One of the most decorated, respected, and charismatic chefs in the world, Todd English has been recognized by several of the food industry’s most prestigious publications, established one of the best-known restaurant brands in the nation and published three critically acclaimed cookbooks.
Japan: The Freshest of Fish
Todd English takes viewers on an exploration of Tokyo and its famous sushi delicacies. Tracing sushi's history as fresh, raw fish combined with sweet, vinegared rice, Todd goes behind-the-scenes at Tokyo's fish market. Join Todd as he visits some of the finest sushi restaurants in the world; Tokyo's kitchen district to admire the precision of sushi knives, and the sushi academy for a glimpse of the rigorous requirements to become a sushi chef. Then it's back to Olives, his restaurant in Charlestown, MA, to see how Todd will apply these new flavors and techniques in his own kitchen.
Nantucket: on the Waterfront
Drawn to the sea and that famous island off the coast of Massachusetts, Todd English goes fishing for striper and learns how to harvest sweet scallops in Nantucket Bay. Along the way, he learns techniques for filleting fresh fish, gets a taste of a bluefish cheek, offers suggestions on how to shop for and prepare fresh seafood, and participates in an authentic beach clambake-and steals some down time to experience the island's beach and vacation culture. Back at Olives, Todd creates a simple, delicious home version of the island's popular clambake.
Japan: The World's Best Beef (Kobe Beef)
Todd continues his journey in Tokyo by first enjoying the abundance of scrumptious street food-from yakatori and noodles, to deep-fried octopus puffs-all topped off with some iced green tea. Hunger pangs abated, Todd begins on his true quest-seeking out one of the most delicious, melt-in-your mouth ingredients in the world: prized Kobe beef. We learn why it's one of Japan's greatest treasures, and enjoy a side-trip to the Asahi brewery. After returning to Olives, Todd incorporates layers of new flavors to capture this Food Trip.
"New York: The Surprise Inside" (Dumplings)
Join Todd English as he travels from Hell's Kitchen down through the East Village in New York City in search of distinct regional takes on the ubiquitous dumpling, a dish that changes with the culture and available ingredients. Along the way, Todd samples crisp and delicate Indian samosa; Polish pierogi, served with sour cream, fried onions, or apple compote; Jewish kreplach, and everything in between. In the Olives kitchen, Todd presents his own spin on the Chinese soup dumpling: potato gnocchi filled with tomato broth, lobster, and mozzarella.
"Phoenix: Roots of the Southwest" (The Great Southwest)
Grab your cowboy hat and travel with Todd English to the Southwest as he saddles up for a chuck wagon dinner complete with green chile beef, and pan de campo prepared in authentic, old Southwest style. Digging deeper into the roots of Southwest cuisine, Todd joins chef Janos Wilder on a cactus hunt to learn more about this ancient food source and how it is used today. And before the sun sets Todd visits with Gila River Indian Community Elementary School students to learn how they grow fresh produce for the Native American-inspired menu at KAI restaurant. Back at Olives, Chef creates desert-inspired pork tenderloin "birds" with a Saguaro syrup glaze, pumpkin stew with beans, and cornmeal pan de campo.
Food Mavens of New York
New York City Jewish eating means big deli sandwiches, lots of comfort food, and of course, fresh juicy pickles! Travel with Todd English as he eats his way from the plump pastrami at Katz's Delicatessen, to Kossar's for bialys, and then to Sammy's Roumanian, where every night is a Bar Mitzvah. After a behind-the-scenes tour of the legendary Zabars delicatessen, Todd makes time to visit The Pickle Guys on the Lower East Side to learn the secret behind the freshest homemade pickles around. Following his whirlwind deli tour, Todd cooks up his own pastrami-rubbed salmon with an apple fennel pickle and a grilled bialy in the Olives kitchen.
Italy: Fast Cars, Slow Food
Even the head-turning speed of a sleek Ferrari can't keep Todd English from slowing down long enough to chat with the founder of Italy's Slow Food movement, Carlo Petrini. Long a supporter of cooking and eating simple, honest, regional foods in a desire to connect the earth with the table, Todd explores how this concept is applied in the production of local products like culatello - a rare, prized cured meat -handmade pasta, and artisanal cheese. Course by course, Todd explores the province of Bologna and experiences traditional cuisine. After a quick stop at a cafe in Bologna for a dolce and espresso, Todd returns to the kitchen of his restaurant Tuscany at Mohegan Sun to create a dish inspired by bella Italia.
Tucson: La Comida Mexicana
It's a movable fiesta as Todd English learns to make tortillas in Old Town Tucson, and then visits with chef Carlotta Flores at El Charro to observe their preparation of carne seca -air-dried beef. After a conversation with chef Douglas Rodriguez, the inventor of Nuevo Latino cooking, it's time to stop at Norma's Cakery for a tres leches cake to offer the hostess at a traditional family fiesta. Upon his return to Olives, Todd creates his own dish: a whole-wheat tortilla with carne seca 'a la minute,' with a quick-seared shrimp ceviche and a prickly pear margarita to wash it all down.
New York: The Best Pizza On Earth
Join Todd English as he hunts for the best pizza on Earth. It all starts with the best ingredients: a visit to Joe's Dairy to try fresh, hand-crafted mozzarella. Then Todd tracks downs a Bronx native who made the move to Phoenix, chef Chris Bianco, to learn the secret of what some critics claim to be the best pizza in the US. And what's a pizza without the sauce? After an exploration of classic sauces, the chef creates his own version of the popular pie with his son, Simon, back at Figs, his restaurant in Charlestown, MA.
New York: A Lotta Bread
Todd English visits the diverse ethnic neighborhoods of New York City and discovers the bakers and breads that help define them. From East 6th Street's Indian restaurants and delicious naan to Russian influenced black bread and the classic New York bialy with its roots in the Ashkenazi Jewish community, Todd brings viewers into the cultures and ingredients that make each bread so unique and then showcases a different take on bread with his recipe - "Onion Soup Inside-Out" - back at Olives in Charlestown, MA.
Join Todd English for a cooking vacation when his Food Trip takes him to Emilia-Romagna. First, a medieval food walk finds Todd roaming the vaulted streets of Bologna La Grassa to learn about this historic city and its cuisine. Then, Todd ventures into the countryside to experience a pheasant hunt and enjoys locally crafted tortellini with a hearty pheasant ragu. What could add to this rich experience? Truffles-and a visit to Savigno, known as the citta di tartufo. Back at Tuscany at Mohegan Sun in Connecticut, Todd creates a beautiful dish inspired by his trip: pheasant-stuffed pasta topped with delicate white truffles.
Boston: Andiamo Mangiare
Come along with Todd English as he gets swept up in the Italian-American festivities of the Fisherman's Feast celebration in Boston's North End, with a stop to taste the best cannoli with PBS's Ciao Italia host Mary Ann Esposito. After a crash course in sausage making at the Sulmona Meat Market, Todd drops in on his mother, Patty, just in time to help her prepare bresciola-one of his favorite dishes from childhood. To complete the sentimental journey, Todd invites Boston Mayor Thomas Menino to join him for a lunch of Italian specialities. Back in his own kitchen at Olives, Todd sums up this food trip with his interpretation of an Italian-American classic.
My Favorite Things
Join Todd English as he shares his favorite people, places, and flavors from the food trips he's taken near and far. Each journey influences the way Todd thinks about, and creates, food. Included is a lesson on the importance of "terroir" with a trip to Emilia-Romagna region of Italy. This region is the home of the rare culatello di zibello, where the local black pigs' diet of fallen acorns, and the foggy air that cures the meat, gives the local ham its distinct flavor. Finally, Todd will explore a different type of travel-- down memory lane--where tastes bring him back in time to days of cooking with his mother, or propel him forward to create a recipe with a cactus bud or a fresh scallop. Back at Olives, Todd creates a dish based on his all-time favorite flavor... the white truffle of Italy, when he makes handmade pasta with truffles.
Italy: The Medieval Cucina- I Live in a Castle
Join Todd English as he travels to Tuscany to experience all things medieval. From living in a medieval castle and shopping at a medieval market, to eating a medieval lampredotto sandwich and recovering at a medieval apothecary, it all comes together at Todd's al fresco Tuscan feast at the castle. Back at Olives, his restaurant in Boston, Todd conjures something old, new and delicious.
Israel: Return to Tel Aviv
Joined by his American team of chefs, Todd English revisits the vibrant city of Tel Aviv. Once Todd passes television food celebrity Gil Havov's courage test at the entrance of Carmel Market the adventure gets underway, which includes a visit to Big Itzik and Dr. Shakshuka. The food trip continues late into the evening at the side of notorious culinarian and club Dj, Aharoni, who shows Todd why Tel Aviv's nightlife is unrivaled. Back at Olives, his restaurant in Boston, Todd creates his own dish full of Israeli inspiration.
Italy: Tuscany By Vintage Car
Todd English tours Tuscany in a 1961 Alpha Romeo and his journey is all about food, people and fun. Join Todd as he cooks dinner for a tough crowd, the leading gastronomic journalists of Italy. Back at Olives, his restaurant in Boston, it smells like a Tuscan kitchen when Todd takes the old techniques and makes new flavor sensations.
Peru: The Heart of the Amazon
Todd English takes viewers on a journey of culinary inspiration to the mighty Amazon River and rain forests that are virtual supermarkets. The Don of the Lima limelight, Chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino, joins Todd on an ultra modern riverboat. Learn about exotic dishes and techniques that come from Incan, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, Creole and Japanese cuisines. From tiger catfish ceviche to hearts of palm fettuccine with tropical fruit salsa to Amazon escargot, the food is pleasing to both the eye and the palate. Then it's back to Olives, Todd's restaurant in Boston, to apply these new flavors in his own kitchen.
Peru: The Andes and the Legacy of the Inca
Todd English continues his journey in Peru in the high Andes Mountains where Incan magic and mystery reveals ancient food secrets. Cuzco, the Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu, are the backdrops for the culinary adventures that include samplings of chichi corn beer, deep fried duck and huacatay stuffed roasted guinea pig. After returning to Olives, his restaurant in Boston, Todd puts his culinary finds to the test in his own kitchen.
Israel: Land of Milk and Honey
Todd English makes a culinary pilgrimage back to Israel after a thirteen-year hiatus where he and other notable American chefs cooked, ate and got to know the Israeli culture. Eating his way from Akko to Nazareth then Jerusalem, Todd stops to visit Holy sites such as the Wailing Wall and the Crusader City. He concludes his food trip with a traditional Chanukah dinner. Upon his return to Olives, his restaurant in Boston, Todd cooks up the ultimate dish for a true Arabian night.
South Africa: That Zulu You Do and the Big Five
Join Todd English as he goes on an African photo safari and meets the big five jungle animals face to face. Then Todd learns about the culture of the Zulu people and experiences a feast by torchlight in the outdoor Boma. After lunching with the local Inkosi, or Chief, and visiting a Zangoma fortuneteller, Todd travels back to Olives in Boston to recreate the inspirations of Africa.
India: Old and New Delhi
Join Todd English in his travels to India where he chats with the locals about their favorite snack; chaat. Elevated sub continental delights are in store, as well as a look at fine high altitude dining. Snake charmers, rickshaw drivers and restaurateurs complete a cast of thousands, as Todd learns about tandoor cooking, parantha, and all kinds of kebabs. A visit to the ancient spice market, the Paan Bazaar, and the best meal in Chowdni Chowk insure that Todd returns to his own kitchen at Olives in Boston with plenty of new ideas from Old Delhi.
Big Mango: Three Nights In Bangkok
Captivated by the rich culture and cuisine of the Land of Smiles, Todd English crosses the sea to embark on his quest to discover the secrets of Bangkok. Culinary delights from creative street foods TO abundant feasts of the royal cuisine await as Todd befriends gifted local chefs who share not only their passion, but also their backstage access to the best of Bangkok. With his mind full of bold and new ideas, Todd journeys back to Olives in Boston to put his signature stamp on Thai cuisine.
South Africa: The Cape Cuisine
Todd travels through the wine country by motorcycle and sidecar and heads to The Showroom, where Chef Craig Paterson is all about culinary creativity in the middle of a car dealership. Accompanied by chef Bruce Robertson of the acclaimed Waterfront Restaurant, Todd visits a farmer's market full of great local produce and artisan products. Then Todd travels to Tiger's Shabeen in Langa Township, where the people are warm and the brai (or barbecue) is delicious. Back in Boston, the Cape Malay cuisine inspires Todd to create something new at Olives.
Southern Thailand: Barefoot In Phuket
Todd English is on a journey in search of a mangosteen, one of the most praised tropical fruits. It's a voyage of epicurean discovery in the south of Thailand, where the rhythm of the beach is a way of life and the kitchens, both plain and fancy, make great use of the tropical bounty. Sea gypsies, plantations where monkeys pick coconuts, palm sugaring, prawn farming, panang and massaman curries send Todd back to the States rejuvenated and ready to create new flavor sensations with equatorial inspirations at Olives in Boston.