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Wednesday smorgasbord: food section highlights

Posted by Devra First  December 19, 2007 03:07 PM

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It's the last Wednesday before Christmas, and food sections nationwide are getting in the spirit with holiday recipes and year-end roundups. The Globe is no exception.

Check out T. Susan Chang's annual cookbook roundup, an excellent source of gift ideas for the cooks in your life (or yourself). Here in the office, we're all intrigued by Cecilia Chang's "The Seventh Daughter," a memoir/Chinese cookbook.

Today's section also features a story by Darry Madden about roasting geese. Martha Stone, chef and owner of Martha's Stone Soup at the Tavern in Plymouth, shares her method. Turns out it's not that hard. Story here, recipe here.

In The New York Times, Mark Bittman offers suggestions for "101 Simple Appetizers in 20 Minutes or Less." Take note, holiday party hosts. The recipes are divided into categories such as "on toothpicks," "finger foods," and "you might need a fork." Some are pretty simple, but yes, there are really 101 of them.

The Washington Post's Bonnie Benwick and Joe Yonan (a former Globe food writer) do a gadget roundup, pitting high-tech contraptions that have potential gift appeal against their low-tech alternatives. Guess which wins almost every time.

In the San Francisco Chronicle, Bay Area four-star chefs share their holiday menus. There's a recipe from each, if you want to try making, say, Thomas Keller's herb-roasted sirloin of beef with beurre Colbert.

Also interesting, and for a break from the holiday-related, is a Chronicle story on top chefs (possibly including the Slanted Door's Charles Phan) opening restaurants in upscale housing developments. We're certainly starting to see a version of that here. To mention a few: Barbara Lynch's FP3 complex, Banq in the Penny Savings Bank building, the restaurant that was supposed to be a Tapeo spinoff called Sapeo but now, according to the blog Boston Condos, looks to be a(nother) Jae's Cafe in the Allele condos, the green Macallen Building's healthy Sophia's Cafe, and Tavolo at the Carruth in Dorchester.

Happy reading.

About Dishing

What's cooking in the world of food.


Sheryl Julian, the Globe's Food Editor, writes regularly for the Food section.

Devra First is the Globe's food reporter and restaurant critic. Her reviews appear weekly in the Food section.

Ellen Bhang reviews Cheap Eats restaurants for the Globe and writes about wine.

The Recipe Box Project:

If you want to contribute a recipe to The Recipe Box Project, please write it below. Also tell us where you got it (package box, cookbook, mom, friend -- include the name). We're looking for the kinds of dishes that people grew up on, that were served at family suppers, that tell a story, that are typically New England, or that you brought with you from a far away place to New England. We will print one of the recipes in the Food section once a month. To ask any questions, write to Debra Samuels, who is overseeing this project, at To discuss your recipes, click here.