Edouardo Jordan’s heartfelt and personal approach at Salare in Seattle has had locals and critics abuzz since day one.

We were very chef-focused this week at Food Republic. We spoke with Dale Talde about a signature dish at his new Italian restaurant in NYC, Massoni, in our latest episode of Plate Deconstruction. We paid a visit to Olmsted in Brooklyn to see how Greg Baxtrom makes his rutabaga pasta — that’d be strips of rutabaga made to resemble tagliatelle. Big news: The James Beard Award semifinalists were announced this week. (Congrats to all those on the list!) We also featured a recipe that Ina Garten swears by. All that and more on this week’s Hot Topics.

  1. Chef Greg Baxtrom of Brooklyn’s Olmsted made tagliatelle pasta out of rutabaga.
  2. We tried the SteakAger on a very expensive cut of steak. Was it worth it?
  3. This year’s James Beard Award semifinalists were announced this week.
  4. Restaurants around the U.S. were affected by the “Day Without Immigrants” strike.
  5. Dale Talde showed us how to marry Cantonese techniques with Italian flavors.
  6. Ina Garten’s skillet-roasted chicken is as easy as, well, skillet-roasted chicken.
  7. Plan your year’s travel around these 12 cool food festivals around the world.
  8. One of the most important factors of a bowl of pho is the garnish.
  9. What is vanilla powder? Your new baking secret weapon.
  10. Here are 10 restaurants you shouldn’t miss on your next visit to Seattle.