“Skills can be taught. Character you either have or you don't have,” Anthony Bourdain.
Letter from the Publisher
Dear Life Bites Readers,
This month features the amazing Terme di Saturnia Spa and Golf Resort in Tuscany, where exotic spa treatments, Michelin Star menus and healing waters will totally bliss you out. Travel section offers destination news for summer/fall travel, with lots of Airline announcements. We have on the upcoming Emmy Awards in Tinseltown will offer a glimpse of 'what's cookin' in entertainment for September.
Culinary Coup has some wonderful chef and restaurant news, including new restaurant openings and latest food trends for sumer and fall. New products and programs for cruising kids in Kids K page.
Wine events and food festivals are in full swing throughout California and the nation and we have some news for our grape lovers in Sips. See new book updates in BookBites. Cute news and advice in Kids K and Teen Times. Updates on TasteTV Chocolate Salon competition news, local and international food events and more. Super recipes to enjoy at home or inspire you to book a reservation at your favorite restaurant for a summer dinner out. (photo of wine served at Terme di Saturnia - local fine wines).
If you live near the water take advantage of this time...go for a sail boat ride or just enjoy a dinner while watching the waves break. Water is healing and we all need to feel its peace. Try a whale watching cruise in Santa Barbara or go fishing from a pier. My favorite spot in summer is the Boathouse at Hendry's Beach in Santa Barbara, where award winning chef Ron True is designing fantastic new menus for breakfast, lunch and dinner - try the oysters. Visit Health Minded section for great 'feel good' tips to add to your regimen.
Enjoy our coverage of the California Coast Wine Classic - 31st event held along the wine coast and ending in Santa Barbara.
Pray for the victims of terror in Europe. Pray for peace and I hope you all will join me in remembering our soldiers who are fighting in other countries, and pray for their safe return to their families. God bless them, and God bless America in these difficult times; may the spirit of our Nation reign now and forever, and may our citizens here at home find hope and prosperity ahead for their families.
Poached Pears with Chocolate Sauce
Yield: 6 servings
3 cups water
1 1/2 cups sugar
slivered zest from one orange
1 vanilla bean
6 small almost-ripe pears, preferably a firm type like Bosc, Bartlett or Concorde
juice from one orange
1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted in a 300°F. oven until just beginning to color, about 3-5 minutes
3 oz. good quality bittersweet chocolate, cut into small pieces
3/4 cup heavy cream
Combine the water, sugar, orange zest and halved, scraped vanilla bean plus its seeds, in a non-reactive (do not use aluminum or cast iron) pot large enough to accommodate the fruit. Bring to a boil and simmer for a few minutes.
Peel the pears. Gently remove the core from the bottom with a corer or paring knife. Cut a thin slice from the bottom of each, so they stand. Place pears in the pan, stem end up. The liquid should just cover the pears. Top this with a round of parchment or waxed paper (cut to size). Bring to a very gentle simmer and cook for 5-20 minutes, just until the pears are tender when pierced with a small knife. Less ripe pears will take longer, riper ones a shorter time. Remove pears and allow to cool to room temperature.
Add the orange juice to poaching syrup and simmer 15-20 minutes, until reduced by half. Pour over pears. May be refrigerated for up to 5 days at this point.
Make the chocolate sauce by bringing the heavy cream to a simmer in a small pan. Add the chocolate and stir, off the heat, until melted. If made in advance, this sauce will need to be re-warmed slightly for serving.
To serve place one pear in each flat bowl, with a little of the syrup. Spoon some warm chocolate sauce over the pear. Sprinkle with toasted almonds and serve.
About Paulding & Company
Founded by mother-daughter duo Terry and Tracy Paulding, Paulding & Co. is a commercial kitchen and instructional/event space that specializes in creating innovative event ideas for families and corporate entities through public cooking classes and exercises. Located in the heart of the San Francisco Bay area, Paulding & Company inspired Disney/Pixar animators for the Ratatouille film and director Clint Eastwood for several projects. To learn more including a schedule of upcoming classes visit www.pauldingandco.com.
Bonnie Carroll, Publisher/Editor
Rosalie Frances, Contributor, tolifebites.com
Mary Hilton, Content Contributor/Marketing Director
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Mike O’Connell, Photo/Video Director/Contributor
Isabella D'Angelo, Rome Correspondent
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