Yesterday, Andrew Coppolino, host of The Food Show that airs on Sundays from noon to 1 pm on Kitchener radio station 570 News, warned listeners that things were about to get wild, wacky and weird when he introduced me and Antony John.
(Listen or download here. Warning: there is about 20 seconds of dead air at the beginning of the recording.)
The latter is a buddy of mine and one of the reasons I moved to Stratford five years ago (others are his lovely wife Tina and the fact that my neighbours in Kensington Market were terrorizing me for reasons too dark to mention). I recently returned to live in Toronto because: Stratford has too many ducks, not enough people of colour etc. etc. (see previous blogs). But I digress.
Ant, as I like to call him, is a gangly, tanned, spiky-haired farmer known for his TV show The Manic Organic (the name speaks volumes) that aired on Food Network TV some years ago (he isn’t bitter it wasn’t renewed but has cancelled his subscription to that channel). His organic farm Soiled Reputation is in Sebringville on the outskirts of Stratford and is well known mainly as a supplier of restaurants and for his impeccable organic veggies.
Anyhoo, witty, capable and charming Coppolino, whose succinctly-named show is sophisticated, informative and entertaining, was right. Things did get quite lively once the mikes were turned on (okay, they were even more unhinged when they weren’t) and the free-ranging discussion began to sizzle.
Wit and badinage were names of the day as we chewed over such topics as roasting vegetables in the nude (a favourite though hazardous pastime of Ant’s); potty-mouthed British chef Gordon Ramsay and the suicides of two people featured on his reality shows Kitchen Nightmares and Hell’s Kitchen (I might be tempted to jump in a river as a New Jersey restaurateur did recently if abused by Ramsay on international TV); a four-way phone interview with Toronto celebrity chef Mark McEwan about his new cookbook (interspersed with munching noises by me and Ant as we sampled Coppolino’s tangy Ceviche made from that book – excellent, by the way); how to cook turkey for Thanksgiving (see my recipe for Ultimate Roast Turkey on this site), and why buying local is so important when it comes to food (the only semi-serious part of the show) – all this peppered with Ant doing animal impersonations, attempting to make me “lose it” (unsuccessful, in my opinion) and me laughing.
I will post an edited version of that show as soon as I get back from a week in New York to attend the Food Network Wine & Food Festival. Meanwhile, take note: This is an excellent food radio show that you should try to catch. Congrats Mr. Coppolino – good on you.
As for Ant, you can enjoy his antics (yes, pun intended) as he channels his inner stand-up comic, by checking a short YouTube video of Antony John pretending to milk a horse. And you thought the countryside was peaceful and bucolic!