Toque Magazine got its start in Lambertville, NJ, a town near Princeton. I had the good fortune to meet Larry Frazer through his wife, Sharyn Murray, at the Princeton Community Television and Digital Media Center. Sharyn saw me working with Ila Couch to get our “What’s for Dinner, America?” video series going and said I should talk to her husband. “He’s a chef who just left Princeton University to teach culinary arts at Eden,” she said. “It might make a good story for you.”
Larry Frazer and Sharyn Murray met on the Dinky, a very short NJ Transit rail link that runs from Princeton Junction to Princeton. They ended up getting married in one of its cars. (Photo © George Vogel)
Larry was high on his new calling, teaching autistic teens basic (and not so basic) culinary skills as Eden Institute’s newest director. We emailed each other and decided that a diary series of his new adventures would be cool to run in Toque.
And they were. The five articles he wrote about his funny, touching and awe-inspiring adventures with would-be teenage chefs were some of our best read features.
Larry’s last installment (Part 5) shares his excitement about the astonishing progress of his students and a note about Eden’s shiny new location. At the very end, he reveals that he has advanced cancer.
Last April, Larry died. He left a yawning hole in many, many people’s lives. To try and fill that hole we wanted to share some of our memories of this amazing, humble person. A man with incredible gifts who had the courage to sacrifice a secure job to follow his dream. Larry was a talented chef who lived to see the emerging talents in his students who had so many life challenges. It took nine months to pull it together but here we are. We’ll hear from “the two Robs:” Robert Harbison, executive chef at Princeton University, and Rob Kimmel, Eden’s new director for the culinary program. We also speak to Sharyn, his wife, who recalls their memorable wedding eight years ago.
As one of the country’s top chefs, Michael Mina has had his share of conventional TV appearances–Top Chef, Hell’s Kitchen, the Cooking Channel’s Food(ography).
Chef Michael Mina and CEO Tanya Melillo launched an online cooking class for those wanting to step it up in the home kitchen.
But in a move that reflects food lovers’ growing preference for online and mobile content, Mina has shrugged off traditional broadcasting and instead is taking his show on the web.
Last weekend, Mina and co-founder Tanya Melillo launched CookTasteEat, a daily serving of video content featuring Mina’s dishes as well as featured recipes and tricks of the trade from guest chefs. It’s a well-considered effort, not only to satisfy the insatiable appetite for online cooking ideas and tips but also as a vehicle for bringing high-level cuisine to an audience who may not have professional culinary training but are more than up for the challenge.
Thirty-nine year-old Hudson Valley, New York restaurateur and chef Marcus Guiliano is not content to simply craft your next meal. No–for him, making sure all restaurants serve healthy choices is a calling. Color him idealistic, but he is making a difference, both at his own restaurant, Aroma Thyme Bistro and around the country.
He exposes chefs and food companies who mislead or even deceive consumers, blowing some loud whistles on his website Truth in Menu, his YouTube channel and whenever you push a microphone in front of him. And not only is he passionate about eating well, he puts certified organic and sustainable cooking and eating into practice.
Chef Marcus Giuliano wants full disclosure of what is in our food and where it comes from. Photo © Jamie Giuliano
We recently asked Chef Guiliano a few questions about his MO, how he gets to the bottom of food deception and why he cares so much.
TOQUE: You’re a chef with a mission. You must have had a field day when all the news came out about pink slime. Were you aware it was so ubiquitous?
GUILIANO: I’ve seen a lot of stuff that goes on in beef packing houses. It didn’t surprise me they used more than the animal that they should have and put ammonia in.
What did surprise me was how massively it was being used – in schools, government programs. [At one moment] you didn’t hear about it and then [all of a sudden] everybody was using it.
I am not sure when it was developed, but the developmental stage, being mass produced on a big [scale] [seemed to have] happened relatively quickly.