'Marvelous' breads come to Baltimore
Washingtonians have been raving about Marvelous Market since it opened on Connecticut Avenue Northwest in mid-1990. They loved the hearty, European-style breads mostly based on starters -- French baguettes, boules and brioches, sourdough bread with black olives, potato bread, rosemary bread, focaccia. They have stood in line an hour to pay up to $3.75 a loaf. They have even tied a bow around the breads and given them as presents.
Now Baltimoreans, too, can enjoy Marvelous Market breads without fighting the traffic on I-95. Marvelous Market bread is available at Eddie's in Roland Park and Cross Keys Village Store. It will be available at Morton's in Baltimore after Dec. 20. The stores carry eight varieties a day; typical prices are $1.50 for a baguette and $3.75 for the olive bread.
Mark Furstenberg, Marvelous Market owner and a former Baltimorean, says he made the bread available in his hometown to save his parents from their trips to Washington to pick up bread for themselves and their friends.
"They would drive down here every week and load up the car with bread," he says. "I had to start selling it in Baltimore to save them from hauling back and forth."
Speaking of great bread in Washington, Jim C. Lawson, author of "The Baltimore Ethnic Food Store Guide" and the "Washington Ethnic Food Store Guide," has done it again. His new book, "The Washington Ethnic Bakery Book," is a guide to bakeries, patisseries and sweet shops in the metropolitan area, including the Maryland and Virginia suburbs. The list includes a potpourri of ethnic breads -- Salvadoran, Chinese, Scottish, Philippine, Middle Eastern, Korean, Dutch, Polish and Hawaiian.
It is available locally at Books for Cooks in Harborplace or by sending a check or money order for $9.95 plus $1.50 postage and handling to Ardmore Publications, P.O. Box 21051, Washington, D.C. 20009-0551.
Hot line offers tips on fending off fat
The ho, ho, ho of holiday celebrating can turn into a big boo-hoo when you look at the scale after the New Year.
If you are looking for a game plan to get through the holidays with the least pain and gain, the Anne Arundel County Department of Health Nutrition Services has some answers in a 24-hour, seven-day-a-week hot line.
Call and get information on great tasting low-calorie, low-cholesterol and low-fat recipes, healthy tips on how not to overeat during the holiday feasting and safe-food handling tips. There is also information for services available for those in need who qualify for the WIC (women, infants and children) supplemental food program. Call (410) 222-7367.
Recipe booklet reveals 'Chef's Sugar Secrets'
If you enjoy the red onion marmalade on the sauce and condiment cart at Baltimore Grille in the Omni Inner Harbor Hotel, you aren't alone.
Judges in a national recipe contest sponsored by the Sugar Association honored the Omni's executive chef Tim Barger recently, making him a finalist in the sauces category. The Sugar Association is a trade group representing the producers and refiners of beet and cane sugar.
The contest, "Chef's Sugar Secrets," solicited recipes from chefs on non-dessert uses of sugar -- entrees, appetizers, sauces and breads.
"Since people no longer cook from scratch as much as they used to, they have a limited understanding of how to use sugar in other dishes," according to Sylvia Rowe, vice president of consumer affairs for the Sugar Association.
A booklet with copies of their recipes is available by sending a check or a money order for $2 to: "Chef's Sugar Secrets," Sugar Association, 1101 15th St. N.W., Suite 600, Washington, D.C. 20005.
Chef Barger says he offers more than 25 specialty garnishments on the menu. This marmalade was created as a healthful, low-calorie accompaniment for steak, poultry and seafood.
Red onion marmalade
Makes 18 to 20 servings.
6 red onions
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup red port wine
1 cup Cabernet sauvignon
1/2 bunch fresh thyme or rosemary
Peel and slice the onions into julienne strips. In a saute pan, melt butter over medium heat and add onions and sugar. Cook until onions are tender. Add wines and spices. Simmer slowly until liquid has almost evaporated and sauce is syrup-like in texture. Serve with steak, poultry or game.
The Tidbits column welcomes interesting nuggets of food news -- new products, food-related news events, local cookbooks, great mail order finds, openings and closings of restaurants and food shops. Please send press releases to Tidbits, Attn: Charlyne Varkonyi, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, Md. 21278.