Supply Chain

A Day in the Life of a Barbecue Pitboss

By • March 29, 2012 • 4 Comments

A Day in the Life of a Barbecue Pitboss

We're celebrating the artisans, writers, makers, and more who make up the diverse and inspiring world of food.

Today: Supply Chain follows Rodney Muirhead into the kitchen of Podnah's Pit in Portland, Oregon for some first-class barbecue.

Since its opening in 2006, Rodney Muirhead has been the pitboss as Podnah's Pit in Portland, Oregon. What does that mean aside from the fact that he has the coolest job title ever? It means that Rodney and his pit crew are up at 5:00am every morning to light oak logs in the firebox and start smoking the 500 pounds of meat that they serve each day, everything from brisket to pulled pork to ribs.

Don't let its location in the Pacific Northwest fool you: Podnah's Pit serves serious Texas barbecue. The restaurant is even named for Rodney's grandfather's nickname -- "Howdy, partner" equals "Howdy, podnah" in Texan. And along with slow-smoked meat you can expect an array of Southern fixings: cornbread, collard greens, and even migas.

We love the integrity, dedication, and just plain hard work that the Podnah's staff brings to their restaurant. Want to see for yourself? Last Saturday, Rodney recorded a typical day at the Podnah's for us -- it's the next best thing to one of their sliced brisket sandwiches. (Or a smoked prime rib cheesesteak.)

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Sundry Topics

Kickstarter and Food

By • March 28, 2012 • 0 Comments

Kickstarter and Food

Have you checked out our Kickstarter curated page? For the uninitiated: Kickstarter is an easy way for creative projects to get funding through small donations from a large number of people -- and each donation comes with fantastic rewards set by the project's owners. We have two fantastic projects for you today -- consider supporting them!

The first is Birds, bars & boxes...in artisan chocolate from Robyn Dochterman of St. Croix, Wisconsin. Her chocolate shop, the St. Croix Chocolate Company, is commissioning beautiful chocolate molds from artist Laura McCaul. The three-dimensional chocolate art, made with organic TCHO chocolate from San Francisco, will be packaged in gorgeous handmade boxes that can be reused to package gifts or store jewelry. The company's committment to fair trade, supporting local agriculture (their cream and milk come from a farm just 10 miles away from the shop!), and seasonal ingredients is inspiriing.

Next up we have This Must Be the Place, an art space in Brooklyn located above the restaurant Marlow and Sons. Run by the same crowd who run Diner Journal, the project aims to better equip their event space to host classes, art exhibits, performances, dancing, eating, drinking, artist residencies, and more.

Are there any Kickstarter projects you've supported lately? Let us know and we'll add them to our curated page!

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Small Batch

How to Make Mozzarella

By • March 28, 2012 • 73 Comments

How to Make Mozzarella

We've asked you to get together and host mozzarella-making parties the weekend of April 20th (find a party near you here) -- and now, our Associate Editor Kristy Mucci shows you how it's done! Read on below for her step-by-step tutorial (and recipe!) for making mozzarella at home.

I am by no means a cheesemonger. Before we talked about writing this post, I'd only ever made ricotta. So, being thorough, I decided to make mozzarella enough times to feel comfortable sharing a method. I've been practicing in the FOOD52 kitchen, and in my own kitchen, for months (I like to be really thorough). For a while I thought I could make it happen witout rennet, but I tested my theory and know better now. You need rennet. You also need citric acid powder. Luckily, those things are easy to locate. If you can find non-homogenized milk, I suggest you use that -- and please, stick to whole milk. The rest is really easy and fun, and if I can do it, anyone can. 

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Behind the Scenes

Lunch at the Office

By • March 26, 2012 • 12 Comments

Lunch at the Office

It's finally lunchtime here in the office and we're ready to dig in. I have a slice of the pumpernickel loaf I baked yesterday (I snuck a bite before the photo was taken) plus a salad of black and white beans, diced carrots, kale stems, and radishes. Our associate editor Kristy has a kale salad with avocado and kabocha sqash, and a sandwich of porchetta and whole-grain mustard.

What's in your lunchbox?

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