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FEATURES

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In Season

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5 Great Al Frescos

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CONTENTS

Weather Permitting

30

40

Stone Soup

High Spirits


CONTENTS

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The Simple Life

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Contributors

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Letter from Steve

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Stylist’s Corner

8

Out of the Bag

10

Art of the Ice Cream Scoop

12

In Season

22

5 Great Al Frescos

24

Weather Permitting

28

Portrait of a Chef

30

Stone Soup

40

High Spirits

42

The Simple Life

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How We Did It

CONTACTS media inquiries Judith Mara | marabeach@sbcglobal.net Deirdre O’Shea | deirdre@stephenhamilton.com

sponsorship opportunities Deirdre O’Shea | deirdre@stephenhamilton.com

representation Schumann & Company | www.schumannco.com patti@schumannco.com | 312.432.1702

stephen hamilton 1520 W. Fulton | Chicago, IL 60607 www.stephenhamilton.com

CONTENTS

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contributors

No 0 0 2

judith mara | Editor and Writer

ian law | Design

Deirdre o’Shea | Production Director

Judith has worked with Stephen for the last six

Ian designed every aspect of Who’s Hungry?™

If you have worked with Stephen Hamilton,

years and helped to lead the editorial concept

magazine with meticulous attention to detail and

you’ve worked with Deirdre. Drawing on 15

and execution of Who’s Hungry?™ magazine. An

typography, and helped turn static images into an

years of experience in managing photography

award-winning former creative director for major

interactive experience. His award-winning design

studios, Deirdre has a hand in nearly every

ad agencies such as Leo Burnett and J. Walter

work has been featured in the pages of Print,

aspect of Stephen’s business. She’s been

Thompson, Judith penned “Weather Permitting”

Creativity, How, PDN and Graphic Design USA.

instrumental in organizing the magazine’s

and literally hand wrote “How We Did It.”

shoots, sourcing ingredients, and always keeping production on schedule.

Sara Moulton |

kate bernot |

Chef, Cookbook Author, Television Personality

A freelance food writer and editor, Kate Bernot

Since 2003, Steve has been the recognizable face

One of the hardest-working women in the food

has contributed to RedEye, Chicago Sun-Times,

of ABC 7’s “The Hungry Hound,” filing reports on

biz, Sara has hosted multiple Food Network

Conde Nast Traveler, Serious Eats Chicago, and

the best eats in Chicago. He has also appeared

shows, served as Gourmet magazine’s executive

BlackboardEats. She helped develop the editorial

as a guest judge on “Iron Chef America”, as a

chef for 23 years, and balanced it all with family

vision of Who’s Hungry? ™ magazine, and tried

contributor to “Unique Eats”, and serves as one

life. She has written three cookbooks, and hosts

not to get too hungry while writing about ice

of the Academy Judges for “The World’s 50 Best

her own PBS show, “Sara’s Weeknight Meals.”

cream sundaes, potluck parties, and Giuseppe

Restaurants.” For Who’s Hungry? ™ magazine,

For Who’s Hungry? ™ magazine, Sara recounts

Tentori’s clam chowder for this issue.

Steve ticked off his favorite al fresco restaurants

the magical draw of her family’s summer home,

Editor and Writer

steve dolinsky | Writer

across the country.

Laurel Farm.

a special thanks to : Geoff Binns-Calvey, Walter Moeller, Josephine Orba, Breana Moeller, Tom Hamilton, Juan Palomino, Raymond Barrera, Ruth Siegel, Sandy Rosencrans, Justin Paris, Andrew Burkle, Pete Klein, Sarah Grueneberg, Giuseppe and Christy Tentori, Rodelio Aglibot, Matt and Stevi Savage, Michael and Lori Shenfeld, Sam Jorden, Malika Ameen, Gale Gand, Jeni Britton Bauer, and Celeste Campise. 4

CONTRIBUTORS


LETTER FROM STEVE That enthusiasm runs through all the stories in this second issue. I am honored to publish a personal essay from Sara Moulton, former Gourmet Magazine executive chef and Food Network host, about idyllic summers spent at her family’s Massachusetts country home. It’s the perfect story to take with you to the beach or the lake, where you can stare out at the water and enjoy its calming effects. There are also plenty of delicious recipes to inspire your ultimate picnic or backyard cook-out. “In Season” features frozen treats from some of the country’s best pastry chefs like Gale Gand, Malika Ameen, Celeste Campise, and ice cream wizard Jeni Britton Bauer. The sundaes, floats, and ice cream sandwiches are easy enough to whip up on a lazy summer afternoon, but beautiful enough to serve to company.

Summer is simplicity. It’s the season when Mother Nature

Kids—even the grown-up kind—are sure to enjoy eating them as much as I enjoyed

makes us grateful for the smallest of gifts, like a warm

photographing them.

breeze or a bite of juicy strawberry. It turns us all into kids

“Weather Permitting” is especially

again, giddy at the thought of a day outside.

fascinating in this issue because of the unpredictable spring weather that complicated farmers’ harvests across the Great Lakes region. Some of our favorite fruits suffered because of late frosts, but the ones that are at markets now look and taste as beautiful as ever. Whether you spend your June and July at the lake, the beach, or just in your own backyard, don’t forget to pause to ask “Who’s Hungry?™” STEPHEN HAMILTON

LETTER FROM STEVE

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CONTRIBUTORS’ PORTRAITS BY ANDREW BURKLE

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S T E V E ’ S P O R T R A I T B Y AV E R Y H O U S E

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S T Y L I S T ’ S C O R N E R : B A C K YA R D B A Z A A R


STYLIST’S

CORNER Backyard Bazaar

Prop styling brings a table to life, setting the mood for the meal ahead. Tom Hamilton, one of the nation’s besttraveled stylists, and brother to Stephen Hamilton, often draws on his own far-flung voyages for inspiration. tom hamilton

Here, Tom recalled his picnics in locations as exotic as Kenya, India, and Morocco. With an eye for each stitch and brushstroke, he brought all the textures and colors into bold but calming, harmony. The trick to layering patterns, says Tom, is to choose one color family and vary the size of the prints. This exotic picnic makes use of Uzbek fabrics, Egyptian glassware, and Vietnamese baskets, and brings a global perspective to the most intimate of spaces: Tom’s own backyard.

P H O T O G R A P H Y B Y S T E P H E N H A M I LT O N

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S T Y L E D B Y T O M H A M I LT O N

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OUT BAG of

the

LEATHERMAN MULTI-TOOL WAVE Geoff’s “constant companion,” this multi-tool packs a dozen tools into one package. It’s like a Swiss Army knife… on steroids. It folds out to reveal a diamond file, scissors, a screwdriver, a can opener, and more.

To make complex shots look effortless, Stephen Hamilton sometimes requires the assistance of Geoff Binns-Calvey. A special effects designer, engineer, and all-around handyman, he has constructed everything from flame rigs to champagne fountains for the studio. If it doesn’t already exist, Geoff can create it. Of course, this wizardry requires some complex gadgets, many of which he carries in his toolbox or infinite number of pockets. From razors to lasers, here’s what might be tucked inside Geoff’s overalls…

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O U T O F T H E B A G : G E O F F B I N N S - C A LV E Y

1


LASER BEAM This over-cranked green laser is imported from China because this bright a beam isn’t available in the United States. Geoff uses it to point to specific areas of a rig or to small details on set.

3

HEMOSTATS Normally reserved for the operating room, these medical pliers come in handy when working with small wires, very hot metal, or both. They’re also helpful for extending one’s reach when building a photo set.

2 X-ACTO KNIFE WITH #11 BLADE The #11 blade, Geoff’s favorite, is made of durable carbon steel so it won’t wear out no matter how many cardboard packages he cuts through. He stores it in this trusty,

4

one-of-a-kind sheath.

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THE ART of the

ICE CREAM SCOOP by K AT E B E R N O T

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THE ART OF THE ICE CREAM SCOOP

Ice cream is the Mount Everest of food photography. If you can style and shoot frozen treats, you know you’ve conquered one of the toughest foods in the business. What makes it so difficult? Hot studio lights and a melting product, for starters, but there’s also the quest to capture just the right texture and shape of the dessert. Click on the bullets below for the full “scoop” on our methods.


THE CREAM First, gallons of ice cream are stored in a freezer that keeps them cold, but not rock hard. That way, the ice cream is easily scooped and molded into the perfect shape.

»

Once the stylist shaves off a perfect curlicue, it is stored in a dry ice freezer that can drop to -40 degrees Fahrenheit. Once it is really frozen, the scoop is brought onto the photo set.

THE CHIPS Not all scoops of mint ice cream have an even distribution of chocolate chips, so food stylist Walter Moeller used tweezers

»

to add chips to areas that looked sparse.

THE CURL Ice cream can take different shapes

»

depending on the instrument used to scoop it. Walter Moeller cut away the cardboard packaging with scissors, then made this shape with a paddle rather than a traditional ice cream scoop.

THE DROPS Unlike some photographers, Stephen uses real ice cream on his shoots. A few strategically placed, melted drops drive home this natural approach.

» P H O T O G R A P H Y B Y S T E P H E N H A M I LT O N

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January

March

April

June

August

September

Refrigeration is a modern invention, but frozen desserts have existed since the time of the Persian Empire. As far back as 400 B.C., the Persians enjoyed fruit syrups poured over snow, which they obtained from the tops of tall mountains and kept cool in underground chambers. Thankfully, the farthest you’ll have to travel for ice cream these days is to your kitchen freezer. Perk up those store-bought pints with these recipes for easy, nostalgic treats from some of the nation’s top pastry chefs.

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IN SEASON: A FROZEN FEAST

December

9 10 11 12 November

8

October

6 7 July

4 5 May

3

February

1 2


IN SEASON A Frozen Feast b y K AT E B E R N O T

P H O T O G R A P H Y B Y S T E P H E N H A M I LT O N

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Gale Gand, award-winning pastry chef at Tru in Chicago, began to pine for classic American root beer floats when she was working in England in the mid-1990s. Being in a root beer-free zone, she had to make the dessert herself. This quest to perfect an at-home root beer float had two results: first, the recipe for her easy but elegant root beer granita-vanilla parfait, and second, the name of her newly adopted terrier, Rootie.

recipe by

GALE GAN D

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IN SEASON: A FROZEN FEAST


root beer granita -vanilla parfait (makes 4 servings)

Thanks to the recent chicness of small-batch, artisan foods, your grocer’s freezer is

6 cups (1 ½ quarts) root beer

probably chock-full of a

1 quart vanilla ice cream

whole rainbow of gourmet

4 elbow straws

Click to view complete recipe »

ice cream flavors.

But even though Ben & Jerry’s has been twisting Americans’ taste buds for more than 30 years, research shows that our favorite flavors remain good ol’ fashioned chocolate and vanilla. According to a Harris poll, scoops of butter pecan and mint chocolate chip still can’t shake our love affair with the basics. There’s something undeniably nostalgic about ice cream and its rituals, like digging wooden spoons into Dixie cups or running after the ice cream truck’s siren song. It’s that nostalgia that really inspired these pastry chefs’ recipes, which can all be recreated at home without ever having to touch your ice cream maker.

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s’more ice cream sandwiches ( makes 6 servings ) recipe by

CELEST E C A M P I S E

1 1/2 sticks soft butter, 3/4 cup dark brown sugar, 1 egg, 1 yolk, 1/2 cup sugar, 1/4 cup honey, 1 1/2 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp premium pure vanilla extract, 2 cups all purpose flour, 1/2 cup graham flour

Click to view complete recipe »

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IN SEASON: A FROZEN FEAST


re c i p e by

JENI B R I T TON BAU E R

And if you happen to have kids

Jeni Britton Bauer, of Jeni’s Splendid

underfoot, invite them into the kitchen

Ice Creams in Columbus, OH,

with you to whip up a batch of s’more

concocted her “One Night in

ice cream sandwiches. At Spiaggia in

Bangkok” sundae with all the

Chicago, pastry chef Celeste Campise

familiar flavors of an ooey-gooey

bakes composed Italian desserts on a

candy bar like peanuts, coconut, and

daily basis. But when she’s at home, she

pralines. There’s no denying that it’s

says she’s much more likely to whip up

her comfort food: During her two

something inspired by childhood, like

pregnancies, Bauer admits she ate a

these soft-baked graham cookies filled

few of these sundaes each week.

with chocolate gelato and marshmallow fluff. Just one bite packs a whole summer’s worth of campfire nights.

one night in bangkok sundae ( makes 6 servings )

6 bananas, sliced lengthwise in half Bangkok Peanut Ice Cream (main flavors are peanut butter, coconut and cayenne), 1 1/2 cups Praline Sauce, warmed, Whipped Cream, About 3/4 cup Spanish peanuts, 6 Fortune Cookies, 1 basil sprig or 6 cilantro sprigs

Click to view complete recipe »

Excerpted from Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home by Jeni Britton Bauer (Artisan Books). Copyright 2011.

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Besides the nostalgia factor, there’s also timing to consider when it comes to frozen desserts. When kids’ soccer teammates unexpectedly drop by after practice, or when guests linger after a barbecue, it’s handy to have an arsenal of no-fuss treats that can be whipped up with minimal time in the kitchen. Malika Ameen, a former Top Chef contestant, owner of ByM Desserts, and busy mother herself, shares her recipe for homemade ginger soda with strawberry ice. It’s simple but sophisticated, requiring just a few minutes in the kitchen but still elegant enough to serve to guests. After all, summer is about enjoying time outside, not slaving over a mixing bowl.

homemade ginger soda with strawberry“ice” (makes 4 servings) ginger soda ½ cup water, 2 tablespoons peeled and grated fresh ginger, ¾ cup organic cane sugar, ¼ cup fresh lime juice, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, 3 cups very cold club soda

strawberry “ice” 1 pound organic strawberries, 2 tablespoons organic cane sugar, ½ cup water, ¼ cup sugar, 1 bag chamomile tea, Pinch of salt

Click to view complete recipe »

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IN SEASON: A FROZEN FEAST

re c i p e by

MALIKA AMEEN


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Grocers’ freezers are packed with all sorts

ice Cream

gelato

The classic American ice cream

This Italian dessert also begins

begins with a custard base of milk,

with a custard base but churns

distinguishes one variety from another, because

cream, and sugar, and usually

the ingredients much more slowly,

contains egg yolks. Some varieties

meaning less air is folded into

when a product contains only a handful of

may omit the eggs and add cream

the mixture. This produces a

cheese or half and half, plus various

denser, richer product. Somewhat

flavorings such as vanilla beans,

deceptively, gelato often contains

chocolate, or fruit. The base churns

less milk and eggs, making its fat

as it is frozen, which adds

content lower than that of ice cream.

of frosty cartons. It’s useful to know what

ingredients, each one affects the treat’s texture and flavor. Here’s your crash course.

air to lighten the texture.

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IN SEASON: A FROZEN FEAST


Move over, cake pops! Ice cream balls are a cool, quick dessert that kids—and adults—will love this summer. Scoop ice cream with a melon baller, roll it in your favorite toppings, and devour.

sorbet

granita

The vegan’s choice, sorbet is

Like sorbet, this dessert of Sicilian

frozen yogurt This trendy treat is often

dairy- and egg-free. A base of

origins begins with a base of

considered a “healthier”

juice or flavored water is churned

water, sugar, and flavorings.

alternative to ice cream, and

with simple syrup, so it retains a

Instead of churning in a machine,

sometimes, it can be: Subbing

light texture similar to ice cream.

the granita base is mixed by

yogurt for cream means less

Sherbet is like sorbet, but with

hand, then left to sit in a freezer.

calories and less fat in a typical

the addition of dairy.

Periodically, the chunks are

serving, plus the addition of

broken up, giving a coarser, more

probiotics. But be careful—some

snow cone-like texture to the ice.

yogurt brands compensate for the lack of cream by adding lots of sugar.

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GREAT AL FRESCOS by STEVE DOLINSKY

We asked Steve Dolinsky, Food Reporter for ABC 7 News in Chicago and 12-time James Beard Award winner, what five al frescos he thinks are worth a special trip. Portrait by Todd Rosenberg Photography

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5 G R E AT A L F R E S C O S


Foreign Cinema »

Salinas »

2534 Mission St., San Francisco

136 9th Ave., New York City

Gjelina » 1429 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice Beach

How about a little Hog Island oyster with your

In Manhattan, of course, love doesn’t come

Thank goodness for the 405, because even on a

Hitchcock? This cool, casual Mediterranean-

cheap. But in Chelsea, there is plenty to love at

bad day, you can finagle your way from LAX to

influenced gem in the Mission would be a worthy

this vibrant Spanish restaurant, which focuses

Gjelina in about 20 minutes. That means if there’s

destination for its food alone. But throw in a

on the Mediterranean coast and Balearic Islands.

a layover, you’ve got do whatever you can to get

covered courtyard with films projected onto

There is no denying the perfection of nibbling

to Venice Beach for a taste of what is surely some

a giant two-story wall outside, and suddenly,

on blistered shishito peppers and Jamón Ibérico

of the best food in the region. The restaurant

those house-cured sardines and cauliflower or

while sitting beneath the inky black New York

leans Mediterranean, with charcuterie platters

that massive smoked masala pork chop with a

City sky under a large, retractable roof. Come

and charred pizzas rife with briny olives, capers

chanterelle-radicchio-leek bread pudding taste

after 12 p.m. on a weekend for brunch, and get a

and homemade sausage. But sitting in the cozy

that much better.

clear view of the sky and surrounding buildings–

backyard, with portable heaters that get turned

there’s no doubt you’re in the city.

on whenever the temperature even threatens to dip below 60, I find myself hunkering down on the long, cushioned couch and plunging my dessert spoon into a cup of the intensely delicious butterscotch budino (pudding) topped with fluffy whipped cream and sea salt.

Piccolo Sogno »

Vinegar Hill House »

464 N. Halsted St., Chicago

72 Hudson Ave., Brooklyn

Tony Priolo’s “little dream” came to fruition after

Half the fun of going to Vinegar Hill House is the

a long stint at Coco Pazzo downtown. But this

trek itself. Whether you take the F train to York

chef must also have a green thumb, because

and walk a few more blocks or drive over the

stepping into the enormous, tree-lined patio that

Manhattan Bridge, this quaint haven in Brooklyn

seats about 150 is like stumbling onto your long-

has an even more charming patio. With large,

lost Italian uncle’s villa somewhere in the Veneto.

horizontal branches strung with intermittent

On any given warm summer night in Chicago,

light bulbs, it could be a scene from a Zach Braff

you can bet the tables will be full, and not just

coming-of-age film about the young couple that

because of the scenery. Priolo makes everything

finds love over a bottle of Sangiovese: She goes

from scratch here, from the pastas all the way

for the beet risotto while he opts for a Red Wattle

down to the tiny grissini, or bread sticks.

breed pork chop and some Cheddar grits.

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WEATHER PERMITTING Early Summer Fruit. And a Late Frost.

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W E A T H E R P E R M I T T I N G : E A R LY S U M M E R F R U I T. A N D A L A T E F R O S T

by J U D I T H M A R A


strawberries Our favorite strawberries are not the gigantic berries you find year round in grocery stores. We love the small, dense and red-all-the-way-through strawberries that local farmers grow across the country. Our favorite variety to search for is the Alpine strawberry (fraises des bois) because it is tiny, juicy and packed with sweet flavor.

cherries Even though there are over 1,000 varieties of cherries, there are two major types: sweet and tart (sour cherries). Everyone knows what to do with juicy sweet cherries––pop in your mouth and spit out the pit. But what about tart cherries? About 4 cups will make a fine cherry pie and some splendid jam. But a real treat is to dry them. Take any amount of pitted tart cherries, simmer them with 2 cups of sugar and water for 20 minutes, drain and place in a dehydrator or 165˚F oven for 3 to 4 hours.

We admire our local, small farmers

Michigan grower Peter Klein of Seedling Fruit

in more ways that we can count. And

claims to have lost 80 to 85% of his apple and

their dependency on Mother Nature

peach crop, more of his pears and a bit less

to cooperate is just one reason why

of his cherries. Lucky for midwest farmers

they deserve our heartfelt respect and

market patrons, his strawberries, blueberries

gratitude. Sadly, the fruit belt across the

and raspberries fared a little better.

Great Lakes area including Michigan, Pennsylvania, New York State, and

So while you’ll see some early summer fruit

Ontario severely felt her wrath this

still filling fruit stands, it is hard to predict

spring. An early heat wave in March, then

just how scarce a Michigan apple is going to

an extended period of cold weather and

be come September. We’ll let you know…

a late April frost to boot, nearly wiped out the entire fruit crop. Hardest hit appear to be cherries, apples, peaches and plums.

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blueberries

watermelon

raspberries

Blueberries are considered to be a superfruit

Just when the searing heat starts kicking

Odds are you won’t find raspberries at

with a list of health benefits too long to

up dust in Texas and other hot southern

farmers markets in areas that have high

mention here. So it is good to know that

states, watermelons make their refreshing

year round temperatures. But in the East,

blueberries freeze well for future use. Wash

appearance. How to pick out a ripe one?

Northeast, Midwest, North and on the

the berries and pat them very dry. Spread

Thumping it with your hand may tell you if it

West Coast, they are plentiful starting in

them out in a single layer on a cookie sheet

“sounds” juicy, but a better way is to look at its

late June and July. Raspberries come in

and freeze them for about 3 hours. Quickly

underside. A ripe watermelon should have a

rich colors of red, purple, black and gold,

transfer the frozen berries to a freezer bag

creamy yellow spot from where it laid on the

with gold being the sweetest.

and lay flat in the freezer to store.

ground and ripened in the sun.

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W E A T H E R P E R M I T T I N G : E A R LY S U M M E R F R U I T. A N D A L A T E F R O S T


apricots

Eighty-two percent of apricots grown in the US are dried. So if you are lucky enough to find some fresh apricots at the market, enjoy this rare treat. You can nibble them like you would a peach, or you can be inventive. Any tart, jam, cake or pie recipe that contains peaches or nectarines can be substituted with apricots.

cantaloupe

How to select a ripe melon? Sniff it. If it smells sweet, then it is ripe. If you are not eating a melon right away, don’t buy it ripe. Let it sit at room temperature for a couple days, and when you smell a fragrant aroma you’ll know that it is begging to be eaten.

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P O R T R A I T OF A

CHEF giuseppe tentori

b y K AT E B E R N O T

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PORTRAIT OF A CHEF: GIUSEPPE TENTORI


From a childhood spent on his grandmother’s farm in Italy to a career at the helm of Chicago’s BOKA and GT Fish & Oyster,

what’s your most embarrassing kitchen moment?

what’s the secret ingredient in your legendary clam chowder?

My most embarrassing moment happened

Really, Sarah? Okay. It’s bacon and

when I was working at Charlie Trotter’s in

cornstarch.

1998. I was working the vegetable station, and I was using white truffles. I just put

Giuseppe Tentori has always

two pieces of shaved white truffle on a dish,

let his passions guide him.

because they’re very expensive. I thought I

An obsession with seasonal ingredients, Italian technique, and fresh seafood has earned him a Michelin star and the title of Food & Wine’s Best New Chef 2008.

was doing the guy a favor. And I remember Charlie yelling at me: “Are you Italian or what?” I learned that if you’re going to use something, you better really use it.

when mentoring, what’s the trait you most look for in a young cook? Their care and passion. The other night, I had to yell at one of my guys on the line because he put a dish up for the server and he knew it wasn’t cooked right. I pulled him aside and explained to him, it’s very

what ingredient do you cook with that would surprise people?

important that you do this right, because at

But it’s his warm hospitality that makes each meal at his restaurants especially

Licorice. At BOKA I used to do short ribs

what you do. And he understood that.

memorable. We invited Sarah Gruene-

braised in licorice—not even fennel, just

berg, the subject of last issue’s “Portrait

regular black licorice.

of a Chef”, to submit the questions she’s been dying to ask Giuseppe…. and forced him to answer them.

the end of the day, you have to be proud of

if you were going to open another restaurant, what would the concept be? An Italian steakhouse. That’s my dream.

AT GT Fish & Oyster, Giuseppe Tentori serves seasonal King Crab legs with clarified butter and aromatic citrus wedges.

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S T O N E S O U P

p o r t ra i t s by S M I L E B O OT H

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STONE SOUP

by K AT E BERNOT


Imagine a modern, urban dinner party inspired by the classic folktale of Stone Soup. At the start of this canonical story, a trio of hungry and weary travelers arrives in a village in search of a warm meal. A large cauldron in the town square is filled with water and one simple, smooth stone. Despite a scarcity of ingredients, the townspeople each contribute one item from their pantries to the pot, until the flavors blend to produce a hearty, comforting stew. Stone Soup is a tale of cooperation and generosity, of coming together for a shared meal and a warm welcome. This story is also the perfect model for the sort of non-traditional potluck that only Stephen Hamilton could plan.

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Decisively, he tucked those dog-eared copies of Gourmet and sauce-splattered Silver Palate

When Stephen Hamilton

cookbooks back on the shelves in favor of a

decided to throw an early

more spontaneous meal. He approached the

summer dinner party, the

always beginning with the question: “How

first step he took was to cast aside all his recipes.

dinner party the way he does photography, can I do this differently?” He found his answer in the tale of Stone Soup, a storybook that he often read to his children when they were young. To make this ancient tale of community and teamwork come alive for the 21st century, Stephen set a few ground rules for his party invitees: No recipes. No planning. No pressure.

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STONE SOUP


Ten guests would arrive at his home,

When the evening of the party arrived,

“These are the ingredients I picked up at

where ample proteins, vegetables, herbs,

a varied crowd assembled around the

the market,” Stephen announced to the

and seasonings would be provided. Then,

kitchen’s center island. Among the guests

culinary army. “We have more than enough

everyone, regardless of his or her level of

were cooks of all levels, from curious home

protein, fruit, and vegetables, and you’re

culinary prowess, would cook a dish. The

cooks all the way to some of the nation’s

also welcome to use all the condiments

goal was to swap meticulous planning for

top chefs, including Rodelio Aglibot (star of

and dry goods in my pantry, plus whatever

spontaneity. Like a confident photographer

TLC’s “Food Buddha”), Giuseppe Tentori (of

herbs are growing on my deck. Alright, let’s

working with natural light and real

Chicago’s BOKA and GT Fish & Oyster), and

get cooking!”

subjects, guests were asked to loosen up,

Celeste Campise (pastry chef at Chicago’s

work with what they were given, and have

Michelin-starred Spiaggia). But like a good

a fantastic time along the way.

stew, each ingredient—and each cook— mattered. Prop stylists, photographers, graphic designers, and real estate agents all tied on their aprons too, ready to add their flavor to the meal.

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As is true of many dinner parties, there was a sense of unfamiliarity at the beginning of the evening. Many of the diners had not met each other before, and were diverse in age, profession, hometown, and ethnicity. But because the host traded small talk and canapĂŠs for an onthe-fly potluck feast, new acquaintances became fast friends with little effort.

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STONE SOUP


There is something about the act of cooking a meal that brings out a person’s character. True to form, Giuseppe Tentori played the entertainer, calmly preparing charred Brussels sprouts and pancetta while simultaneously keeping an eye on pork loin sautéing in a pan. Prop stylist Juan Palomino stirred a flavorful, vibrant pot of yellow rice for paella as he explained the native foods of his home country of Colombia. He swapped stories of South American travel with graphic designer Sam Jorden, who began to marinate tender rock shrimp in blood orange and spicy red pepper sauce. Photographers Matt and Stevi Savage set up a Smilebooth which—along with a few glasses of red wine—prompted everyone to let loose in front of the camera.

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While laughter bounced around the room like sunbeams, myriad scents wafted from the stovetop: tangy Vietnamese fish sauce, grilled fennel, rich roasting lamb chops, and buttery baked profiteroles. This wasn’t the fussy, multi-course meal that one would pluck from the pages of a magazine, but it was a familystyle feast made better for its contrasts.

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STONE SOUP


Using the ingredients provided, guests came up with dishes both familiar and exotic. Some drew on childhood memories and family secrets, while others took a global approach and tried their hands at new dishes. what the group made Âť

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When the cooks had finished, platters were laid out, colorful as a quilt. After the happy clamor of cooking died down, a reverential silence followed as the guests contemplated the meal: a dinner made better for its diversity, for its juxtaposition of gourmet and nostalgic, for its familiarity and ingenuity— a truly contemporary stone soup.

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STONE SOUP


Looking to recreate your own Stone Soup dinner party? A smart idea is to stock up on proteins, vegetables, and herbs that are all in season. If it grows together, it likely goes together. Click to view complete grocery list Âť

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40

HIGH SPIRITS


ROCK

S T E A DY by K AT E B E R N O T

The star of a great margarita isn’t fussy preparation; it’s the tang of fresh citrus and the delicious lick of a salt rim. That’s why, summer after summer, this cocktail is king. To keep your recipe fresh, try coating the lip of the glass with flavored salts in place of the regular kind. It adds a twist to the end of each sip, whether you’re craving spice, citrus, or herbal flavors. Sure, you can find these blends at specialty grocery stores, but they’re just as easy to make at home. Pulse grated lime and lemon zest in a blender with kosher salt or sea salt for an added citrus pop. Combine equal parts salt and roasted, grated Szechuan peppers for a bit of lingering heat. Or, if your herb garden is in bloom, toss the salt with your freshest picked leaves. Whichever garnishes you choose, remember the 2-1-1-1 ratio for margaritas: Two parts tequila to one part each lime juice and triple sec, plus one whole day to enjoy the drinks.

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THE SIM P L E L I F E b y S A R A M O U LT O N

Celebrity TV chef and cookbook author Sara Moulton shares her memoir of escaping to Laurel Farm, her family’s treasured haven tucked away in rural Massachusetts.

Stephen Hamilton captures her story and recipes through images from his own great escapes.

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THE SIMPLE LIFE


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My parents bought a farmhouse with a barn in northeast Massachusetts when I was seven. Built in 1726, it has beams on the ceiling and six fireplaces, (including a huge one in the living room with a big hook for hanging pots, and a baking oven). The house and barn are surrounded on all sides by fields and then forest.

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THE SIMPLE LIFE


We have almost a hundred acres, although

My folks own it with my aunt and uncle.

a significant chunk of a back forest has

Each couple had three kids, all of the kids

been taken over by beavers. There is a

got married and most of them had kids.

pond in the middle of one of the fields

Now we don’t fit there at one time without

and a stream running through much of

setting up sleeping tents on the back lawn,

the forest. It is like a wildlife preserve.

which we refer to as the wedding lawn

It is very, very quiet.

because many of us got married there.

We have almost a hundred acres, although a significant chunk of a back forest has been taken over by beavers.

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Every summer since my daughter Ruthie was four, my little family—me, the husband and two kids—go up for a week in late August, just the four of us.

I look forward to it all year. But it takes

the subway into a beautiful forest. That

lettuces, broccoli, tomatoes (big and

awhile to get adjusted. We are not used to

is how we feel after a day or two. My kids

cherry), chiles, squashes, and herbs. The

the country and its silence, or its animal

(now 25 and 21) like to play tennis on our

row of raspberry bushes has already shed

sounds. The frogs wake us up at night. We

beaten up court and Ping-Pong in the barn.

its crop before we get there, but usually

worry about the ax murderers breaking in.

My husband checks out all the yard sales

the wild blueberries are ripening during

It doesn’t help that there is a ghost. Old

and flea markets, scouring for Christmas

our stay. And we can supplement from a

farmer Heywood’s brother was murdered

music for his annual Christmas DVD. Me,

farm stand down the road that not only

in the barn in the late 1930s by two young

I read books and take long rigorous walks

has fresh corn every day (August is the best

thugs from a nearby town looking for

and, oddly enough, focus on making

time for corn), but also sells other fruits,

money. Sometimes we think we hear him.

new recipes.

vegetables and locally raised lamb, pork

But finally, we get into a routine and relax.

It helps that we usually have a good-size

There is a framed photo by the front door

vegetable garden in the backyard. Everyone

in the kitchen, a New Yorker cartoon that

gets together and plants on Memorial

depicts a business man coming up from

Day weekend. There are always assorted

and beef.

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THE SIMPLE LIFE


mexican-style street corn ( makes 4 servings )

4 ears corn, husks removed, 1/3 cup mayonnaise, 1/4 cup fresh herbs such as cilantro, oregano, basil, thyme or parsley, or a mixture, 1/2 garlic clove, minced, 1/4 pound very cold Cheddar cheese

Click to view complete recipe Âť

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slow-roasted spiced baby back ribs (makes 6 servings) 6 pounds baby back ribs,¼ cup sweet or hot paprika, 2 tablespoons kosher salt ½ cup firmly packed dark brown sugar, ¼ cup chili powder, 5 to 6 garlic cloves, minced, 2 tablespoons ground cumin, 1 tablespoon dry mustard, 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper or more to taste, 4 cups your favorite store-bought barbecue sauce

Click to view complete recipe »

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THE SIMPLE LIFE


The town center boasts two churches, a town green complete with bandstand for Wednesday night concerts, and a rundown old general store that sells penny candy, hardware, wine, a few staples, and tucked in the back, a butcher shop and deli run by Pat and Linda. Pat makes a large variety of excellent sausages. Sometimes when we are lucky, we get there just as he is finishing his homemade kielbasa and he will give us a warm piece right out of the smoker.

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The most important part of the

The light at that time of day, especially

day for me is from 6:00 to 7:00

wedding lawn, back field and pond

when we all go out and sit behind the house next to the flower

in August, is magical. We can see the from this vantage point. Sometimes there is a great blue heron hanging out by the water hunting frogs. We put in

garden, drink a glass of wine or

a stone fountain two years ago for my

gin and tonic and hang out.

soothing sound track.

50

THE SIMPLE LIFE

parent’s anniversary which provides a


sparkling watermelon lemonade ( makes 6 drinks )

4 cups cubed fresh watermelon (seeds removed), 5 to 6 tablespoons superfine sugar or to taste, 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice, seltzer, well chilled, Fresh mint or herb sprigs for garnish

Click to view complete recipe Âť

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dill pickle cucumber slices ( makes 1 1/3 cups )

One 5 to 6 inch piece cucumber, 1/4 red onion, sliced thin, 2 tablespoons fresh dill leaves or 1 teaspoon dried, 2 tablespoons cider vinegar, 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, 4 large romaine lettuce leaves

Click to view complete recipe Âť

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THE SIMPLE LIFE


I prep dinner from 5:30 to 6:00, and then the kids join me after cocktail hour to finish making the dishes. We eat at the kitchen table, a wooden picnic table covered with a colorful

“Fried” Catfish Sandwich ( makes 4 servings )

plastic tablecloth and cloth napkins. I insist on lighting candles although I don’t think anyone

8 slices bacon - optional, 2 plum tomatoes, Kosher salt, ¾ c mayon-

else cares. We make simple fare, eat it with

naise, ¼ c fresh basil leaves, ½ teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest,

pleasure, and talk about the day just past and

Freshly ground black pepper, 4 slices firm white bread, ¼ c Wondra

the one to come. Occasionally I manage to

or unbleached all-purpose flour, 1 large egg , Four 4 oz catfish fil-

drag everyone out to the back field to look at

lets, ¼ c extra virgin olive oil, 8 slices rustic bread

the stars. Then we go to bed and try not to be

4 large romaine lettuce leaves

distracted by the things in nature that go bump in the night.

Click to view complete recipe »

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HOW WE

DID IT

Deconstructing a shot from Stephen Hamilton’s The Restaurant Project by JUDITH MARA

favorite dish

Tostada De Pollo with a Tecate Margarita Restaurant

Big Star, Chicago food stylist

Carol Smoler prop stylist

Tom Hamilton

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HOW WE DID IT


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early S U M M E R 2 0 1 2

Who's Hungry? Magazine | Early Summer 2012 | No 2  

Blending the worlds of food and photography, the magazine features travel stories and recipes from top food writers, as well as styling tips...

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