Archive: Culinary Contests

Wanted: Your Best Potato Salad

It’s rare of me to make generalizations, but doesn’t everyone in America make potato (pronounced ‘puh-tate-uh” if you’re from Philly) salad for the Fourth of July? Correct me if I’m wrong, but I’ve got a hunch that no matter where you live or how you celebrate Independence Day, there’ll be a bowl of boiled spuds on this weekend’s picnic table. It’s kind of like Thanksgiving stuffing that way; Fourth of July wouldn’t be the same otherwise. From a cook’s point of view, boiled potatoes are like a blank canvas, an open invitation to play with color, texture and creativity. The possibilities are endless-- curry, anchovies, scallions, bacon, capers, yogurt, rosemary, roasted garlic, cider vinegar, hard-boiled eggs -- and yes, even mayonnaise. And as long as you season the spuds with plenty of salt, potato salad is difficult to screw up. As many of you already know, I live a mayo-free...


By Kim ODonnel | July 2, 2009; 07:00 AM ET | Comments (33)

Wanted: Your Candy-Coated Sweet Nothings

(Courtesy of NECCO) Valentine’s Day may be months away, but the folks at New England Confectionary Company (NECCO) are already planning ahead for next year’s Cupid fest. Probably best known for its retro wax-papered roll of pastel candy wafers, NECCO also manufactures Sweethearts, those candy conversation hearts that we’ve come to associate with February 14. In preparation for next year’s lineup of messages (there are a total of 80), NECCO is turning to the public for inspiration in the sweet nothings department. The company has set up a Web site, My Sweethearts, for online submission, until May 31. Eighty new messages will be chosen, 11 of which will win a candy-coated prize. Ten second-prize candy gift baskets (with NECCO treats, of course) are up for grabs, but the grand prize might be one of the quirkiest I’ve come across: A custom run of conversation hearts, printed with messages of...


By Kim ODonnel | May 6, 2009; 07:00 AM ET | Comments (4)

A Trio of Grilled Cheese Contests

If you are the marketing guru who came up with National Grilled Cheese Month, please identify yourself because we’d all like to give you props for designating April the cheesiest month of the year. (Kim O'Donnel) For those who agree with me that grilled cheese is a spiritual phenomenon, you’ve got an opportunity to show off your stuff (and spread the gospel) via three competitions around the country. You’ve got only 24 hours to whip your sandwich into shape for the Grilled Cheese Sandwich Contest sponsored by Artisanal Fromagerie, Bistro and Wine Bar in New York. Join the restaurant’s Facebook Fan page, and post your original recipe and contact info. Not on Facebook? No problem; e-mail the gooey details instead. Regardless, all entries must be received by tomorrow, April 17, at 5 ET. The culinary stylings of 12 semi-finalists will posted on Artisanal’s Facebook page and on The Feed Bag...


By Kim ODonnel | April 16, 2009; 07:30 AM ET | Comments (9)


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