Creative Freedom on American Forces Network Wiesbaden

Being on the radio is similar to cooking.  You have to be quick on your feet and react without hesitation.  My adrenaline high started when I walked into the studio.  Sweat bullets started to pour down my face, as I set my mise en place for the live cooking demonstration.  The observant morning hosts of AFN Radio were Paul Hughes “The Brit” and JR Williams. They cranked up the AC to make me feel comfortable, which was very thoughtful. As a professional cook, you typically sweat from the beginning to the end of your shift.  A nice change indeed.

Being on air, gave me the opportunity to promote my upcoming classes through the USO.  The interview/demonstration went by so quickly.  It reminded me of the time I used to cook on the line and just go into autopilot.  Everything becomes silent, when people talk it’s inaudible, but you’re aware of everything going on around you.  The body doesn’t even have to think about its next move, it just flows naturally.  This state generates focus and elevates precision in a work environment.

The demonstration went as well as could be expected for my first radio appearance.  Though pleased, there are a few things I would change if given another opportunity.   Jackie Toobs was a listener, the station selected to be a taste tester. I could tell she enjoys her food by the way she described the experience in her mouth (automatic cool points). It was really special to be able to showcase a dish from the Philippines.  A traditional Filipino breakfast consists of Longanisa sausage, garlic fried rice and eggs.  This can be accompanied with a tomato and scallion salad seasoned with fish sauce.  Tomato berries were used in place of regular tomatoes.  Theses tiny blueberry sized tomatoes give your mouth a surprise by experiencing the pop of a cherry tomato with every bite.  Longanisa is ground pork seasoned with garlic, annatto powder, soy sauce, vinegar, brown sugar, salt and pepper.  The Spaniards were kind enough to introduce this awesome, sweet, garlicky sausage to Filipino culture.  It’s really easy to make your own sausage mix. Ground pork is a great base and can be made exciting by adding different ingredients such as herbs, maple syrup, aromatics, etc. Making your own sausage mix is worth your while because you control the ingredient.

Longanisa with Sunny Side Egg, Garlic Rice and Tomato Berry, Scallion Salad

Longanisa  Sausage Patty With Sunny Side Egg, Garlic Rice and Tomato Berry, Scallion Salad

Creating the menu for my USO Classes and the AFN demo was quite liberating.  At this point in my life, I feel ecstatic about being able to truly express myself through the food I cook.  There’s a different sense of pride and achievement that comes along with executing my own ideas.

After the segment, I quickly prepared a sweet treat for the awesome AFN Duo.   I toasted Brioche bread and topped it with condensed milk and sliced donut peaches.  The local grocery store, Globus, sells brioche for 2 Euro per loaf.  The bread is liberally slathered with European butter. This type of butter has a higher fat content and less water.  When added to toast, you will experience a silkier feel on the palate.  Condensed milk  is my favorite ingredient.  It is milk that has been reduced and sweetened with the addition of sugar.  If you don’t have a can, I recommend getting one (ahora!).  This sweet, dairy creation can be used to replace syrup for your pancakes adding a sweetness with more depth.  Do it now (Arnold voice)!Paul encourage JR to try the Fancy Toast

Paul encourages JR to try the Fancy Toast

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Toasted Brioche with Stone Fruit 

Serves: 8

Total Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:

1 Brioche Loaf (4 inch slices)

4 T Butter

1/2 cup Condensed Milk

3 Stone Fruit (Peaches, Nectarines, Plums, and Cherries)

Directions:

  • Liberally apply butter to slices of bread.
  • Heat pan on medium low and carefully toast each slice until each side is golden brown and crispy.
  • Transfer toast to a decorative plate or platter and drizzle with condensed milk.  Add slices of stone fruit of choice.

Guten Appetit!

After returning home,  I started lunch for my husband.  Cooking lunch for my husband is the best part of my day.  Summer is even better, because I get to cook lunch for my children.  They enjoyed eating the leftovers from the demo.  My oldest son requested split pea soup for dinner, so we made a trip to the downtown Wiesbaden Market and bought 2 kilograms of fresh snap peas.

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Downtown Wiesbaden Market Every Wednesday and Saturday

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This day was epic.   I had the opportunity to meet awesome people, enjoyed a sunny day at the market and made some scrumptious food.

Catch what happened on the radio with Paul “The Brit” Hughes and JR Williams by clicking here.

Cheers!

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