We just finished producing the new TV commercial for the National Fiery Foods & Barbecue Show. It's the first high def spot we've ever done for the show, and so we did a little Monty Python animation for it. Written by Wayne Scheiner, voiced by Wayne and me. The animation was done at :30 Second Street in Albuquerque.
For the fifth year in a row, the 23rd annual National Fiery Foods & Barbecue Show is sold out of exhibitor space! Thanks to all of our loyal customers and the new exhibitors as well. Join us March 4-6 for the show at Sandia Resort and Casino. The bravest of spice fanatics will also have the opportunity to sample El Pinto Scorpion Salsa, a product made with the new hottest chile pepper in the world, the New Mexico Scorpion. The New Mexico Scorpion measures 1.2 million Scoville Heat Units (SHU) according to tests conducted by a third-party laboratory and is currently under consideration by Guinness World Records™ for the “World’s Hottest Chili” record. Myself, Marlin Bensinger, Chemical Engineer; and Jim Duffy, grower, are pursuing the record.
Other exciting happenings at the show include a daily Disc-It grill raffle giveaway. The Disc-It, customized for the Fiery Foods Show with a chile pattern and inscription, has a unique wok shape that makes it ideal for outdoor cooking and grilling. Disc-It’s are manufactured locally in northwest Albuquerque. The show will also be streamed live for the first time ever on Saturday and Sunday. The live stream can be viewed at www.stickam.com during public show hours on March 5 and 6. More show details are here.
Scorpion bedding plants are available from ChilePlants.com, here. Seeds are available in the Store at Refining Fire Chiles, here.
Sandia Resort and Casino is the ideal location for an event like the National Fiery Foods & Barbecue Show. It simply has everything you could want away from home. A spectacular location at the foot of the 10,600 foot-high Sandia Mountains, plus a great view of the city makes for relaxing surroundings. The large rooms offer:
King size or Queen size bed
32" flat screen TV
Separate soaking tub
Oversized walk-in shower
Nicely sized vanity
Complimentary Wireless and Wired Internet access
Gilchrist & Soames bath amenities
To make your reservation at Sandia Resort, call the resort directly at 505-798-3930 or toll-free at 877-272-9199. Make sure you specify that you are with the National Fiery Foods & Barbecue Show to get the special rate. Deluxe Guest Rooms – $165.00/night for one king, $175.00/night for two queens.1 Bdrm Suite – $349.00/night. Rooms are filling up fast, so make your reservation today. For detailed information on Sandia Resort and Casino, go here.
Can’t decide what to make for dinner tonight? Having trouble with your pizza dough technique? Gone are the days of rifling through a library of cookbooks to find the best tiramisu recipe or the perfectly sized meal for a party of one. The next generation of food documentation is here, and it’s streaming online 24/7.
“[E]ven the most well-stocked library cannot undermine the speed and expanse of the Internet. Cooks curious about a particular technique can click through YouTube archives as if turning the pages of a well-thumbed French Laundry cookbook. I know many who do and then pass them around via e-mail and Facebook. Cutline Communications, a consumer technology PR company, has noted that ‘more Americans are turning to YouTube to learn how to prepare all kinds of foods.’”
Embedded videos from sites such as YouTube aren’t the only forms of new cooking media. Throwing its weight into the arena are video games dedicated to the art of cooking. Games like the popular Diner Dash and Iron Chef America: Supreme Cuisine, are teaching tech-savvy cooks how to filet a fish and julienne an onion from the comfort of their game consoles. Smartphones have also joined the fray, and you can now access thousands of recipes from your iPhone or Android mobile device.
From the pepper bandits who made off with more than 26,000 pounds of red peppers in Adra, Spain, to the pepper thief who stole 128 pounds of sweet peppers – valued at $20,000 – from a farm in California, chile peppers are definitely a hot commodity on the black market. But it’s not just humans who can’t help themselves to a bit of pepper pilfering.
Santa Fe, New Mexico residents Jamie Hascall and Dr. Betsy Brown were amazed not only to find a pack rat’s nest under the hood of their Subaru Forrester, but also by the artful display of chile pods the rodent had collected from a nearby chile ristra that had fallen to the ground. It turns out that many different animals love peppers just as much as humans do. Birds, rodents, even dogs will grab the chance to sneak a bite of sweet peppers (even jalapeños) if the opportunity should arise. Because birds lack the kind of receptors on their tongues that cause humans to nibble habaneros carefully, they have a much higher tolerance for the capsaicin that makes peppers hot. In fact, many bird seed producers include dried chile pods and seeds in their seed mixes.
Next time you’re prepping a spicy dish, or adding some fresh hatch chiles to the grill, make sure there are no would-be pepper felons hanging around, waiting for a taste!
Here at Sunbelt Shows, the SuperSite's parent company, we are really looking forward to the coming year because of the new media projects we're launching—a digital magazine and a book publishing division. We owe it all to technological advancements that now make it easier than ever to publish digital products, so we're proud to announce Burn! digital magazine, and digital books through Sunbelt Media, our book division. But Sunbelt Media will also have printed books, because we are not abandoning a very popular medium that's been around for 600 years or so.
In the next year, look for chilehead and BBQ books from me and from other writers on our team, including a facsimile release of the original Callaloo, Calypso & Carnival: The Cuisines of Trinidad & Tobago, first published in 1993; The Hot Sauce Bible: New Testament; and The Vegetarian Chilehead, a large collection of spicy meatless recipes. Hopefully, we will be able to complete Barbecue Apocalypse: Spiced-Up Q with an Attitude, but that might have to wait until 2012. Burn! digital magazine, a subscription-based monthly, will absolutely blow your mind! Read all about it here. And cheers to a wonderful 2011!
You don’t have to be a kid to appreciate something as cool as a BBQ grill made out of an Altoids container. The model pictured is just one of many DIY designs that have been featured all over the Web. This grill is made using an Altoids Sours tin, some sheet metal screws, metal nuts, and a couple of computer fan guards. Once constructed, place a briquette on the lower rack and light it from the bottom. (Other grills have been made using gas and rectangular Altoids tins, too.) The grill heats up quite a bit, and it really can cook mini hamburgers or a full-size hot dog cut into segments. It may not be completely practical, but it sure works as a conversation starter at your next BBQ!
Try your hand at making a mini BBQ grill – check out the Instructables website for an easy-to-follow tutorial.
At this fairly new restaurant, the idea and decor are better than the food. But what a great idea! The name is a pun on that stage encouragement, "Break a leg," so the restaurant (breakfast and lunch only) has a movie theme. Film strips decorate the walls, along with movie posters and TVs showing classic films. When I ate there with Kristina Martinez of the NMSU Library, they were showing "The King and I," which has nice spectacle but doesn't fit the theme. "The Egg and I" (Fred MacMurry, 1947), "Breakfast at Tiffany's," "Humpty Dumpty" (1935), or anything starring Kevin Bacon would have been better to show. "The Amazing Omelette" (2005) would have been perfect because every actor wears pancake makeup! Its menu is a "script" with numerous "acts," like "Egg-Cademy Award Winners," "Scene Stealers," and "Box Office Hits." There are an incredible number of breakfast options with titles like "The Gaffer" (Eggs Florentine) and "The Cinematographer" (Eggs Rellenos). They have a separate Southwest menu, and I had the "Machaca Skillet," but it was quite ordinary pulled beef with a mysterious-looking sauce that was spicy without having much flavor. Even their coffee is just average. That said, their pecan muffins were great. I would rate it an "A" for decor and a "C" for food quality. It's at 201 South Solano in Las Cruces, 575-647-300.
I'm pleased to announce the publication of two new books of mine. The first, 1001 Best Hot & Spicy Recipes, is a compilation assembled from my rather large recipe archives. I went through them and selected what I considered to be the best and most representative recipes from all cultures that like to spice up their foods with chiles. Together with last year's The Complete Chile Pepper Book, these are all you would need to be certified an official chilehead. I submitted a total of 1059 recipes just to be sure there were enough! You can order the book at a discount from Amazon, here.
The next book is one that I'm really proud of. For the second time (after Da Vinci's Kitchen), I abandoned writing about chiles and hot and spicy to try my hand at food history. Because I graduated from the University of Virginia ("Mr. Jefferson's academical village"), I've always been a fan of Thomas Jefferson, and when I started researching his farming and gardening, that led me to George Washington (a better farmer, actually) and Benjamin Franklin, one of the more famous early American food lovers. After three and a half years of research and writing, I completed The Founding Foodies: How Washington, Jefferson, and Franklin Revolutionized American Cuisine. My agent, Scott Mendel, believes that it is one of my best books ever, and I take that a step further: I think it's the best book I've ever written. It's not scheduled for release until November 1, but you can pre-order it at Amazon, here. You will not be disappointed, I promise. Early American cuisine was surprisingly sophisticated, and both Washington and Jefferson grew chile peppers in their gardens. Everyone loved barbecue back in those days--when it was mostly a political event featuring smoked ox or whole hogs, plus, of course, a great amount of beer and whiskey. For more information and some excerpts from the book, see my founding foodies website, here.