Win Tailgating Season With These Chef-Inspired Recipes

Win Tailgating Season With These Chef-Inspired Recipes

Let's face it!

Tailgating is not done the same way your father and grandpa used to do it back in their day. Modern tailgating is more than just grilling cheap burgers and cracking a few beers open behind the trunk of your neighbor's pickup truck.

Now, it's about who can throw the most elaborate pre-game celebration with gourmet food options and trendy food stations.

The most extreme example of fancy tailgates would probably have to be Michael Mina's 49ers Tailgate Experience, but we are not all James Beard Award-winning chefs with stadium restaurants, are we?

Lucky for you The Melting Pot's corporate chef, Jason Miller, shared with Foodable four booze-infused fondue recipes that are sure to crown you as the King or Queen of Tailgates this football season. Remember, winter is coming and you still have until February to show off your skills at your next pre-game celebration. Why not do it with a warm beer or liquor-infused cheese fondue?

Check out the delicious recipes, below. Don't be afraid to get creative!

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What Does 'Quality Ingredients' Mean? 3 Things to Consider

What Does 'Quality Ingredients' Mean? 3 Things to Consider

By Jim Berman, Foodable Industry Expert

What does it mean when to use quality ingredients? Restaurants and brands toss the phrase everywhere on their menus and websites, but does that mean we buy the absolute best of everything? If not, why not? Quality is as subjective as flavor.

Being open about quality in terms of a marketing device is much like listening to explicit music with your grandmother in the same room — uncomfortable, but quite relieving when it is a shared experience. I guess. In other words, are you buying the best or are you saying that you buy the best? Either you don’t know, or you don’t want to admit to perpetrating a crime against ingredients.

Quality isn’t just throwing money at the most expensive ingredients. That doesn’t make them the best for your business. Throw money at a problem and now you have two problems. So, how do we keep our commitment to quality intact? Here are three things to consider.

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Are Millennials Changing Culinary Culture for the Better?

Are Millennials Changing Culinary Culture for the Better?

After 10 years in this industry, there was a part of me that was proud to realize that I had become hard as coffin nails. I was as the industry had made me.

I had also become quick: quick witted, nimble in close quarters, and fleet of foot. I could think my way out of any problem and figure out a workaround to any surprise.

I had earned my bones.

I had also closed down my heart and flushed compassion down the toilet. Both had become liabilities to successfully accomplishing the mission. If someone’s issue or problem didn’t directly affect the objective, it had no place in my kitchen or in my mind. I needed to be focused, anything else — sick kids, the death of a loved one, or someone else’s addiction — didn’t matter to me. It wasn’t a complete day until someone cried, and it would never, ever be me.

Working backwards against the clock had become a finely-honed skill. Anything that negatively influenced that timeline had to be discarded, ignored, or forgotten.

Twenty years on, despite a stainless steel heart, late at night, the “hour of doubt” would come upon me. Trying to medicate my adrenaline high, I would sometimes consider the Faustian bargain I had made for my culinary success. I was okay giving up being a regular “citizen” for the life of a culinary pirate. I was a “kitchen dawg,” but was compassion, consideration, or empathy an equitable price to be paid for the intense, instant gratification of the ‘grind’?

It had to be, right?

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In-House Pickling: Why Bringing This Program Into Your Kitchen Is Worth It

In-House Pickling: Why Bringing This Program Into Your Kitchen Is Worth It

By Brian Murphy, Foodable Industry Expert

Food preservation is nothing new, much like the concept of “farm-to-table.” Popularity, trends, and a shift in the food system have pushed these ideas back into the spotlight, and for good reason — flavor. Chefs embracing and making use of the freshest ingredients at the height of the season opens up possibilities. Pickling is a way to use a rather ordinary item and turn it into something extraordinarily delicious.

Make It More Authentic

The notion of a more authentic cuisine continues to grow significantly within market. It’s exciting for guests who are constantly seeking out the more obscure, the most delicious, or rare items. Millennials especially will go out of their way to get something authentic and will try to be one of the first to indulge or be in-the-know. An establishment that is boasting about crafting their own pickles, whether as a feature item or accompaniment, acts as one with a bit more “cred.” Doing so puts the establishment in a position where it can brag about the depth of their from-scratch kitchen and making use of what the market or seasons will bear.

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Compassion in the Kitchen: Why Culinary Culture Must Change

Compassion in the Kitchen: Why Culinary Culture Must Change

By Adam M Lamb, Foodable Industry Expert

While Anthony Bourdain has gone on record arguing for the rightness, the necessity of hazing in his book “Kitchen Confidential,” the crueler and harshest antics used in some kitchens no longer have a place in modern culinary professionalism. We need to attract more prospective employees, not scare them off into other industries because of the established Culinary Bro Code. There are already enough reasons to choose from to do something else for a living.

Women have not had an easy time integrating into the hyper-masculine world of the professional culinary kitchen. Ask any woman working in the business today and she’ll relate as many horror stories as you have time, or the stomach, to listen to about coming up in our current culinary career culture. A recent Thrillist article recounted such tales, such as one from an anonymous sous chef who remembered a chef who grabbed girls by their hair buns and yanked their heads back, and who attached a carrot at the end of her station and called her “The Little Donkey.”

Along with this type of abuse is the disturbing fact that still, in 2016, along with unequal professional recognition, women are paid less than men for similar work. According to Glassdoor, female chefs make 28.3 percent less in base pay than their male colleagues. That's the second-highest "adjusted" percentage among the careers included in the study.

I learned early, the value of female co-workers. In my very first Executive Chef position, I was paired up with a woman as my sous chef. Lori Walker was an amazing assistant for me and helped me get my feet under me as a first-time chef. Thanks mostly to her partnership, I wouldn’t have lasted a month.

She, and many other women that I have had the pleasure to work with, have been the hardest working culinarians on staff — coming in on their days off, even when sick, and they were the hardest-working people in the room, primarily because they had to be. They could not be seen as weak, needy, or quick to tire. The “bros” in the room were waiting in the wings, ready to shame them right out of their whites. The Culinary Bro Code demanded it of them, or they would quickly be, outside looking in. Such was the price many of these women paid.

One might argue that as bad as all this may sound, it has improved, and one might be right. Just not fast enough, by this writer’s estimation

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