Wednesday, February 27
And who's better than Giada De Laurentiis--set to give birth to her first child in April--to kick off this fun part of the festival?
Giada showed the kids how to make marscapone cupcakes with strawberry filling. The kids were very cute and expressive throughout the demo and didn't whine when G needed to sit and put her feet up (as she did at the previous night's BubbleQ). This was only 10:30 in the morning, but it was close to 80 degrees, so I'm glad the mom-to-be even agreed to leave the comforts of her air-conditioned hotel room. She still took lots of questions and really seemed to enjoy working with the kids. She's going to be a great mom.
I was also able to catch some of the demo by Ellie Krieger, who was making her first appearance at the festival. She made portobello mushroom caps, lamb "pops", and some kind of interesting orange salad.
I just love Ellie's tips on staying healthy without making everything you eat boring. She advocates for the use of--in moderation--real cheeses and real ingredients whose tastes are simply impossible to replicate. She classifies ingredients into the categories of: always, sometimes and rarely. Shes uses small amounts of those "rarely" ingredients to generate maximum flavor.
Ellie also taught me something new! We already know about the four taste sensations (sweet, salty, sour and bitter), but a fifth taste has been proposed which describes food that is "delicious" and "savory" called umami. It's the kind of food that just melts in your mouth. Her portabello mushroom caps definitely sounded umami-ish.
You're supposed to be able to go to foodnetwork.com/sobe and find the recipes for what the celebs cooked over the weekend, but (not surprisingly) they're not up yet. If you're looking for last year's recipes, then you're in luck (although recipes by Emeril Lagasse and Dave Lieberman are still "coming soon.")
I don't even know what Rachael was cooking. When I made my way to her stage she was taking questions (which was how last year's demo turned out, too.) She looked drenched in sweat in person, but the pictures don't seem to show that.
She was glistening. I hear that she asked to have the large, industrial fans onstage turned off so she could hear the audience's questions better. What a trooper!
At the end of some of the demos, the staff for the festival auctioned off an autographed Kitchenaid mixer for charity. While Giada's reportedly went for $3,600, poor Rachael's only sold for a measly $1,100!
... more to come.