Lifestyle

Delicious and Offbeat Recipes for Labor Day from George Geary @ChefGeary

Posted on August 31st, 2017 by & filed under Books, Everything Miz Meliz, Foodie Reviews

Award-winning chef, best-selling author, and renowned educator George Geary celebrates the weird and wonderful foods sold at state and county fairs with his new book, Fair Foods: The Most Popular and Offbeat Recipes from America’s State and County Fairs (Santa Monica Press/August 2017). This illustrated cookbook features 120 recipes of some of the most interesting and unusual foods served at fairs across the USA.

I was provided a review copy of the book  by George Geary from The Trina Kaye Organization/Lifestyle Public Relations. I was not required or obligated to publish a review. All opinions are my own. Recipes and photos used by permission. See my disclosure to read more about why I post articles like this on my blog.

Summer is Not Over Yet!

The summer season is a time for ice cream, trips to the beach, and . . . state and county fairs! The food selection at state and county fairs is now more diverse and delicious than ever before, ranging from timeless classics like apple pie and corn dogs to new inventions like spicy peanut butter and jelly cheeseburgers and fried Coca-Cola®!

Would you like to try making some of these crazy creations or even some timeless classics at home? Get the book for your pure enjoyment, the photos are amazing and it is a great “show and tell” book, but you can also use it to wow your guests when you follow the recipes.

Would you like to know how to make Deep-Fried Oreos®? Here is how George does it! 

 

 

FAIR FOODS: The Most Popular and Offbeat Recipes from America’s
State and County Fairs
By George Geary
Santa Monica Press/August 2017
Hardcover/$24.95
ISBN-13: 978-1-59580-093-0
“For 28 seasons, I was involved in the largest county fair in the country: the Los Angeles County Fair,” says Geary. “During that time, I watched as the focus of the fair moved from blue ribbons and homemade pie bake-offs to the rows and rows of vendors that now hawk crazy food combinations. Around 1980, ‘classic’ fair food began to evolve from cotton candy and snow cones to bacon-wrapped doughnuts fried in pork belly fat. Not all the food sold at the fair is fried, but the motto of today’s county fair might as well be ‘Just Fry It!’”
Fair Foods highlights not only the new culinary “classics” at state and county fairs, but also longstanding favorites. Some of the recipes in the book include:
  • Maple and Bacon Doughnuts
  • The World’s Gooiest Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Frosting
  • Caramel Kettle Corn
  • Fried Sweet Potato Sticks
  • Ten-Pound Cheese Buns
  • Triple Cheeseburger Doughnuts
  • Cheesecake on a Stick
  • Chocolate-Encased Bacon
  • Deep-Fried Twinkies®
  • Fried Coca-Cola®
  • Deep-Fried Oreos®
  • Bacon-Wrapped Tater Tots with Dill Dipping Sauce
  • Firehouse Chili with Peppers
  • Grilled Pork Chops on a Stick
  • Spicy Peanut Butter and Jelly Cheeseburgers
  • Egg Cream
  • Funnel Cake with Berries
  • Old-Fashioned Salted Pretzels
Each page of Fair Foods is illustrated with photographs of America’s most beloved fair foods, as well as vintage and contemporary images of rides, attractions, and nostalgic ephemera from the fair.
Fair Foods captures the joy and spirit of America’s greatest county fairs. You don’t have to wait for fair season to make these wacky and wonderful foods—now you can enjoy them all year long!
About the Author
George Geary is an award-winning chef, best-selling author, and renowned educator. A former pastry chef for the Walt Disney Company, George is a Certified Culinary Professional, and was recently chosen as the Culinary Educator of the Year by the International Association of Culinary Professionals. He is perhaps best known for creating all the cheesecakes for The Golden Girls and other top-rated television programs.
George has worked as a critic and/or judge for ABC’s The Taste with Anthony Bourdain, The American Baking Competition with Jeff Foxworthy, Hell’s Kitchen, Supermarket Superstar, and many other popular television shows. He also teaches cooking classes aboard Holland America Lines.
For over thirty years, Geary has been a culinary contest judge for such major food manufacturers as Canola Producers, Veg-All, Hormel Foods, the Hershey Company, Knott’s Berry Farm Foods, Ghirardelli Chocolate, Fleischmann’s Yeast, the San Diego Union Tribune, ABC News, and many more. From 1982 to 2010, George was the culinary coordinator of the Los Angeles County Fair.
George is the author of L.A.’s Legendary Restaurants, as well as nine cookbooks including The Cheesecake Bible, The Complete Baking Cookbook, and 125 Best Cheesecake Recipes. He is a frequent guest on national and local television and lives in Los Angeles.

Up for a Challenge?

My son and husband love to try making their favorites from restaurants and events that we attend. One of the things they have enjoyed making is fried pickles. We try them everywhere we have been that serves them. My son thinks he has perfected a recipe of his own. Maybe he will be up for a challenge against Chef Cleary’s recipe! Here it is:
Recipe reprinted from FAIR FOODS: The Most Popular and Offbeat Recipes from America’s State and County Fairs
by George Geary
Santa Monica Press/August 2017
FRIED PICKLES
The hot, crunchy pucker of these fried pickles is like no other flavor you can imagine. Pair with ketchup or mustard.
Serves 4
24 oz. dill pickles, sliced into ¼-inch rounds
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. seasoned salt
2 tsp. garlic powder
½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 ½ tbsp. hot sauce
¾ cup water
canola oil
Special Supplies:
Stockpot
Candy/deep fry thermometer
Paper towels
Drain dill slices on paper towels. Refrigerate until ready to use.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, seasoned salt, garlic powder, and black pepper. Add hot sauce and water to make a runny paste.
In a stockpot, heat 1 ½ inches of canola oil over medium heat to 375°F.
Dip pickle rounds into the batter to coat all sides. If the batter is runny and doesn’t stick to the pickle, add additional flour. If it is too thick, add hot water.
Using a slotted spoon, lower the battered pickles into the hot oil and fry until golden brown, about 30 seconds, turning over halfway through.
Remove from heat and drain on paper towels.
Do you like fried pickles or deep fried oreos?
Have you dared to try these items at the county fair?
Let me know if you try the recipe!

Give Yourself a Break! It’s OK to Say “No, Thank You.”

Posted on December 19th, 2012 by & filed under Be Inspired, Everything Miz Meliz

When asked about her best moment in 2012 artist Liz Crain says, “Finally being able to refuse commissioned work I don’t want to take on without feeling cheesy, awkward, apologetic or wrong. Doing so with ease and a smile, even a soft joke that leaves the requester still on my team. I learned this comes from my solar plexus not my brain with its dutiful, people-pleasing programming.”

That reminds me of a time when I learned to say “no” – looking back, I see how much it changed my life. I am a people pleaser, too. I never wanted to let someone down. Someone recently cancelled on me after committing to do some volunteer work and it was the 2nd time she cancelled on a project that I really needed her for, and I thought “she is someone who has not learned to say, I want to, but I just can’t. Thank you for thinking of me.” It makes such a difference. Especially when you do commit to something and you can do it and you do your absolutely best ‘knock-their-socks-off work and it shows.

Take a look at this video to see a great explanation of this point. . . “Hell Yeah or No!”

http://vimeo.com/25496723

I have been consistently doing that for about ten years now and you know what? I still have friends, I am still asked to work on projects, I still participate in things – and I do it to the best of my capabilities.

This makes me proud.  I have three kids.  I started out wanting to be “fair” and doing the same things with each of them.  Mommy & Me class, soccer team mom, room parent, etc.  My mom used to tell me, “You are doing too much.  Life isn’t fair.  They won’t remember all of the things you do.”  But I was trying to do the right thing.  I was trying to be that Super Mom.  I needed to learn to say “no” to the things I felt obliged to do.  I love it when I have the time and energy to devote to the the things that I can say, “Hell Yeah!” to.time is running out

Peter Bregman, author of 18 Minutes, calls it “flexing his no thanks muscles.”  He actually has a “No Thank You List.”  Peter says, “Of course, the reason we’re saying, “no thanks,” is so that we can say, “yes please,” to the right things. The reason I didn’t join the committee is so I can focus on my book. The reason I passed on the dinner is so I can focus on my family. The reason I didn’t take on that project is so I can focus on this other one instead.”

Now it is the holiday season and the countdown to vacation.  I can’t wait!  I am super excited.  Not as much for the shopping and the parties as much as the relaxation!  I may say “no thank you” to a few things.  I need this time to focus on me and my family.  I plan to take walks with my husband and cook for my boys.  I plan to write and work on projects.

What are you planning to do?  Will you be saying “no thank you” to anything over the next few weeks?

Movie Review: Magic Mike

Posted on June 22nd, 2012 by & filed under Blog Venture, Everything Miz Meliz, Movie Reviews

Cinéphile Miz Meliz Goes to Hollywood

I’m a movie buff (cinephile in French, cinefilo in Spanish) and I love going to the movies all the time, but in the summer, it’s almost required. Maybe it’s the cool dark theaters, the gigantic icy soft drinks, the block busters that open in the Summer months, I don’t know for sure. But I have been enjoying taking in a few flicks recently.

Warner Bros. and Rolling Stone L.A. hyping up Magic Mike

Last night I got to see a pre-screening of the film, Magic Mike. This is a much-anticipated film about male strippers set in Tampa, Florida. I’ve heard that it is loosely based on the background of the star of the film, actor Channing Tatum‘s life.

Magic Mike was written by Reid Carolin, actor, producer, director and screenwriter. He is also the co-founder of Constellation, a service (Facebook Ap) presenting live interactive events built around online streaming movies, where viewers can chat with each other and with special guests.
Check it out:
http://www.constellation.tv/event/magicmike

Reid Carolin, who also wrote the documentary, “Earth Made of Glass,”about Rwandan President Paul Kagame and France’s hidden role in the 1994 Rwandan Genocide, is President of Iron Horse Entertainment, the production company he started with Channing Tatum.

Oscar Award winner Steven Soderbergh, who is known for Traffic, Ocean’s Eleven and its sequels, directed Magic Mike. Although the movie was great as a fun summer flick to be enjoyed with a few girlfriends after happy hour or before going out bar hopping, it was not what I would expect from Soderbergh. If this film makes money, it will be solely because of the mass marketing taking place and the possibility of it becoming a ‘must have’ DVD for all the ladies who love Matthew McConaughey and/or Channing Tatum. In fact, I will be stocking up on said DVD to have on hand to be given as a bridal shower/bachelorette party gift for sure!

Cheers to Magic Mike and Dallas! There’s always room for one more dance!

There were some heavy topics and themes which emerged in the story-line of the film. Choosing one’s life direction and doing whatever it takes to make your dream come true is one of the major themes. Few people strive to be a stripper and to make their living with the dollar bills stuffed in their g-strings. But most everyone has a dream that they hope to achieve in life. We can all relate to the hope of living comfortably and doing meaningful work that we are passionate about. Magic Mike mentors “The Kid,” played by Alex Pettyfer.  Unfortunately for “The Kid,” whenever he gets close to success it eats him up. Drug addiction, extreme living, and the “lifestyle” of stripping, sex, and partying gets in the way of his dreams.

The Kid’s sister, Brooke, played by Cody Horn, copes with her struggles to make ends meet on her own, being supportive of her brother and standing by as he learns his life’s lessons while he repeats some mistakes along the way. It was an interesting twist on the story being that it is her little brother who turns to dancing and gets caught up in the dangerous night life. Of course, Magic Mike, who is talented and sexy beyond belief, is the one who travels the most on his journey and has the most to lose. Brooke is forced to practice some tough love on her brother while resisting her attraction to Mike as he works out his own issues.

Chef Holly and I as we get ready for the Ladies Night Happy Hour at Rolling Stone L.A.’s promo for Magic Mike.

Thanks to Warner Bros. for releasing this movie and for all the fun promotions that I enjoyed on my own vacation from reality this past week! What I want to know is, do all the movies at the AMC Theater in Century City open with live male strippers entertaining the audience? Because if so, it will be worth it to me to drive there for the rest of the summer!

Matthew McConaughey is known for showing off his hot bod in movies like Fool’s Gold and Surfer, Dude.

I would say that the best part of this movie by far was Matthew McConaughey’s performance as Dallas, the owner of Club Xquisite, the Tampa, Florida male strip club. It wasn’t his best acting performance and he played it pretty straight. He might have stolen the show just a bit! I love his acting in films like We are Marshall and The Lincoln Lawyer, but in this particular film all I want is to see him on the screen with his clothes off. It wouldn’t matter to me what he says! Now, if a man said that about a female actress I would most likely protest! I want to be clear that I appreciate Matthew McConaughey’s versatility and ability to share his many gifts. He has an amazing physique. He is a god!

My friend said this about McConaughey in Magic Mike, “It was so wrong, but it was so right. He has the perfect body and I love that it has some meat on it!”

I couldn’t agree more! I enjoyed all the eye candy and fun excerpts of dancing and showing off skin and muscles both on screen and at the pre-screening events. Ladies, it’s going to be one hot summer!

Miz Meliz goes to Hollywood for Magic Mike #mizmeliz http://mizmeliz.com

Miz Meliz goes to Hollywood for Magic Mike!

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Cinéphile Miz Meliz Rating

Category: Chick Flick

Cinematography: C-

Acting: C

Music/Score: C

Directing: C

Oscar Nod? Not likely!

Date Worthy? Please, no!

DVD or Netflix Worthy? Definitely!