Indio, CA may be most famous for hosting the Coachella Music and Arts Festival every year, but it is quickly becoming the Tamale capital of the world. Roughly 100,000 people attended this year's Indio Tamale Festival, including Blue Ribbon Hunter's Allison Fishman. The festival was buzzing with Mexican folk dancing, a lively tamale eating competition, and of course an array of eclectic flavored tamales that one could only dream of. Piña Colada tamale anyone?
The real star of the festival was an 80 year-old woman known by everyone in town as "Grandma Lupe". The line of people waiting for Grandma Lupe's tamales seemed to go on for miles and had up to a 3 hour wait! One festivalgoer told us, "You need to taste these tamales to know you will wait two and a half to three hours for these tamales." Grandma Lupe only sells her tamales 2 days a year, and both days are at the Indio Tamale Festival.
Twenty tamale cooks went head-to-head competing for the top tamale. The winner was Jackalope
Blog Posts by Blue Ribbon Hunter
Want some chili?During these chilly months, it is the perfect time to make and eat delicious comfort foods. That's why in this episode of Blue Ribbon Hunter we traveled to Mesquite, Nevada in search of the king of all comfort foods...chili. The stakes were high at the Mojave Desert Chili Cook-Off as 32 competitors went head-to-head for the best chili. Among those competing were former World Champions and Grand Champions with safely-guarded award winning recipes. But lucky for you, we got them to reveal some of their chili secrets, and even got the full recipe from the winner himself, Mark Haught. Check it out!Read More »from 5 Chili Secrets from the Pros
1) Add a Prune for Gloss: Many competitors confessed that they use a prune (or raisins) to offset bitterness and add a nice gloss to the chili. But be careful, make sure to remove the prunes as soon as they begin to puff or else you will be chasing bits of prune around the pot trying to get them out!
2) It's All About Timing: Add your spices heavily and often. As the chili cooks, the flavors
'Tis the season! In this special holiday edition of Blue Ribbon Hunter, we traveled to Asheville, NC for the National Gingerbread House Competition at the Grove Park Inn. But there was a lot more on display than just gingerbread houses. Works of gingerbread art came in all shapes and sizes, from toy chests, to sleighs, to people! In order to qualify, each creation had to be 100% edible, and 75% gingerbread. Judges walked from exhibit to exhibit with flashlights so that they could look inside each of the houses to see if they were furnished, and even used drills to test that the core of the piece was indeed gingerbread. The winner was Ashley Howard who made a replica of the shoe from the classic nursery rhyme, "There Was An Old Woman Who Lived In A Shoe". The entire boot was made out of one seamless piece of gingerbread, and every room inside the shoe was fully furnished. There was even an edible bubble bath on the top floor! It's no wonder that this is the third time Ashley has won
In this episode, Blue Ribbon Hunter traveled west to the San Diego Wine and Food Festival where the winner received a whopping $50,000.00 grand prize. Our very own Blue Ribbon Hunter host, Allison Fishman, was invited to be one of the grand jury judges and tasted all of the top 16 dishes (some of them twice!). The winning dish was pretty extraordinary, and quite honestly, probably not something you would make at home. Nevertheless, the actual recipe is printed below for those of you who are up for the challenge! The winner was Chef Daniel Barron from Blue Point Coastal Cuisine. The dish is Crispy Laughing Bird shrimp with curry-glazed sous vide pork belly, cauliflower polenta*, and roasted ginger and kaffir lime air.
*The recipe below is the original recipe submitted to the judges by Chef Barron. Please note that some of the recipe below is different than the recipe featured in the video. Although the recipe includes a cauliflower espuma, Chef Barron decided last minute to make a
- Blue Ribbon Hunter | Shine Food – Fri, Nov 11, 2011 2:30 PM EST
This week Blue Ribbon Hunter traveled west for the Arizona Taco Festival where among the many taco related activities ruling the weekend we witness a man eat the world's hottest chili called the Trinidad Scorpion (according to Guinness World Records). But the real highlight was the amazing variety of taco recipes from all the competitors vying for top taco. We focused mainly on fish tacos because they are actually the most searched taco type on Yahoo Search (who knew?) But you learn about all the winners at the festival web site.
The grand champion winner was the crew from Distrito's restaurant and they took the top spot with their version of a fish taco. The exact recipe is a secret, but the components are listed below so you can experiment at home. And if you're ever in Scottsdale, Arizona you could drop in to taste the real deal.
Award-winning tacos at the Arizona Taco Festival
Distrito's Blue Ribbon Tacos
Hamachi (Yellowtail) Breaded plantain crust
Pickled Red Cabbage
On a Corn Tortilla
Apple Festivals happen all over the country this time of year, and one of the largest is in Lafayette, New York. We traveled north in search of a Blue Ribbon worthy pie recipe to share with our viewers, and we did not return empty handed. In fact, we returned with the actual winner. In this episode we have a two time Blue Ribbon winner for her Apple Pie recipe, Pam Brunet, sharing the secrets to her award winning pie in our studio kitchen. Pam's pie is actually a family heirloom recipe handed down to her from her mother-in-law, Sally Brunet, and cherished by their entire family. What a treat for us that they agreed to share it with our viewers.Read More »from Grandma Brunet's Blue Ribbon Apple Pie
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Grandma Brunet's Blue Ribbon Apple Pie
2 cups flour, plus more for rolling dough
1 teaspoon table salt
1 cup shortening
¼ cup ice cold water
¾ cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons flour
6 to 8 medium-tart apples (like Cortland and Empire), peeled, cored, and sliced
- Blue Ribbon Hunter | Shine Food – Sat, Oct 15, 2011 1:23 AM EDT
In this episode, Blue Ribbon Hunter travels to Little Rock, Arkansas for the world's largest Cheese Dip festival. It's clear the locals take this "game time" perennial very seriously, and competition was fierce as contestants stretched the limits on ingredients, spices, and cheese type. And while some entries tickled the taste buds, others did not. For a full proof and delicious Cheese Dip that anyone can make this weekend, try Allison's "Beginner's Luck Cheese Dip."
Beginner's Luck Cheese Dip
Makes about 2 1/2 cups cheese dip
1 pound Velveeta
1 can original Rotel, partially drained
1/3 cup cooked, roughly chopped bacon
1/3 cup sliced green onions (green parts only)
1 shot (two tablespoons) Octoberfest beer or pale ale, or to desired texture
Cut Velveeta into one-inch chunks; combine cheese, tomatoes, and bacon in pot on top of stove over medium-low heat or in a crock pot and cook on high until cheese is melted, stirring occasionally. This should take 2-3 minutes
- Blue Ribbon Hunter | Shine Food – Mon, Oct 3, 2011 3:58 AM EDT
Food festivals are thriving all over America, and in this new video series from Yahoo called "Blue Ribbon Hunter" our host is in pursuit of the winning recipes and secret ingredients that turn ordinary people into culinary folk heroes.
In this first episode we traveled to Buffalo, New York for the Buffalo Hot Wing Festival. Over 20,000 people attended and literally tons of hot wings were served to a very enthusiastic crowd. Our host, Allison Fishman got to face off against the winner of the amateur hot wing category, Adam Fries, and although we didn't beat him in a head to head competition, we did manage to convince him to share his winning recipe!
In Adam's own winning words:
The base of my wing sauce is comprised of the following ingredients:
-Frank's Red Hot Sauce
-Lemon Pepper Salt
First, pour 12oz of Frank's Hot Sauce into a pot on low temperature. Then, add about 1/2 stick of butter (more or less depending on how hot or mild you like your