuff—the food.

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While Cento does offer a brunch and lunch menu, the dinner selections are the true standouts. Appetizers range from bacon-wrapped dates and burrata, to olio verde and beef tartare with quail egg. You might be able to tell from this short list alone that Cento is definitely not a restaurant for the conservative eater. This establishment also offers wood-fired pizzas from a traditional cheese pie to a variant which consists of more involved vegetable and meat toppings. While a pizza topped with porchetta, Brussels sprouts and pesto does sound mouth-watering, the consistency as far as the quality of the pizza is a tad suspect.


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o one knows better than a pizza enthusiast like me that a burnt or overdone pizza is a true tragedy and Cento may have a few kinks to work out in that department. One of the highlights of the pasta offerings, however, is the choice between an appetizer or entrée-sized portion. If you’re looking to truly sample the menu, I would recommend the appetizer size. This way, you’re able to experience the same great flavors at less of an expense for your wallet and waistline.

Although the menu may seem somewhat overwhelming, most dishes provide the delicious flavors that have enabled Chef Pruett to recently be named one of the Best Chefs in America.

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izza and pasta aside, my absolute favorite dish at Cento would without a doubt be the roasted chicken. Served with salsa verde, arugula and lemon, this dish is the perfect balance between savory and roasted flavors, yet remains a lighter entrée option. It is a pure masterpiece. While Cento can be a pricier restaurant to begin with, they also offer a Chef’s Table option. For $125 per person, famed chef Michael Pruett will prepare a seasonal seven-course dinner for a maximum of six patrons. While it may seem like an exorbi-

tant amount of money to spend on a single dinner, I’m sure each diner leaves satiated.

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nother great perk of Cento is its central location to the Capitol and Overture Center. To truly capitalize on this, Cento now offers a theatre menu before select performances. For $35, one can get a night filled with creative culinary options at Cento and artful performances at the Overture Center. These diverse offerings and extensive menu choices are just some of the reasons Cento has quickly become a Madison highlight. Blending traditional Italian recipes with modern techniques results in a menu unique to even the most dedicated Italian diners.

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lthough the menu may seem somewhat overwhelming, most dishes provide the delicious flavors that have enabled Chef Pruett to recently be named one of the Best Chefs in America. I encourage both the most cautious and critical eaters to enjoy the ambiance, wine selection and food offerings that Cento has crafted. I have never left without a full, satisfied belly and a slightly emptier wallet that was well worth every bite. n

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NO RESERVATIONS

O. S. S. O N 19

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R e g e n t

Photos courtesy of Josh Boll


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By Bri Moritz

ow that spring has arrived, Madison students are thrilled to get back to their favorite outdoor activities, including playing Ultimate Frisbee, visiting local farmer’s markets, and enjoying patio dining. There are many fantastic options for dining in this city; from international cuisine, comfort food, and Sconnie favorites, the list is infinite. Recently, Madison Magazine came out with the ‘Best of 2015’, which announced OSS on Regent Street as the Best New Restaurant. OSS opened in 2014 and has since proven to be a very successful sausage shop. What makes it so unique in this restaurant-filled town is the niche concept: locally crafted sausages, often with an international twist. While Wisconsin is already famous for beer brats and all-beef dogs, this restaurant transforms these classics into something much more gourmet.

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o-manager and recipe creator Josh Boll explains how this special restaurant came to fruition with OSS owners Tyler and Chris Soukup. The duo began in Monroe, Wisconsin with the mother restaurant Baumgartner’s Cheese Store & Tavern, which specializes in the best Wisconsin comfort foods. “The concept for this sausage shop was the combining of our two loves of local [Wisconsin] comfort food and all those other [flavors] in the world that exist, and putting them together in a sausage,” Boll explains.

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nternational cuisine has a major influence on this sausage shop, with flavors like the Veal Brat, the Glarner, and the Korean BBQ, all made as essentially a ‘dish on a bun’. Practically all of the ingredients are locally made, especially those used in OSS’s specialty sausages. OSS prides itself on creating new recipes with local shops Hosley’s and Zuber’s, two great Green County meat kitchens. Boll explains that with each new sausage idea, OSS collaborates with the kitchens by testing and perfecting the ingredients with local meats. The combinations are always different, giving each sausage its own identity.

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ut meat isn’t the only local ingredient OSS uses. Boll lists several local cheese shops for their feature dishes, from places like Baumgartner Cheese, Forgotten Valley, and Maple Leaf for their curds. It’s impossible not to use local cheese in a state like Wisconsin, and OSS definitely commits to all of their local sources for quality ingredients.

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ne of the most outstanding highlights of OSS is its “Open Source Sausage” concept. Customers, chefs, and foodies alike, can contribute to the list of sausages with ideas as vague as a flavor, or as intricate as a full recipe, to be featured on rotation at the shop. The most popular open source recipe to date is the Tikka Masala, created by a regular customer with a full-recipe plan. Some regulars have simply asked for ideas like the Lamb Merguez, which is now a sausage created by OSS, and used in collaboration with chefs from Madison’s Brasserie V restaurant.

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orking with other customers and even other restaurants is definitely the focal point of OSS’s brand. “[Open Source Sausages] is the fun part: We deconstruct meals to create new sausages, and then we reconstruct them with other restaurants so they can make a dish with them,” Boll says. “It makes our experience, and especially the customer’s experience, deeper and richer with the restaurant.” OSS on Regent Street is a wonderful place where everyone can enjoy something on the menu. “You can have really ardent foodies…and then you can have picky eaters, sitting right next to each other, both eating really gourmet sausages, and they’re all eating with their hands,” Boll says. “I think the sausage can become this great equalizer amongst all of us, whether you can like a Plain Jane hot dog, or a Braunschweiger Limburger sausage.”

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e sure to check out OSS, and dine outside in their brand new beer garden, complete with seasonal tap beers and a rotating menu. Also, make sure to add them on Facebook, and follow their newest Open Source options, among other fun promos! n

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FOOD FOR THOUGHT

School lunch A

story By Liz Schnee

tender cut of steak served with rice, tomato and corn salad, locally made cheese and baguette, and a ripe kiwi—in a school cafeteria. As shocking as it sounds to fellow public school grads who grew up with tater tot casserole on their trays, the above was a typical lunch at the public high school I attended while studying in France.

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ut to my hometown, where typical lunches included pizza, giant chocolate chip cookies, chips, and sports drinks. Or in the hot lunch line, a plat du jour would have included frozen meat transported to the school from a commercial supplier, canned fruit or veggies, a dessert, and a carton of milk. By the time lunch even rolled around, many students would have already visited the vending machine to fill up on carbohydrate and sugar laden foods.

Photo credit to Xavier Selles A typical lunch served in Trevoux, France, includes local sausage, green salad, potatoes, creme brulee, a baguette, and yogurt.

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France vs. America

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hy are these pictures so radically different? The government regulations for school meals in America and France have many commonalities. Both nations require nutritional reviews for every proposed meal, albeit in France this takes place every two weeks and in America only every three years. There are similar limitations for caloric intake and the amount of starchy vegetables and simple carbs for each country. The reauthorization of the U.S. National School Lunch Act in 2012 tightened the regulations of fat levels, sodium intakes and food group balancing. Yet Wisconsin’s child obesity rate is currently at 28.8 percent, almost double France’s 15 percent.

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rance’s approach to school lunches may offer some insight. The most noticeable difference is in meal preparation; neither Wisconsin legislature nor the National School Lunch Act include any regulations for food freshness or quality. Because the five required daily food groups remain the same in both countries—protein, dairy, fruits, vegetables and grains—the hidden inequalities may be laying between the cellophane packaging. Within preservatives and processed foods lay obesogens, chemicals found in foods that inappropriately alter fat storage and energy balance. UW-Madison assistant professor Jennifer Gaddis believes this “chronic low-dose exposure to processing additives” may be part of the cause for the high obesity rate in the U.S.

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art of French law requires that high school meals be prepared on site, which means local ingredients are more likely to be used. The


need for full-time cooks is also a major boost to the local labor force, whereas many food service employees in America work only part-time as servers. “It seems to be cooking is the exception and not the norm, ” Gaddis says of American school lunch systems.

Photo courtesy of Westwood.com

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he underrepresentation of local products and cooks preparing these products is detrimental not only to the health of students missing out on natural foods, but also may have a negative effect on the local employment level. Another French standard A typical American school lunch includes pizza, corn, fruit cocktail, a pretzel and cheese sauce, and milk. is the intolerance for “zero” Vending machines have been outlawed in public foods, or zero nutrient foods, schools in France since 2005. In the lunch line, saucwhich are unforgivably high in sugar and sodium es have all been pre-portioned on plates so students levels with artificial ingredients that Bill Nye couldn’t can’t douse every item with ranch or cheese sauce, even pronounce. which is a big source of additives and fat for American students. Of course, I don’t mean to criticize everything Wisconsin is doing in their lunch lines; there are many schools who don’t follow this traditional model and others who are in the process of making meaningful nutritional reforms.

The underrepresentation of local products and cooks preparing these products is detrimental not only to the health of students missing out on natural foods, but also may have a negative effect on the local employment level.

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f school food preparation is to change, there needs to be a greater demand for transparency in the origins of our food. For instance, every cut of meat I ate in school abroad was labeled with its area of origin. Additionally, there needs to be a higher priority set for the investment of obtaining fresh, high-quality, wholesome ingredients. Better tasting food is less likely to be wasted, and we can all agree that less waste is economically and environmentally beneficial. It seems we could all learn a thing or two from our European friends. Bon appétit. For more information on obesogens, check out the obesogens chapter in Julie Guthman’s book Weighing In. n

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FOOD FOR thought

Getting the most out of your food market travels

Story and Photos by Ali Castriano

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efore coming to London, I had been to a handful of farmer’s markets and food carts, but nothing had prepared me for the chaos and excitement of the street food markets in Europe. So far, I have been to five different markets in London and two in Copenhagen, and all have pleasantly surprised me! Going to a market and buying food may seem fairly obvious, but based on the experiences I have had abroad, I now know there is a systematic way to go about it. Sure, you could just walk around and find a food tent that looks good, order your

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THE DISH | SPRING 2015

food and leave; but doing this won’t allow you to get the best possible experience. Whether you are trying international cuisines abroad or enjoying food carts and the farmer’s market back in Madison, this guide will help you get the most out of any food market experience. First, I think venturing to the markets with a friend or two is the best way to go. You don’t want too big of a group because it’s easy to get split up in the crowd and want to go your separate ways. However, it’s important to go with at least one other person so you can optimize the


variety of food you eat. Every time I go, a friend and I each pick a food tent of our choice and share the meals with each other. We’ve made three trips to the same market, but with this technique we have tried over seven different food tents there! My second piece of advice is to always try the samples first. Most of the time there will be samples out in plain view, but for some you have to look harder because the vendors don’t want everyone mooching from their station. So, make sure you keep an eye out for those sneaky ones. Unfortunately, there are some vendors who don’t ever have samples, but don’t let this hold you back. Simply go up and ask if you can try whatever they are selling. Most of the time, they will allow you to have a sample because they want you to buy their food. Worst-case scenario is they say no, so don’t shy away from the possibility of free food! Once you have gone through the whole market and sampled everything possible (yes, you may already be full, but you can’t stop here), it’s time to evaluate what you have tried and walk back through the market to make a decision. This is the hardest part; I can never make a quick decision, but going with a friend and splitting meals helps make things easier. When deciding what to eat, I think it’s important to take a risk on one of the meals.

Having an open mind makes the experience more exciting because you might be trying a cuisine you’ve never had before and you could discover your new favorite food! Through my experiences I’ve realized I really like Peruvian, Columbian, Turkish, and Indian cuisine; I had never tried any of these before, but going in with an open mind has allowed me to explore all these cultures and really enjoy them. So, after seeing how I work the food market system, I think it is obvious that markets aren’t for those with small appetites. Be prepared to eat your heart out and allow plenty of time to fully immerse yourself in everything the market has to offer. And lastly, I have some advice I got from a friend: get anything with cheese on it. I think this holds true no matter where you are in the world, and it especially holds true in Wisconsin. n

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The Dish Spring 2015 Issue  
The Dish Spring 2015 Issue  
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