Sunday, February 26, 2017

I AM The Yankee Chef

I can't tell you how thankful I am that my brand, The Yankee Chef, has finally overcome any and all obstacles that has stood in the way for the past 3 months with regards to registering with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. As per my previous post about the New York Yankees, I was quite ill prepared to begin with when registering the name with the USPTP. Never in a million years did I think ANYONE would either object or try to delay what is obviously a "no brainah" when it came to being called The Yankee Chef. Once all my p's and q's were all lined up, I thought it would only have been a matter or time in order to finally have The Yankee Chef legally binding, but then a wrench was thrown I thought.

The New York Yankees asked for an extension of time in order to learn if I would be detrimental to their organization if I were to officially become such. The NEW YORK Yankees!!!!! Really!?!?

So I hired an attorney to represent not only my best interest, but to sort through what could possibly be so "defaming". Come to find out, it was money I didn't need to spend.

The Yankee organization was more than willing to explain everything to me and help me through the process and the reasons why they were concerned....although I still don't believe there should have been ANY concern. After all, I AM a Yankee, I AM a chef, I AM THE YANKEE CHEF!!!

At first, they wanted me to agree that I will NOT have anything to do with ANY sports team EVER...again, REALLY!?!? I couldn't endorse, work with or even have any collusion with even an amateur boxer with the name The Yankee Chef. It didn't take long to completely and utterly refuse such a silly request on their part.

So after some haggling back and forth and another long delay on their part(apparently to think it over and for the legal department to talk to the owners)they emailed me to let me know that as long as I changed my fonts on my website and logo, we were good to go....oh, and NOT to have any relationship with another baseball team.

So I thought about it long and hard, at least through one cup of coffee, and decided that the money I spent, the time I paced would be all the "side bars" I would entertain again. So be it!

I signed the final agreement and now we are good to go.

I will gladly thank the organization for the help and sincere friendship they showed me in finalizing our agreement. At first it bothered me, they irritated me and angered me. Now I feel quite comfortable with the end result and, although they are New Yorker's, I am proud to call them friends on a personal level.

We had a few laughs during the many phone conversations I had with them and they showed me that they were NOT the big bad guys I initially touted them as. They were there for me even when I had silly questions, They were there for me when I had sincere concerns and they were there WITH me during the final draft. Hell, I might even watch them play once in a while now.

So from a few generations of real Yankees to a team that is Yankee in name only, I say thanks. (And that was NOT a slam.....maybe an elbow in the side though.)


Monday, February 6, 2017

Why Didn't I Think Of That?

There have been many times, too often to recall, that I have shaken my head, sworn under my breath and just plain ol' kicked myself in the back-end because I never "thought of it". Anything from seeing an invention that is making millions of dollars to wishing I had stayed focus and marketed something that could net me the same.

I remember my brother, wayyyyy back in the early 70s, making English muffin pizzas at my parents first restaurant and thinking it was a stupid idea. I never tried it because I never thought anything but butter and jam belong on English muffins. Boy, was I wrong when just a short few years later, we began seeing these kinds of pizzas in the freezer isle of every supermarket.

I think Yankee stubborness plays a huge part in that manner of thinking as well. Take gravy for example.

I have never swayed from the classic preparation of gravy that I was taught by my Dad. "Using butter-based roux was the ONLY way to make a gravy", I thought for many decades. I never bought that sort of shiny gravy you see in the store that was obviously not made from roux.

Now with my next cookbook almost finished, I wanted to stay in focus with the overall theme, fruits, vegetables and children. How could I make a gravy that is healthy, a gravy that my children would NEVER guess I slipped in a healthy amount of vegetables, a gravy that takes mere minutes to make and a gravy with flavor that mimics the classic presentation?

Now I am sure many of you have made such a gravy in some form or another, but I urge you to come up with a gravy that encompasses ALL the above properties. This recipe does that and more.

I only use low sodium broth because it truly is too salty using regular broth. Not because of my preference to salt(which I might add is an addiction) but because the flavor of vegetables more than compensates and you may even think it is STILL too salty!

This, my friends, is the best none!

I know, I know, you are probably thinking "What is the big deal with making gravy?". My answer to you is simply to ask any teenager you can if they know how to make real gravy. You will be amazed at the response! It isn't like when we were kids when parents and grandparents showed us how to cook at home, but even young adults. They will not, or can not, make homemade gravy because it is easier to buy it and heat it up. This recipe blows the competition away and only takes about 2 minutes longer than opening and heating up a jar of store bought gravy.

Chicken Gravy


Amazing Gravy

What a great way to make something that is good for you AND a phenomenal way to introduce vegetables into your childrens diet without them even knowing. I have done away with the classic roux thickener here, without any loss of flavor.

Perfect for beginners or those in a rush. This gravy should not take more than five minutes from beginnging to end and it will be the best gravy you'll ever have. For an amazingly tasty gravy without fat, simply buy fat free broth.


1(15-ounce)can low sodium beef or chicken broth *
1 cup frozen mixed vegetables of your choice, thawed
1 tablespoon cornstarch


Warm up the broth in the microwave or stove top until hot, but not scalding. Place in a food processor or blender with the last 2 ingredients and puree, on high, until you can no longer see even small bits of vegetables, about 30 seconds.

You can either strain the bulk from the vegetables from the liquid or leave as is. There will not be more than a teaspoon, if any.

Place mixture in a medium saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil, stirring almost constantly. Once boiling, remove from heat and serve.

* If you are using bouillion, use enough to flavor 2 cups water.
Beef Gravy

NOTE: I would like to touch base on two things. First, the beef gravy will not be as brown as you are used to because of the carrots in the mixed vegetables(As evidenced from both pictures above). Purchased gravy uses caramel coloring to darken the end result. And secondly, to make this recipe even quicker. Bring broth to a boil before continuing with recipe. There will be no need to bring it to a boil again if you are going to immediately consume it. The reason I prepare it as directed is because it will get slightly thicker when boiling it after pureeing and I have always brought food up to temp in all restaurants because of health code restrictions.