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A future Food Boy in the making

I do believe we have a little Food Boy in the making.

Although my three sons all enjoy helping me out in the kitchen, middle guy Isaac is the one who has taken a real interest in cooking. He's always enjoyed food unlike anyone I've ever seen and can seriously put away the goods.

But now Isaac also gets a charge out of making the food he consumes.

It started with me asking him to pitch in preparing meals, and then progressed to him volunteering his services. Now he's collecting (and creating!) his own recipes. And asking ME to step in when he needs me.

He's 7. I'm in heaven.

Lately, Isaac has developed a culinary crush on the Food Network's "Hungry Girl" (Lisa Lillien) and has taken to recording and watching her shows. He'll sit on the couch — remote in one hand, pencil in the other — and write down the recipes she shares, dutifully pausing and rewinding every few minutes to make sure he gets it just right.

After a recent show on "Movie Night" snacks, he put his research to work and prepared a full spread for the family. We munched on Chili Cheese Dog Nachos, Chewy S'mores Snack Mix and Cherry Lemonade Super Slushies, his favorite recipes from that episode.

And while that's not the healthiest dinner around, I do applaud Lisa's commitment to calorie cutting. She always substitutes lower sugar/fat ingredients to create kid-approved recipes that are indulgent but less destructive on the ol' diet.

Check her out at www.

hungry-girl.com.

Isaac's latest creation occurred this past Friday when he came home from school determined to make the family dessert that night.

That's great, I said. Where did you find this recipe?

"I made it up."

Nice!

Then he proceeded to get out five small dessert cups, which he filled with alternating layers of Nutella, whipped cream, cake icing and crushed graham crackers. ("I'd prefer Nilla Wafers," he said, frowning, "but I'll make this work.") For a finishing touch, he perched a tall rolled cookie straw in each dish.

It was a nice-looking parfait, I must say. But unlike the Hungry Girl, he didn't cut any sugary corners and served us something lethally sweet.

My stomach tried to have words with me afterward, but I told it to hush. We have a little Food Boy in the making, and his creativity must not be crushed.

Atta' boy, Isaac!

***

Charleston reader Bedell Binford wrote in to say how much he enjoyed last week's column on German food — and to ask for a little help.

"I savored your article in today's Daily Mail on your 'Blocktoberfest,' " he said. "We need a German restaurant in the Charleston area! Could you possibly encourage a promoter to invest in one?"

Oh, how I wish I had that kind of pull. But I guess it never hurts to ask.

Anyone out there have a stash of cash burning a hole in their pocket? If you'd like to use it to open a new German restaurant in town, my new friend Bedell and I will be the first in line.

***

A homegrown talent has been named Stonewall Resort's new executive chef.

Elkins native Tim White earned his food and beverage management degree at Davis & Elkins College before heading off to the New England Culinary Institute in Vermont, which led him to externships at fine-dining restaurants in Boston and Chicago.

That's when he met his wife, Erin, and the two of them soon ran a small B&B in her lakeside hometown in Northern Michigan, earning many awards and lots of press in the process. After six years there, the couple returned to West Virginia, where Tim became executive chef at The Food Guy-favorite, but now sadly missed, Tavern 1785 in Lewisburg.

Next came culinary stints in Charlottesville, back to his alma mater at Davis & Elkins and in Southern West Virginia, where he led The Food Guy-favorite, and still enjoyed, Smoky's on the Gorge.

It's been quite a journey, but Tim's now settling in at the Lewis County property and says he's excited about blending his culinary experiences with the resort's authentic Appalachian cuisine.

"With fresh regional produce — some from Stonewall Resort's own garden — and a dedicated culinary team, I look forward to crafting dining experiences to delight and excite our guests."

And as someone who has followed his career (and tasted his work) at various statewide culinary events, I'm excited to see what he has in store as well.

Contact writer Steven Keith at dailymailfoodguy@aol.com or 304-348-1721. You can also follow him on Facebook and Pinterest as "DailyMail FoodGuy," on Twitter as "DMFoodGuy" or read his blog at http://blogs.dailymail.com/foodguy/.


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