Fancy Food Show, Part Deux

By Sandy Hu
The latest from Inside Special Fork

Last week, I shared some items that caught my attention at the Fancy Food Show. This week, I’m posting a few recipe acquired there that I look forward to trying.

I met the folks from American Lamb at the show and learned they have a number of informational and recipe brochures, including a beautiful recipe booklet called The Supper Club with Lamb, available at no charge. Since so much of the country has been facing severe weather conditions, I’m featuring a lamb shanks recipe from The Supper Club. With its easy prep, this is a good choice for a weekend meal when you’re holed up indoors. You can keep your kitchen warm and savor scrumptious aromas as the lamb simmers until dinnertime.

The cocktail recipe I’ve chosen is something simple and sophisticated to serve on Super Bowl Sunday as an option to beer or wine. It’s an easy drink using Bruce Cost Ginger Ale to carry the flavor. This ginger ale is pure and crisp, made with fresh ginger and cane sugar. By itself, it’s a great non-alcoholic refreshment option for your party.

And since everyone loves chocolate, here’s a recipe for Chocolate Arbequina Truffles, a recipe by Alice Medrich, the queen of chocolate and America’s pioneer truffle maker. Before the Fancy Food Show, California Olive Ranch had sent me samples of their line of olive oils and I was especially taken with the Arbequina varietal, which is fresh, fruity and buttery. You’ll see how the flavors play out in the truffle recipe below.

Braised Lamb Shanks with White Beans and Tomatoes
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 American Lamb shanks (about 1 pound each), trimmed of visible fat
Salt and pepper
1 medium onion, chopped
2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces
2 celery ribs, sliced crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1-1/2 tablespoons herbs de Provence
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup dry red wine
1-1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes with juice
1 can (15 ounces) white beans (great northern or cannellini), drained and rinsed

In a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add oil. Season lamb with salt and pepper. Add to hot oil and cook, browning each side, about 4 minutes per side (if necessary, cook in batches). Remove shanks to a clean plate and set aside.

Add onion, carrots, celery, tomato paste, herbs de Provence, garlic, 1/4 teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper; cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add wine, scraping up any brown bits on the bottom of the pan.

Add broth, tomatoes and beans; bring mixture to a simmer. Nestle browned lamb shanks into broth mixture; cover and cook until meat is tender and easily falls off the bone, about 1-1/2 to 2-1/2 hours, depending on size of shanks. Place shanks in individual shallow bowls or plates. Divide vegetables and sauce among bowls.

Serve with a simple green salad (arugula or mixed greens dressed with lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil) and whole grain crusty bread.

Makes 4 servings.

Recipe (adapted) and image provided by the American Lamb Board

To get the Braised Lamb Shanks with White Beans and Tomatoes recipe and shopping list on your smartphone (iPhone, BlackBerry, Android device) or PC, click here.

Gin & Ginger
1 ounce fine gin (Hendricks/Bombay Sapphire)
5 ounces Bruce Cost Original Ginger Fresh Ginger Ale
0.5 ounce fresh lemon or lime juice
Lime wedge or slices for garnish

Fill one 8-ounce glass with ice. Combine remaining ingredients and pour over ice.

Makes 1 drink


  • Muddle 6 to 8 cilantro leaves in bottom of glass before making drink
  • Substitute any of the other three ginger ale flavors: Jasmine Tea, Pomegranate with Hibiscus or Passion Fruit with Yellow Ginger (turmeric)

Recipe (adapted) and image provided by Bruce Cost Fresh Ginger, Ginger Ale

To get the Gin & Ginger recipe and shopping list on your smartphone (iPhone, BlackBerry, Android device) or PC, click here.

Chocolate Arbequina Truffles
8 ounces Scharffen Berger 62% Cacao Semisweet Chocolate, chopped
5 ½ tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/3 cup California Olive Ranch Arbequina Extra Virgin Olive Oil
A pinch of fine sea salt
1/4 cup Scharffen Berger Unsweetened Natural Cocoa Powder
1 bright skinned organic or unsprayed orange for zesting (optional), washed

Place chocolate, butter, olive oil and salt in top of a double boiler over barely simmering water. Stir frequently until chocolate is melted and smooth. Pour into a bowl. Cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours (or up to 3 days) to harden.

Remove and let mixture stand at room temperature for 15+ minutes to soften slightly.

Spread cocoa in a shallow pie or cake pan. If desired, use a micro plane zester to grate zest from half of the orange directly over the cocoa. Scrape a tiny scoop or melon baller across the surface of the chocolate mixture to form an irregular round truffle 1” or less in diameter. Place truffle into pie pan. Shake pan to roll the truffle in cocoa. Repeat until all the truffles are shaped and coated.

Remove truffles from the cocoa to a covered container. Refrigerate to store. Remove truffles from the fridge about 10 minutes before serving. Recipe created by Alice Medrich especially for California Olive Ranch.

Makes 35 to 40 truffles

Recipe (adapted) and image provided by California Olive Ranch

To get the Chocolate Arbequina Truffles recipe and shopping list on your smartphone (iPhone, BlackBerry, Android device) or PC, click here.

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Related posts:

  1. A Taste of the Fancy Food Show
  2. A Visit to the Fancy Food Show
  3. At the Winter Fancy Food Show in San Francisco
  4. SPAMMED – the Food Kind!
  5. Chef Tim Luym on Filipino Food

Posted: Jan 27th by Sandy_Hu