Anchor has the scoop on cooking Gourmet: Vic Carter works as well at the stove as he does behind the news desk at WJZ-TV.

Kitchen Encounters

November 13, 1996|By Karol V. Menzie | Karol V. Menzie,SUN STAFF

For WJZ-TV anchor Vic Carter, preparing a meal comes as easily as delivering the nightly news. When he's not reporting local events or joshing with colleagues Denise Koch, Bob Turk and John Buren, Carter could very well be planning an evening meal of chicken Creole and dirty rice, or sausages and grapes in balsamic butter sauce.

Cooking is "not as difficult as people make it out to be," says the self-confessed TV Food Network junkie. "All you have to do is pay attention to what you're doing."

Nor is he hesitant to venture outside his Virginia roots in looking for culinary challenges. "There's nothing to cooking French, or Thai or Italian food," he says. "Those people cook with what they have, just like we do."

Carter, who comes from a family with four sisters, credits his mother for his interest cooking.

"She always loved to experiment with new foods. Saturday evenings in our home in Radford, Va., were filled with wonderful aromas," he recalls. "My father was a meat-and-potatoes guy, he'd say, what's this? But she would 'sell' it -- This is going to be so good.' My inquisitiveness about food started with her."

Carter, who has been at Channel 13 since last January, started cooking seriously when he worked at a station in Raleigh, N.C. "It was a smaller news staff," he says, "and occasionally we'd get together and [everybody] would bring a dish."

Although he will try cooking just about any kind of food, he says, "I like the things that surprise you -- like souffles. They rise so high -- and then they fall: 'Hey, everybody, come look quick!' "

Here is one of Carter's recipes that has an international flair.

Vic's Moroccan chicken

Serves 4

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

1 teaspoon nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

1 1/2 cups orange juice

1/2 cup honey

1/4 cup raisins

2 tablespoons cornstarch

2 tablespoons water

1/4 cup toasted sliced almonds

Lightly flatten chicken breasts.

Sprinkle both sides of chicken with nutmeg, salt and pepper. Combine orange juice, honey, and raisins in a large skillet; heat. Add chicken, cover and simmer 15 to 20 minutes or until tender; remove.

Dissolve cornstarch in water; stir into orange juice mixture. Cook until thickened, stirring constantly.

Return chicken to skillet; stir in almonds. Heat.

Serve with couscous or rice.

Pub Date: 11/13/96

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