In the Kitchen, in the Theater

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Friday, November 16, 2012

James Beard Award-winning food writer Melissa Clark offers Thanksgiving shortcuts. Playwright Ayad Akhtar and actor Aasif Mandvi talk about their play, “Disgraced.” We’ll celebrate the 25th anniversary season of the Irish Repertory Theater and look at its production of “The Freedom of the City.” Plus, this week’s Please Explain is all about the Fiscal Cliff.

Melissa Clark's Thanksgiving Shortcuts

Melissa Clark, the James Beard award-winning food writer who writes the “A Good Appetite” column in the Dining Section of the New York Times offers some Thanksgiving shortcuts, advice on how to cook a big meal in a small kitchen, how to save time, and more. Her latest cookbook is Cook This Now.

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"Disgraced" at Lincoln Center

Playwright Ayad Akhtar talks about the play “Disgraced,” along with actor Aasif Mandvi, who plays the lead role. The play tells is the story of a successful Pakistani-American lawyer who is moving up the corporate ladder while distancing himself from his cultural roots. When he and his wife Emily, a white artist influenced by Islamic paintings, host a dinner party, what starts out as a friendly conversation escalates into something far more damaging. “Disgraced” is playing at Lincoln Center Theater and has been extended through December 23.

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25 Years of the Irish Rep

Cara Seymour, who stars as Lily in Brian Friel's “The Freedom of the City,” talks about the Irish Repertory Theatre’s new production of the play and the Irish Rep’s 25thanniversary season. She’s joined by Ciaran O’Reilly, the producing director, and Charlotte Moore, the Irish Rep’s artistic director. “The Freedom of the City” is playing at the Irish Repertory Theatre through November 25, then January 2-20.


Please Explain: The Fiscal Cliff

David Wessel, economics editor of The Wall Street Journal and author, most recently, of Red Ink: Inside the High Stakes Politics of the Federal Budget, and Mattea Kramer, Senior Research Analyst, National Priorities Project, and lead author of National Priorities Project's new book, A People’s Guide to the Federal Budget, explain what the fiscal cliff means, why we’re heading for it, and ways Washington can solve the nation's budget problems.

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Melissa Clark's Thanksgiving Recipes

Bourbon and Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie

6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 3/4 cups pumpkin puree
3 large eggs
1/2 cup half and half
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons Bourbon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
Pinch ground clove
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 9-inch fully baked pie crust

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

    Melt the butter in a small pan over medium heat. Once melted and the white solids have begun to rise the top, swirl the pan every 30 seconds or so. Stay close to the pan - the butter can go from browned to burnt very quickly. The butter will begin to brown after about 4 to 5 minutes, it will smell nutty and look dark golden. Once it hits that color, and the furious bubbling dies down somewhat, it’s ready. Remove from the heat. Allow the browned butter to cool.

    In a large bowl, whisk together the browned butter, pumpkin puree, cream, eggs, sugar, brandy, spices, and salt. Pour mixture into the cooled pie shell.

    Transfer pie to a large baking sheet. Bake until crust is golden and center jiggles just slightly when shaken, 50 to 60 minutes. Cool completely before serving.

    Yield: 8 servings.


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