A New Use For the King of Cheese?

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Apparently Starbucks hasn't abandoned its in-store ovens, which Howard Schultz said it would do in one of the many interviews he's given about how to bring earnings back and as I among others have called for (the smell of those weird hot sandwiches).

Price points can't be ignored, and evidently the big per-store investments in those bulky steel ovens can't be either. So there's a new sandwich, with a $3.95 price tag that's supposed to change people's minds about $4 just being for lattes -- and coffee in the bargain.

More relevant, there's this helpful consideration of how to avoid those sausage smells getting in the way of coffee, as Schultz had hearteningly said he wanted to do -- customers should only smell coffee, he said, and he was right: add Parmesan to the eggs.

Starbucks's food scientists mixed Parmesan cheese with the egg to prevent the smell from seeping into the stores and overwhelming the smell of coffee.

I welcome any new use of the one irreplaceable cheese, and have a sinking feeling that Starbucks isn't using Parmigiano-Reggiano, which could help the cheese consortium's own underwater problems. But the king of cheese as an egg deodorizer rather than what I know it as, an ideal egg enhancer? Smells funny to me.

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Corby Kummer's work in The Atlantic has established him as one of the most widely read, authoritative, and creative food writers in the United States. The San Francisco Examiner pronounced him "a dean among food writers in America." More

Corby Kummer's work in The Atlantic has established him as one of the most widely read, authoritative, and creative food writers in the United States. The San Francisco Examiner pronounced him "a dean among food writers in America." Julia Child once said, "I think he's a very good food writer. He really does his homework. As a reporter and a writer he takes his work very seriously." Kummer's 1990 Atlantic series about coffee was heralded by foodies and the general public alike. The response to his recommendations about coffees and coffee-makers was typical--suppliers scrambled to meet the demand. As Giorgio Deluca, co-founder of New York's epicurean grocery Dean & Deluca, says: "I can tell when Corby's pieces hit; the phone doesn't stop ringing." His book, The Joy of Coffee, based on his Atlantic series, was heralded by The New York Times as "the most definitive and engagingly written book on the subject to date." In nominating his work for a National Magazine Award (for which he became a finalist), the editors wrote: "Kummer treats food as if its preparation were something of a life sport: an activity to be pursued regularly and healthfully by knowledgeable people who demand quality." Kummer's book The Pleasures of Slow Food celebrates local artisans who raise and prepare the foods of their regions with the love and expertise that come only with generations of practice. Kummer was restaurant critic of New York Magazine in 1995 and 1996 and since 1997 has served as restaurant critic for Boston Magazine. He is also a frequent food commentator on television and radio. He was educated at Yale, immediately after which he came to The Atlantic. He is the recipient of five James Beard Journalism Awards, including the MFK Fisher Distinguished Writing Award.
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