Season 3, Episode 5
Cleveland, Pighead & Perch
Andrew makes some tasty new discoveries in Cleveland! From a family company taking extra steps to make its sausage, to a chef creating new varieties of vinegar, to a farmer growing vegetables with a twist, Andrew finds out that it's the spirit of the people behind the food that make it extra special.
Cleveland is a city that loves sausage so Andrew begins his visit with a trip to a place that serves up some of the best. Andrew meets up with cookbook author, food writer, and Cleveland native Michael Ruhlman at the Katz Club Diner to sample their signature dish: the deep fried hot dog. It's delicious, but there's another Cleveland style sausage that Andrew needs to try so he and Michael head to Seti's, a food truck that's known for serving the best version of the city's most iconic sandwich. The Polish Boy is a kielbasa sausage that's grilled, then fried and topped with coleslaw, French fries, and barbecue sauce. It's a combination that Andrew enjoys much more than he expected!
Andrew gets another treat when he visits Ray's Sausage where he learns how they make their popular souse, a potted meat made from pig snouts, ears, and tongues. They use a secret family recipe that includes extra steps that make a final product that Andrew says is intensely porky, but not swine-y! The combination of the good food and this fun family makes Andrew realize just how much he loves his job!
Andrew's next stop is at Catanese Classic Seafood, a business along the banks of the Cuyahoga River that brings in five to ten thousand pounds of fish every week, mainly yellow perch. The big haul is a good sign that the river has rebounded from the pollution that took a toll back in the 1950's and 60's. Andrew gets to taste some of that yellow perch in all its glory when he attends a Friday night fish fry at The American Slovak Club in Lorain. A team of women in the kitchen puts plenty of tmie, hard work and love into making the dinner every Friday week. Andrew admits it's the best tasting fish fry he's ever had and their stuffed cabbage is also unbelievable!
At the West Side Market Andrew encounters vendors selling all kinds of food. After stopping at Frank's Bratwurst for their mainstay, he heads to Dohar Meat to try their traditional Hungarian Hurka, made from pork and liver cased in cow intestine. Fantastic! Afterwards, Andrew tries the famous beef jerky sold at Czuchraj Meats. It's already been recommended by TV Chef Michael Symon and Andrew agrees that it's amazing! Next, Andrew joins Chef Jonathon Sawyer to shop the market for fresh ingredients to serve in the dishes at his stand called Noodle Cat. Later, they whip up ramen made with lamb kidneys and chanterelles. Jonathon also invites Andrew to his home to show him they different varieties of vinegar that he's fermenting in his basement, including one made from $135 bottle of wine. Jonathon loves to experiment with food, which is evident on the menu at his restaurant Greenhouse Tavern where diners can order an entire pig head! Andrew digs into all the parts of the head, including the oyster, which is the cluster of muscles found behind the pig's eye.
Andrew finds out that's there's also plenty of beef in Cleveland when he meets the meat doctor. Dr. Phil Bass is a scientist trying to encourage people to eat more kinds of beef, like certified Black Angus that's been wet-aged instead of the more traditional dry-aged method. Andrew tastes the difference in the flavor and also gets his first taste of a Denver steak, which comes from the inner shoulder of the steer, a portion usually made into hamburger. Andrew calls it the greatest takeaway in meat he's had in a long time!
Finally, Andrew travels to the Chef's Garden, a farm near the shore of Lake Erie where they grow vegetables in the dark, including peas and sweet corn. Andrew makes some of the crops, including squash blossoms, into a dish to eat with Farmer Lee Jones. It's full fresh new flavor!
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