What makes ingredients like oats, farro, and almond flour extraordinary? Fresh Pickings takes a closer look at everyday ingredients and how you can incorporate them into your recipes in new and creative ways with help from HRN's circle of hosts and friends.
Episode 8: Almond Flour
As many Americans look to cut back on gluten, alternatives like almond flour are really having a moment. Made with 100 percent sweet almonds, it’s the perfect alternative to traditional white flours but lends a unique flavor that can take desserts to the next level. On this episode of Fresh Pickings, we looking at one small nut’s journey through the mill, and how almond flour can transform everything you thought you knew about baking.
We start at the source: the almond. The almond is native to an area stretching from the northern Indian subcontinent westwards to Syria, Israel, and Turkey. It was spread by humans in ancient times along the shores of the Mediterranean into northern Africa and southern Europe and more recently transported to other parts of the world, notably California.
Host Kat Johnson is joined by Cynthia Malaran (also known as DJ Cherishtheluv), the host of Wedding Cake, who shares her childhood memories of discovering that the almond isn't actually a nut, but a fruit. She bit into what she thought was an apple, but discovered a sour taste and large seed.
Cynthia also shares some health info about the notoriously healthy almond: they provide a good amount of manganese and vitamin E, as well as a healthy serving of monounsaturated fats. Not only do they have a healthy boost of protein, they are also very low in carbohydrates and inherently gluten free. When they are ground into a flour they add moistness and a rich nutty taste to baked goods.
To wrap things up, Kat speaks to Eli Sussman, host of The Line. He shares his recipe for Almond Flourless Cake, which he serves at his Williamsburg restaurant, Samesa.
Episode 7: Nutritional Yeast
If someone offered you a "bag of nooch," or a "sprinkle of hippie dust," would you take it? If you’re a pizza-loving vegan, you probably would! This episode of Fresh Pickings explores the world of nutritional yeast (and reveals its various street names).
Nutritional yeast is the deactivated (or dead) form of Saccharomyces Cerevisiae – the mother of all yeast strains. Dave Arnold of Cooking Issues joins Kat to teach her more about the science behind "brewer's yeast" – how it's grown, cultured (deactivated) to create nutritional yeast, and then packaged for our consumption.
If you've ever tried nutritional yeast before, you know that it packs a umami punch. For that reason, it's particularly popular among vegetarians and vegans as a way to add a savory seasoning to dishes. Kat welcomes back VLGL (Vegan Low Glycemic Load) blogger, Elizabeth Taylor, to share her recipe for a Chickpea Flour Omelette with Chipotle-Grilled Tomato.
Episode 6: Flaxseed Meal
Flax is an amazingly versatile food and fiber crop. In fact, it’s one of the oldest fiber crops in the world, known to have been cultivated in ancient Egypt and China. If it seems like flax is good for everything, that’s because it is. Its Latin name is *usitatissimum*, which means “most useful.”
On this episode, Kat talks to Harry Rosenblum, host of Feast YR Ears here on Heritage Radio Network, about all things flaxseed. Did you know: Flaxseed sprouts are edible, with a slightly spicy flavor. In northern India, flaxseed, called tisi or alsi, is traditionally roasted, powdered, and eaten with boiled rice, a little water, and a little salt, and used in Savji curries. The seed of the plant is edible, but grinding it into meal unlocks its health benefits and makes it more readily digested. Flaxseed meal can be added to bread, pancakes, muffins, bars, cookies, and all sorts of other recipes to provide a nice nutty flavor and a nutritional punch.
To learn more about how we can incorporate flaxseed into recipes, Kat is joined by her friend and VLGL blogger, Elizabeth Taylor. Elizbeth's VLGL diet is a whole-foods, plant-based way of cooking and eating that emphasizes non-starchy vegetables, whole fruits, nuts, legumes, seeds, and certain whole grains.
Episode 5: Muesli
Are you confused about the difference between muesli and granola? On this episode of Fresh Pickings, we’re going to help you sort out that difference by doing a deep dive into the world of muesli.
Host Kat Johnson welcomes Linda Pelaccio, host of A Taste of the Past, to talk about the inventor of muesli: Swiss physician and nutritional pioneer, Maximilian Bircher-Benner. His original recipe consisted of oat flakes, raw apples, condensed milk, nuts, and lemon juice and was based on the diet of alpine shepherds, who Dr. Bircher-Benner saw as being particularly vital and healthy. He prescribed muesli it to his patients and saw overwhelming improvements in their health. Dr. Bircher-Benner determined that much of the sickness experienced by his patients could be alleviated with increased exercise and a more nutritious diet.
Then, instead of our usual recipe segment, Michael Harlan Turkell, host of The Food Seen, brings us a special interview with Bob Moore himself. Bob shares the origin story of his famous muesli.
There are lots of ways to incorporate this whole grain cereal into your diet, but if you're trying it for the first time, start with the basic instructions for hot, cold, and Swiss-style on the back of each back of Bob's Red Mill muesli package.
Episode 4: Masa Harina
How is masa harina made? What is it used for? To learn more about the science behind masa (which involves the process of nixtamalization) Kat interviews Dave Arnold, co-host of Cooking Issues. Masa and cornmeal are made from the sameprimary ingredient, but they are processed quite differently and have different outcomes when cooked. After corn is softened by lime water, some of the oil is broken down into emulsifying agents, and corn proteins are bonded to each other in the process. That's what makes it possible to form a dough from masa without introducing a bonding agent, such as the gluten in flour.
Episode 3: Paleo Baking Flour
What is "paleo?" The Paleolithic diet is a nutritional program based on foods available to humans living in that era. In 2012, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics described paleo as one of the "latest trends" in diets. And in 2013 it was Google's most searched weight-loss method.
Of the estimated 80 billion people who have ever lived out a life span on Earth, more than 90% of them have foraged for all of their food. In other words, foraging and paleo go hand-in-hand. To learn more about it, Kat is joined by Cathy Erway, host of Eat Your Words, who has discovered you can forage right here in Brooklyn. Tune in to hear what plants Cathy is able to find in Prospect Park and how she uses them in her cooking.
Next, Kat talks to Harry Rosenblum, host of Feast Yr Ears, about the paleo diet, paleo foods, and paleo flours. While he doesn't follow the diet himself (he loves coffee too much), Harry recently had Samir Patel on his show to talk about it. Samir is a science journalist, photographer, and editor based in Brooklyn. He was the Deputy Editor at Archaeology, and has a lot to say about how early humans ate.
Then, Krista Margies, a baker from Charlotte, North Carolina, shares a paleo-approved recipe with us. Hint: it's her riff on chocolate lava cake and you're going to want to make it as soon as you finish listening to this episode!
For the full recipe, go to http://heritageradionetwork.org/podcast/paleo-baking-flour
Customer ReviewsSee All
Sometimes too scripted
I appreciate podcasts that rein in the banter, but some of the “interviews” here are so obviously scripted that the show sounds too stiff. Interesting show, even though it’s heavily branded.