To help in my quest for new recipes, I ordered Cooking Light and Martha Stewart Living through my niece and nephew's magazine drive. Both showed up just in time to help me chart a course for food exploration and new recipes in 2010. In addition, my mother renewed the Cooks Illustrated subscription I had let lapse.
Besides new recipes, there were some totally inspiring and hunger pang inducing articles. It had been quite some time since I'd picked up a Cooking Light, so I really was not expecting to want to book a ticket to Quebec City after reading an article about the city's storied food culture.
Artisanal cheeses, the discovery of Jerusalem artichokes, North American foods with a European flair, and poutine. Oh, do I want some poutine.
Most interesting was the story of Les Fromages de L'Isle d'Orleans. Considered America's first cheese and made on a tiny island just outside Quebec City, government regulations prohibiting unpasteurized milk halted production 40 years ago and only recently has it been made with scientific twists on the old recipe.
The other story I just ate up was about Black Dinah Chocolatiers, featured in this month's Martha Stewart.
Husband and wife pull up their West Coast stakes and move to a tiny island in Maine's Penobscot bay (I'm sensing a theme here, no?). He's a computer geek and she's a chef. To supplement their income, they started a chocolate business with a cafe attached to their house.
Most inspiring? The farm market collection, featuring products made within 50 miles of Isle Au Haut. Blueberry black pepper, rhubarb, apple, strawberry balsamic and chevre & nib just to name a few.
Photos from here, here and here.