Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Mourning Chef Harv

Chef Harv died before I got to make his acquaintance. Harvey Christie could've gone quite far, but was just getting companies and concepts off the ground when he crashed his van in December 2006 and died. He had founded a gourmet company in the Eastern Panhandle that served The Greenbrier Resort among others. But his most intriguing concept was a company that handled the overhead for people who wanted to make and package their own products to sell. For example, let's say I had what I thought was a great recipe for Granny's apple butter but opening a commercial kitchen and getting the proper permits was too overwhelming. I could call Harvey Christie's Gourmet Central, take my apples and spices to their kitchen and use their equipment to prepare, package and even label my product before marketing it. Harv's wife and partner are still running it last I heard.

What got me thinking about Chef Harv? I caught a 15-minute cooking show he hosted on our local public television station. I don't know if he was the only host of "Easy Bites" but it seemed like he was. He gave two quick kid-friendly recipes, fitness tips on a kid level like "go outside and jump rope or run around to get your energy out and you won't have any trouble being sleepy at bedtime" and book recommendations. I fell in love with him and missed him severely when Arabella and I caught an episode about bedtime snacks recently. I wish I had written down the recipe for these scone-like creations that combined bits of cooked turkey breast with cranberries, sage, a few kinds of cheese and baking mix like Bisquick. He said he liked to take them on fishing trips. But the second recipe I do remember and it is simple and can be served hot or cold.

Take a cup of apple juice and a chamomile tea bag.
Have a grown-up help you heat the apple juice. Steep the tea bag in the warm apple juice for 10 minutes or so. Drink.
OR pour into Popsicle molds and insert sticks. Freeze. Eat one before bed on a warm night.

I have e-mailed the station for the turkey biscuit recipe. If I receive it, I'll post it. I may just have to fiddle with it till I figure it out.

The recipes from the 2006 season of Christie's main show "WV Cooks" are still on the station's Web site. On that show, Harv had guest chefs from around the state join him to make something.

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