Food Matters: See if your recipe has what it takes to feed thousands with nonprofit
Earlier this summer, in a story about Meals on Wheels and More turning 40 this year, I mentioned that the nonprofit would be hosting a contest to find a new recipe to serve its more than 3,400 clients.
Well, now is your chance to achieve local food greatness. The Statesman's Andrea Ball dedicated an entire column earlier this month to the contest, which officially begins today, but I wanted to let you all know about it here.
Inspired by the popularity of the Ron Lantz meatloaf, named for a longtime Meals on Wheels and More supporter, the nonprofit will name the winning dish after its creator.
Consider the following when figuring out what recipe you'd like to submit:
¦ Cost and practicality. When you're a nonprofit cooking for thousands of people, lobster tails or Kobe beef isn't going to happen.
¦ Prep and cook time. If it takes too long, it won't get out the door on time. Hungry people do not like this.
¦ Cooking equipment. Meals on Wheels needs recipes that can be made with industrial-sized equipment, such as 60- to 80-gallon kettles, large steamers and tilt skillets.
¦ Nutrition. No 2,000-calorie belly busters, please. Most of the nonprofit's meals are in the 600- to 700-calorie range, and that usually includes bread and fruit. Examples of entrees include Parmesan chicken, apple-glazed turkey ham and Creole beef.
You have until Sept. 10 to submit a recipe to firstname.lastname@example.org. Snail mail entries should be mailed to Meals on Wheels, Attn: Thad Rosenfeld, 3227 E. Fifth St., Austin TX 78702.
WHAT'S IN YOUR FRIDGE
Can't bear to toss out unused condiments
Sandra Martin's fridge is full of things that she can't bear to throw away.
So many, in fact, that she has her own acronym for them: ICBTTA (I Can't Bear To Throw Away).
Most of the ICBTTA items are condiments, which are starting to squeeze out the real food. She realized she might be a condiment hoarder when her son exclaimed the other day, "The refrigerator is full, but there's nothing to eat!"
"We have an abundance of condiments," she says. "Unlike my sister, who is perfectly fine throwing away a condiment she hasn't used for a month or two, it is anathema for me to do that if there is a chance that I may use it in the foreseeable or not-foreseeable future. Or at least before it grows mold on it."
Among the ICBTTA condiments items in her fridge right now:
Homemade loquat jam and syrup (leftover from the bounty of loquats we had earlier this year), homemade chili paste (for roasted cornish game hens in mole sauce), homemade mint chutney, homemade bourbon butter sauce and a failed mayonnaise that her daughter made ("ICBTTA because of all that olive oil," she writes).
And then there's the condiments that Martin's family actually uses on a somewhat regular basis:
Chili lime butter, preserved lemons, harissa, tamarind paste, anchovy paste, wasabi, hoisin sauce, onion date relish, cherry honey mustard, limoncello, Coco Lopez cream of coconut and some kim chi to serve with the bibimbap that her daughter, a hostess at Uchiko, taught her to make with leftover rice.
But Martin's meloncello might take the cake. "We brought back Liquore di Melone with us from Naples six years ago," she writes. "Because it is so fantastic, we are drinking very very slowly to make it last."
See more in the "What's in your fridge" series at austin360.com/relishaustin. If you'd like to submit your fridge, contact Addie Broyles at email@example.com.
Central Texas rum has citrus, sweet notes
The homegrown Austin spirits scene includes a few varieties of rum. From Treaty Oak's flagship white rum to Pecan Street's pecan-flavored rum, each one offers a flavor profile different from the next. White Hat Rum came out in March, but owner Mike Jakle recently sent a bottle for me to taste and share my thoughts with you.
The spirit is the first one produced by South Congress Distillery, located in Manor. Made primarily from molasses sourced from South Texas, the rum is triple distilled and rested in American Oak barrels for several months to develop body.
Jakle says he drips the aged liquid through activated carbon to strip the color from the final product. As for flavor, it hits the palate with a fair amount of alcohol burn and bright citrus, then mellows and rounds out with moments featuring prominent caramel and vanilla notes. Jakle recommended several recipes from Jeremy Corn, the beverage director at the Monument Cafe Group in Georgetown. Here are the measurements for one:
Dying Under the Texas Sun
1 oz. White Hat Rum
1/2 oz. Fresh Texas Pink Grapefruit Juice
1/4 oz. Rich Simple Syrup
3 oz. Champagne
Add the rum, grapefruit juice, and simple syrup to a highball glass, top with crushed ice, and fill to the brim with Champagne.
— Emma Janzen
Food Blogger Alliance supports Bake A Wish
The Austin Food Blogger Alliance raised $4,500 at its Cupcakes & Cocktails event last month for Bake A Wish, a local nonprofit that provides birthday cakes and baked goods to underserved communities. This includes kids in shelters and foster homes, older people, and people with disabilities. The alliance ended up not declaring a winner in the evening's cupcake contest, in which local bakers came up with cocktail-themed desserts. More on the food bloggers and the event at austinfoodbloggers.org and more on Bake A Wish at bakeawishaustin.org.