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  1. Good morning! I'm pleased and a bit surprised that nobody identified me as the next Foodblogger. The teaser photos are of Highland cattle and a plate of seafood with lupins. The cattle are in the back field here on the farm in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, Canada. The chowder and flowers are from my home outside Halifax. It's been more than four years since I put together my 1st eG Foodblog. This time I'm on the road and away from my own kitchen. We've just finished catering a wedding here so there will tons of photos in the very near future. Tonight I'm going to Cavendish, Prince Edward Island for the week. The Foodblogs of late have been quite excellent and I've got some hard acts to follow. This week I can promise you a lot of seafood, extreme cheese, fine port and good whisky. The topic description reads "More Maritimes" which refers to the three eastern provinces New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and PEI. If you throw in Newfoundland & Labrador, you get "Atlantic Canada". Time to pack!
  2. Welcome to my Singapore food blog for e gullet! The blogs are one of my favourite things about egullet and the standard of writing/photography not to mention eating and drinking has been incredibly high so i hope i don’t let the side down! I suppose I should start with a bit about me really, My name is, as you had probably guessed Nikki and after spending the first 10 years of my working life in London managing restaurants i realised somewhat belatedly that the hospitality industry is the same the world over and if i was going to continue working anything up to 16 hours a day i might as well do it somewhere interesting. My first port of call was Lebanon, and i fell head over heels in love with the country, its food, its wine (and arak) and of course its people (especially my boyfriend who i am enjoying early morning skyping with as we try to settle into this long distance/6 hour time difference phase of our relationship) I wish I’d got round to blogging more when I was there – i am kicking myself for not doing a food blog then. To sum up, if you haven’t been, add it to your list – it truly is one of the most amazing places I’ve ever been, am hopefully heading back to see the boy in January so maybe i’ll do another one then if i’m allowed.... Kuwait followed (very briefly for many many reasons i won’t go into here lets just say i HATED every second of it and flew back to Beirut almost every other weekend so i didn’t lose my mind) and now i find myself on the other side of the world in Singapore. I live in an area called Little India so a lot of what i typically consume is Indian – I’ll try to mix it up this week though- besides, Percyn covered India beautifully and i am hoping we will see Jenni blogging sooner rather than later as well.....I love living in this area, Singapore can feel very sanitized & organised but there is a “realness” about Little India that i warmed to immediately. The smells of Jothi flowers for prayer offerings mix beautifully with incense and spices not to mention all the street food and there is a great sense of energy surrounding the place. I also love hanging out in Arab Street where i can go to smoke arguileh/drink coffee at any time of day or night – I’m struggling to find good Arabic food so far but i am having so much fun with everything else it doesn’t really matter. Apart from the strong Indian influences here in Singapore, there are also Malay, Chinese, Indonesian and Peranaken ( descended from the early Chinese settlers in Penang, Malacca, Indonesia and Singapore who intermarried with Malays and thus created a whole new culture and foods with it) not to mention Thailand, the Middle East, The Philippines and Sri Lanka. You also see “Chindian” food too where local chefs will take Indian ingredients and use them in their recipes as well which is interesting. Having seen a shot of my fridge in my teaser photos, you will not be at all surprised to learn that this week my intention is to show you what Singapore is possibly most famous for – Hawker Centres and its rich multi cultural culinary influences from the myriad of different nationalities who now call Singapore home. PLease feek free to ask any questions, request any food and enjoy the ride!!
  3. Hello everyone! So I'll be taking the reigns after a great week of Philly food from nolnacs! A very quick little background, I was born and raised here in Oakland, CA. I have to admit that food wasn't the biggest part of my life growing up. It wasn't until about 2001 when I was out of high school that I started watching the original japanese Iron Chef. I hadn't realized just how creative you could be with food, I was still microwaving cheddar cheese on bagels... Working 2 dead end jobs I enrolled in the California Culinary Academy in 2002. I had found a perfect fit. I love to make things with my hands and I love to take care of people. But as it is with a lot of culinary schools it wasn't a fit for most and I am only 3 out of 32 in my class still cooking. I jumped around restaurants in the Bay Area never really staying at one place for more than a year, I wanted to get a very broad knowledge base. Wood oven at "B", raw bar at Pearl, deserts at Scharffen Berger and 6 years later I had landed at Boulevard in San Francisco when a friend approached me. He asked if I wanted a little article written up in his email news letter about my small catering thing I did on the side. I told him "Sure, just write up that I will come over and cook a meal like a do for my friends and family". I got 63 emails the day it came out. I started the business, built the website and was off the races within 2 weeks. It has really been a perfect fit for me. I have moved back home to utilize my parent's beautiful kitchen and to save money/buy equipment. I ride my bicycle here in the East Bay and to San Francisco to pick up my product. Then I get to make everything myself (I'm a little controlling when it comes to my food...). So here we go, it's about 8:30 and my day starts, I have a dinner tonight so I'm about to jump on the bike and do my rounds. I have a lot on my schedule this week and it all has to do with food so I think it will be entertaining for you all. Enjoy!
  4. First of all, I am very excited to be blogging – a little nervous, but excited. I have a lot of things planned, but I am sure I won't get to all of them. Most of all, I hope to have a lot of fun blogging this week and introducing you to some of the food that is not the typical things people hear about – which is all about the Creole food from New Orleans and Cajun food from southwest Louisiana. There's more... there's good old country food that most of us grew up eating. How did I come up with the name of Honeysuckles and Huckleberries? It's the name of a cookbook I put together for our family. What the name means to me is country living and home. Growing up I remember Mama loved the sweet, sensational smell of honeysuckles. It was her favorite flower. They grew wild on the fences around our property. They were always pretty and fragrant, and I would pull the stem from them until it came out of the bottom of the flower all for one drop of juice, which tasted out of this world. One of my dreams then was to have one whole glass of honeysuckle juice! We also had a pond that had turtles, fish, snakes and everything else that intrigues children. There were also wild blackberry bushes. In the summertime, we would take our buckets and pick blackberries all afternoon. We were told not to eat the berries until they were washed, and our blackberry-stained tongues would tell Mom, “No, ma'am. We didn't eat any.” After a little lecture, and after the berries were washed, we would smash the berries in a bowl and add cream and sugar and eat them with a spoon. Then, she would make us a blackberry cobbler for dessert that night! So... blackberries aren't huckleberries, but they're close enough, and they remind me of Huckleberry Finn and little boys having adventures growing up on the Mississippi River. Brett, my brother, had his own adventures growing up in the country. He hunted, fished, skipped school to go horseback riding all day, etc. Whenever he would catch a fish, he would excitedly run into the house and say, "Cook this for me, Mama!" It was a wonderful place to grow up, and while we were a family of very modest means, we always ate well – just like most of the people around here. What I hope to do in this blog is introduce you to a little bit of Louisiana country living. There will be a few field trips to some interesting places. Food will be cooked, of course, but I am going to do my best to stay away from the standard fare that everyone hears so much about (except jambalaya – there will be jambalaya) and cook old time country favorites, and by the end of this week I would hope that you would feel like a welcome guest in our home.
  5. When I go on book tour, my appearances are attended by a handful of people most of whom were just wandering around the bookstore when the announcement came over the public address system. They ask questions like, "What's your book about?" When Ferran Adria (aka the world's greatest chef, the leader of the culinary avant garde) goes on book tour, everyone shows up. The most significant food-world players for 500 miles around come to pay homage. They have prepared their questions for the master. Ferran Adria's biography, written by Colman Andrews, has just hit the bookstores and Adria and Andrews are making the rounds. This evening they appeared at the International Culinary Center (the umbrella institution that includes the French Culinary Institute and the Italian Culinary Academy) in New York City. I got invited, perhaps because I teach a class there, perhaps by mistake, perhaps out of pity. I was certainly the least important person in the room -- a marginal inclusion on the guest list that included Mario Batali, Tim Zagat, Jose Andres, Andre Soltner, Jacques Torres, Drew Nieporent, Alain Sailhac, Jonathan Waxman and a whole bunch of others. I'll give a brief description of the event, with some photo support, in a moment. But first, welcome to my eG Foodblog, the first of this new season of eG Foodblogs. For the next week, I'll be posting ad nauseam about my food life. The centerpiece of the week is a trip I'm taking down to Mobile, Alabama, to look in on the seafood industry post-BP-spill. Before and after that trip, I'll share the various things I'll be doing in the course of this week. Returning to the matter of Ferran Adria and Colman Andrews, the book is called Ferran: The Inside Story of El Bulli and the Man Who Reinvented Food. (Should you choose to buy a copy, that's an eG-friendly link, which means the Society will get a small commission from Amazon if you use that link for purchase.) There's DC-based Spanish (and then some) chef Jose Andres talking to Dorothy Hamilton, president of the ICC. Photo: Ellen R. Shapiro I'm only going to apologize once this week for my terrible photography. Sorry. Now deal with it. That's Colman Andrews, who wrote the book. Photo: Ellen R. Shapiro The snacks were not at all avant-garde. They were mostly Spanish-style and pretty good. Photo: Ellen R. Shapiro The restaurateur Drew Nieporent (Nobu, Tribeca Grill, Corton, etc. -- he keeps opening new places so it's hard to keep track of him). Photo: Ellen R. Shapiro My signed copy of the book. Photo: Ellen R. Shapiro Ellen also made a short video of Ferran Adria speaking to the question "What's the biggest misconception about you?" That will not be postable until morning, though, because of the time it takes to compress and upload the video. I found Adria to be engaging despite speaking through a translator. This was the first time I'd ever seen him up close, and I had wondered whether I'd find him as brilliant as everybody says he is. I did. It was also good to hear him speak directly on the issue of El Bulli's closing. There has been a lot of press on this -- world's most difficult-to-reserve restaurant suddenly closing -- and Adria assured us that it's a temporary closing. El Bulli is expected to reopen in 2014, at which point the company will be reorganized as a nonprofit foundation. Although I was intrigued by the Q&A session, my actual mission was to try to get Colman Andrews and Ferran Adria to join us here for online Q&A. When I spoke to them and their publicist, however, it turned out that they had already agreed to do it -- Dave Scantland ("Dave the Cook") already had a whole dialog running. So we are looking forward to welcoming them soon. There is an excerpt from the book on the New York Times website, if you're interested. I'm off to catch a little shuteye before an early rise for a visit to Sarabeth's bakery. More on that tomorrow morning.
  6. 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.
  7. Hello, fair eG folk! Sorry for the late start. (Well, late for Europe; it's lunchtime.) Tracey was right. (However did you guess?!) Welcome to Prague. My name is Erin, and I live and work here, with my husband (who is Czech), in the city of a thousand spires (which also happen to look a lot like forks, when you're hungry...or so I think). The first teaser photo is on the far south side of Prague. It's of Cukrak mountain; "cukrak," roughly translated, means "little pastry chef." (Cukrak is about an hour from this Prague vista.) The second teaser photo, below, really is in Prague; it's of a fruit and vegetable market in the Ujezd neighborhood. They have the best fruit and veg in town (at least, in my opinion). I'm at work, today and tomorrow, and I'll tell you more about that later, because I spend the business day surrounded by cookbooks... After that, I have a few days off so I'm planning to roam around Prague and show you some hidden good stuff beyond roast pork, dumplings, and cabbage. Here's my plan for the week... Ask any questions you like about what you see. Unorganized bits of the plan... I'll post a bunch of photos later, but I have to warn you that my food photography skills are nowhere near the previous bloggers'.... Kim's blog and Chris's were truly mouthwatering. The good news is that I just discovered Picasa, this morning, so I may be able to spare you my blurry breakfast photos. Breakfast: turkey sandwich and coffee. It's about all I can do to assemble this. In fact, this is advanced, for me. I'm not a morning person at all. More anon.
  8. 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?
  9. So, it’s the morning of the 19th, and it’s my turn on stage. Oh, no! I think I’ve forgotten my lines, even worse, it appears there isn’t a script! How do I keep up the high standards therese set in her blog? Help! Deep breath, I’m sure I’m not the only one that gets food blog stage fright… Ok, OK…Start with the basics… Well, I grew up in Montana USA, moved to Alaska USA after uni/with husband (husband is from Alaska). After 4 years in Anchorage we moved to Melbourne Australia. We had a 2 year temporary visa but ended up staying 11 years. (Don't worry, we did actually renew our visas! ) Then just a few months ago we decided to take an opportunity that has brought us to Dubai UAE. And that’s a looooong way from Montana in more than just distance! To prepare for this week I did what I usually do to plan food. I grabbed some of my food mags and some of my cookbooks and paged through to find somthing I felt like cookin'. There's often not a rhyme or reason to what I pick, it just sounds fun to make! The thing I’ve done the most this past year is make bread and I’m very proud of some of my efforts. This week I want to give Ciabatta a try and I, of course am open to hints in making it! Of course I'll just HAVE to go out for a meal or two this week. Sometimes that's hard to fit in with all the stuff I organise to cook but I'll just have to make the time, now won't I? therese asked loads of questions of us last week and I’ll be asking some too. Difference is I don’t know the answers! I’m still trying to identify things at the supermarkets! Before I forget, I need to say thanks to my friend Amanda who sent me the quote in my signature just in time for my blog and without even knowing I was gonna be doing this! (doing dance of joy now since I made it over the initial posting!)
  10. 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.
  11. 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.
  12. Now you are probably wondering about the title.... My past two blogs covered big events here in Japan New Year's blog Undokai (sports day festivities) blog Currently there is no major event going on in Japan so I have decided to focus this blog on modern and traditional Japan and how they are combined in daily life. There are a couple things going on this week. Today (April 5) is the first day of school, the Japanese school year runs April- March) so in about 15 minutes I will go outside with my daughters to send them off to school. (yeah ) Mia is going into the 4th grade and Julia the 2nd. My son Hide will go back to preschool on Thursday. This time of year is one of the most beautiful in Japan, it is cherry blossom (sakura) season and the trees will all be in bloom by the time my blog is over. I will take tons of pictures of these trees as the area I live in has them lining all of the streets. it is just gorgeous. oh yeah and we will talk about food too!
  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 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!
  15. Hi, wow, been very nervous about this, but now that I'm at the jumping off point it doesnt seem so bad, lol. Welcome back to Scotland, Edinburgh again in fact, although hopefully, a different view of our city and eating. I live with my husband and mum, my sister and her little girl are here for most meals during the week, I also look after her little one after school so I'm usually on lunch duty too. My main enthusiasm is baking, I love making bread, cakes and cookies, however I do not partake as I can only eat a soft/pureed diet. I also make jam, I have an occasional stall at my niece's school market. On the agenda this week, a trip to a pick your own orchard, jams and jellies, haggis, a dry run on making a pumpkin shaped cake and international talk like a pirate day! arr. I have to scoot out but will be back shortly with (hopefully) a laptop cable that will allow me to post some pictures of today's eating!
  16. Good morning from soggy Toledo, Ohio. It has been raining for days, which the grass and plants appreciate, but we're all getting a little bit sitr crazy! I'm very excited about this week, though I must warn you that it will be far less exotic than laksa's wonderful blog. I grew up in NY (on Long Island), but my husband, daughter and I live in Toledo. To give everyone some reference, we are very close to the Michigan border. We are an hour from Detroit, and about 50 minutes from Ann Arbor. In fact, Ann Arbor is where we do most of our food shopping. We get our high quality supplies (EVOO, sherry vinegar, mustards, capers packed in salt, etc.) from Zingerman's, get most of our meats from a wonderful butcher up there called Sparrow Meat Market, and then pick up the rest of our supplies at Whole Foods. They also have a new Trader Joe's that we have just started to take advantage of. This week, though, we will be sticking to Toledo for all of our food supplies, which isn't as bad as some might assume. One of the things I love about Toledo is its ethnic neighborhoods, all of which have their own markets. We have Tiger Bakery for Lebanese food, Stanley's for Polish food, Takacs and Golden Oven Bakery for Hungarian favorites, Sofo's for Italian food, and La Perla for Mexican food such as homemade tortillas. We also have an excellent fruit and vegetable market called Rhode's which I will be visiting today for inspiration. I won't have my week's menu planned until after that trip, but here are some highlights that you can look forward to: This evening for dinner, we will be heading out to the annual German American Festival in Oregon, Ohio. Today is the last day of the three-day festival, and I'm excited about my pig hock with potato salad. I am sure that my almost-three-year-old daughter Dylan will want something resembling a hot dog, so I will try to introduce her the "wurst booth". Stay tuned this evening for lots of photos of this crazy event and the food we eat there. We'll also go out to eat one night this week. I used to be the food critic in Ann Arbor, so I thought it would be fun to "review" a restaurant for you guys. I'm leaning towards one of the Lebanese favorites in town. The Lebanese population is by far the most prevalent of all of the immigrant groups here, so it seems like a good choice. Dylan, my daughter, is a big fan of the place we're going to go, because they allow you to order a side dish of olives. She loves olives. Finally, I'll end the blog on Saturday with a breakfast tailgate at a University of Michigan football game. My husband is a U of M alum, and we have four season tickets. This is the first game of the season and it starts at noon. The breakfast tailgates are always my favorites. So, that's the deal with me. I'm going to try to get back to my coffee and NY Times now before my daughter comes home. She had her first ever sleepover at Grandma's house, and I need to take advantage of my remaining free time!
  17. 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!
  18. 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!
  19. 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=
  20. In real time, I was passed the torch by balmagowry on Thursday, I believe. But with the schedule being off due to Stinger’s truncated blog, I got to ruminate on my fate for a few days. One would think this would give me plenty of time to think of a schedule of events and write a beautiful, sweeping introduction to my food life. One would be wrong. Mr. Victoria, hereafter known as Keifel, and I have been supremely lazy this weekend so far, aside from dragging the boychick, our son, off to the farmer’s market entirely too early for his liking yesterday. However, I will try to give a little background, since I haven’t gotten around to doing a bio post either. I will try to shorten what could be a long story. My husband and I have been married two and half years, but we have only been living together for about two months. We met online four years ago, fell in love, decided to be rational creatures… oh, wait. Did I mention my husband is from Trinidad? And that he didn’t have a resident visa? Well, we fell in love. He got a work visa. He went to London on business. On his return, he discovered his papers were not in order. He was summarily deported in July 2001. Then September 11th happened. His employer withdrew her support of his work visa. We got married in January 2002 and started jumping through all the necessary hoops to get him here and lo and behold, he landed in Nashville in March and we have been disgustingly happy since. How does this apply to the foodblog? Keifel doesn’t have a work permit yet, that hoop is still flaming. So, currently, I have the good fortune to have an amazingly devoted house husband, who drives me to work and the boychick to school and cleans and does a great deal of the cooking. So what goes on at ms. victoria’s over our week together with the foodblog will involve him and he has been kind enough to be both a good sport and help with pictures. I have only been in Nashville since last November and am still learning the lay of the land. I quit my old job as an associate television producer to find my fortune (or at least follow my bliss) as a personal chef and a writer. I’ve applied to the culinary arts program at the local state school and am working as a temp at another university in the area. Until a month ago, I was also waiting tables but the current temp gig pays fairly well and I wanted my weekends back. Generally, things are in flux, but the good kind. We are still kind of hitting our groove in the kitchen. I tend to be a haphazard cook as far as menu planning at home. I cook what I feel like eating or decide at 8 PM to make bread. We are getting more into a routine of sorts and I am learning meat cookery from my dedicated carnivore of a husband. (Until he got here I was either hardcore vegetarian or maybe eating fish, I have fallen off the veggie wagon and into the omnivore sidecar.) For this week, I do have a little bit of a plan. We are going to have a Trini dinner at least one night and a Mexican dinner on Wednesday to honor Cinco de Mayo. Aside from that it will be catch as catch can and I will only be able to post photos from home in the evening. I am now off to the kitchen to make French toast for breakfast before we go to church (UU if anyone is interested) and the Pottery Barn thereafter to shop for a teapot. Our kitchen (a little messy, right after we moved in):
  21. Thanks to gsquared I will be hosting this week's food blog. This week is more or less like any other week, except for Friday - which is my birthday. We live at the bottom of Napa Valley in California, in a reasonably small town. MsMelkor and I both work from home, so the only time we go out for breakfast/lunch during the week is for work. Almost every day starts with a cappuccino. We are working on perfecting our cappuccino making skills so we each drink 4 or so a day - I make them during the week, MsMelkor makes them on the weekends since her work day starts around 6:30am, while mine starts at 9am. Because it wouldn't be right to start this blog without pictures of the cats here ya go. Texas: Rosie:
  22. Oh, shit, I guess I tagged myself. I warn you all: don't expect any gourmet tap-dance. Okay, yesterday, Monday, August 25: vitamin pills, with instant iced coffee (Bustello dissolved in boiling water, ice cubes, water, and skim milk. No Sweet 'n' Low this time) 1 Le Petit Ecolier 70% Extra-Dark Chocolate-covered cookie Lots of tap water (mmmmmmmm, NYC water) "Lunch" (around 3pm): salad with balsamic vinaigrette, left over from Saturday's dinner, kind of limp but not yet slimy, with some kasseri cheese microplaned on top, and freshly ground black pepper. Dinner: Only one glass (!) of La Gitana fino sherry Lamb and artichoke stew out of the freezer, plus chickpeas (canned ) and artichoke paste. Potato-plantain spatzl (how's THAT for fusion? ), also from Saturday. Stir-fried green Swiss Chard The ever-present salad, with doctored Marie's Feta Dressing (extra feta, oregano, dill, and yogurt) 1/2 of the bottle of Wagner (Finger Lakes) 1998 Cabernet Franc That's it. HWOE finished off the Lychee and Lime sorbet that Rachel and Jason brought to the potluck, but I was too full.
  23. Suzanne F tagged me so here goes. The subtitle refers to the fact that I love to cook but I don't eat much. I like to eat, just not much quantity. (So why am I so fluffy?) Therefore, this thread may include what I am THINKING about eating as much as what I actually put in my mouth. I am starting this now because I am expecting everyone to notice the time. This is a lesson in dedication to BBQ. Gotta go start the fire and crank up the magic bullet. More on that later. This should get interesting. We are in the middle of tropical storm Grace. Think the rain planet in Star Wars. Coffee, Melitta brand Columbian, brewed strong, evaporated milk and sweetener added. A Keebler Club cracker... because it was there.
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