Chefs

Studio, How Does Your Garden Grow?

Chefs, Cooking, Restaurants By May 4, 2017

Chef Gardener Kathryn Agresto, owner of Native Soil Gardens, tends and oversees the 1,000 square foot garden next to Studio at Montage Laguna. Studio’s talented executive chef, Craig Strong,  is inspired by the garden, creating dishes that are rich tasting, yet light and healthful.  Here’s a shot of Studio’s raised beds. Fruit trees are espaliered against the wall on the…

Zov’s Pastry Chef Shares Secrets to Gorgeous Flow Icing Topped Cut-Out Easter Cookies

Chefs, Cooking, Restaurants By April 14, 2017

Whimsy teams with artistry atop Michelle Bracken’s decorated cutout cookies. Themed to holidays, these impressive treats have become a kind of edible calendar for patrons at Zov’s Bistro and Bakery in Tustin, where Bracken is the longtime executive pastry chef. Valentine’s Day through Christmas, these glamorous goodies represent symbols of the season. For me, my favorites are her Easter cookies:…

Chef Ross Pangilinan Spreads His Wings – Departs Leatherby’s For His Own Mix Mix

Chefs, Cooking, Recipes, Restaurants, Uncategorized By March 31, 2017

Orange Coast Magazine’s restaurant critic Gretchen Kurz just named Mix Mix Kitchen Bar as “Restaurant of the Year.” Vision, talent and guts. That’s what it takes for a chef to leave a much respected restaurant to plunge into the hazardous waters of restaurant ownership.  Count award-winning Chef Ross Pangilinan as one of those brave owners. In December he opened Mix…

My La La Land Escapades

Chefs, Restaurants, Uncategorized By March 31, 2017

When I was attending college in Los Angeles, downtown L.A. was a ghost town after dark or on weekends. Needless to say, that was a long time ago. A recent weekend spent downtown, gave me a new perspective. It was a tease – a little three-day taste of delicious fun and thought-provoking sites. The city bustles with activity fed by…

Babette’s Twist on Cauliflower Soup: Vegan But Fabulous

Chefs, Cooking, Recipes By December 13, 2016

Babette’s Truffled Cauliflower Almond Soup The ingredient list puzzled me. I’ve made hundreds of pureed soups, showcasing everything from asparagus to zucchini, most often including dairy products (cream, yogurt or milk) to achieve lush texture and taste. Cooking with Zach Layton, executive chef-owner of Babette’s in Newport Coast, opened my eyes to a vegan approach. His Truffled Cauliflower Almond Soup…

Easy Chinese-Style Appetizers, Katie Chin Style

Chefs, Cooking, Recipes By September 27, 2016

Chinese tapas, yes! Cookbook author-caterer, Katie Chin, learned how to cook from her Chinese mother. She helped in the kitchen with her late mother, Leeann Chin, an award-winning restaurateur. In 2003, the two starred in a PBS national cooking show “Double Happiness.” I joined her in the Melissa’s Produce kitchen to test out some of her favorite recipes from her…

Cooking Class with Chef Michael Rossi, The Ranch

Chefs, Recipes, Restaurants By September 26, 2016

Award winning executive chef at The Ranch in Anaheim, Michael Rossi, charmed  students with his skill and culinary passion in a recent cooking class. It was the first class taught in the beautiful teaching kitchen on the sixth floor – high above the restaurant. Twenty-four students sipped sparkling wine in this intimate-yet-high tech setting while watching Rossi’s every move. If…