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  1. Good morning! So, since Irishgirl is such a good food detective (and in possession of a ridiculous memory!), I suppose this post won't come as much of a surprise to all of you. I'm very excited to start my second eG foodblog, and I think we have some fun things in store for the week! For those of you who don't know too much about me, a quick intro. I've lived in Manhattan since graduating from college almost six years ago, and have become more and more obsessed with food over that time. I'm a fairly competent cook (nothing to some of the folks here on eG, let alone the pros), and an avid eater and drinker. I'm also a huge caffeine addict, so you'll be privy to my coffee and Diet Coke consumption (I swear, I could be their spokesperson). Last time I blogged, I was, blessedly, off of work for most of the week. This time around, the situation is reversed - I'm working for most of the blog, but will be off of work next Friday. So you'll get to see a lot of my more mundane culinary world...the coffee machine in the 8th Floor kitchen, the lunch places near my office, the grocery store... However! I also have lots of far more interesting things planned (requests and suggestions are VERY welcome)...here's a tentative agenda: Friday: Dinner at Cafe d'Alsace Saturday: Union Square Greenmarket, Schaller and Weber, dinner at home! Sunday: Laundry, a movie...Dylan's Candy Bar! Monday: Rockefeller Center, not sure about dinner yet... Tuesday: Lunch at The Modern Wednesday: Valentine's Day Thursday: Way up in the air! Friday: Breakfast at Cafe Sabarsky, Dinner at Degustation...lunch in Chinatown? Saturday: Totally open! It's pretty cold here in the city, so I've traded in my typical culinary adventure footwear (Pumas!) for some warmer trappings (Uggs!), the better to maintain my stamina and actually get to all the places promised...so, bundle up and come along for the ride! Off to get some coffee...of course.
  2. Hello everybody! I hope you guys like bananas! 99.9% of my diet consists of bananas. For protein, I pick ticks from my fellow wild men. But seriously... I work as a computer programmer in Poughkeepsie, NY. So what's this crap about being a wild man of Borneo, I hear you ask. I am really from Borneo. I was born and raised in Sarawak, Malaysia, but my grandparents originally came from Fuzhou, China. From the age of 13 until 26, I lived in Melbourne, Australia. For the last four years, I've been going wild in the jungles of Poughkeepsie. "Wild man gone wild" is now available in VHS and DVD from your local quality video store. Why is the wild man rambling? I think it gives some background to the type of food you can expect to see in this food blog. That's right, it's gonna be a confusing and incoherent mish mash. Ok, there will be Chinese, there will be Malaysian, there will be Australian, and there will be Sarawakian. There will be steak because I love steak. I like cooking only when it's not a "chore", so sometimes we eat out. I bet all the New Yorkers are dying to read about the wonders of Poughkeepsie's restaurant scene. Here's an attempt at providing some structure to the ideas swirling in my head, in no particular order: Pork congee - what I'm going to have for lunch today. Pictures to come. Asian BBQ pork - inspired by the recent eG BBQ pork thread. Kari Ayam (Malaysian Chicken Curry) Umai - Sarawakian raw fish salad Sarawak Laksa (of course... and nothing like the one from Penang) Tuna casserole (Australian recipe) Aussie burger with the lot (that means fried egg and beetroot, I'm afraid) Steak I'm terrible at making desserts, but I'll have a go at making kueh salat, because I miss it so. I hope that list meets with your approval, fellow eGulleteers. There's only going to be two of us eating the food, and our main meal is dinner, so the list may be overly ambitious. Forgive me if I don't get around to every item or if I change things around mid-stream. I can't make any promises, but there is a plan to eat some stinky durian and to incorporate as much stinky shrimp paste in the recipes as possible. Be prepared to hold your noses! If any term or ingredient is unfamiliar to you, please feel free to ask. My googling skills are at your disposal!
  3. Hi! Welcome to my life for the next week! Hopefully you'll enjoy it. I've got to keep this short, because it's 1 am and I have to work at 9 tomorrow morning. I live in Seattle, Washington, and I've lived here basically my whole life. I'm a sophomore at the University of Washington where I'm studying French and comparative literature. I also write a weekly food column for the UW's paper, which if you're interested, you can find here: www.thedaily.washington.edu (click on "Intermission). In addition to being a student full time, I also work as a cook at Mioposto, a pizza place in Seattle (where I will be at 9 tomorrow morning...) Over the week you'll get to see me in action and get a look at the restaurant, as I spend a fair amount of time there. In addition to that, I spend a good chunk of my time at home cooking as well. I've always been really interested in food. When I was a kid, my favorite shows were Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and The Frugal Gourmet. My foodblog "preview" pictures never ended up getting posted (I don't think anyway) but they were of chopped liver which I made, and chicken's feet at dim sum. These two things are very representative of my food background: I'm Jewish, and although I think I make some pretty mean chopped liver, I don't particularly like Jewish food. The chicken feet on the other hand have nothing to do with my cultural background, but are far more representative of my food interests. Since I was about 15 or 16 I've had a great interest in Asian food, particularly in Japanese cuisine, almost to the point of obsession I don't have any special event that this blog is based around, but I'm out of school for the next three weeks and thus will have a lot of time to do a lot of cooking and eating. I'll post some pictures tomorrow so you can get a better view of my food filled world.
  4. Good morning! I'm so excited to be your next food blogger, as I have long been an avid – though often lurking – reader. I'm Nina Callaway, a freelance writer who lives in Brooklyn, NY. Now, I know what you're thinking: We've had a lot of New York City food blogs. But, most of them have been very Manhattan focused, and while I like Manhattan, I'm in love with Brooklyn. This amazing borough is at once big city cool and small town heart. While most of the world's eyes are pointed at Manhattan, Brooklyn isn't some groveling parasite – it's the largest of all of the five boroughs. At approx. 2.5 million residents, if Brooklyn were an independent city it would be the 4th largest city in the US. It boasts the 3rd largest business district in the city (first 2 are midtown and lower Manhattan), a vibrant independent arts scene, awesome restaurants and, most importantly, some of the friendliest and most interesting people in the city. (A quick vocabulary/geography lesson: New York City is divided into 5 boroughs – similar to counties. Brooklyn was its own city until 1898, when its residents voted to become part of the new New York City, along with Manhattan, Queens, Staten Island, and the Bronx.) I'm just finishing up an assignment for Fodor's, writing the chapters of "Brooklyn" and "The Bronx/Queens/Staten Island" for the general New York City guidebook. With limited space, it necessarily covers the neighborhoods closest to Manhattan, for easy jaunts, as well as Prospect Park and Coney Island – essentially places that readers have already heard of, and want to know more about. As it's organized into neighborhoods, its hard to include some of the really interesting sites farther afield. But the process of writing this chapter made me think about what I'd write if I were only writing for myself. And so the title of this food blog: Around the World in Just One Borough. My plan for the week is to visit just a few of Brooklyn's neighborhoods. I'm hoping to show you my nabe of Clinton Hill, as well as Polish Greenpoint, Middle Eastern Atlantic Avenue, Latin American and Chinese Sunset Park, and Russian/Asian Brighton Beach. (Hey I'm a freelance writer. It's all research!) But that's not all that's going on. I'm working on my Pieathon! – a fundraising project that had its start here on eG. And on Sunday, many of my friends are coming over for brunch. Today is going to be a baking day, rather than a show-you-around Brooklyn day. But, I've just returned from a short vacation through Massachusetts and Vermont, where we spent a day visiting small cheese farmers. So I thought I'd recap some of that for you to hold you over. (A little city mouse, country mouse action.) I'm off to the gym now. When I get back, breakfast.
  5. Let me cut to the chase: God is not perfect, as he made me a Yankee. Although my birthstate is New York and I spent the first 17 years raised in Pennsylvania, I have lived all of my adult life in the South. I am a Southerner, and if anyone wants to fight me over that, bring it on. This week, I have decided to take that most adventurous of vacations: I am staying at home with my wife, the lovely, talented, and extremely brilliant Mrs. Dr. Varmint and the four L'il Varmints. I can't promise you that I'll introduce you to any new herb species or a great new pastry technique, but I'll show you what my family is all about, primarily through what we eat. Much of what I'll be cooking will involve my 4 children in the preparation. Hell, I am on vacation, so I might as well avail myself of the free labor. Today was not the greatest day to start a foodblog, as my 9 year old daughter is playing in a soccer tournament. We also had a birthday party today, but as I look back, I'm pleasantly surprised over the amount of food-related information I can convey. Details to follow.
  6. It’s not even 6am yet and I was so excited about starting my food blog today, I couldn’t fall back asleep. I had quite the late night last night, yet my body seems to be telling me that 4 hours of sleep is enough when there is food to write about! First, a bit about myself. My name is Henry H Lo. I am in no way connected to the “industry” but have found that I have a passion for good food and cooking my whole life. I am 33 years old and an architect in Seattle. The relationship between cooking and architecture is generally discussed among the architecture world. Both are art forms which are not always recognized as art by the general public. Just as food must provide nourishment for life, architecture must provide shelter. Once these basic requirements are established, only the educated few can see the artistic qualities which some architects/chefs elevate their work to. A few exceptions exist which are too obvious as to not be recognized as art. The buildings of Rem Koolhaus, and Ferran Adria’s work come to mind. I find that my architecture is greatly influenced by lessons I've learned from the cooking world. After all, in both endevours, we are creating "functional art." Another nice thing about being an architect was the fact that I was able to design and build my own kitchen. More on my kitchen to come. When I found out I would be food blogging, I set up a number of events in Seattle for myself and my friends to take part in. Here’s a short list of the things I have planned for this week: Friday March 17th Trail the chef at Veil Veil I did this last night and had a great time. More on this to come. Here's a teaser photo though: Friday March 17th Dinner at Crush Crush Had a great time! Stay tuned for more information. Saturday March 18th Dinner at Veil Sunday March 19th Brunch at Monsoon Monsoon (That's me on the webpage behind the potted cypress. The owner is sitting to my left) Sunday March 20th “Sopranos” Pot Luck Monday March 21st Dinner at The Barking Frog Barking Frog Tuesday March 22nd Dinner Party at home Wednesday March 23rd Special lunch at Salumi Salumi Thursday March 24th Dinner at Mistral for 20 Mistral Friday March 25th Trail the chef at Mistral Saturday March 26th Dinner at Marjorie Marjorie I also plan on taking you all on a sandwich tour of Seattle. After all, the sandwich is the perfect food! I am really looking forward to sharing my great food town with the rest of you. Please feel free to let me know if there are any specific places or things in Seattle you would like me to explore. Talk to you all soon!
  7. Howdy! I'll be your blogger this week and would like to show you my little part of the country. A few things come to mind when one thinks of Texas -- barbecue, cowboys -- but this week I want to share with you some of the lesser known aspects of Texas food and culture. I was born in Shanghai and lived there until I was six. I moved with my parents first to Baltimore and then a few years later to Galveston, an island southeast of Houston. I consider Galveston to be the home of my formative years of middle and high school. My mother is a terrific cook, having been cooking since she was thirteen. During the Cultural Revolution in China, her father was imprisoned for being an intellectual and the family fell upon hard times. Her older siblings all had to work to make ends meet, so as the youngest child she learned to cook from her grandmother. (See Food stories from the Cultural Revolution). When I moved out on my own to Austin to attend the University of Texas, my mother's only stipulation was that I learn how to cook. So, armed with three months of basic lessons and a dozen of her recipes, I moved to my own apartment in Austin. That is when I first began to develop my passion for food. I'll tell you a little more after I fix myself breakfast, but let's take a look at my teaser photo: Any ideas for a caption?
  8. SobaAddict70

    Foodblog: SobaAddict70

    Hi, I'm SobaAddict70 and this is my third eG Foodblog. This installment feels as if I've come full circle. I can't believe it's been nearly five years since A Week in the Life of Fat Guy's Household. Unlike the last time I did a Foodblog, I have a digital camera! So sit back and enjoy the ride because there'll be lots of pix, lots of cooking and more importantly, lots of eating in the days to come. I'm starting this installment an hour or two early because I'll be up late tonight, and also I'm setting things up for tomorrow's breakfast. First thing though are your questions from the teaser photo that Janet posted earlier: This is a picture taken at Otto Enoteca Pizzeria. A friend of mine had bought me a post-birthday lunch in early January and I thought I'd take this shot to remember the occasion by. I also take photos whenever I dine out but that's another story altogether. Clockwise from top left: prunes in port sauce, lavender honey, quartino of white wine, bread and cheese, orange sections in honey, breadsticks (in wrapper), cheese plate (two cow, two sheep and one goat's cheese). * * * What's new with this Foodblog, you ask? A number of things have changed in my life since the last installment. I was diagnosed with HIV in December 2003. The news struck me with the force of a sledgehammer. You cannot imagine what it's like living with a disease that has no cure. Although I am thankful that I have had relatively few side effects and afflictions in the past four and a half years, the psychological toll is immeasurable. It is beyond crushing. I do try to take care of myself. I eat right, maintain my weight as best as I can and workout (although that's fallen by the wayside recently). More importantly, I try to keep a positive attitude. I try to focus on things I can control instead of the unknown. My future is one of great uncertainty. I know that a long time down the road my immune system will cease to function. The medical cocktails I take on a daily basis are instrumental in improving my present quality of life. I can only hope that at some point in the future, perhaps one or two years from now, or more likely in the next twenty years, that a vaccine will become available to every individual afflicted with this terrible of diseases. And thus this Foodblog. As I said, I try to focus on a positive attitude. One of the things that continues to give me immense pleasure is food -- be it cooking and eating, or being with a community of like-minded people and friends. I want this Foodblog to be special...not just to me, but to everyone in the eGullet community. I want to take this opportunity to focus on the beauty in the world around us, beauty that many people take for granted or don't really think of beyond what's for dinner. * * * *Side note: I realize that many of you will have questions that will stray beyond the boundaries that are permissible for an eG Foodblog. I welcome all questions, but if it's not food-related, please PM or email me or ask your questions on my blog.
  9. Click here for The Tale of the Corporate Cafeteria. WARNING: This is a Foodblog unlike any other. There won't be very many pictures. Not only do I not own a digital camera, I'm not quite a techie. For instance, it really does take me more than two minutes to figure out how to use a cell phone. Yes, I'm hopeless. My eating habits have changed drastically since late 2003. In December 2003, I weighed something like 138 lbs. soaking wet. Fast forward twenty-two months and countless trips to the gym, and I'm now 187; furthermore, I'm contemplating going on a diet for the first time in my life. It's been quite a ride. This week promises to be fairly interesting. You'll get to see how a professional hobbit deals with having seven to nine meals a day, in ways that make Frodo Baggins look like an amateur. In some ways, meals are an adventure every day. At other times, eating tends to be a chore. Lest you think that my food life consists of endless bowls of cottage cheese topped with tuna and Mrs. Dash, I do plan to actually cook a dinner or two that's worthy of the Dinner! thread and not the infamous Dinner II thread. What these will consist of shall remain a secret for now. I'll give you a hint though -- one of them involves a dish only an eGulleteer could love. Sunday evening I'll probably want to have dinner someplace in the city. This is where you, Gentle Reader, come in. Take a look through our New York forum and pick two or three restaurants that you think I might have a reasonable chance of securing a reservation on short notice. It doesn't matter if you don't have any familiarity with restaurants in New York. I have a feeling that if enough readers weigh in on this Foodblog, I'll run a relatively good chance of going to some place good. I don't have any food dislikes apart from stinky cheese (so things like epoisses are out), jellied eels and extraordinarily weird food such as although it's worth noting that something like doesn't phase me. Weird, huh? So without further adieu, welcome to my world. I promise it won't be too bad...
  10. Early morning greetings everyone! I guess my hint photos for this blog were somewhat of a giveaway, especially to Megan. Oh well. For those that don't know, the bridge picture is a shot from my walk from the subway to work -- it is the Brooklyn side of the Manhattan bridge and if you look closely, you can see the Empire State building framed within the arch of the bridge. It was an overcast day when I took the photo; I will try to get a better picture this week. For those that don't know much about me, I will give a quick background. My name is John Deragon, a native New Yorker, born and raised in Brooklyn, NY. My father’s heritage is Quebecois and my mother’s heritage is Norwegian. My grandfather on my mother’s side was a lobster fisherman in Coney Island, so I spent quite a bit of time on a boat as a child, and still love being around the water to this day. Growing up as a child in Brooklyn was a pretty awesome experience. Not only was I exposed to the great foods Brooklyn had to offer (Knishes, Bagels, Nathan's franks, etc.) we had tons of ways to entertain ourselves with various games we learned (stickball, stoopball, ball & crack, skulls…). I will get into more detail on the food and games as the week progresses. I currently live in Park Slope, which is a neighborhood in Southern Brooklyn that is framed by Prospect Park along with my wife Jeannie and our dog Dune. (Which is whom you see in my avatar photo) Prospect Park is the sister park of Central park and was designed by Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux who also designed Central Park. The rumor is by designing Prospect Park after Central Park, they fixed all the mistakes they made in CP. More info about our great park can be found at the Prospect Park website. We purchased a small wood frame house about 2 years ago with the purpose of doing a lot of the renovations ourselves. The house was priced right mainly due to the dysfunctional layout of the first floor, mainly the pathetic kitchen and bathroom layout. From what we could tell, the house was built sometime between 1915 and 1920, and for the most part is pretty sound. The kitchen was built in the back of the house and was roughly 5’ by 6’ with a small window going out to our relatively (by NY comparison) backyard. To the right of the kitchen was a small bathroom with another very small window. Those two photos are as the kitchen right before we moved in, as the previous owners were packing up. We made a decision to start the construction (or more precisely the demolition) on the kitchen immediately as you can see from these photos: Needless to say we found a lot of surprises along the way. (more details on that later this week, including that chimney you see, along with some nasty termite damage) All the work was done while I was working a full time job at an interactive advertising agency, so all the work was done at nights and weekends, which lead to us living with a fridge, laundry sink and microwave for almost 10 months. Fast forward to today and our kitchen is done and is awesome, if I say so myself. During the day I am now the Chief Technology Officer for Waterfront Media which is a company that provides online versions of many popular diets, as well as a health related reference site EverydayHealth. The offices are located in Dumbo, which stands for Down Under [the] Manhattan Bridge Overpass, hence the teaser photo! Ok -- given it is getting late and I have a early meeting tomorrow morning I am going to wrap it up for now. As far as what to expect this week here is the schedule as it stands now: Monday: Dinner at home, or possibly out at a friends Birthday dinner. Still up in the air. Tuesday: Dinner at Applewood Restaurant one of our favorite local restaurants here in Park Slope. Wednesday: Dinner at Annisa, Anita Lo’s restaurant. Thursday: Pegu Club Friday: Still up in the air. Saturday: Dinner party for 8 at home. All during the week I will be preparing for the dinner party on Saturday, so there will be bits and pieces of Saturdays dinner spread throughout the week, from tracking down ingredients, to prep work, to figuring out the wine pairings. With that, I will see everyone back here in a few hours!
  11. Good Morning! And welcome to a reprisal of "She who only cooks." Well, not exactly a reprisal. When asked to blog again (boy, was I flattered) I thought it might be fun to take the cooking and eating in a bit of a new direction. Some history: First a little background in addition to what is already here, let me fill in on my foraging history. I suppose I have been foraging since I was a kid. Most of what I remember from childhood involved seafood. My grandfather had a family compound at Oyster Creek where we went on weekends. The kids always had crab lines hanging off the pier. The way we crabbed was to tie a chicken neck or gizzard onto a string, weight it with a big nut, toss it into the water and wait. Pretty soon a crab would come along and try to exit stage left with the bait. The string goes tight and the fun begins. Now, you must carefully pull in the crab so he doesn't smell a rat (or crabber) and drop off. One deft swoop of the dip net and another crab is in the washtub. Ooops, first you have to check that the crab is big enough (from point to point on the shell, at least the length of your spread hand from thumb tip to little finger tip) and that it was a male (from looking at its underside and checking the shape of its flap). Information on our common blue crab is here. The rules were our own on the conservation of the crab. There were no legal requirements or limits at the time but we thought it was the right thing to do. I still think that crab traps are a lousy way to get crabs. Not only are traps boring but they just don't seem right to me. The story of me and the crab is an example of how we related to the bounty of the waters around us. We learned about the critter; its habits and habitats, seasonal comings and goings, and of course how to eat it. My mother, grandmother and great aunt were terrific cooks and knew their way around our seafood. Grandpa had a "big boat" and the guys would use it to go after shrimp and oysters in our bays. They would also have seining parties on the beach front. Grandma and Aunt Minnie were legendary chasers of the redfish or Red Drum. They were even written up in the Houston paper sometime back in the early fifties. I still remember the picture of them in Grandma's skiff, their bonnets in place, Grandma at the helm, headed up the creek to look for the tide line. When I was in junior high and high school, my sister was married to a hunter. He got my dad re-interested in hunting, so we added white tail deer and dove to our diet. Then, my sister got interested in foraging. She had just read her first Euell Gibbons book, Stalking the Wild Asparagus, and she has been hooked ever since and hooked me as well. That worked out because, in addition to places to go on the water, someone had a country place inland and we liked to camp and hike in the East Texas woods. We have found some things that were delicious to eat. We have found some things that we decided weren't worth the trouble but we could at least eat it if we were stranded in a survival situation. (Yeah . . . Right!) But the most fun part of our various foraging adventures is learning about the world around us as we go. We consider good eats a bonus. Alas, my kids (in their 30s) are city folk and don't necessarily participate with the same passion that we do. However, my nephew is a passionate hunter and fisherman. He has also decided that the plant kingdom is worthy of consideration so the tradition continues.
  12. Yes, it’s me – I’m amazed at how quickly I was ‘outed’; I’m awful at guessing! The title is a bit of a misnomer. I am not a housewife, but wish I was. I always say that I was born in the wrong decade. My ultimate dream is to stay home and cook and take care of my home and family. Circumstances haven't allowed that very much in my life, but I still love doing all that stuff! Mr. Kim promises that I can retire in 3 years (but he's been saying that for at least 5 years....hmmm). We live in Richmond, VA with our daughter, Jessica who is back home after graduating from college last spring. The first teaser picture was of our summer house. I kid, I kid - it's the state capitol. I cannot believe that I have to follow Chris. I feel especially grotty and slobby when I look at the pictures of his beautiful, bright, CLEAN kitchen. The things that normally show in my house aren't as clean and tidy as the stuff that normally doesn't in his! Please know that while I am messy and my floor might be questionable, I keep all surfaces and objects clean. I promise. I've decided that my 'angle' for this blog is going to be new stuff. I am an incorrigible recipe/cookbook collector (hence, my second teaser picture). I have them stashed all over my house. Here are some in the island that Ted Fairhead made: In the last picture is also our ‘bar’, some storage and ‘my’ drinks (more anon regarding that). I have a file drawer in the family room full of recipes that I’ve torn out from magazines and printed out from the internet: Here’s a shelf and a half in the living room: Upstairs in our bedroom, I have cookbooks under the TV: and beside the bed: Oh, crap, there’s some more: So for this week (at least for dinners) I will only cook new recipes that I have collected – some from my fellow eGulleteers. If we eat out, it will be at new restaurants I have wanted to try. In my files I have a 'Richmond restaurants to try' file stuffed full of newspaper/magazine articles and print outs of internet suggestions. I'll tell you right now that, except for the weekend, breakfast will be boring. I am not a breakfast fan, so you're going to see a banana and a Special K bar or yogurt most days. I love breakfast food anytime of the day and if I can have it an hour or so after getting up, I do. But that doesn't happen on work days. Lunch is more varied. Sometimes I have leftovers and since I work in a doctor's office, we have drug company reps that sometimes bring us lunch. This week we are supposed to have lunch brought on Monday, but that’s all so far. I only have 30 minutes, so eating out doesn't happen very often. One thing that you should know about me (some already know) is that I had a gastric bypass in 2003. I lost about 100 lbs. My before and afters: Before: After: In the before picture, I am the large flowered object on the left (amazing amounts of self delusion were going on that day), my daughter is in the middle (she also had a gastric bypass and lost even more than I did) and my momma (Ted Fairhead's wife) is on the right. Ideally, I would like to lose another 40 lbs. and I am trying to lose another 20 right now. I am told that if my insurance company would just approve the skin removal, that would be 20 lbs. right there (which just skeeves me right out to even think about - the idea of 20 lbs. of SKIN <shudder>). I would never, ever recommend the operation to anyone else - that is a completely personal decision, but I haven't ever regretted doing it for one minute. I weighed almost 270 lbs. and was getting fatter every day. I had tried every diet in the world and couldn't seem to get a handle on my food intake. I was on diabetes, blood pressure and cholesterol meds. Except for cholesterol, all of that is gone now. Because I eat less now, there is a chance that I won’t get all the nutrients in my food, so I take a lot of supplements. Here is my daily dose: from left to right – flaxseed oil, multi-vitamin, calcium, vitamin E, vitamins A&D, low dose aspirin, Nexium and Lipitor. The Nexium is for acid – a common consequence of a little stomach and the Lipitor for cholesterol. My blood chemistry tests are always good now. I walk for exercise and feel good. I am 48 years old (49 in July), so I won’t ever be toned and buff, but I look good for my age and my former weight. Flab is ok - I just cover it up and Mr. Kim is a kind man! I eat so much less now that it is just unimaginable to think about the amounts of food that I used to consume. I can eat most any kind of food that I want - as long as I watch portions. There are only two things that really bother me - I can only eat a bite of steak or rice. Some days my tummy is fine. Other days, nothing seems to 'sit' well. Or something gets stuck in the little exit from my stomach. Bad days (which are not very frequent - once every few weeks) I live on cheese, pretzels and Tic Tacs (they settle my stomach without being overly sweet). I hate my kitchen. Square footage-wise it seems pretty good, but I have terrible cabinet and counter space. The pantry is one of those pantry/laundry room things. The top shelves are almost impossible for me to get stuff down from even with a ladder. Thank goodness Mr. Kim is 6' tall! Ted Fairhead made me the island when we moved into the house: It adds much welcome storage, counter space, an eating place, etc. He does nice work, huh? Since I have such crappy storage space, we have stuff all over the house: Living room closet, attic, even under table skirts. It's insane - I try to keep a list on the computer of what is where, but I still lose stuff. I’ll post those pictures later. Richmond has a pretty active food scene and some very good restaurants. We live out in the 'burbs - Glen Allen if anyone knows the area. My favorite area in Richmond is actually in town - the old neighborhoods known as the Fan, the Museum District and Carytown. You can read about them here. It is where VA Commonwealth University is located and where I lived while I was in college and right after we got married. It has a cool city feeling without being too raw-ly urban - very diverse as far as age, ethnicity and even economics. It was always our intent to move back there after Jessica graduated from high school, but they priced us right out of the market! So I live in suburbia and shop, eat and walk the city when I can. I'll probably get down there during the weekend and both the restaurants that we plan on going to this week are there, too. So here I am - I am so nervous and scared that I will disappoint/bore y'all! Everyone who has ever done a blog, will, I'm sure recognize those fears! If anyone has any questions, please ask! My favorite blogs are the ones that are like conversations! Mr. Kim’s two cents: So, if Mrs. Mike is nervous and scared just writing about her food this week, imagine MY trepidation as I look ahead to trying to keep up with her this week. You should just TRY being the only person in the house WITHOUT a gastric bypass when Kim starts working her kitchen magic. I mean, someone has to eat what she can’t. So I wage a constant battle not to eat myself into a fleshy imitation of a Macy’s balloon. Okay, battle may be too strong a word – I don’t resist Kim’s culinary wiles too vigorously. I am glad to be along for the ride this week, and based on the menu and Kim’s likely portion sizes, I look forward to a new wardrobe by the time she’s through blogging. Do they even MAKE grown up clothes in Size Husky?
  13. Brain. Earth to brain. Come iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiin brain. Drat. I knew it fell out somewhere back there in August. Or so it must have if I actually volunteered to do an eGullet Foodblog during back-to-school week. Oh well. Chalk it up to temporary Mommy-brain insanity. Mental lapse aside, I suppose I should introduce myself and the rest of the Mouse house. *curtseys demurely* I'm Joie, a real estate marketing executive in my former life and a stay-at-home Mom in my current one. Co-habitating in marital bliss with my husband Ian who indulges my love for all things food-related. Mommy to our four-year-old son Noah whose growing passion for food is almost as big as mine. Owner of Shadow, the largest Norwegian Forest Cat in all of Christendom who adopted us two summers ago. We've been living in a beautiful heritage house in Vancouver, British Columbia for the past couple of years, housesitting for two friends of ours, and are in the throes of renovating a home of our own with plans to move in by month's end. See what I mean about madness? The start of school, home renos... what was I thinking?! Nonetheless, I hope that you'll fasten your seatbelts and join our family as we rush headlong through this first full week of September. Cooking will be far from gourmet this week as Ian, Noah and I readjust to our fall schedule. To placate Soba, I'll try to squeeze in some Filipino food over the course of this blog. And we'll close off the week with some fellow eGulleters at Aurora Bistro's A Taste of British Columbia! dinner. Fire away with any questions you might have about Vancouver, Filipino food, preschooler dining habits or life in general. For the span of this week, my house is your house and I'm more than happy to accommodate. Let's have some fun!
  14. Hi All, It's hard to believe that it's been nearly a year since I last blogged. My! How time flies! Some very brief background about myself. I am 41 and I live in the northern suburbs of Chicago with my wife and my 7-year-old son. I work in the food industry selling bulk ingredients; primarily 100% natural, processed fruit products. I have a love/hate relationship with cooking. I love to do it and I love to learn how to cook new things but I also reserve the right to "not cook" any time it (or the thought of it) ceases to be fun. My wife is culinarily-challenged and, as such, I am the primary meal provider in our house. There are some nights when after getting home from work, spending time in the kitchen is the last thing I want to do. So I don't. There are other times when after getting home from work, nothing sounds better to me than relaxing by spending time in the kitchen (or out by the grill or smoker) making a meal for my family. I'm not exactly sure what specific factors influence these moods but they will no doubt manifest here, over the course of this blog. It'll be a mixed bag this week for sure...probably about 1/3 cooking, 1/3 going out and 1/3 scrounging for leftovers. I started out this morning (and pretty much every morning) with an Iced Venti Americano (no water, please) from Starbuck's. To this I add 1 packet of sweet and low and a splash of half and half. I really need the caffeine in the a.m. but I'm not a particularly passionate coffee person. When I occasionally come across the good stuff, I'm very happy to have it but I don't go out of my way for it either. A friend of mine roasts his own beans and he will hook me up from time to time. Yes, I can tell the difference and yes I can appreciate it. But honestly, I'd rather sleep an extra few minutes in the morning than spend the time making coffee for myself. When I get to my office, my IVA is waiting for me because one of the guys at the office hits Starbucks every morning. Good deal I spent most of this past Sunday cooking (was really in the mood ) and I brought some split pea soup to the office today to share with my cohorts. I'm sure it'll end up being part of our lunch in some manner but we'll no doubt augment it by ordering carryout from one of our local spots. There are 5 of us in the office and we recently went to a system where each one of is assigned a day to choose the lunch venue. Today, our resident vegetarian will be making the choice so the soup, which turned out quite well, is a solid insurance policy that lunch--or at least some portion of it--will be edible =R=
  15. Good morning! I think it's my turn and it's a scary thought to follow Kristen and Rachel. I know I can't compete with either of them for their generosity in sharing their experiences but I will do my best to make this as interesting as I can. I have called my blog "Thirteen Steps to Dinner" and will reveal the meaning behind this as we go along. For now, here's The Dane's lunch for today. He HATES taking lunch and would prefer to spend his 10 hours in the machine shop foodless! I worry that anyone operating dangerous machinery on empty is ripe for an accident and so he allows me to pack him half a sandwich. The other half will be my breakfast. This is store-bought white bread (busy week!) with liver paste and bacon. His "goodies" are 2 home made chocolate chip cookies, one home made gingersnap and in the plastic wrap his all-time favourite, a marzipan and dried cherry square. He does not object to the goodies - just the sandwich!
  16. Good morning everyone! Time flies incredibly fast: when Susan offered me to keep a blog right after we moved to Moscow in the end of May, I did not want to say no, but I did not feel ready and asked if I could do it sometime at the end of summer, like August. Before I knew it, my blog week is here! So… A week of blogging from Russia, how exciting! Let me tell you how this happened. My American husband and I met in Russia when we were students, and got married 10 years ago. So I moved to States to be with him. Last year Shawn landed a job which eventually took him to Russia. In May he was offered to stay in Moscow long-term, and very fortunately my company was also able to offer me a job in our Moscow office. These two months of adjusting to the new life have been interesting, to say the least. I was expecting what they call a “reverse cultural shock,” which people experience when they move back to their home country. But I would say, to me it almost seems like I have simply moved to a new country, the language and customs of which I happen to know. Believe me, Russia has become a new country in the 10 years I’ve been away (and I have become a different person, too). Additionally, I have never lived in Moscow and am just getting to know the city. My new job is also a lot different from what I used to do before, more demanding and with much longer hours. Just to keep things interesting, life threw in another surprise: a few days after we decided to move to another country, we found out we are going to have a baby! When I think about introducing you to Moscow in a culinary sense, I get overwhelmed: there are so many things to see and do (and eat), and there are so many misconceptions about what’s available here that I don’t know where to begin. But, as they say, one cannot embrace the boundless, so I will not attempt. I will simply invite you to spend my usual week with me, with no weddings, Passovers, visits to wineries, or other special events planned. I think even that should be plenty interesting . And, as good tourists, we will assume we will return: hopefully, in a year or so I will be able to invite you to another blogging week in Moscow which will be completely different as I will be offering the view of a seasoned Moscovite . Well… What a long introduction! And you are probably just waiting for the pictures. Then, we shall begin with… breakfast! Before we do that, a short notice: since English is not my native tongue, I am sure I will make a lot of mistakes, but we’ll just consider them my quaint Eastern European accent, won’t we? And, my name is Alina, but I used the diminutive form of my name because Alina was already taken when I was registering. Either one is fine. Oh, and please ask plenty of questions: we can make this blog whatever we want, and your questions will shape what will be talking about.
  17. Hi Gang! Most mornings I ride my bike over to Spring Point to get a lungful of sea air and see what's going on in the channel. Spring Point juts into Casco Bay on it's western side, just outside the mouth of the Fore River where the city of Portland sits on a peninsula. Around the bend from the point is Willard Beach, a typical New England seaside neighborhood with a mix of summertime folk and year-round dwellers who make the short commute over the bridge into Portland for work. At the little town square there is a bakery called One Fifty Eight owned and operated by eGullet's KeysToVt where I like to stop in and get a peach muffin or some local cheese, but today I didn't have time. We'll catch her later this week. Welcome to Maine, everyone!
  18. Greetings and welcome to another foodblog from a Pacific Northwesterner. Although I live in Seattle now, you won't be seeing any food from that region for I am on my summer holidays in not-so-sunny Sydney. I have to run off real soon so I'll leave some of the introductory stuff for a bit later. I was asking for advice from some former foodbloggers once I knew I was going to be doing one, and one of them told me that many foodblogs start off a bit slow so I'm going to start this one off with a dinner I just cooked in Melbourne for some of my friends: Melbourne and Sydney are the two largest towns in Australia (although neither are the capital). I did my High School in a small town quite close to Melbourne and so many of my High School friends are still living there. I hadn't been back since I left High School 6 years ago so this was the perfect time to return and catch up with a lot of old friends who I hadn't seen for a long time. As part of my last day in Melbourne, I was going to cook a big going away meal. The main problem I was facing was trying to find someone who could donate their kitchen and house to me hosting a party. It was a bit touch and go for a while with a few people saying they might be able to do it, and then not being able to and I was structuring my menu around being adaptable to any kitchen I would have to walk into but, fortunately, on the noon of that day, someone finally came through and things were very quickly organised. So in the end, I had 2 hours to shop and then 3.5 hours to cook 7 courses for 19 people. Here's what I managed to pull off: The Inaugural Fitzroy Garden Salad - Milkweed, Radish, Apple & Lemon Thyme with a Raspberry Vinagrette. I love using the combination of Radish and Apple and it's appeared a bunch of times in different salads. I'll tell a story of how the milkweed got into the salad in a later post. Someone at the table suggested this salad needed a name and we were dining near the Fitzroy Gardens so that's how the salad got it's name. Irish Lamb Stew with Onions, Potatoes, Parsnips, Turnips, Carrots & Roasted Garlic. This was a great dish for a cold, winter's day and it was deep and hearty with all the different root vegetables. Dead easy to make as well Mushroom Risotto. At this stage of the night, I was pretty drunk so I pressganged people into stirring the risotto for me. The great thing about cooking for friends is, if you're clever, you can push them into the kitchen while you're quaffing red wine at the table and being belligerent. Roast Leg of Lamb with Minted White Bean Mash and Sauteed Silverbeet. The Lamb was rubbed with garlic, rosemary, lemon thyme, anchovies, & olive oil and roasted in a low oven until perfectly medium rare. The beans were pretty magical. I simmered them until almost tender with some trimmed off lamb fat and the silverbeet stems and then I placed the entire thing underneath the lamb when it was roasting so all the fat and drippings dripped down onto it. A bit of mint at the end really brightened it up. The silverbeet was just sauteed lightly with some garlic and chilli flakes and they were great too. Apple & Rhubarb Crumble with a Feijoa Sabayon. Anytime I'm drunk and get to play with fire is a good night in my opinion so once I found out the kitchen had a blowtorch in it, sabayon was put on the menu. Rhubarb was looking great at the market and a crumble is always a good way of doing a dessert without needing much equipment. Feijoa is an interesting and rather unusual fruit. I had never had it before that day and I bought a bunch not knowing what I could do with it. It tastes sort of a cross between sour apple and kiwifruit and, according to wikipedia, it grows in South America and now New Zealand/Australia. It went really well in this dish as it played off both the apple and the rhubarb quite well. Passionfruit Truffles. I always love ending a meal with Truffles now since they're so easy to make but give such an elegant finish to a meal. I hadn't eaten passionfruit for almost a year as they're either impossible to get or absurdly expensive in the US. So when I saw them, 7 for $2 at the market, I snagged as many as I could and just went on a binge. Anyway, I'm going to go be nerdy with my friends now at Dorkbot but I'll post something later tonight (It's 6pm here in Sydney so later tonight means in a few hours).