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Topic: Nancy Leson
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November 12, 2013 at 3:51 PM
Seattle Times restaurant critic Providence Cicero, food writer Nancy Leson and food editor Kathleen Triesch Saul chatted with readers Wednesday about restaurants we all love. Read the questions and comments below.
This is to whet your appetite for Thursday night’s big Seattle Public Library event at Town Hall, where Nancy chats it up with a panel of some of Seattle’s longtime chefs and restaurateurs about what makes their places great. On the panel: Holly Smith of Cafe Juanita, John Sundstrom of Lark, Hajime Sato of Mashiko, Daisley Gordon of Cafe Campagne and Marché and Rick Yoder of Wild Ginger. This event is free and open to the public starting at 7 p.m. Doors open at 6:15. More info here.
November 12, 2013 at 1:06 PM
What’s hot? Oh, let’s not! Instead, join Seattle Times food writer Nancy Leson Thursday, Nov. 14 at Town Hall when the Seattle Times, in partnership with the Seattle Public Library, hosts a panel of chefs and restaurateurs who’ve been around long enough to know that being great trumps being new.
How do they keep it real? How do they keep their customers coming back for more? What makes them hot under the collar when it comes to the public — and the media’s — insatiable appetite for the latest hot-new-thing? Nancy sits down with John Sundstrom of Lark, Mashiko’s Hajime Sato, Café Juanita’s Holly Smith, Daisley Gordon of Cafe Campagne and Marché and Wild Ginger’s Rick Yoder.
The conversation starts at 7 p.m., and promises to be frank, smart and a little bit smarty-pants. It’s free, there will be prizes, and the audience will have a chance to ask some questions, too. Doors open at 6:15, seats in the Great Hall (1119 Eighth Ave., Seattle) are first come, first served. More at www.townhallseattle.org.
August 19, 2013 at 11:19 AM
I adore figs. But (so far, anyway) I can’t grow them. Good thing, then, that I’ve befriended Seattle’s fig king, Bill Farhat, a retired Arabic professor who’s been growing figs in his backyard in Seattle’s Lake City neighborhood for decades. I met him though his daughter, Sally, and when she told me her dad grew an astonishing amount of figs and I had to see it to believe it, she wasn’t kidding.
Bill was raised in Lebanon, where he grew up eating figs as if they were candy. (Aren’t they?) He shared a lot of information with me about growing up in the Middle East, about raising a family in the Pacific Northwest and about growing sweet figs (among other fruits, including loquats and green Persian plums) in the terraced yard he’s carefully built and tended over the years. He also told me about this great website, Figs 4 Fun, offering a wider world of info and insight for those of you who want to grow your own.
Perhaps you read about Bill in my recent Pacific Northwest profile. (If not, what are you waiting for?) But I also wanted to show you what he showed me when we took a tour of his garden in June, before his figs were ripe enough to eat. Here’s a video trio show-and-tell.
August 2, 2013 at 11:00 AM
I’ve written plenty about restaurant service.
A dozen years ago, when I was still writing restaurant criticism — and fielding frantic calls from restaurateurs crying “Good help is hard to find!” — I penned this very personal column. In 2004, I discussed what happens when service goes south. Readers responded in droves (read some of what they had to say). In 2005 I offered the Ten Commandments of Restaurant Behavior: common courtesies that should help make dining out a more civilized endeavor for restaurant patrons and the folks who serve them (they stand, today). When a reader wrote in praise of a particular waiter in 2007, complaining about shared-tipping practices. I jumped into the tipping pool to help explain where tip-dollars end up and heard back from some very vocal folks on both sides of the tipping-for-service fence. Today, in my cover story for Weekend Plus, I gave a shout-out to a handful of the many restaurant folks who always make my day. Among them? The two guys above. I invite you to join in, sharing the names — and locations — of your favorite “service providers.”
July 22, 2013 at 11:09 AM
I was living la vida Gidget in a surfing town in Puerto Rico the first time I took part in a pig roast. There on the Rincon beach, a local dude dug a trough in the sand and cooked a pig in the covered pit. There was rum. And cerveza. And a roar from the crowd that drowned out the crashing waves when — 10 hours after its burial — el puerco was devoured on the spot.
So begins my latest Taste column, in which I tell the tale of a neighborhood pig roast. The one where, in a backyard bacchanal disguised as a birthday party, I join forces with family and friends to procure, brine, roast and eat a whole pig. Read the story here. And if you’ve ever wondered what it takes to pull-off a neighborhood pig roast, I’ve got the step-by-step visuals.
July 11, 2013 at 10:17 AM
I don’t have to do much to get my husband all misty-eyed. Say “Door County” and away he goes, waxing nostalgic about boyhood summers spent on Baileys Harbor in Door County, Wisconsin. There, far from the urban center that was his Chicago home, he fished Lake Michigan with his favorite aunts, picked the county’s famous sour Montmorency cherries and slept, sunburned and freckle-faced, on a cot in a screened-in porch.
Which is why, 16 years ago, he insisted we plant a pair of dwarf cherry trees in our backyard: edible nostalgia.
As I explained to my radio partner Dick Stein this week on Food for Thought (listen in here), this year I bore the brunt of the picking and pitting, though Mac took to the task for the last of them and — necessity being the mother of invention — shared with me for the first time his mother’s secret for pitting cherries: use a hairpin!
When he asked if I had a bobby pin, I was skeptical, but when I rustled up the only hairpin I had, he showed me how it’s done. “No way!” I said, pulling out my iPhone camera so he could show you: (more…)
June 19, 2013 at 11:10 AM
In the latest installment of my Taste column, I shared my simple recipe for grilled quail, which you may have eaten in a restaurant but never considered making at home. Big mistake! I grill quail year-round. It’s great dinner-party fare and if you’re concerned that guests won’t go for it (I promise, they will), do as I often do and serve the wee ones as part of a mixed grill (six quail, six lamb chops, six prawns — you get my drift, right?).
As I mentioned in the column, you can go the easy route and buy quail that’s already been prepped, or buy it frozen (for about $10 a six-pack) at an Asian supermarket and prep it yourself. Now, before you balk at the thought of handling a bitty bird (or a dozen), I assure you: there’s nothing to it, especially if you’ve got a good pair of kitchen shears. If you don’t, run don’t walk and buy yourself a pair. Just remember, once you’ve got them in hand, listen to your mother: Don’t run with scissors! And do listen to me, as I show you the ropes.
May 20, 2013 at 11:42 AM
Good morning, fans of all things food. Beginning this week, you’ll notice that All You Can Eat is expanding to bring you more news, tips and talk about our favorite subject. Now, the entire Seattle Times “food group” will be serving you. Rebekah Denn will continue to be our host, setting the communal table and keeping the conversation going. And Nancy Leson, who began this blog in 2008, will be back, while keeping her regular gig in Sunday’s Pacific NW magazine (see her latest story, plus cool video, on Pasteria Lucchese).
Joining them will be their pal, Providence Cicero, dishing on the dining-out scene she covers so well as our restaurant critic, but also on cooking, entertaining at home, and whatever else she feels like sharing. Happy Hour honcho Tan Vinh is quite happy to bring another round of drinks, filling us in on the booze-and-beer beat he covers each Friday in Weekend Plus.
And just for kicks, fellow editor Brian Thomas Gallagher and I will take a seat here from time to time to offer a few appetizers, side dishes and desserts of our own.
Enjoy the meal, and please, join the discussion.
— Kathleen Triesch Saul, Seattle Times food editor
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