In between setting my fantasy football roster and purchasing baby moccasins online this morning, I came across a recall announcement from 4C Foods Corp. Since this is a brand that I’ve bought before and because it affects consumers in the Midwest — where many of my friends and family reside — I figured I should post it.
4C is recalling its 6-oz. glass jars of “Grated Cheese HomeStyle Parmesan” with best by dates of July 21, 2016 and July 22, 2016 due to possible contamination with salmonella, the Food and Drug Administration said. The product was distributed in late July in stores in Iowa, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wisconsin.
Luckily, no illnesses have been reported to date. Still, better to err on the side of caution. If you have one of these jars, throw it away and call 4C at 1-718-272-7800 ext. 176 for a refund.
4C’s recall comes hot on the heels of one last week by Kraft. The cheese giant voluntarily recalled 7,691 cases of Kraft American Singles Pasteurized Prepared Cheese Product, blaming a supplier for failing to store an ingredient at the correct temperature, possibly leading to premature spoilage and/or food borne illness. Click here for more info on the varieties of Singles and package codes involved in that recall.
I worked in an open newsroom for eight years. In the movies, it’s really glamorous. There are reporters running around waving sheafs of paper and yelling about scoops as phones ring off the hook. Yes, that does occasionally happen — the 2010 Flash Crash was pretty darn exciting , as are election nights — but for the most part, there are dozens of reporters simply typing away in silence.
Until, that is, someone microwaves fish. Then there’s a ripple effect of complaining about quick-cooking smelly foods in a communal space. (You’d be amazed by how far the odor of reheated salmon or popcorn can travel.) Yet, I love popcorn so deeply that getting a late afternoon fix sometimes actually seemed worth braving the dirty looks/comments of my co-workers.
Yet, while satisfying in a pinch, a bag of microwaved kernels just can’t hold a candle to the Italian parmesan popcorn I make in the privacy of my own home (where there’s no one to complain about the smell except for Dave.) And his only objection is when I’ve made a batch and didn’t save any for him.
Here’s what you’ll need to make a bowl for two using a popcorn maker:
(I’m partial to Urban Accents Premium White Gold Popcorn. I’ve probably tried a dozen different brands and have found that this one results in the biggest and fluffiest kernels.)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons melted butter
- 1 heaping tablespoon of grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 teaspoon dry Italian salad dressing mix
(Note: This is not for people who are trying to limit their sodium intake. It’s crazy salty. But also soooooo good.)
Now you’re about three minutes away from snack nirvana.
Once the kernels have popped, drizzle them with the melted butter, Parmesan and Italian seasoning. Toss a few times and try not to slap everyone else’s hands away from the bowl.
When I was in Chicago with my mother last week, my friend Megan was kind enough to have us over for dinner. Between raising two young children, getting her home ready for a sale and freelance writing, I have no idea how she found time to not only whip up a gourmet meal but even serve it with cloth napkins (something that happens in my home only on Christmas.)
I was especially impressed by the elegant salad she made, sporting homemade dressing and a crispy parmesan topper. It was restaurant-quality presentation in what she swears was under 10 minutes.
The recipe, which is from Martha Stewart and which you can find here, involves simply baking a thin layer of parmesan cheese and letting it cool before topping the salad.
Megan’s tip: the parmesan should stay in the oven until it’s crispy enough to break with the tap of a fork.
Dining at Il Gabbiano in Miami last week felt like eating in a bygone era. Waiters were clad in white jackets and the appetizer special (a giant langoustine stuffed into a massive crab claw) was advertised tableside.
While it’s becoming more and more rare to receive a basket of complimentary bread (or even a single roll) in New York these days, Il Gabbiano doesn’t skimp on the pre-dinner warm-up.
Not only was a bountiful basket of assorted warm carbs delivered the second that we sat down, but two pieces of garlicky tomato bruschetta also arrived. Even better, the waiter chiseled out hunks of parmesan (shown above) and presented them to us alongside a pool of aged balsamic vinegar the consistency of syrup.
The parmesan was a perfect way to kick off a wonderful Italian meal. Although the cheese is usually relegated to a garnish in my household, I’m definitely going to serve it as a pre-appetizer the next time I’m trying to class up a homemade Italian dinner.
Il Gabbiano, 335 S Biscayne Blvd., Miami, 305-373-0063
After a party, particularly around the holidays, I inevitably end up with multiple baggies of shredded cheese. Sometimes I’m smart and label them with the type of cheese and the date so I make sure to use them before they go bad. Most of the time, though, I shove them label-less into the fridge where they are pushed to the back and forgotten about until they turn green.
Last weekend, Dave rescued one such baggie holding a mere 1/4 cup of shredded parmesan and upped the ante on an already-delicious breakfast. Since the picture turned out so pretty, I thought I’d share his process. (I say “process” instead of “recipe” because it really involves grabbing whatever we had hanging around in the fridge.)
He toasted a generous slice of sourdough bread, topped it with ripe avocado and layered on a scrambled egg. He then added a hearty sprinkle of the parmesan (though any shredded cheese would be tasty) and some leftover herbs. A handful of grape tomatoes got tossed around in a pan and voila — a quick and healthy meal.