5@5 - Chef Tony Conte's Five Tips on Cooking Fall Squash
October 27th, 2010
05:00 PM ET
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5@5 is a daily, food-related list from chefs, writers, political pundits, musicians, actors, and all manner of opinionated people from around the globe.

Despite this week’s climatic tomfoolery, we are indeed in the midst of autumn - and if the fall season means anything for food, it’s squash, and lots of it.

Chef Tony Conte is the executive chef of The Oval Room in Washington, D.C. Conte arrived on the capital city’s dining scene after a stint as executive sous chef at Jean-Georges Vongrichten's critically acclaimed, three-Michelin-starred Jean Georges restaurant in New York City. Since then, he’s been cranking out Mediterranean-influenced modern American cuisine to the District's power players and food lovers alike.

For Conte, the best way to celebrate autumn's most ubiquitous gourd is by squashing it into your usual culinary repertoire - and here's how.

Five Tips on Cooking Fall Squash: Tony Conte

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Filed under: 5@5 • Fall Vegetables • Squash • Think • Vegetables

Blogger Spotlight: Blank Palate
October 27th, 2010
02:30 PM ET
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Every so often, we're highlighting a local or regional blogger we think you ought to know about. We can’t be everywhere at once, so we look to these passionate eaters, cooks and writers to keep us tapped into every facet of the food world. Consider this a way to get to know a blog’s taste buds, because, well, you should.

Who: Marti Buckley Kilpatrick, of Blank Palate
Where: San Sebastián, Spain
Twitter: @martibk

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Filed under: Blog Spotlight • Blogs • Think • Uncategorized

October 27th, 2010
02:10 PM ET
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We asked via iReport for your stories of that person, place, book, restaurant or dish that made you sit up and start to see food as more than just a three times a day chore. You eat every day, and you've got a story to share.

Every so often, we're sharing the most hunger-inducing and heartfelt ones right 'chere.

iReporter ChrisMorrow caught up with Buddy Valastro, better known as TLC's "Cake Boss," on the red carpet of the Women's Conference in Long Beach, California. Turns out, his dear ol’ dad deserves all the credit for his mad baking skills, that he can whip up a mean truffle risotto and that baking isn't for the unscientific.

Watch the video on iReport

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Filed under: Buzz • Food Love • iReport

Lunchtime poll – favorite flavor
October 27th, 2010
12:15 PM ET
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Every stitch of clothing in my suitcase reeks of wood smoke, and I can't say I mind all that much.

I've recently returned from the Southern Foodways Alliance Symposium in Oxford, Mississippi, where the preferred method for transubstantiation from whole animal (namely pigs and goats) and nasty bits (41 cow heads and a choir's worth of tongues) to sumptuous, silken barbecue was a good long linger in a pit full of ashed-over wood and coals. Or, as speaker Dr. James Peacock of the University of North Carolina's Department of Anthropology termed it, "Profane spheres like barbecue - good old boys doing stuff outside...with pigs."

I couldn't get enough of that heady scent and luscious flesh and I'm sure I made a pest of myself at the pit where Chef Kelly English of Memphis's Restaurant Iris was holding vigil over the barbacoa de cabeza all night. But, as the SFA's director John T. Edge told me, "Your Twitter feed, more than anyone else's out there, reflects your love of smoke." He wasn't wrong.

Heck - some ladies love a sugar-slathered Magnolia cupcake. I'm a slave to the smolder.

Box lunch
October 27th, 2010
12:00 PM ET
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Sink your teeth into today's top stories from around the globe.

  • Is candy the angel on your right shoulder, or devil on the left? - New York Times

  • Lardcore!: A new era of cutting-edge Southern chefs. - TIME

  • Don Draper isn't the only  scrumptious part of "Mad Men." - BBC

  • The beginnings of Lithuanian vegetarianism. - The Atlantic

  • Sexy Michael Pollan? Turkey-leg-toting Guy Fieri? Dress like your favorite food personality this Halloween. - CHOW
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Filed under: Box Lunch • News

Breakfast buffet
October 27th, 2010
09:00 AM ET
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While you're frying up some eggs and bacon, we're cooking up something else: a way to celebrate today's food holiday and the most delicious finds on TV.

October 27 is American Beer Day - whatever style is on tap, whether lager, ale, IPA, dark or light, just make sure it's a domestic.

Today, we're one nation under beer so raise a glass and chug-a-lug to the stars and stripes.

Founding Father Benjamin Franklin might have said it best: "Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy."


What's on TV?

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Filed under: Breakfast Buffet • Food Holidays • News

Hanging tough: relief from over-imbibing
October 27th, 2010
02:00 AM ET
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If our commenters are to be believed, a bit of the wacky terbaccy is a sure-fire cure for alcoholic excess. If you hold truck with what Dole's publicists have to say, bananas are a magic bullet for relieving booze-induced misery.

The latter assert that 'nanners battle the after-effects of alcohol consumption. Quoth Dole.com, "Eat bananas if you've overindulged. Scientific evidence suggests hydration, vitamins B6 and C may make hangovers more bearable." An in-depth breakdown goes on to expand upon the fruit's ability to help the over-hung to, "Rehydrate...neutralize free radicals...re-balance...recover."

That's appealing and all, but unless you're in the habit of having a fresh bunch stashed at all times, no way are you slipping on pants and some manner of footwear for anything less than a greasy cheeseburger or the dog that done bit ya the night before.

As we'd mentioned, the kids at the back of the bus tout the benefits of smoking the suffer away.

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