Bonnie and Barry Boyer, 72 and 75, of Nazareth, Penn., teach Mo about their unique Pennsylvania Dutch traditions, language and cuisine. The dishes Mo and the Boyers prepare are delicious but not exactly light, low calorie fare; buttery potato filling, shoofly pie and stuffed pig stomach. Luckily Barry, a legendary local High School basketball coach, helps Mo burn some calories on the court by putting him through his paces.
Grandma Suzanne Taylor, 61, of Marin County, Calif., came of age in the tumultuous 1960s. On this episode, Suzanne shows Mo how to forage for natural ingredients in the woods of Northern California. Suzanne and Mo find some stinging nettles for a nettle frittata with a potato crust, and later they search for trumpet mushrooms to make a hearty mushroom galette.
MGR's first Mexican Grandmother is Olga Gonzalez, 57, of San Mateo, Calif., and she's quite a live wire with an infectious laugh. Olga teaches Mo how to make delicious chicken enchiladas, while her husband, Carlos, shows Mo a few tips and tricks for making a great margarita. This episode also features a preview from an MGR-inspired "telenovela" and culminates in a Mexican fiesta.
If you have trouble remembering Ki Sook Yoo's name, this 72-year-old grandmother from Laguna Woods, Calif., suggests you think of the words "Kiss You!" Ki Sook's life story of survival is beyond inspiring, but also is her ability to prepare delicious Korean specialties. Ki Sook shows Mo how to make kimchi, a staple in Korean cuisine and one of the ingredients in Ki Sook's mung bean pancakes. The main course is classic Seoul food, galbi, traditional marinated grilled beef.
Mo meets the charming grandfather Dave Pearson, 75, who has been a chef with the Los Angeles Dodger organization for the past fifty years. Dave trains Mo to cook like a major leaguer without too many drops, errors or rookie mistakes. Dave shows Mo how to make his buddy Tommy Lasorda's favorite dish, lasagna, at Dodger Stadium, and later they prepare short ribs and green beans for a family dinner at his home. Mo also learns once and for all what getting to third base means.
In this episode, Mo is safe in the kitchen because both Sally Starin, 70, and June Ploch, 68, are nurses, living in Montclair, N.J. Sally is the head cook of the household, and she shows Mo how to make a delectable roast chicken with a three-nut stuffing and a colorful side dish of vegetable hash, while June supervises the frosting of a yummy marble cake.
In the tradition of Hollywood's glitziest leading ladies, Thelma Brelesky, 90, of Waterford, Conn., is ready for her close up. Since we're in New England, seafood is a must -- Mo and Thelma prepare jumbo shrimp stuffed with scallops and breadcrumbs. For dessert, Thelma shows Mo a bit of her Greek heritage by making traditional almond cookies called Kourabiedes. In addition to cooking, also Thelma teaches Mo how to swing dance, and stars in her very own pantyhose commercial!
Clida Ellison, 76, may live in Detroit, but this southern transplant prefers to cook the dishes she grew up with in her native town of Natchitoches, La. Mo learns how to make Clida's favorite Creole dishes; gumbo, pralines and stuffed crab.
George Martin, 79, is a Native American grandfather, he is of the Ojibwe Nation and lives in Hopkins, Mich. In this episode, George teaches Mo how to make a big pot of corn soup. Sound simple? Think again -- the first step in the recipe is to light a fire without a match. George teaches Mo that handy skill, along with many beautiful traditions of his people. George also plays a mean game of mini golf.
You haven't met anyone quite like Michele Riggi! Michele and her husband, Ron, built a 20,000 square foot castle made of stone on the main drag of Saratoga Springs, N.Y. Palazzo Riggi, as they call it, is complete with a giant pool, a Balinese Spa, eleven bathrooms, a movie theater and bowling alley. Oh yeah, and her forty beloved dogs with names like Andy Panda, Coco Chanel, and Vicente Fox. Michele is also a great cook and shows Mo how to make a delectable eggplant parmigiana and something special for the dogs, too.
Joenie Haas is an energetic, amiable, grandmother who cooks delicious and comforting dishes, straight from her log cabin on Milles Lacs Lake in Minnesota. The food she'll make is quite different from some of the things her son-in-law, Andrew Zimmern, is used to eating on his hit Travel Channel series "Bizarre Foods." When coming home after one of his crazy culinary adventures, there's nothing Andrew likes more than to sit down with a plate of Joenie's tater tot hot dish. On this episode, Joenie will introduce Mo the art of the "hot dish," as well as a delicious Jell-o salad and her traditional Christmas Jesus cake.
Grethe Petersen, 73, of Bloomington, Minn., has been called the Julia Child of Danish cooking. Grandma Grethe, Mo and her family are hosting a delightful, multi-course luncheon at the Danish Center -- and yes, the food will be traditional.
Aslaug Warmboe, 86, of Hastings, Minn., is originally from Iceland, in fact, on a recent trip to her homeland, she brought back some culinary specialties for Mo to taste. Traditional smoked lamb called Hangikjot, and some pickled shark with a chaser of the national liquor, Brennivin, are some of the delicacies Mo will try. Aslaug also teaches Mo how to make creamed potatoes, and a brown bread that in Iceland is traditionally baked for over two days with the heat of a natural spring. The episode culminates with a lovely family dinner complete with some traditional Icelandic outfits (but no Bjork swan dresses).
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