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Day TWO of the 2006 Independent Food Festival & Awards


Day One | Day Two | Day Three | Day Four | Day Five






Latin America's Best

The Best Tasting Smoked Fish

The Best Things to Stick to your Marshmallow

Chocolate Better Than Morphine

The Best Excuse For Not Making It Yourself Red Raspberry Jam Award

The Best Hamburger You Will Never Have

The Best Sandwich in Saigon

Best Patis

Ice Cream I Wouldn't Hesitate to Beg My Husband to
Drive 2 1/2 Hours out of the City For

Best Reason to Go to the Farmers Market on Sunday Instead of Saturday

Best Wicked Indulgence for $4




Latin America's Best


Juan Deago's Panamanian Cocada

Awarded by: The Cooking Diva




The Best Tasting Smoked Fish


Jahrs Fish Company, Unionville, Michigan

Awarded by: 18th Century Cuisine


The Best Things to Stick to your Marshmallow


Scharffen Berger, Chocolate Covered Cacao Nibs

Awarded by: Candyblog


Chocolate Better Than Morphine


Sahagún Chocolates, Portland, Oregon

Awarded by: Portland Food and Drink


The Best Excuse For Not Making It Yourself Red Raspberry Jam Award


Summerfield Farm's Reduced Sugar Red Raspberry Preserves

Awarded by: Simply Recipes


The Best Hamburger You Will Never Have


Phebe's Hamburger, circa 1977

Awarded by: Knife's Edge 



The Best Sandwich in Saigon


Stallholder at 37 Nguyen Trai street in District 1,
Saigon, Vietnam

Awarded by: noodlepie


Best Patis


BF Patis

Awarded by: Pinoy Cook 


Ice Cream I Wouldn't Hesitate to Beg My Husband to Drive 2 1/2 Hours out of the City For


Kawartha Dairy in Bobcaygeon, Ontario, Canada

Awarded by: The Domestic Goddess


Best Reason to Go to the Farmers Market on Sunday Instead of Saturday


Beignets, Boulette's Larder, Ferry Plaza Market, San Francisco, California

Awarded by: Gastronome


Best Wicked Indulgence for $4


Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookie, Della Fattoria, Ferry Plaza Market, San Francisco, California

Awarded by: World On A Plate










Tastingmenu is focused on superlative restaurant experiences from two perspectives: behind the plate and behind the stove. Tastingmenu is written by Hillel (professional eater) and Dana (up-and-coming professional chef) in Seattle, Washington.

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  Garlic has long been credited with providing and prolonging physical strength and was fed to Egyptian slaves building the giant pyramids. Throughout the centuries, its medicinal claims have included cures for toothaches, consumption, open wounds and evil demons. A member of the lily family, garlic is a cousin to leeks, chives, onions and shallots. The edible bulb or "head" grows beneath the ground. This bulb is made up of sections called cloves, each encased in its own parchmentlike membrane. Today's major garlic suppliers include the United States (mainly California, Texas and Louisiana), France, Spain, Italy and Mexico. There are three major types of garlic available in the United States: the white-skinned, strongly flavored American garlic; the Mexican and Italian garlic, both of which have mauve-colored skins and a somewhat milder flavor; and the Paul Bunyanesque, white-skinned elephant garlic (which is not a true garlic, but a relative of the leek), the most mildly flavored of the three. Depending on the variety, cloves of American, Mexican and Italian garlic can range from 1/2 to 1 1/2 inches in length. Elephant garlic (grown mainly in California) has bulbs the size of a small grapefruit, with huge cloves averaging 1 ounce each. It can be purchased through mail order and in some gourmet markets. Green garlic, available occasionally in specialty produce markets, is young garlic before it begins to form cloves. It resembles a baby leek, with a long green top and white bulb, sometimes tinged with pink. The flavor of a baby plant is much softer than that of mature garlic. Fresh garlic is available year-round. Purchase firm, plump bulbs with dry skins. Avoid heads with soft or shriveled cloves, and those stored in the refrigerated section of the produce department. Store fresh garlic in an open container (away from other foods) in a cool, dark place. Properly stored, unbroken bulbs can be kept up to 8 weeks, though they will begin to dry out toward the end of that time. Once broken from the bulb, individual cloves will keep from 3 to 10 days. Garlic is usually peeled before use in recipes. Among the exceptions are roasted garlic bulbs and the famous dish, "chicken with 40 cloves of garlic," in which unpeeled garlic cloves are baked with chicken in a broth until they become sweet and butter-soft. Crushing, chopping, pressing or pureeing garlic releases more of its essential oils and provides a sharper, more assertive flavor than slicing or leaving it whole. Garlic is readily available in forms other than fresh. Dehydrated garlic flakes (sometimes referred to as instant garlic) are slices or bits of garlic that must be reconstituted before using (unless added to a liquid-based dish, such as soup or stew). When dehydrated garlic flakes are ground, the result is garlic powder. Garlic salt is garlic powder blended with salt and a moisture-absorbing agent. Garlic extract and garlic juice are derived from pressed garlic cloves. Though all of these products are convenient, they're a poor flavor substitute for the less expensive, readily available and easy-to-store fresh garlic. One unfortunate side effect of garlic is that, because its essential oils permeate the lung tissue, it remains with the body long after it's been consumed, affecting breath and even skin odor. Chewing chlorophyll tablets or fresh parsley is helpful but, unfortunately, modern-day science has yet to find the perfect antidote for residual garlic odor.  

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