I was strolling around Valletta, the capital of Malta, as one does, and came across Is-Suq Tal-Belt, an indoor food market off Merchants Street and decided to go in. It’s a sizable place – three floors – and similar to food halls you’d find in the states, with a variety of stalls selling all manner of food and drink.
But I was drawn to the Merkanti, which bills itself as selling Maltese street food (yes, street foods not sold on the street is a thing in Europe, too). It had a variety of grilled meats and stews in steam trays on display behind the glass panel. I was intrigued by the laham taz-ziemel, which is a traditional Matese preparation of horse meat.
The Chef & I, on of the more ambitious restaurant kiosks at the Hall on the Yard in Ivanhoe Village, is hosting a Chef Battle as part of its dinner series. Chefs Michael Morrison and Travis Chasteen will face off on January 25 at 6:30 p.m. to produce a four-course taste-off using shrot ribs, mahi mahi, pork tenderloin and Key West pink shrimp. And attendees will choose who cooked it better. Tickets are very limited and are $100, which includes gratuity. Tickets here.
If you’ve been waiting all week for the weekend so that you could go to Tap Room at Dubsdread for the prime rib that is not available during the week, you’ve wasted several days. The popular College Park restaurant now offers prime rib every evening.
Flog favorite Stefano’s Trattoria in Winter Springs is taking an innovative approach to subsidize some of its costs. Although it’s a popular dining destination for many, it also has a lot of takeout orders, a sector of the business that likely ramped up during the pandemic and continues to be a strong suit.
But increased takeout business brings increased costs in the form of takeout containers and pizza boxes. Owner Alejandro Martinez saw an opportunity there and is offering the containers as advertising surfaces – mini traveling billboards – to local businesses and slapping flyers for local companies on the pizza boxes and to-go bags that are picked up or delivered to homes in Winter Springs, Oviedo, Casselberry and Winter Park. Very smart. And a win-win-win situation: Stefano’s costs are defrayed; businesses get noticed; and customers get Stefano’s terrific food.
Local Flavor is a collaboration with The Community Paper.
Dharma Southern Kitchen is a vegan restaurant in the Milk District’s Market on South that opened in 2015. Chef/Owner Shaun Noonan shares his recipe for Fried Green Tomatoes, which uses a cornstarch slurry in place of the usual egg wash.
Noonan says there are two keys to this dish: finding truly green tomatoes and slicing them no thinner than 1/2 inch. Otherwise, he says, you’ll end up with mush.
The finished tomatoes may be used in a sandwich, as shown in the photo, or eaten with a knife and fork as an appetizer.