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Everything posted by zora

  1. When all else fails, blame it on the Yucatecans. That would be my guess, what with the hard-cooked egg on top. And the cream seems somehow to fit in with other Euro-influenced stuff. On the other hand, it's a recipe from 1964, so who the hell knows what passed for "Mexican" in those days! Just look at "Chinese" from the 60s...
  2. In the Yucatan, I think the most common torta is grilled chicken, with lots of avocado and _tons_ of mayonnaise. I swear, the US and Mexico did a condiment swap a while back--there's definitely more mayo than salsa consumed in the Yucatan. (Not that I'm complaining! I love the stuff.) Sometimes tomato, hardly ever beans. And the bread is the bolillo, with some of the soft part removed. And it's pretty much never toasted. Sounds dull compared to some of the others described, but it's really delicious. I find the tortas I get here in my nabe in NYC are ginormous compared to the Yucatecan ones. Don't know if that's regional (guys here are from Puebla), or the everything's-bigger-in-America effect. The tacos are overstuffed too.
  3. Am I too late? Have you gone? Merida isn't "big city"-feeling at all--you would never guess a million people live there. The center is very compact and tidy, and you can wander around easily--no street hassle. In Campeche, there are two exceptionally delicious places to eat: one is called La Pigua (though when I was there last, it was being remodeled, and everything had moved next door to a place called Sir Francis Drink...tee hee). It's just north of the center, outside the old walls--head up C/8. Excellent seafood. Very popular. The other awesome place, much simpler and cheaper, is La Parroquia, just off the plaza on C/55--open 24hrs, big airy diner feel. All tasty. In Merida, see above (El Marlin Azul), and also go to Parque Santiago at night for snacks--a little bit west of the center, at C/70. There are a couple of snack joints open for panuchos and salbutes. In Cancun, go to Parque de las Palapas downtown and just snack a lot there. Heck, even the taco carts in front of the bus station are good. And there's a very cute lunch place called La Lomita in Isla Mujeres, and a couple good ceviche places on the beach right next to the ferry dock.
  4. Indeed, that's what's in it. Mostly lime juice, then a couple dashes of W'shire and Tabasco (or similar) to taste. Lots of salt on the rim, and ice. Maybe I'm a wuss, but I prefer the plain old chelada--just the lime and salt. Or maybe it's just that you can drink more of those. The michelada always feels a bit like an appetizer, rather than a drink. edited to add: This is in the Yucatan, I should specify. And come to think of it, I've seen Maggi used also.
  5. Saveur, May 2006 First: James Oseland loves lemons, especially the Meyers. Fare: Corn Tapas, Anyone? Lisa Abend reports on Spaniards’, especially Asturians’, adoption of corn in cuisine. Act I: Cue Fork: The Grid Iron Theatre Company does food-based productions. By Evan Rail Recipe: Revuelto de Cebolla y Cabrales Sobre Tortos Crujiente de Maiz (corn cakes with eggs scrambled with onions and cabrales) Jersey Pride: Trenton’s hometown hero is hickory-smoked “pork roll” sausage. By Rick Nichols Funky Fish: Sushi’s ancestor, funa-zushi, is a fermented delicacy. By Hiroko Shimbo Pass the Shredded Wheat Pilaf, Please: Breakfast cereal recipes collected in The Breakfast Cereal Gourmet, by David Hoffman. By Kate Fox Recipe: Roasted Poblano Meat Loaf Agenda: Asparagus Festival in Schwetzingen, Germany, on May 6; Festival of San Isidro May 10–20 in Madrid; Seattle Cheese Festivel May 13–14; Hadong Mountain Dew Tea Festival in Korea, May 18–21; Mike’s Festival, celebrating a headless chicken, in Fruita, Colo., May 19–20; anniversary of H.M.S. Salisbury scurvy test, May 20, 1747; Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit born May 24, 1686, in Gdansk; Kodiak Crab Festival May 25–29 in Alaska One Good Bottle: Shenandoah Vineyards Rezerve Barbera 2003 ($24): “big, brawling and manly….” Book Review: Margo True reviews Mangoes & Curry Leaves: Culinary Travels Through the Great Subcontinent, by Jeffrey Alford and Naomi Duguid, and finds it engagingly written and informative, with adventurous recipes, if occasionally confusing in its use of photos and first-person narrative. Recipe: Shallot Sambhar The Saveur List: 7 Doughnut Shops. By John T. Edge Kitchenwise: The Simple Life: Deborah Madison’s tiny kitchen in Galisteo, N.M., is brightly colored and open to the seating area. By Kathleen Brennan Cellar: Out of the Damp Albariño, from lush, green Galicia, is a savory, acidic and sometimes very serious wine. By John Winthrop Haeger Tasting notes: 12 albariños/alvarinhos from Spain, Portugal and California, from Condes de Albarei 2004 ($15; “intense, soft, polished, persistently peachy”) to Havens Carneros Napa Valley Albariño 2005 ($24; “very tight, intense, masculine and mineral rich, with a dry, grippy finish”). Source: Come and Take It is a classic Lone Star cocktail mix. By Kathleen Brennan Reporter: A Corsican Passion: An annual competition honors the French island’s traditional cheese makers. By Marie-Pascale Lescot Classic: Mediterranean Roll: Dolmades are a Greek taverna standby. By Diane Kochilas Recipe: Dolmades (grape leaves stuffed with rice and raisins) North Island Bounty: The Matakana farmers’ market, in New Zealand’s northern reaches, is a treasury of fresh, flavorful foodstuffs—and a reminder to locals of just how lucky they are. By Caroline Campion Recipes: Macadamia-Crusted Lamb with Honeygar Reduction Green Bean and Radish Salad Muesli Cockle Fritters with Aioli Blueberry Brioche Zucchini Tart with Feta Sidebar: Kiwi Queen Bee: BeesOnline is a resto, shop and honey production center in Waimauku The Guide: Where to stay and eat and what to do in Matakana Land of Lemons: The citrus groves of Italy’s Sorrento Peninsula produce an intensely aromatic fruit that’s at the heart of many of the region’s favorite foods. By Lorraine Alexander Recipes: Insalata di Limoni e Buccia di Arancia (lemon salad with orange zest) Pollo al Limone (grilled chicken with lemon leaves) Limoncello (lemon liqueur) Risotto al Limone (lemon risotto) Concerto di Sapori e Profumi al Limone (lemon custard with dried lemon slices and lemon fritters) Mozzarella al Limone (mozzarella grilled with lemon leaves) Sidebar: Where to stay and eat and what to do in the Sorrento Peninsula and Capri Pork Chops in Paradise: Honolulu’s Side Street Inn plays host to some of Oahu’s greatest chefs—and some of its best meals. By Shane Mitchell Recipes: Side Mui (cocktail) Lilikoi Baby Back Ribs Fried Rice Furikake-Crusted Ahi with Spicy Mustard Drizzle Macaroni Salad Panfried Pork Chops Pocho Clams Mackerel Punts and Pilchards: Fishing is a way of life in the village port of Newlyn, on Cornwall’s rocky coast. By Megan Wetherall Recipes: Fish Cakes Crab Sandwiches Saffron Buns Cornish Pasties Fish Pie The Guide: Where to stay and eat and what to do in Newlyn In the Saveur Kitchen: versatile NZ corn relish goes in toast; all about lemon leaves; li hing mui is ground from dried plum flavored with salt, licorice and saccharine Recipe: Corn Relish Moment: cowboy extras, and Iron Eyes Cody, take a lunch break at the Universal Studios commissary
  6. Saveur, April 2006 First: James Oseland praises old-school French restaurants, where he learned to eat like a grown-up. Fare: Campus Chow: Food carts near college campuses serve everything from bulgogi to “poor man’s pizza.” By JJ Goode Spiny Wonder: Prickly-pear paddles are essential to Mexican cuisine, and they’re not impossible to prepare at home. By Jennifer Acosta Scott Recipe: Nopales Salad with Jalapeño Dressing Googledy-Gook: Colman Andrews feeds foreign recipes through the insta-translator. Hilarity ensues. Pacific Paella: A bizarre restaurant in Tonga conjures Spain, sort of. By Belle Caseres Cholesterol Special: how to make Uncle John’s easter pizza rustica. By Marc Vassallo Recipe: Pizza Rustica Agenda: Lamb Cook-Off in Vail, Colo, April 5; National Grits Festival in Warwick, Ga., April 8; Viernes Santo / Good Friday in Cuzco, Peru, April 14; anniversary of the Dagwood Sandwich, April 16, 1936; Sugar Festival in Clewiston, Fla., April 22; SAgra del Carciofo Romanesco, roman artichoke fest in Ladispoli, Italy, April 21–23; Justin “I gar-on-tee” Wilson born April 24, 1914; La Fete de la Coquille St-Jacques, St-Quay-Portrieux, France April 29–30 One Good Bottle: Ahcaval Ferrer Quimera 2003 ($38), a malbec blend that’s “luscious with opulently rounded fruit” Book Review: Kelly Alexander reviews the new edition of Paula Wolfert’s The Jewish Kitchen, by Clarissa Hyman and Peter Cassidy: a good effort at a near-impossible task, with some imprecision and odd shifts in tone. Buy it for the stories as much as for the recipes. On a side note: Matzoh Ball Gumbo: Culinary Tales of the Jewish South, by Cohen Ferris, is an excellent study. Recipe: Jennifer Hyman’s Beet Jam Kitchenwise: Fiona and Gordon Hamersley redid their kitchen after 11 years: two sinks, all utensils hung on S-hooks, and soapstone counters. By Kathleen Brennan Cellar: Swashbuckler Madiran is the dark, spicy, tannic expression of the French southwest. By John Winthrop Haeger Tasting notes: 10 madirans from France, plus two tannat-based bottles, one from Uruguay and one from California: Chateau de Perron 2001 ($13) is “fruit-sweet on the palate, with a blackberry and graphite core,” while Chateau Montus Cuvée Prestige 2002 ($60) has “nutty highlights, leading to bright grape-cherry flavors with hints of citrus peel” Memories: Jean Freas reminisces about her life with sculptor David Smith, who always carried a head of garlic in his breast pocket, and the remarkable meals he used to cook for her. Drink: Campbeltown Original In Scotland’s “other” whisky region, Springbank does everything its own way. By Colman Andrews Source: Destino alfajores recreate the dulce de leche richness of this South American classic. Order from Gump’s San Francisco. By Kathleen Brennan Classic: Wings of Desire: Spicy and addictive, Buffalo wings are serious business in their hometown. By Denise Mickelsen Recipe: Buffalo Wings The Flavors of Home At the trattorias of Florence, locals and visitors alike eat simply, heartily, and extremely well. By Lori Zimring de Mori Recipes: Arista di Maiale (roasted herb-stuffed pork loin) Fagioli Sgranati (white beans with sage) Piselli Freschi (fresh peas with prosciutto) Pappa al Pomodoro (bread and tomato soup) Insalata di Trippa (cold tripe salad) Pappardelle all’Anatra (broad noodles with duck sauce) Fritto Misto di Coniglio e Verdure (fried rabbit and vegetables) The Guide: where to stay and eat and what to do in Florence The World of Hummus From cafes in Jericho to suburban party platters, the alchemic mixture of chickpeas, lemon juice, sesame paste, and garlic is a savory staple. By Alia Yunis Recipes: Hummus bi Tahini (hummus with sesame paste) Hummus ma Lahma (hummus with ground beef) Black Bean Hummus Masbaha (hummus with whole chickpeas) Vive le Restaurant Manhattan’s Le Veau d’Or is an unapologetic reminder of the day when fine dining meant wine sauces and white gloves. By James Villas Recipes: Poussins en Cocotte “Bonne Femme” (poussins with bacon and mushroom sauce) Celeri Remouldade (celeriac salad) Escalopines de Veau (veal scallops with lemon-parsley sauce) Tripes a la Mode de Caen (stewed tripe with calvados) Oeufs a la Neige (floating island) Sidebar: Keepers of the Flame: some other throwback French restaurants in NYC. By Sarah DiGregorio The End of Smorrebrod? The traditional Danish feast of “buttered bread” sandwiches—which are in fac hearty, varied knife-and-fork extravaganzas—is an endangered culinary tradition. By Regina Schrambling [whose knack for the negative is still strong] Recipes: Roget al Smorrebrod (smoked eel smorrebrod) Sommer Kartoffel Smorrebrod (summer potato smorrebrod) Rejer og Aeg Smorrebrod (shrimp and egg smorrebrod) Princess Alexandra Smorrebrod (salmon and wasabi cream cheese smorrebrod) Gravad Helleflynder (fennel-cured halibut) Gravad Helleflynder Smorrebrod (fennel-cured halibut smorrebrod) Roastbeef Smorrebrod med Remoulade (roast beef smorrebrod with remoulade sauce) Ansjos Smorrebrod (anchovy smorrebrod) Th Guide: where to stay and eat and what to do in Copenhagen In the Saveur Kitchen: pickled turnips are a standard Middle Eastern side; homemade pita is easy; rabbit stock uses up the bits from fritto misto Recipes: Lifit (pickled turnips) Khubz ’aadi (pita bread) Rabbit Stock Moment: stilt-wearing street performers snack on the Ramblas in Barcelona
  7. Saveur, March 2006 First: Colman Andrews says, well, duh, of course he’s part Irish. Fare: Move Over, Cheesecake: Cake Man Raven of Brooklyn makes a mean red-velvet cake. His customers, some famous, “don’t want no muffins.” By Jaime Joyce Recipe: Red Velvet Cake From Obscurity to Kansas State: Food writer Clementine Paddleford’s papers are ready to be examined at Kansas State University. By Kelly Alexander For Your Delectation: new culinary-themed cinema: Work the Line, perhaps? Or Fatback Mountain? Hmm, no byline on this one. Vincente Generoso: Cook, writer and character actor Vincente Schiavelli died of lung cancer the day after Christmas 2005. By Colman Andrews. Mad for Manti: Margo True loves the Turkish dumplings, and visits a manti sweatshop. Recipe: Manti (Turkish dumplings with yogurt sauce) Agenda: apple and grape harvest festival in Stanthorpe, Australia; 800-foot-long lunch table in Napier, NZ; Kona brewers fest, Hawaii; In Vino wine fest in Belgrade; Catfish fest in Washington, La.; Forrest Edward Mars born March 21, 1904; Oyster Olympics in Seattle; fugu arrived in the US, March 29, 1989 One Good Bottle: Louis M. Martini Alexander Valley cabernet sauvignon reserve 2001 ($35): rich velvety texture and “the scent of a suede-lined leather cuff link box.” Book Review: Shane Mitchell reviews the new edition of Paula Wolfert’s The Cooking of Southwest France and loves it—it’s not for anyone look for anything quick or easy, though. A whole section is devoted to cassoulet. Recipe: Gateau de Cuisse de Poulette aux Pommes de Terre et aux Artichauts (chicken, potato and artichoke cake) The Saveur List: 10 chocolates, all American, including that fantastic Recchiuti business. By Sierra Burnett Kitchenwise: California transplants to the Hudson River Valley install a waist-high fireplace, inspired by The Magic of Fire, by William Rubel. Cellar: Lean Vintages The wines of the East Coast have…well, possibilities. By Michael Steinberger Tasting notes: 12 wines from Pa., Conn., R.I., N.J., and Mass., from Sakonnet Vineyards (R.I.) Vidal Blanc 2004 ($11; “lean and taut in the mouth….Quite nice.”) to Chaddsford Winery (Pa.) Merican 2001 ($40; unusual Bordeaux blend with “sweet tobacco…cherry, mint, and tree bark….A little too spicy…”) Source: Rising C Ranches delivers super-ripe, specialty citrus. By Kathleen Brennan Classic: Burnt OfferingL “Cajun” blackened redfish is a deliciously charred treat. By Pableaux Johnson Recipe: Blackened Redfish Ireland from Farm to Fork Salmon, lamb, and farmhouse cheese; innovative chefs; one of the world’s great cooking schools; delicate whiskey and hearty ale… If you’ve got an appetite, the Irish are ready for you. By Colman Andrews Recipes: Irish Stew Colcannon Lamb’s Liver with Whiskey and Cream Fried Cooleeney Cheese with Beet Salad Special sections: County Cork: Food Capital: Its population of individualistic food-loving artisan-entrepreneurs and chefs has made this big, rich southern Irish county a gastronomic mecca. Recipes: Nettle Soup Spinach, Red Onion, and Coolea Cheese Tartlets with Parsley-Walnut Pesto and Olive-Crushed Potatoes Corned Beef with Parsley Sauce, Champ, Mashed Carrots and Parsnips, and Broccoli Panfried Sole with Garlic Butter Seaweed and Cheese: Maja Binder and Olivier Beaujouon forage for seaweed and handcraft cheese. Recipe: Carrageen Lemon Pots Heart and Hearth: “Ballymaloe” is the magic word in Irish food today—the name of both Ireland’s most influential restaurant and its finest cooking school. Recipes: Doris Grant’s Brown Bread Hot Buttered Lobster Ireland’s Perfect Condiment: The incredible richness and special character of Irish butter. A Kid from the Country: One of Galway’s great culinary assets is chef turned writer Gerry Galvin, who has been called the father of Ireland’s traditional-cooking revival. Recipes: Mussel and Oyster Hot Pot Tipsy Puddings with Mulled Wine Sidebar: Reinventing the Butcher Shop: James McGeough does a “prosciutto” of lamb The Chef and His Material: At Chapter One, Ross Lewis turns the best Irish products into food both refined and homey Recipes: Cauliflower Soup with Potato Emulsion and Crozier Blue Cheese Rhubarb Financiers with Vanilla Ice Cream and Poached Rhubarb Turnip and Brown Bread Soup Sidebar: Taking Ireland Organic: a slow process, introduced by foreigners Sidebar: The Wine of the Country: stout and whiskey Sidebar: Otto Kunze of Otto’s Creative Catering is a farmer-restaurateur The Guide: where to stay and eat in Ireland Calypso, Sequins, and Spice Driven by rhythm and fed by roti, pelau, and curried pork, all of Trinidad turns out for Carnival. By Lucretia Bingham Recipes: Geera Pork (curried pork) Buss-Up-Shut (griddle-cooked flatbread) Goat Curry Chadon Benny Sauce (culantro sauce) Chicken Pelau Sidebar: Party Music: all about calypso The Guide: where to stay and eat and what to do in Trinidad In the Saveur Kitchen: the difference between colcannon and champ, and what to do with leftovers; easy home bread the Irish way; details on culantro (Eryngium foetidum), by Sarah Breckenridge; Trinidadian kucheela blows char away, by James Osland Recipe: Colcannon Cakes Pint-Glass Bread Mango Kucheela (shredded mango pickle) In the Saveur Library: Callaloo, Calypso & Carnival, by Dave DeWitt and Mary Jane Wilan, gives geography and history along with recipes; Myrtle Allen’s Cooking at Ballymaloe House, by Myrtle Allen (Stewart, Tabori & Chang, 2000), is loyal to Irish tradition. Moment: two women enjoy sandwiches while waiting under the hairdryers in 1965 South Carolina
  8. Don't miss ceviche at El Marlin Azul--it's on C 62 (I think)--if you're on the plaza facing north, go north on the street running out of the left side. It's only open till 4pm, and doesn't have much of a sign (look for a blue awning--long counter inside; next door north is also theirs, a little unmarked dining room). Freshest ceviche I had in the Yucatan, even better than places on the coast...go figure.
  9. I haven't taken classes there, but I have seen the place, and the chef seems great and enthusiastic. To my knowledge from researching travel guides, it's the only really organized cooking class you can get in the Yucatan anyway. (I think I heard about some more casual things in Playa del Carmen, but maybe that was a one-off deal, and some language schools in Merida will tack on a pretty impromptu cooking class if you ask.) If Yucatecan food is new to you, I'd imagine this would be a great experience.
  10. Saveur, February 2006 The Saveur 100 First: Colman Andrews reports that Edible Ojai’s inclusion in the Saveur 100 two years ago inspired numerous spinoffs. Fare: The Fabulous Baker Boys: Four friends from Belgrade run Pain d’Avignon in Cape Cod. By Amy Wilensky Family Style: Shelley Pannill Stein praises family cookbooks, especially one she received from her sisters and mother as a wedding present. Recipe: Detering Ranch Pecans Sidebar: Making Books: Resources for designing your own family cookbook Don’t Bogart Those Zonkers, My Friend: Colman Andrews discovers the classic stoner snack is back on the shelves. What? No Big Gulp? Taiwan’s 7-Eleven stores dish up excellent hot lunches, even Chinese New Year feasts. By Rich Lang Agenda: Niagara icewine festival; Hershey Co. est. Jan. 15, 1894; Benjamin Franklin born Jan. 17—but what year?; Mendocino crab and wine days; Pies on Parade in Rockland, Me.; Pahimis coffee festival in the Philippines; black truffle fest in Norcia, Italy; Ybor City, Fla., celebrates Cuban heritage; One Good Bottle: Simsonig Chenin Blanc 2005 ($9), from Stellenbosch, is reminiscent of apricot nectar. Book Review: Diane Kochilas reviews three new books on Spanish cuisine: Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America, by Jose Andres, The Cuisines of Spain: Exploring Regional Home Cooking, by Teresa Barrenechea, and The New Spanish Table, by Anya von Bremzen. Andres’s book does a good job bringing restaurant cuisine home, while Barrenechea’s tome is a solid, almost scholarly reference. But von Bremzen’s best combines the two trends. Recipes: Gildas (Basque skewers, from von Bremzen) Flan (caramel custard, from Barrenechea) Butifarra amb Mongetes del Ganxet (Catalan pork sausage with white beans, from Andres) Cellar: Bierzo Rising Meet some of Spain’s best new red wines. By Roger Morris Tasting notes: 12 wines from the Bierzo region, from Pago de Valdoneje 2003 ($12; “bright cherry and hemp aromas…a brambly, brulee finish”) to Paixar 2002 ($87; “rich, chalky, and showing a cherry flavor with white pepper underneath”). Kitchenwise: Mexico in Manhattan: Zarela Martinez designed the floor plan of her kitchen to welcome guests but keep them from getting in the way. Bright colors and painted tiles set the tone. Memories: Viola, the Souffle! Dale M. Brown recalls working on the Time-Life Books Foods of the World series between 1968 and 1971. Recipe: Souffle au Grand Marnier Classic: Pillows of Bliss: New Mexican sopaipillas are irresistible. By Cheryl J. Foote Recipe: Sopaipillas (New Mexican beignets) The Saveur 100: favorite restaurants, food, drink, people, places, and things. French farm resto La Chassagnette gets the lead; other highlights include NZ pohutukawa honey, Istanbul’s Ciya resto, Ikea food, the book Hungry Planet, fallenfruit.org, and New Orleans. (What’s with those dorky “Fusion Fun” symbols?) Recipes: South Indian Squid Fry Beef Tenderloin Fried with Black Pepper Sauce (Singapore Cantonese–style) Goan Avocado Salad (from Floyd Cardoz at Tabla) Huevos “Hacienda de Puebla” (eggs with tomatoes, black beans, and poblanos, from Mexico City breakfast spot El Cardenal) Southern Chopped Salad (from Jim ‘n’ Nick’s Bar-B-Q in Birmingham) Cranberry Pudding Perde Pilavi (pilaf “veiled” in a pastry crust, from Ciya) Parmentier de Porc Confit aux Oignons (“cottage pie” of pork confit with onions, from Le Timbre in Paris) Ricotta Gnocchi with Spinach, Chanterelles, and Parmigiano-Reggiano (from Alex in the Wynn Las Vegas) Hoedeopbap (Korean-style raw fish with rice and vegetables) Fried Duck Eggs Cheese Popovers (from BLT Steak) Philly Cheesesteak Spring Roll (from the Four Seasons in Philadelphia) Gazdag Ember Batyul (Hungarian “rich man’s purses” filled with paprika chicken) Galletas de Encurtidos (olive tuiles, from El Bohio in La Mancha) Sawagani (fried Japanese freshwater hard-shell crabs) Fritada (Ecuadoran fried pork with traditional accompaniments) Du-Par’s Steak Pot Pie (from Du-Par’s in LA) Chocolate Pithiviers (from Roast Chicken and Other Stories, by Simon Hopkinson with Lindsey Bareham) In the Saveur Kitchen: versatile lotus root; best molds for flan; duck eggs. Recipe: Lotus Root Chips Moment: a ladies’ picnic lunch on the Baltic, with blinis and vodka
  11. I talked to my friend again, and she says maryameh is sage...does that sound right? I've never heard of sage having any particular qualities for women's health, though. I can see how it would make a good tea...
  12. Thanks, everyone! Someone else did email me to say he thought hindaba was chicory as well. I'll have to look into this mariamia thing. My friend said she was served black tea with mariamia in it by some Palestinian militia leader, and it was the best tea she'd ever tasted, so he went out to the yard and picked big bunches of it for her. Hot-cha-cha...
  13. I got in a long, confusing conversation last night about greens, complicated by my never having learned the Arabic words for these things and the other person not knowing any English words for them, and also not having been on hand in the kitchen to see a lot of them raw. We tried looking through the Chef Ramzi cookbook for pics, but no luck. The main confusing ones: Hindaba' Baqli (?) And if neither of those are purslane, how do you say purslane in Arabic? And there's some kind of herb/green you put in tea called something like marharam? Marhamia? It's already slipping away... Any help greatly appreciated!
  14. winesonoma, your real-time reports are giving me little post-traumatic stress fits. Glad to hear you got some real produce, though, and good luck with the new joint.
  15. Here's the Mit'in Shiro recipe I described above. Presumably, you could just leave out the berbere to make the non-hot version? Or maybe leave out all the spices and just grind up the toasted peas? I tried to clarify the directions, but I didn't change the proportions, of course. This cookbook hasn't really been vetted for consistency... 1/2 c. split chickpeas 3 c. split peas 1/2 c. split lentils 1/2 c. split fava beans Roast these and set aside. 2 tbsp. garlic, chopped 2 tbsp. ginger, chopped 1 c. onions, chopped "Place...on a pan and toast it in a low heat until dry." Hmm. 1/3 c. rue seed (tena adam) 1 tbsp. fenugreek 1 tbsp. basil (besobila) [[unclear if this is seed or leaf]] 1 tbsp. cardamom 1 tbsp. coriander [[seeds, I guess?]] salt to taste Toast all these for about 2 minutes. Mix everything together with 1 c. berbere and pound to a fine powder. This mixture is then ready to make Yemitin Shiro We't: For 2 servings: 2 tbsp Mitin Shiro (above) --Mix with 1 c. water, stirring to remove lumps 2 shallots, chopped 2 tbsp. vegetable oil --Cook in a saucepan for 3 minutes. Add 2 c. water and bring to boil. Pour in shiro mixture, stirring continuously. Let simmer for 30 mins until thick and smooth. That sounds very weird--2 tbsp. of powdered peas dissolved in 3 c. of water? Hmm. Then there's the recipe for Yeshiro We't, which I'm transcribing word for word, because the instructions are open to interpretation... For 5 servings: 4 tbsp. powdered peas [[not spicy, I'm guessing]] 3 c. water 1/2 c. onion, chopped 1/2 c. vegetable oil salt to taste 1 tbsp. ginger, diced 1 tbsp. garlic, diced 2 tbsp. berbere 1 tbsp. key we't kemem [[a whole other recipe: 1/2 lb. ajwain seed (nech azmud), 1/2 lb. black cumin (tiqur azmud), 2 tbsp. dry ginger, 2 tbsp. dry garlic, 3 tbsp. cardamom...but I doubt you want a whole pound of the stuff]] --Cook onion until soft and brown, add water to prevent burning or sticking. --Add garlic, ginger, berbere, key we't kemem and oil, stirring constantly for 10 minutes at low temperature. --Add 3 c. of water and wait until boil. --In a small bowl, mix powdered peas with water until thick and smooth. --Simmer for about 40 minutes in a very low heat stirring occasionally. --Remove from heat let it stand. Refrigerate. Ay yi yi. The pic that accompanies is a very dark brown. By contrast, on the next page is the recipe for Yeshiro Alich'a We't, which is yellowish, and differs only in the last ingredient: 1/2 tbsp. alecha we't kemem, which is 1/2 lb. dry ginger, 1/2 lb. dry garlic, and 1/2 c. basil (leaves? seeds?). (For some reason, this recipe serves 4.) Sooo, clear as mud. I guess the moral of the story is you can use a mixture of lentils, peas, etc., and then decide which way you want to go with the spicing: intense or mild....
  16. Y'know, because _flavor_ can be so upsetting to the system. Sigh. On another note, it's also a bad sign when you start looking at branded, packaged food as a bonus--oh boy, Kozyshack pudding! At least I know that's sold on the open market in regular retail markets, and not created just for institutions. Sort of the same way as McDonald's becomes more appealing in airports, when it's one of the most reliable options...
  17. ONE grape?! That's tragic. Hang in there. Can some eGulleteers near you bring in some roast duck dinner or something? A couple of friends of mine have said they didn't mind hospital food so much, but were dismayed at how little of it there was, and asked to be put on double portions. I just couldn't bring myself to do it. I had a feeling that if I looked at _two_ blobs of scrambled-eggs-from-a-powder or two scoops of army-green spinach, I wouldn't be able to eat any of it at all. And Marlena, you've changed my travel plans forever. I'll have to start spending more time in France, just in case I get sick again...
  18. I have this cookbook "Taste of Ethiopia: The Other Good Food," which was recommended in a previous thread here on eGullet. I have yet to cook a thing out of it, but it looks pretty good in that it doesn't seem to dumb down ingredients, and some recipes are quite similar to those found in the Froog's "The Frugal Gourmet on Our Immigrant Ancestors," which I've used to turn out some very good dishes. Anyhoo, the "Yeshiro We't" recipe might be what you're looking for. But the interesting thing is that the first ingredient is "4 tbsp powdered peas." Which requires lots of flipping through the rest of the book to sort out what that is. So there's a recipe in the back for "Mit'in Shiro," or hot powdered peas. Flipping around more, this ingredient is called for in several other dishes that have the word "shiro" in the name. I don't want to type up the whole thing, because it's copyrighted, but the gist is this: 1) Roast dry chickpeas, split peas, split lentils and fava beans. 2) Cook garlic, ginger and onions and "toast it in a low heat until dry." Might need to flip around in the book more to sort out this technique... 3) Roast cardamom, fenugreek, coriander, rue seed (tena adam), besobila and salt. 4) Mix together with berbere (for which there's a separate recipe) and pound into a fine powder. Labor-intensive, but intriguing... and possibly more complicated than your local Ethiopian joint even goes for. Hmm. Now I see the book seems to be out of print. I suppose I could type up the recipe. But now I'm bound for bed. Will have to wait till tomorrow--sorry. But I hope this points in the right direction.
  19. Last month I had to go to the hospital for the first time in my life--for what I thought would just be some heavy-duty antibiotics to treat endocarditis (tip: If a doctor tells you out of the blue that you have a heart murmur, and you have strange swellings in your extremities, don't wait six more weeks while the doc figures it out). It ended up being more complicated, and I had to stay incarcerated for a whole week, transferring hospitals mid-week. And then a few days later, I had to go _back_ to the ER--but used a different hospital this time. I'm now relatively OK but have to have surgery sometime down the road. The point is: I had to eat a _lot_ of substandard food. Luckily, I had a couple of very good friends who brought me dinner pretty regularly, but still. It was bleak. And I'll have to be back in the hospital for a while, post-surgery. Bad food is just one more reason why being in the hospital is actually _bad_ for your health. I'm pasting my impressions from my blog below, but am curious to know: what are others' hospital food experiences? Tips and tricks for surviving? Most horrifying moment? Most surprisingly good? Does quality of food really correlate with quality of medical care (my impression)? Here's what I wrote last week: Let me first admit: I have a soft spot for airplane food. The little individual compartments and containers are very compelling to me (but maybe that's just my OCD talking). I have never had a completely inedible meal on an airplane, and once, in Delta biz class, I actually said "Yum!" while I was eating. So, that said, I didn't find the hospital food that bad--at first. I'd been actively fearing it because several years ago I went to a restaurant-supply convention here in NYC, where I stood mesmerized and morbidly fascinated in front of a robotic food-dispensing machine for use in "institutions such as prisons and hospitals" (suggested the demo video). A huge stainless-steel box contained Nutrient Gloop A, and it was pumped through springy tubes, then squirted in precisely measured portions onto trays running by on a conveyor belt. I was scared straight, as they say. But fortunately there was no Nutrient Gloop on my tray in Forest Hills. Most food items were recognizable. The separately heated entree dish and coffee mug provided the familiar reference point of dining in the sky. The trouble with the airplane-food analogy is that I've never been on a plane for more than three meals. My first hospital stay, eight days total, would be the equivalent of jetting to Australia and back four times in a row. In the hospital, you get a special jiggly bed that ensures you won't die of deep-vein thrombosis, but the stewardesses aren't the least bit cute. And, at least at LIJ in Forest Hills, you don't even get a choice of beef or pasta. And what your menu says rarely correlates with what's on your tray. Best example: a promised chicken cacciatore took the form of tuna casserole with tricolor rotini--very jarring if you're expecting chix with mushrooms. Some items required a little imagination to match them up with their labels. At first I thought "Chinese-style roast chicken" was another case of a failed menu writing. Then I realized the little scallion slices and the brown glaze signified "Chinese-style." And then some things were just straight-out weird: one day I got some beef stew with mandarin oranges. Yes, the ones you get in the syrup in the cans. This was a Jewish hospital--was this perhaps some institutional interpretation of Passover brisket? That's the only real-life foodstuff I could peg this concoction to. Additionally, there was a disturbing lack of concern for nutrition. Partially hydrogenated spread was the norm. I, a heart patient, got coffee for breakfast every morning. And dessert portions were always physically larger than entree portions. Which I guess was supposed to be a perk, but only seemed to reinforce the miserableness of being in the hospital, as the big bricks of gooey cake practically screamed, "You poor hopeless sickie! Here's a treat!" After a few days of this, I was living that dumb joke: The food is terrible, and the portions are so small! At every meal, I'd been diligently cleaning as much of my plate as I could before I was gripped with utter despair (I drew the line at the margarine), but on the morning of the third day, I was weak and dizzy with hunger. Fortunately, Tamara started the daily dinner delivery that night, but by then I'd already been carted down to the special heart-monitoring floor, as I gasped, "It's just low blood sugar...need REAL food badly..." Getting transferred to LIJ in Manhasset was a step up, because there at least I got a little menu to choose entrees from each day. Again, descriptions rarely gibed with reality, and chicken broth, a plastic mug of tasteless murk, accompanied every meal. One morning I just started crying right off the bat; I was crushed by the task of discerning actual oatmeal bits amid the starchy pap. I felt like Oliver Twist, but without the pluck or, of course, the desire for more. But the green beans weren't so mercilessly boiled, the dessert portions were a bit more moderate, and fresh fruit made an occasional appearance. One night I got a thimbleful of real butter, but the bread to put it on was like mattress stuffing. I rubbed it on the ubiquitous green beans instead. After all that, Mt. Sinai was like Babbo, Le Bernardin and Jean-Georges all rolled together. The nightly bulletin applied a bit of hyperbole to the next day's choices--though to be fair, a "seasonal" green salad in December would be iceberg lettuce and carrot shreds. Otherwise, I felt like I had a new nutritional lease on life, with my choice of butter or margarine (duh), salad and fruit options galore, and dinner entrees so edible that I fortunately can't remember any of them.
  20. zora

    Cooking Burns and Scars

    I still have a splotchy patch on my left thigh from when I was 3 years old and spilled hot bacon grease on myself from a tippy griddle. My mother still feels guilty that she was letting me cook then ("But you seemed so mature!"), but I'm glad I got in there early. It also marked me early on as a "burner" rather than a "cutter"--according to the theory of a chef I knew, who claimed that all cooks were prone to one or the other sort of injury. And whenever I burn myself good, my husband swoons. It's sad--when I don't cook regularly, all the hair on my forearms grows back...and then it smells fun-kee when I do finally get back over a big flame.
  21. Saveur, December 2005 First: Margo True talks about the difficulty of learning techniques from TV, cookbooks, and magazines--nothing substitutes for the sure hand of a tutor. Fare: Ciao, Bue Grasso!: Alan Tardi visits Carru for the Fair of the Fat Ox and a serving of bollito misto. Secret Garden: The now-defunct Garden Cafeteria on NYC's Lower East Side was the haunt of Jewish journos. By Michelle Golden Tubular Titan: H. David Dalquist invented the bundt pan for the Minneapolis Hadassah. By Kelly Alexander Recipe: Lillian Bogas's Harvey Wallbanger Bundt Cake Agenda: Winter ale fest in Dovercourt, England; Pohutukawa Fest in NZ celebrates kiwi cuisine; wild game dinner in Graham, Tex.; Igls, Austria, does Krampuslaufen for good and bad boys and girls; Le Fave di San Nicola in Pollutri, Italy, thanks Saint Nicolas for saving the town from famine; Jim Harrison, author of The Raw and the Cooked, born Dec. 11, 1937; coffeehouse proclamation in London, Dec. 29, 1675; mochi-pounding gathering in Hawaii One Good Bottle: Bollinger Special Cuvee ($52) was cheap in the 80s, but still worth seeking out: "dry almost to the point of astringency...hint of warm brioche" Ubiquitous Sweets: Alisa Weinstein reports on the dazzling varieties of mithai in Pakistan. Book Review: Five gems from the holiday cookbook wave: Camas Davis reviews Simple Soirees, by Peggy Knickerbocker, full of seasonal menus for dinner parties, plus tips for executing. Vivian Jao reviews Washoku: Recipes from the Japanese Home Kitchen, by Elizabeth Andoh, who learned from her Japanese mother-in-law. Margo True praises Suzanne Goin's Sunday Suppers at Lucques: Goin is "a girl obsessed with cooking." Recipes: A Collection for the Modern Cook, by Susan Spungen, sounds dull and finicky but is actually quite reliable and pleasurable, especially for entertaining; reviewed by Caroline Campion. Margo True likens May Bsisu's The Arab Table: Recipes & Culinary Traditions to learning from a chatty immigrant friend; Bsisu draws from all over the Middle East. The Saveur List: 12 olive oils from surprising places: Tunisia, Texas, Israel, New Zealand, Australia, etc. Cellar: White Star Blanc de blancs champagne is excellent and varied. By Michael Steinberger Tasting notes: 12 bottles, from Jean Milan Speciale NV ($47; "nutmeg, lime, flowers....a vigor bordering on exuberance") to Krug Clos du Mesnil 1992 ($586; "kaleidoscopic nose....Lush and creamy in the mouth....Distinctly nutty on the finish") Memories: Late-Night Chitlins with Momma Pig intestines brought Audrey Petty closer to her mother; they also signified Southern black identity in integrated Chicago. Recipe: Chitlins Lives: The Lord of Chateau Bel-Air In one of LA's toniest neighborhoods, a retired aerospace leader has become a full-time vigneron. By Colman Andrews Source: Hail, Grenache! Is it time to worship these wines openly, wonders James Stonehill. Join Grateful Palate's Grenache of the Month Club. Classic: Sour and Spice The fiery, vinegary Chinese soup makes everything nice Recipe: Suan La Tang (hot and sour soup) Caviar, Grandfather Frost, and Fireworks: On New Year's Eve in post-Communist Mosco, the food is abundant and delicious and the parties are raucously joyful. By Catherine Cheremeteff Jones Recipes: Yaitsa Farshirovanniye Ikroi (caviar-stuffed eggs) Salat Olivier (Russian-style salad) Zhulien (mushroom casserole) Seliodka pod Shuboi (herring "under a fur coat") Svinina v Kislo-Sladkom Souse (pork stew with dried apricots and prunes) Khvorost (Russian twig cookies) The Guide: where to stay and eat in Moscow The Mother of Mexican Cuisine: A culinary educator and pioneering author, Josefina Velazquez de Leon was the first person to popularize her country's regional foods. By Mauricio Velazquez de Leon Recipes: Sopa de Fideo (vermicelli soup) Albondigas en Chipotle (meatballs in chipotle sauce) Quesadillas Potosinas (San Luis Potosi–style quesadillas) Chiles en Vinagre (pickled chiles) Pampano Empapelado (pompano in parchment paper) Aguacates Tampico (Tampico-style avocados) The Pleasures of Strudel: Making this buttery, flaky pastry can be almost as much fun, and as addictive, as eating it: detailed instructions and illustrations from Austrian expert Meta Kulnigg. By Margo True [i cannot resist editorializing here: If you're really interested in making strudel, you must also read Robert Farrar Capon's The Supper of the Lamb, which is a marvelous book that happens to have a highly detailed--not to mention philosophical and entertaining--interlude on strudel-making.] Recipes: Strudelteig (strudel dough) Apfelstrudel (apple strudel) Weichselstrudel (morello cherry strudel) Sauerkrautstrudel (sauerkraut and bacon strudel) Milchrahmstrudel (custard strudel) Sidebar: Vienna's Finest: where to go for the city's best store-bought strudels Basques on the Range: The Viscayan sheepherders who began settling in Boise, Idaho, more than a century ago brought along their language, their hearty food, and their exuberant sense of hospitality. By Lynne Sampson Recipes: Basque Red Bean Soup Epi's Beef Tongue Rice Pudding Lamb Txilindron (lamb stew) Bakailao Koskera (cod in white wine sauce with clams and white asparagus) The Guide: where to stay and eat and what to do in Boise In the Saveur Kitchen: Russian cabbage-and-onion pie makes a good afternoon snack; Nancy Lindsay recalls how her dog helped hide a tureen of spilled gravy from guests; chitlins-prep techniques Recipe: Kulebiaka s Kapustoi (cabbage and onion pie) Moment: Signore Claus and his donkey take a snack break, Dec. 22, 1959 in Rome
  22. Saveur, November 2005 First: Margo True muses on how food creates community and reminds people of home--especially in New Orleans. Fare: Gravy Mistress: Lucretia Bingham explains how to make turkey gravy without freaking out. Recipe: Lucretia's Gravy Scotch Guide: Philip Hills has just published The Scotch Whiskey Directory. By Sarah Doyle Lacamoire Summer in a Jar: Pickled peaches smooth over Southern rivalries. By John T. Edge Recipe: Pickled Peaches Where London Gets the Bird: The butcher Lidgates supplies Americans with their Thanksgiving turkeys. By Jenny McPhee Thefts of the Ancients: Thousand-year-old olive trees in Apulia are under threat from fashionable northern Italians who want to buy them for their yards. By Ivar Ekman Agenda: Kellogg's Apple Jacks trademark registered Nov. 1, 1966; Cracklin' Festival in Port Barre, La.; sweet potato festival in Kurimoto, Japan; pinot noir fest in Martinborough, NZ; Festival of the Mountain Masters, Harlan, Ky.; 3-ton salad tossing in Baguio, Philippines; fowl fest in St-Sever, France; Mark Twain's birthday, Nov. 30, 1835 One Good Bottle: Montes Purple Angel Colchagua Valley 2003 ($42) is a blend of Chile's carmenere grape with a few othersL "dark, thick, spicy, intense...a delicious monster." Book Review: Shane Mitchell reviews The Philosopher Fish: Sturgeon, Caviar and the Geography of Desire, by Richard Adams Carey, and King of Fish:The Thousand-Year Run of Salmon, by David R. Montgomery. They're not as compelling as Kurlansky's Cod: A Biography of the Fish That Changed the World, but give good environmental background and arguments. Kitchenwise: A Kitchen on the River: a fishing shack converted to a contemporary kitchen, with a pantry with electrical outlets for small appliances; a wine fridge; and a river view. By Kathleen Brennan Cellar: King Lagrein Master winemakers from Trentino-Alto Adige are working wonders with this little-known grape. By John Winthrop Haeger Tasting notes: 11 Italian lagreins, plus 1 from California: Cantina Bolzano Rosso Vigneti Dolomiti "La Pergola" 2003 ($12; "intense juicy fruit; finishes with...soft tannins and a hint of sweetness"), Abbazia di Novacella Lagrein-Dunkel Riserva "Praepositus" 1999 ($34; "intense nose of toasted nuts and coffee...concentrated and chewy in the mouth"), and Mosby Red Wine "La Seduzione" 2001 ($22; the Californian: "rich, seductive, fruit-sweet....long"). Reporter: Michelin Takes a Bite Out of the Big Apple Giles Macdonogh reports on Michelin's first assessment of NYC restos: 500 total, in all five boroughs. Drink: Sweet Renaissance The amazing wines of Hungary's Tokaj region are overlooked, undervalued and unique. By Patrick Matthews Tasting notes: 14 tokajis, mostly aszús, from Hétszölö Ancien Domaine Royal Imperial Tokaj Late Harvest 2004 ($16/750ml; "lively and sweet...good grapey, fruity flavor") to Szepsy Tokaji Aszú 6 Puttonyos 1999 ($120/500ml: "rich and eszencia-sweet, with...a complex weave of fruity flavors, from dried figs to orange peel") Source: MacArthur grant-winner Gary Nabhan is promoting an oregano grown by the Seri Indians of Mexico, available through the Center for Sustainable Environments. By Kathleen Brennan Classic: The Greater Goo: Few desserts are as irresistible as sticky toffee pudding. By Laurie Werner Recipe: Sticky Toffee Pudding Kentucky Home: At William and Rena McClure's, Thanksgiving is a celebration of family, food and a lifetime of self-sufficiency. By Christopher Hirsheimer Recipes: Thanksgiving Roast Turkey with Corn Bread Dressing Creamed Corn Coleslaw Apple Pie Pumpkin Pie An American Cooks in Paris: From the local market to his tiny kitchen off the boulevard Saint-Germain, a top-notch California Chef shows us how to make a perfect lunch. Detailed photos and explanations with the recipes. Alas, some rely on tasty French pork. By Dorothy Kalins Recipes: Foie Gras Pâté Wild Mushroom Sauté Swiss Chard Gratin Roast Pork with Fennel, Garlic and Herbs A Good Green Salad Sidebar: The Connoisseur's Paris: Where to Eat and Shop My Life with Rice: Mei Chin hated rice and couldn't cook it--very, very bad for a Chinese woman. But she got over it. Recipes: Xiangchang Xia Chaofan (Chinese sausage and shrimp fried rice) Ganbel Huasheng Zhou (dried scallop and peanut congee) Zongzi (sticky rice dumplings wrapped in bamboo leaves) Guoba Xiefen Maodou (crab and soybean stir-fry over sizzling rice) Cullen Skink at the Chip: Scotland does have a cuisine, and for more than 30 years, an idiosyncratic restaurant (the Ubiquitous Chip) in Glasgow has been keeping it delicious--and up-to-date. By Colman Andrews Recipes: Cullen Skink (smoked haddock soup) Brandade Fried in Beer Batter with Cauliflower Cream Vegetarian Haggis with Neeps 'n' Tatties Cod with Chile Oil on a Bed of Clapshot (potatoes mashed with turnips) with Fried Arame (seaweed) Braised Ox Heart with Riesling-Washed Cabbage and Skirlie Stovies (oatmeal, potatoes and bacon) Caledonian Oatmeal Ice Cream with Fruit Compote The Guide: Where to stay and eat in Glasgow In the Saveur Kitchen: The Ubiquitous Chip makes tuiles in the shape of forks; Vivian Jao sympathized with Mai Chin's rice hatred, and recommends an automatic cooker Recipes: Fork-Shaped Tuiles Zhenzhu Rouwan (pearl rice balls, aka porcupine balls) Moment: Korean housewives make kimchi en masse outside City Hall in Seoul
  23. I ate street snacks in Marrakech and was OK. Don't miss all the fresh orange juice--well, you can't miss it...There's a comical overabundance of OJ carts on the Djema. In general, I find eating tons of yogurt before and during a trip helps immensely in terms of GI stability. Re: dress--don't hesitate to look glamorous, as Marrakech is getting absurdly stylish. It's polite to keep skin covered, though. And don't worry about the mosque issue, as last I knew, non-Muslims couldn't go in any mosques in Morocco, except for that gigundo modern one in Casablanca.
  24. I've seen the dried eggplant used to make a rice-stuffed dish--don't know if they're rehydrated first, then filled, or filled up and then stewed... (Ate them at Çiya, that awesome resto in Kadiköy that Paula Wolfert tipped us to--don't miss it. The market around the resto is great--less crazy than the big central ones, but gorgeously stocked. Look for the gorgeous honey vendor...) Look for whole sumac berries too--the flavor lasts longer than getting the already-ground stuff.
  25. The whole Orthodox tradition seems to hinge on "fasting" at the drop of a hat. I couldn't get married in the Greek church this summer, because of a two-week fasting period prior to the something-of-the-Virgin (I'm a great convert!) on August 15th. In the Greek church, at least, the list of things you can't eat during the fasts covers, well, pretty much everything tasty you can think of, and I think the number of days a year it allegedly covers is comparable to the Coptic rules.
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