IMoM (1932): Riviera Salad (1968); Seabreeze Salad

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Mon Feb 9 02:14:03 UTC 2004


   I'm back at NYU with the ProQuest databases.  There are 68 hits in the NEW YORK TIMES.  The first is 1932; the next is 1997!

ALONG THE HIGHWAYS OF FINANCE.; Labor Day as a Mile-Stone in Wall Street -- Montagu Norman's Mysteries -- An Experiment With Labor.
By EUGENE M. LOKEY.. New York Times (1857-Current file). New York, N.Y.: Sep 4, 1932. p. F5 (1 page):
   Among bankers here there is no sympathy for Mr. Norman in his affectation of the role of international man of mystery.

2. Other 11 -- No Title
New York Times (1857-Current file). New York, N.Y.: Apr 27, 1997. p. H23 (1 page)


   Only four NEW YORK TIMES hits.

1. And Now -- Salad Days
By CRAIG CLAIBORNE. New York Times (1857-Current file). New York, N.Y.: Aug 13, 1961. p. SM69 (1 page):
_RIVIERA SALAD_, sometimes called salade Nicoise, is served here as the main course of a light supper.  The dish, which contains such Mediterranean specialties as tuna fish, anchovies, tomatoes, olives and olive oil, is well suited for informal summertime entertaining.  For an added touch of elegance, the meal is accompanied by a chilled white wine.  Recipes for this French dish and three other main-course salads are given on this page.

2. Pique-Nique' Is Almost a Way of Life
By CRAIG CLAIBORNE Special to The New York Times. New York Times (1857-Current file). New York, N.Y.: Feb 8, 1968. p. 46 (1 page):

3. Article 2 -- No Title
By ANN PRINGLE HARRIS. New York Times (1857-Current file). New York, N.Y.: Jun 26, 1988. p. XX12 (2 pages)

4. Warm Welcome, Soul-Satisfying Food
By JOANNE STARKEY. New York Times (1857-Current file). New York, N.Y.: Feb 16, 1997. p. LI27 (1 page)


   There are only two FACTIVA hits, but both are from Tampa.  Has it spread outside the Seabreeze Restaurant to become a genuine regional dish?

Eatery Favorites In Cookbook
579 words
27 February 2002
The Tampa Tribune
(Copyright 2002)

TAMPA - Dried sweet basil and dried oregano turned up often in dishes at the former Seabreeze restaurant.

Another flavoring was egg shade, a liquid coloring only found at a wholesale distributor, says Helen Richards, who, with husband Robert, wrote "The Seabreeze by the Bay Cookbook."

Basic recipes include such favorites as shrimp cocktail and seasoned salt.

Broiled Mullet, Robert's favorite fish dish, which became a favorite with shipyard customers, and Smoked Mullet Dip, a complimentary hors d'oeuvre served with crackers, made the book.

1/2 head iceberg lettuce, chopped

1/2 head Romaine lettuce, chopped

1/4 cup boiled ham, diced

1/4 cup Swiss cheese, diced

1/4 cup American cheese, diced

1/2 cup green bell pepper, diced

1/4 cup onion, diced

1 ripe tomato, diced

1/4 cup green pimento-stuffed olives

6 black olives

1 bunch celery hearts, chopped

Dried sweet basil

Parmesan cheese, grated

1 lemon, squeezed

Mix lettuces, ham and cheeses. Add remaining ingredients except Parmesan cheese and lemon. Just before serving, squeeze lemon over salad. Serve topped with Seabreeze Salad Dressing and Parmesan.


2 ounces olive oil

2 ounces vegetable oil

2 cloves garlic, crushed and minced

1 teaspoon oregano flakes

2 ounces red wine vinegar

Mix ingredients and let sit 2 hours before serving.

The Seabreeze: A New Chapter
mscourtes at
930 words
27 February 2002
The Tampa Tribune
(Copyright 2002)

Former owners of the restaurant compile recipes and the history of the closed Tampa landmark in a new cookbook.

TAMPA - Robert and Helen Richards were not on hand when the Seabreeze Restaurant opened, nor were they at the helm when it closed.

But they spent enough time running this Tampa landmark to fill a book with anecdotes and recipes.

Now, copies of their new book, "The Seabreeze by the Bay Cookbook" (American Printing USA, $14.95), are selling almost as fast as heads- on shrimp at Seabreeze Seafood, the market Robert and son Jimmy have operated for 35 years.

The 154-page book, published last month, is sprinkled with historical pictures of Tampa. The owners say they sold about 1,000 copies the first month.

Back in 1923, the Victor Licata family launched the restaurant before the 22nd Street Causeway was built. Customers would cross McKay Bay in rowboats to enjoy the fresh fish and shellfish from surrounding waters.

"The first menu featured anything that could be caught in the bay or woods," says Helen Richards.

Later, the menu evolved into a blend of Italian and Cracker cooking. Customers beat a path there for Miss Lucy Potatoes (homemade potato chips), crab Chilau (boiled blue crab in a spicy tomato sauce), steak Milanesa (thin steaks with spaghetti sauce), soft- shell crab and swamp cabbage.

Several generations celebrated birthdays, engagements and other special events there.

In 1992, when the Licata family decided to sell the Seabreeze, the Richardses learned they would have no place to keep their nearby fleet of shrimp, mullet and crab boats.

"We were fishermen. We had a fish market and no idea of ever becoming restaurateurs," recalls Helen.

The couple bought the place anyway with Robert becoming the cook and manager, and Helen "its grease."

"I was a little bit of everything that made everything run smooth," she quips.

The couple ran the restaurant for nine years, then sold it to a company that leased it to a Tampa caterer. The restaurant closed late last year, and the building is empty.

Helen Richards loved the Seabreeze's boliche (chorizo-stuffed eye of round), but the big draw was deviled crabs, she says.

"It [deviled crab] held the Seabreeze together for seventysomething years," she adds.

But you won't find that Licata family crab recipe here.

"If [it is published] in the newspaper, [people] won't buy the book," says Richards firmly.

Patricia O'Neal, a Seabreeze cook for six years, mixed up 60- pound batches of deviled crab at a time.

"Everything was from scratch," O'Neal says. "We didn't have anything that came out of cans or was frozen."

And customers came back for the same dishes, she says.

It took one year for Helen and Robert, along with historian Andrew T. Huse, to transcribe notes and recipes into the book. Longtime friend Medna Pritchett of Tampa, a Seabreeze customer for 30 years, proofread the recipes.

At the Seabreeze, customer loyalty was unequaled.

Tampa's Bob Clark Jr. recalls the Seabreeze as a good, convenient place to eat and take business guests. He ate at the Seabreeze every day for a dozen years during much of the '70s and '80s, he says.

Over boliche and Seabreeze salad, Clark and other board members of the Miss Tampa Scholarship Pageant sat at the same table to plan the annual event. Clark, the president of Tampa Steel Erecting, says he bought about 50 copies of the cookbook to give away.

The book is filled with fan letters and stories, such as one called "Beautiful Danger: The Waterspout," about the Richardses' daughter-in-law Donna and 2-year-old son being trapped inside a waterspout.

Riverview's Nancy Foley was moved by the Seabreeze history, especially the waterspout account.

"It was terrifying," says Foley, a senior administrative aid at Tampa Electric Co. in Apollo Beach.

Foley bought a copy of the cookbook and stayed up all night to finish it. Then she took it to work, and Seabreeze fever broke out.

"A lot of us are from the area. When they saw mine, they had to have their own," she says.

She went back for three dozen more.

"I went there as a teenager" in the late '60s. "I wasn't supposed to go there, but did," she says with a laugh.

Across the street was the Auto Park Drive-In, where "the rougher" boys hung out.

A Foley favorite is the Seabreeze salad, which was originally tossed at tables. Made with ham and Swiss cheese, it is among the recipes in the cookbook.

"It tastes just like I remember," she adds.

"The Seabreeze by the Bay Cookbook" is sold at Seabreeze Seafood, behind the restaurant, at 3609 Causeway Crescent, Tampa. Helen Richards is available to sign copies of her book in a nearby office through March. It's also sold at the Tampa Bay History Center downtown and will be in bookstores soon.


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