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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

On today’s show: We’ll take a look at the country’s complex legal system. Then, Tom Wolfe stops by to discuss The Bonfire of the Vanities, the latest selection for the Leonard Lopate Show Book Club. Our latest Globavores segment looks at pumpkins and squash. And the gurus of how-to, Al and Larry Ubell, take your calls on home repair.

Law and Politics in China

Ira Belkin, Executive Director of the U.S. Asia Law Institute at New York University School of Law and a program officer on law and rights at the Ford Foundation in Beijing, and Jerome Cohen, Professor at NYU Law School and a senior fellow for Asia Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations, discuss whether there is a chasm between law and the rule of law in China and look at the relationship between politics and law in China.

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November's Book: The Bonfire of the Vanities, by Tom Wolfe

Tom Wolfe’s bestselling novel The Bonfire of the Vanities is a portrait of New York in the late 1980s—a city seething with racial tension in Harlem and the Bronx while traders were raking in huge profits on Wall Street. Wolfe’s sharp observations skewer New York society’s greed and arrogance, and highlight the simmering resentment between the haves and have nots. The New York Times Book Review called it “A big, bitter, funny, craftily plotted book that grabs you by the lapels and won’t let go.” Read it now and get your lapels grabbed!  

 

Get the conversation started now by leaving your comments and questions about the book!

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Globavores: Squash and Pumpkins

Our latest installment of Globavores: Food Travels since 1492 looks at squash and pumpkins! We’ll speak with Bill Telepan, chef and owner of Telepan, and with Amy Goldman, author of The Compleat Squash.

Share your recipes for squash and pumpkins—leave them as a comment, below.

Comments [14]

The Gurus of How-To Clean Up

The Gurus of How-To, Al Ubell and Larry Ubell, answer questions and share their advice on how to repair and maintain your home and how to clean up after Sandy.

Call 212-433-9692 with your questions or leave a comment below!

Comments [9]

Bill Telepan's Buttercup Squash Gnocchi with Sage, Wild Mushrooms and Pine Nuts

For the gnocchi:

2 cups buttercup squash purée (yielded from 2 to 3 pounds buttercup squash)
1 egg
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour (then more if needed)
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 450ºF.
Cut squash in half length-­wise and scoop out seeds. Salt squash and place skin side down on a baking sheet. Cover the bottom of the baking sheet with water. Cover squash with aluminum foil and bake until tender, about 45 minutes. Let cool. Scoop out the flesh into a strainer. Squeeze out excess moisture in batches (but not completely dry). Measure out 2 cups of squeezed squash and pass through a food mill into a large bowl.

In a small bowl whisk the egg. Mix the egg with the squash. Mix in the flour, cheese, and salt until the dough just comes together. Form into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap, and place in the freezer for 20 to 30 minutes.

Place dough on a heavily floured surface. Divide the dough into eighths. Roll out one segment into a snake about 1/2 inch thick, working from the middle out applying even pressure. If the snake won’t roll wipe excess flour from the workspace and roll using just enough flour to keep dough from sticking. Cut into gnocchi about 3/4 inch long. Transfer to a well floured baking sheet using the edge of a chef’s knife or flat spatula. Repeat with remaining dough and place in the freezer until hard, about 1 hour.

To finish:
1 small butternut squash, peeled and diced into 1/3 inch dice to render about 3 cups
8 tablespoons butter
1/2 pound mixed wild mushrooms, cleaned and sliced 1/8 inch thick
4 sage leaves, julienne
1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
1 tablespoon chopped parsley

Toast the pine nuts until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Heat a large sauté pan very hot, add 2 tablespoons butter. When butter is melted and browning add the squash. Sauté until golden and tender, about 6 minutes. Set aside.

To the same pan, add 2 tablespoons more butter and sauté the mushrooms over high heat until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Set aside.

Place the remaining 4 tablespoons butter in a large sauté pan, add the cooked squash and mushrooms to the pan. Add sage and pine nuts and set aside. Reheat the pumpkins and tops in oven.

Bring a large pot (12 quart) of lightly salted water to a vigorous boil. Cook gnocchi until they all float to the top and then cook one additional minute. Drain gnocchi in a colander reserving 4 ounces of the cooking liquid. Add cooking liquid to the pan with the squash and mushrooms and bring to a boil over high heat to form a creamy sauce. Add drained gnocchi and parsley, season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

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Bill Telepan’s Squash Soup

Serves 4

2 cups buttercup squash purée (yielded from 2 to 3 pounds buttercup squash)
1 small leek, white and light green parts only, split lengthwise, sliced and washed
½ small onion, sliced
1 clove garlic, sliced
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cups vegetable stock or water

Preheat oven to 450ºF.

Cut squash in half length-wise and scoop out seeds.

Salt squash and place skin side down on a baking sheet.

Cover the bottom of the baking sheet with water. Cover squash with aluminum foil and bake until tender, about 45 minutes. Let cool. Scoop out the flesh into a strainer. Squeeze out excess moisture in batches (but not completely dry). Measure out 2 cups of squeezed squash and pass through a food mill into a large bowl.

In a 2-quart pot heat olive oil over low heat. Add the remaining vegetables, salt and cook until tender, about 7 minutes. Add the stock, bring to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Add squash and carefully purée in a blender or food processor. Adjust seasoning.

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Bill Telepan's Acorn Squash with a Parsley, Hazelnut, and Smoked Ham Salad

Serves 4

2 pounds acorn squash
4 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 teaspoon freshly ground coriander seed
1tablespoon sherry vinegar
2 tablespoons hazelnut oil
2 cups parsley leaves, washed and dried
1/2 cup chopped, peeled hazelnuts
1/2 cup small-­diced black forest ham

Preheat oven to 450ºF.

Break off the stem of the squash and cut in half from top to bottom with a heavy knife. Remove the seeds and cut each half into 4 wedges.

In a large sauté pan melt the butter on high heat until bubbly, add the squash and move pan around to lightly brown. After 2 minutes, place in oven and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from oven, flip the squash and return to oven to finish cooking, about 8 to 12 minutes. Remove from oven, drizzle with syrup, sprinkle with coriander, and return to oven for 1 minute. Transfer to a plate and set aside.

Place hazelnuts in a sauté pan, place in oven and toast until lightly browned, about 3 to 5 minutes.

Place vinegar in a bowl and whisk in oil, season. In another bowl, mix together the parsley, nuts, and ham, toss with the vinaigrette.

Arrange 2 wedges of the squash per plate, on their side, creating an oval. Place salad in the center and serve.

Comment

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