Danny Gabriner's blog

21 Course Dinner

A little while ago, someone sent me a Facebook message telling me I should check out a dinner party that his friend Michael was putting on. Always looking out for good food, I sent Michael an email asking him about the dinner; I had no idea what I was getting myself involved in. Michael Cirino often does dinners with a group of dedicated chefs called A Razor, A Shiny Knife.

Gourmet Gastronomer Soup Off

For the second Gourmet Gastronomer Cook Off, we have chosen the theme of soup. Soup is a dish that is often neglected, yet it can be done in so many ways, and is often so delicious. People forget how easy it is to make certain soups, and how well they can be stored for future meals.

This portion of the Soup Off will be conducted like we did for the Mac and Cheese Off. You will vote on whichever soup looks best to you, based on the pictures, descriptions, and anything else that appeals to you about the soup. However, this time you will get 3 votes, so feel free to use different criteria for your selections.

Voting begins February 25th at 5:00PM, and will end February 27th at 5:00pm. Once the 12 original soups are voted down to the final 3, we will host a large Tasting, as that is the most important part of judging a soup. The tasting will be held on March 8th at 3:00PM at 2277 Bryant, San Francisco, California. All are welcome to join.

All participants received 50 Palate Points for entering. Every person voting in the Soup Off will receive 25 Palate Points, just let me know at danny@gourmetgastronomer.com. So please vote on your favorite soups, and feel free to leave comments about what you like about each of them.

Update: Results from the Soup Off

1 2 3 4
Yummy Yummy Soup Danny’s Beef Stock Barley Soup Cream of Mushroom Soup with Bacon Salt Chicken Pesto Tortellini Soup
5 6 7 8
Curry ‘n Cream Soup Eileen’s Chicken Lentil Spinach Roasted Carrot Soup Pureed White Bean and Sage Soup Spicy Tom Kha
9 10 11 img_56611
Cioppino CrockPot Guiness Beef Stew Mexican Chicken Corn Chowder Russian Roots Soup a.k.a Borscht

Stock Talk

I have recently installed a Food Chatroom, and would like to kick it off with a good discussion about stock. There are so many kinds of stock, and many different techniques. Stock can be so easy to make, but there are also a lot of intricacies. If you make stock ahead of time, there is so much you can do with it. So please join us today at 6:00 PM (PST) at http://www.gourmetgastronomer.com/chat to talk, share, learn, and immerse yourself in stock. See you there. Danny


My basic quesadilla recipe is as follows: - Get pan on medium-high heat - grab a tortilla, and butter one side - throw tortilla on pan, while you prep everything else - get your cheddar cheese grated - turn down heat to medium once pan warms up, flip tortilla after a minute or so (once pan is warm, successive tortillas need less time) - flip tortilla again once it is soft - cheese goes on one half of tortilla, and close it - make sure you have your next tortilla buttered - flip quesadilla as needed to melt cheese - La Victoria green taco sauce goes in the middle once its done - at this point i

Gourmet Gastronomer Soup Off

After an extremely successful Mac and Cheese Off, we have decided to host another competition, the Gourmet Gastronomer Soup Off. It's winter, its cold, and it's the perfect time to eat some soup. The format of the Soup Off will be similar to the Mac and Cheese Off, but with a twist. One of the hardest parts of the last contest was that there was no tasting involved. This time, the online vote based on pictures and descriptions will be the first round.


I recently joined the Daring Bakers, and this is the first monthly challenge that I participated in. I had no idea what I was getting myself involved in when I joined the Daring Bakers, but this was definitely fun. We had a basic recipe we had to follow, and it was amazing to see how different everyone made theirs. This month's challenge is brought to us by Karen of Bake My Day and Zorra of 1x umruehren bitte.

Mac and Cheese Off Results

Thanks to everyone who participated in the Mac and Cheese Off. This was way larger, and I got way more involvement from the community, than I expected. We received over 350 votes, with more than 60 comments on the amazing Mac and Cheese entries. Although it was neck and neck for most of the voting period, Michael Stashwick pulled ahead with his Stash’s Mexican Mac and Cheese to beat out Elle's delicious Vermont Mac and Cheese. He will receive the Grand Prize, a Cheese Kit from New England Cheesemaking Supply Company.

In addition to the Grand Prize, all entrants have won 50 Palate Points. You can earn Palate Points by entering in competitions, writing articles, and participating at Gourmet Gastronomer. Palate Points can be used to enter into raffles, or buy prizes.

Thanks again to everyone who made this contest so great. We will definitely have another one next month, so email me at danny@gourmetgastronomer.com if you want to participate. I have also added TipJoy to this site in an effort to make Gourmet Gastronomer sustainable. Please leave a small tip if you enjoyed the contest.

Gourmet Gastronomer Mac and Cheese Off

After weeks of hard work, the first ever Gourmet Gastronomer Mac and Cheese Off has now officially started. This is the most diverse collection of Mac and Cheeses that I have ever seen. Low budget to gourmet, classic to new age, swiss, Velveeta, gouda, Mexican, Italian, Greek and more. I knew there were many ways to make Mac and Cheese, but I never thought I would get 9 entries that were so radically different from each other.

Please vote on the Mac and Cheese entry that you find most delicious. Look at the pictures, look at the ingredients, look at the stories, and try to figure out which one you would enjoy most. The winner of the contest will get the Grand Prize, which is a Cheese Making Kit from the New England Cheesemaking Supply Company.

Make sure you check out the bios of all the contestants.

Mac and Cheese Off Results
mac-cheese gnocchi-with-three-cheese-sauce trufflemac-n-cheese Sam'sree Macaroni and Cheese
Rustic Italian Mac N’ Cheese by Artepicure Potato Gnocchi Mac and Cheese Champagne Truffle Mac and Cheese with Pancetta and Wild Mushrooms Sam’s Greek Macaroni and Cheese
Bacon and Swiss Mac and Cheese Vermont Mac and Cheese Stash’s Mexican Mac and Cheese Poor Man's Mac and Cheese
Mac ‘n Cheese Off - Aussie Style

Mac and Cheese Off Contestants

We had a fairly large turnout for the first ever Gourmet Gastronomer Mac and Cheese Off.  The contestants are from all walks of life, but they all love food.  Our contestants were:


limesicon Born and raised in New England Stay at home mom, four kids and a lot of pets. Have always loved cooking and baking, and absolutely love blogging. Was always ha

Mac and Cheese Off

Mac and Cheese. It is something that pretty much everyone loves, and yet there are so many ways to make it. Stove top or baked, traditional or innovative, cheddar or gouda, breadcrumbs or none? For the first ever Gourmet Gastronomer Mac and Cheese off, competitors will attempt to create the tastiest dish possible. To enter the contest, each competitor will submit a post of their best Mac and Cheese recipe. They should include a picture, and details of how the dish was made.

Cookbook Updates

I have just added two more cookbooks into the store which each are highly recommended. The first one, Soffritto: Tradition and Innovation in Tuscan Cooking comes as the first pick from a new Gourmet Gastronomer, Chef Bageldog. Chef Bageldog is a friend and an amazing cook, who will now be hand picking the best items for the store, as well as contributing his knowledge here.

A More Social Food Blog

This food blog is all very new for me, and I am still trying to figure out exactly how I want it to work. One thing I do realize is that I want it to be more about good food, and less about me. As part of this plan of sharing other people's good recipes and ideas on food, I have put together a "Food I'm Craving" section, which is from my Shared Google Reader of other people's blogs. My next big step is to host the first ever Gourmet Gastronomer Mac-and-Cheese-Off.

Goat Cheese Lamb Burger

For lunch today I had an awesome lamb burger from Universal Cafe, which is just down the street from me. I like the restaurant because they change their menu every day, and almost everything is delicious in there. This lamb burger had goat cheese, arugala, aioli, and caramelized onions on a nice toasty bun. Think it was the first time I had a burger without ketchup or barbeque sauce, but it honestly didn’t need it.

Ham, Cheese, and Steamed Egg Croissant

Having breakfast today at Atlas Cafe because I am too lazy to make it myself. Luckily, they make the most delicious breakfast croisant sandwich. They steam their eggs, which is kind of like scrambled, but they are super fluffy. White cheddar cheese and black forest ham on a super flaky buttery croisant. Add some tapatio (hot sauce), salt, and pepper,and it is an unstoppable combo. I'd make this myself, but the recipe I found for croisants in the Tartine Cookbook is 5 pages long and takes at least two days.

Potato and Carrot Medley With Watercress

Another simple recipe using basic ingredients. I used a purple potato for this, which gave the dish a nice color, but you can pretty much use anything. This is actually way tastier than it looks. This is modified slightly from the Joy of Cooking. Boil:    3 medium potatoes, washed and cut into small pieces    3 carrots, peeled and cut into small pieces Cook for about half an hour, or until the veggies are very soft. Drain them, and put them back in a pan over low heat.
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