The Food Guy, Steven Keith Eating his way through the state, plate by plate

‘Pig of the Month’ Discount for Food Guy Fans!

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After I shared my love of the awesome Pig of the Month Club in Wednesday’s Daily Mail, the good folks there contacted me with a special offer we can all take advantage of in time for Easter …

Readers who order online at www.pigofthemonth.com can receive 15% off their purchases by using the coupon code FEEDME, plus all packages are 25% off now through the weekend with the code LOVEBACON.

And what’s the only thing better than good pork? Less-expensive good pork.

If you missed my “Ode to Swine,” you can check it out here.

Stout Mac & Cheese. Yes, Yes & Please!

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With just two more days until “The Wearin’, Eatin’ and Drinkin’ o’ the Green” (also known as St. Patrick’s Day) I’m still mining cookbooks, magazines and ye’ ol’ internet for some tasty Irish recipes.
Stout Mac & Cheese
Stout Mac & Cheese

Yesterday, I shared one for a Green Apple, Cheesy Guinness Melt.

Today, it’s Stout Mac & Cheese, a recipe that comes from – wait for it – Cooking Light?

Yep.

By using reduced-fat cheese and turkey sausage, it’s a decadent dish that won’t cause as much cosmetic damage as it could.

So get to cookin’, eatin’ and enjoyin’ this tasty o’ dish!

 

STOUT MAC & CHEESE

7 ounces uncooked rotini pasta
2 teaspoons canola oil
4 ounces hot turkey Italian sausage
3/4 cup diced onion
2 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup Guinness Stout beer
1/3 cup whole milk
2.5 ounces reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
2 ounces light processed cheese, shredded (such as Velveeta Light)
Cooking spray

1. Preheat oven to 450°.

2. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain.

3. While pasta cooks, heat a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add oil; swirl to coat. Remove casing from sausage. Add sausage and onion to pan; cook 6 minutes, stirring to crumble sausage. Add flour, pepper, and salt; cook 1 minute, stirring frequently. Stir in beer; bring to a boil.

4. Cook 3 minutes or until thick and bubbly, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add milk and cheeses, stirring until smooth. Stir in pasta. Divide mixture evenly among 4 ceramic gratin dishes coated with cooking spray. Bake at 450° for 10 minutes or until lightly browned.

Recipe courtesy Cooking Light

A Green Apple, Cheesy Guinness Melt? Yes Please!

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Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day this weekend, my friends at the U.S. Apple Association sent along a crazy-good sounding recipe to help mark the occasion.

Green Apple Guinness Melt

Not only are the flavors Irish inspired, but the recipe also features a little GREEN, thanks to the apples, and GUINNESS, so you can eat and toast at the same time.

Slainte!

The rich, rustic “Green Apple Guinness Melt” combines sweet and tangy Granny Smith apples, savory cheddar cheese and creamy stout beer, all buried in a butter-filled baguette.

Doesn’t that sound amazing? And if you’re still not convinced, take a look at that photo below. Count me in!

Green Apple Guinness Melt

1 baguette, cut into thirds, then each piece cut lengthwise in half (6 pieces total)
2 1/2 tablespoons salted butter
2 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
6 ounces dry stout, such as Guinness
14 ounces extra-sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1 tablespoon whole grain mustard
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
Kosher or sea salt to taste
Freshly ground pepper
1 Granny Smith apple, unpeeled, cored and cut crosswise into 1/8-inch thick slices

  1. Turn broiler to high and set a rack about 6 inches from the heating element. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, shiny side up. Arrange the baguette pieces, cut side down, on the sheet and broil until lightly toasted, about 2 minutes. Remove from oven, turn the pieces over, and use your fingers to scoop out enough bread to make a channel in the center of each piece. Set baguette pieces aside, still on the tray.
  2. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat and cook until bubbling and golden brown. Add flour and whisk it in until the mixture is smooth and chestnut brown. Add the beer and whisk until smooth, then reduce heat to medium and continue stirring until thickened and smooth. Reduce heat to low and add cheese, mustard and Worcestershire, stirring continuously until melted and smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Spoon a generous amount of cheese sauce into each baguette piece. Lay a few overlapping apple slices over the cheese, then transfer to the oven and broil until browned and bubbling, 2 to 4 minutes. Serve hot.

Makes 4 to 6 servings

The Best Part of Wakin’ Up? Sing it Loud!

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Want to go down in the history books as one of the greatest TV commercial jingle composers of all time?

Here’s your chance …

From Johnny Cash’s soulful spin to the upbeat melody of Rascal Flatts, many musicians have put their spin on the catchy little “The Best Part of Wakin’ Up” jingle for Folgers. Composed by Leslie Pearl, the original jingle debuted in 1984 and has since been used in countless advertisements in country, R&B, a cappella and gospel versions.

Now the company is searching for the next great rendition.

Folgers and award-winning musician and songwriter Gavin DeGraw invite anyone with an affinity for music to submit their own version of the iconic jingle – “The Best Part of Wakin’ Up is Folgers in Your Cup” – by March 6, 2013, for a chance to win $25,000.

Individuals and groups of six or fewer are encouraged to submit original video entries through March 6 on www.folgers.com/jingle.Entries will be judged based on creativity/originality, musical performance and adherence to the creative assignment. The top 10 finalists will have their entries posted online for a nationwide vote from May 15 through June 19, 2013.

Go, Charleston, go!

Vote Now for the Best Fish Sandwich in Town!

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Hey Charleston peeps …

Lent season is upon us and we’re looking for the best fish sandwiches in town!

Does your local hangout do it better than the rest? And if so, what makes it so — the fish itself, the bun, the sauce? Inquiring minds want to know.

Vote here for your favorite place for fish: http://bit.ly/WHdIHJ. Then follow the Charleston Daily Mail and this Food Guy blog for all of the tasty results.

Bridgeport Woman Wins Super Bowl Recipe Contest

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Just in time for tonight’s Super Bowl, a Bridgeport woman has beat out hundreds of entrants in the “Sporty Snack Showdown” at justapinch.com, a recipe and social network for home cooks. And she didn’t just win bragging rights, but also a $4,000 home entertainment system.

Jeanette Nelson won for her Island Teriyaki Tiki Chicken Bites, little rolls stuffed with Asian-flavored chicken, green onions, red peppers and carrots flavored with pineapple preserves, garlic, sesame oil, hot chili sauce and more.

“Who can resist this fabulous appetizer? I know I can’t — especially when you dip them into a sweet and sour sauce,” Jeanette says. “I guarantee if you put these in front of a crowd they will be gone in seconds!”

Nelson is a proud mom of three girls (ages 3, 7 and 11) and says Asian food is a hit in her family.

“This delicious appetizer recipe captures those flavors you find at your favorite Chinese restaurant.”

You can find the winning recipe, along with photos and notes about the dish, here.

 

 

Pick Up Some Soup … and Keep the Beautiful Bowl

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What’s better than buying a nice big bowl of homemade soup to enjoy on Super Bowl Sunday – or any cold winter’s day, for that matter?

Getting to keep the bowl, too.

And not just any bowl, but a beautiful ceramic one handcrafted by West Virginia artisans whose work is often on display at Tamarack.

This Saturday, just a day before the big game, Unity of Kanawha Valley will hold a “Souper Bowl Saturday” soup and bowl sale at the church, on the corner of Bridge and Myrtle roads in South Hills.

Homemade soups, breads and tasty baked goods will be sold, along with the opportunity to purchase ceramic soup bowls created by regional potters. The Tamarack Foundation worked with artists from St. Albans to Hinton to donate bowls for this weekend’s sale.

You can purchase just the soup or the soup in a decorative bowl. Potters will also have order forms on hand in case you’d like to purchase additional matching bowls or a complete set.

Get some soup to eat in, purchase a bowl to take out or stock up for the game.

Sounds souper!

The sale will run from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. this Saturday, with proceeds going to the church. For more information, call 304-345-0021.

West Virginia Gin Comes Up Short at ‘Food Oscars’

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You may have read earlier this month that an up-and-coming West Virginia distillery was nominated as a national finalist in the prestigious Good Food Awards.

Considered the Oscars of the industry, the Good Food Awards reviewed nearly 1,400 entries before selecting Lewisburg’s Smooth Ambler Greenbrier Gin as one of only 184 finalists from 31 states to make the cut for this year’s ceremony.

The awards were handed out last week and, alas, Smooth Ambler didn’t win. But as they say at the Oscars, it really is an honor just to be nominated among such great company.

Smooth Ambler’s gin was nominated based on product quality (as judged through blind tastings) and their approach to environmental and social responsibility. It was West Virginia’s only finalist, although 14 honorees come from a Washington, D.C.-anchored “food shed” that covers West Virginia, Virginia, Pennsylvania and Maryland.

Although I’m not a gin aficionado by any means, I have sampled Smooth Ambler and have to say it’s pretty special. Earning a score of 91 (and comments like “it really sings” and “it’s perfect”) by American Craft Spirits, Greenbrier Gin blends its juniper base with citrus and black-pepper spice to create a crisp, smooth and luxurious finish.

To learn more, visit www.smoothambler.com and www.goodfoodawards.org.

Huntington Restaurant Offering Inaugural Meal

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If you happened to catch the presidential inauguration on TV this week, you may have wondered just exactly what all of those dignitaries were noshing on when they sat down for an elegant luncheon after the ceremony.

Well, wonder no more.

Savannah’s Restaurant in Huntington (a fantastic place, by the way!) is celebrating the 57th Inauguration of the President of the United States this weekend by recreating the meal served that day. The three-course menu includes …

  • First course: Lobster Tail with New England Chowder Sauce
  • Second course: Grilled Bison with Red Potato Horseradish Cake
  • Third course: Apple Pie with Ice Cream, Cheese and Honey

The menu is available as a three-course prix fixe meal or individual courses may be ordered a la carte. Wine recommendations for each course also will be included on the special menu, which is available tonight and tomorrow night only, Jan. 25-26.

For more information or reservations, call 304-529-0919 or visit www.savannahsmenu.com. The restaurant is located at 1208 Sixth Ave. in Huntington.

It’s National Pie Day. Bake, Slice and Celebrate!

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Wednesday (Jan. 23) is National Pie Day – WOOT! – so here are a few fun facts from various sources to mark the occasion …

  • Nearly one out of five (19%) of Americans prefer apple pie, followed by pumpkin (13%), pecan (12%), banana cream (10%) and cherry (9%).
  • Pie isn’t just for dessert anymore! Thirty-five percent of Americans say they’ve had pies for breakfast. Pies as lunch (66%) and midnight snacks (59%) also have a popular following.
  • When asked what dessert Americans would prefer a friend or family member bring to their house for a holiday dinner, pie was the winner with 29%. Cake (17%) and cookies (15%) rounded out the top three.
  • The expression “as American as apple pie” traces back to 14th century England. The Pilgrims brought their pie-making skills, along with      apple seeds, to America. As the popularity of apple pie spread throughout the nation, the phrase grew to symbolize American prosperity.
  • The term “upper crust” refers to early America when the economy was difficult and supplies were hard to come by. Only affluent households could afford ingredients for both the upper and lower crusts of a pie, thus the term “upper crust” was born.

Now, go make one. 🙂