Tom Harte

Host - Caffé Concerto

Tom Harte is a retired faculty member from Southeast Missouri State University where he was an award-winning teacher, a nationally recognized debate coach, and chair of the department of Speech Communication and Theatre.

A founder of “My Daddy’s Cheesecake,” a bakery/café in Cape Girardeau, a  food columnist for The Southeast Missourian, and a cookbook author, he blends his passion for food with his passion for classical music in his daily program, The Caffe Concerto.

An inveterate traveler as well as a connoisseur of food and classical music, Tom has been to the five major continents and sailed the seven seas in search of great music and great cuisine, delicacies which he enjoys most when consumed simultaneously.  He also hosts A Harte Appetite.

Ways to Connect

Just about every major holiday in America is associated with its own signature version of what Jonathan Barlett, author of The Cook's Dictionary and Culinary Reference, calls those "sugary confections that feed our sweet tooth, rot our teeth and lift our spirits." At Christmas it's the candy cane, on Valentine's Day it's the chocolate heart, for Easter it's Marshmallow Peeps and come Halloween it's candy corn.

flickr user Eelke (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)

I’m sure you are familiar with Gouda cheese, arguably Holland’s most famous, accounting for over fifty percent of the total production of cheese in that country and these days as ubiquitous, even in this country, as Kraft singles.

I too am familiar with the cheese and have been enjoying it all my life.  But recently I discovered, upon visiting the Dutch city from which the cheese gets its designation, that for all these years I have been mispronouncing its name.  The locals call it “how-da”, not “goo-da.”

flickr user U.S. Department of Agriculture (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)

Long before it began asking, “Got Milk?” the Dairy Association used to tout milk as “Mother Nature’s most nearly perfect food.”  The slogan always made sense to me, especially those days when after I got home from school my mother would fix me a tall glass of chocolate milk.  Without the chocolate, milk was only nearly perfect.  With it, it could not be improved.

I was moved recently to think back on those memories and wonder, is chocolate milk really be just for kids?

flickr user uzi978 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/)

Recently the Ritz, the most famous hotel in the world, reopened its doors after a $450 million renovation.  Situated on Paris’ Place Vendôme, where dukes and princes used to live, the accommodation is no less palatial than any royal residence and those who are able to afford a room there (running as high as $25,000 a night) surely must feel like a king or a queen, which was the goal of the hotel’s founder, César Ritz.

flickr user Timothy Tsui (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/)

"A handful of couscous is better than Mecca and all its dust." So says a famous Moroccan proverb about almsgiving.

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