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  1. Well today I'm going to start this blog very slowly as I had a very bad night with the youngsters of my family (read too many beers and way too many shots). I'll start with an introduction and then later today I'll post about the mayhem and madness making and devouring Easter lunch My wife is a NYer born and bred - Me, I'm Australian through and through. We met just after 9-11, when I was across here on an exchange with the fire department. AFter spending 3 weeks in NJ and NY together, then my wife (I'll call her V) visiting me for 2 weeks in Australia, we got married last April in NJ - tomorrow's the big one year anniversary. For those of you wine conniseurs, we currently live in the Clare Valley in Australia which is the home of such great wineries as Taylors, Wolf Blass, Penfolds, Barrys and MANY other smaller boutique wineries - god I could spend a day here just writing about the wineries in our area. I believe grand total it's about 120 wineries both big and small, good and bad The unfortunate part of living where we do is that restaurants and supermarkets are few and far between, and sometimes it's just basically a pain in the ass trying to get the supplies I want for a meal. Our family over here actually moved to NJ from the Bronx back in the 80's. They're Italian-American, so food is definitely a thing of importance which is great for me because good food is damn important to me too. I'm the youngest of the "kids" so I get ALOT of perks until it comes to cooking and then they basically shut the kitchen door and leave me locked in there until the food is ready They're slowly realizing that I'm a better cook than the MIL, so every time we come back for vacation I get an email from my FIL requesting various things. One day I'm going to have the nerve to tell him that grilling when it's like 32F outside is just not fun!!!!! Food wise, V and I will basically eat anything - Japanese, Chinese, Thai, Italian, Greek - you name it, we'll eat it. OK I'm lieing, the only offal I'll eat are kidneys and V will eat nothing of the sort. Call me a wuss if you like but that's just me, other than that everything's fair game.... those deer and groundhogs in Dad's backyard are looking pretty damn good. Anyone know what groundhog tastes like?? Anyway that's all for now, I have Easter lunch to hook into and make (read create ) and then later today I'll post about dinner last night and lunch today. Cheers Tom PS I hope everyone has a great Easter and just keep on smiling NOTE: sorry guys I'm yet to move into the 21st century so there won't be any pics just verbal descriptions of what we're eating
  2. Good morning. Those cheers you heard this morning were from me, as I put the last of the three kids on the bus. I have loved having them home all summer, but I really loved the peace and quiet when they left. I celebrated my first day of freedom with a trip to the Minneapolis Farmer's Market. Before we moved to our new home, I was only about 5 minutes away. Since it's now a 20-minute drive, I don't get there as often. I stopped by my formerly-local Kowalski's market on the way home to get some Hope Butter. I do miss the very close and easy (most often biking distance) to a wonderful local supermarket and lots of Asian markets, but I am adapting. For breakfast today, I had several cups of really strong coffee and an Old Gold. Oh, and I had 1/2 piece of toast. I'm not a big early morning eater, and have noticed that as I've aged, I do not want to eat anything sweet in the morning. In fact, my sweet tooth in general is not very strong, except for fruit. I tend to have my first real hunger of the day at about 11:00 am. My eating patterns during the day will be quite different than they were up until last week, when there were three kids who wanted breakfast and lunch, not the frequent "little" meals I gravitate toward when I am home alone. So, now, I will go and grab something to eat and attempt to fix whatever happened on the computer to my camera program when Paul installed a new operating system. Hopefully, it will be an easy process so I can post photos of the bounty I acquired this morning.
  3. Here we go. Fasten your seat belts and try to remain awake. Emma woke at 1am after having a bad dream, then it was Ian's turn at 2am, just as we had fallen asleep again. Woke this morning at 6:30 feeling less than refreshed. Breakfast: 2 cups of hot coffee, more or less. I can never keep track because as soon as what's in my cup cools off, it gets poured out and replaced by fresh. I large chocolate chip cookie - snagged before Scott whisked the rest off to the office with him. Fixed pancakes, orange juice and sliced banana for the kids. One slice of cheddar and half an apple as a midmorning snack. Eaten because vitamins + coffee + empty stomach is a recipe for disaster. We put off grocery shopping yesterday, so it will have to be done today with both kids along. Ack!
  4. I'm not going to start my "official" blogging until tomorrow but, while I've got a few free minutes, I thought I'd at least introduce myself. My name is Jen Jensen and I live in Sacramento with my husband and 14 year-old daughter, Kathleen (AKA the Spawn). We are imports from BC (Canada) and have lived here for 5 years now. I "retired" when we moved here, as I only have a "live" visa, not a "work" visa. Before moving here, I worked as a technical writer on various IT and business process projects. My hobby is dog racing (whippets, not greyhounds) so we also live with four of the five dogs I own. Living here in CA with us are Streaka (AKA Über--as in Streaka über alles.); Tighe (AKA Goober, because it rhymes with Über and matches his personality); Dayton (Dids); and Rogie (meiner Deutscher Junge), whom I co-own with a friend back home. My fifth dog, Derby, is Tighe's daughter and lives with my friend in BC. In the coming week, I'll be eating at home, eating out, and (most exciting of all) eating at Tigh-na-Mara, a spa/resort on Vancouver Island in BC. The trip to Tigh-na-Mara is why I won't be starting until tomorrow ... I want to be able to include my meals there in the blog. Until tomorrow ...
  5. 8am... Why did I volunteeer for this? I'm sure I will lose any reputation that I might have as a serious foodie...need more coffee. This is not going to be about elelegant restaurant food, but bourgeoise domestic cooking. For those that don't already know Jill and I live about 5 miles west of Cambridge, UK where it is currently dank and raining, but not too cold. Some forecasters predict the weather will turn cold and snow, but a white Christmas is unlikely. Our main meals tend to be in the evening, except for holidays and the odd Sunday. Unless otherwise noted, breakfast for me is a mug of coffee (mix of 1/3rd Old Brown Java, 1/3rd Kenya Pea Berry, 1/3rd Mocha Mysore, all medium roast and made in a press pot) with semi-skimmed milk. Probably made stronger than coffeee in the US, and when I'm in the US I find there is something strange about the milk usually served with US coffee. Powdered milk, or NDC is not acceptable at any time. I usually skip lunch, or graze. For the holidays this year we are expecting this year Jill's grown up sons plus their partners, one of whom is vegetarian, and various waifs and strays. We are not religious, so this is a secular celebration, encompassing as many traditions as possible, but rooted in English customs with a fair bit of Provence influence. Currently I plan. eG folk, please comment and advise. Circumstances may change, and it may not all happen. Today Saturday 20 Dec. First day of Chanukah Supermarket shopping at Tesco's, 100,000 sq ft of supermarket for most of the basics. Start making Pannetone. Has to be Latkes, and I guess Brisket for supper. Maybe kale or cabbage or sourkraut to go with. Sunday 21 Dec Winter Solstice, Yule Get in Yule log, holly, Mistletoe, Xmas tree, (which my brother, being frum, calls a Hannukah bush) Finish Pannetone Baked Ham, parsley sauce Monday 22 Dec Dunno. Leftovers or take-out Tuesday 23rd Dec Company (www.artimi.com) Xmas dinner at the University Arms Hotel. Rubber turkey I expect Wednesday 24th Dec Xmas Eve Bread baking: Pome a l'huile Making mince pies to the sound of King's College Carols Provence style Gros Souper, meat free maybe: l'aigo boulido, a garlic and herb soup, cauliflower (gratin), Salt cod balls or en raito, celery with anchoïade. Cheese. Trifl; the "trieze deserts". As we don't go to Midnight Mass, we wont follow with the Souper Gras Thursday 25th Dec Xmas, and Sir Isaac Newton's Birthday. Late Xmas lunch Amuse: Truffled Brandade and Tapenade crostini Caviars, blinis etc Truffled consomme dore (shot glasses) -o0o- Turkey, with all the trimmings - Fois gras truffe - Sausage meat and a vegetarian chestnut stuffing (for the veggie) - chipolatas, bacon rolls - cranberry and bread sauces, Jus - roast potatoes, parsnips, Jerusalem artichokes (sunchokes) - Sprouts, carrots Christmas pudding, hard sauce Cheese Mince pies, tangerines, walnuts etc Friday 26th Dec Boxing Day Brunch Invited to supper by our neighbors Saturday 27th Leftovers: Soup, maybe devilled turkey wings, a pie, or Risotto... Sunday 28th Standing rib roast Monday 29th Leftovers: Tuesday 30th: Stew? Wednesday 31st New Years Eve Cock-a-leekie Haggis Syllabub and shortbread Cheese
  6. I'm it this week. And who am I, anyway? You could check out my bio, if you really want to, but really all you need to know is that I'm not professionally involved with food, although more and more I wish I were. I have amassed nearly 1000 posts here in (I think?) pretty quiet fashion. I mostly take from eGullet-- I learn new things every day, and I'm very grateful. I live in Brooklyn, with my wife Robin and our two children, Leah (2 years old) and Nate (almost 7 months). I am a lawyer, but for the past four months I've been on a leave of absence taking care of the kids. This leave of absence ends June 1. That's right, we are at the beginning of my last week of freedom. (Incidentally, I did a sort of half-blog for a while about new stuff I was learning to make while on leave. You can find it here.) When my leave began, I wanted to tackle a bunch of disparate projects, but eventually I became primarily obsessed with baking bread. I began baking every day, and I eventually got my own sourdough starter (whom I call Ringo) up and running. This daily bread-making has become part of my identity now, and it's going to be tough to part with it. Once I return to work, my daily baking is going to have to end, so I've recently been baking more than ever, trying to cram in what I can before I go back. So this week you can expect some bread from me. And I'll try to show you a few things about how we live here in Brooklyn, U.S.A. We will be traveling later this week. We'll be leaving Wednesday night to go to my mother's home in Maryland. My mother knows not of this eGullet business (at least, so far as I know ), and it might be best if this remains the case. So you may not get much in the way of food photos while we're in Maryland, but I'll give you some reports that you might find amusing. So, on with the blog already! Oh, by the way, I've been instructed to tell you that if you reply to the blog, you're fair game to be tagged as the next blogger. And that you have a moral obligation not to say no! I was apparently the very last choice to be tagged for this week. (They said it was because I live in NYC, where so many of the bloggers have lived, but really...) I've always been picked last since I was a child, so I'm okay with it. But don't put some other loser in my position! Say "yes" when you're tagged! Take it for the team! (Now will anyone dare reply? ) Okay, so dinner this evening was (drum roll, please)....... tuna salad. Behold, mortals! See, I made this poached chicken with aioli on Friday, and there's just a ton of aioli left over, which I love, but I'm having a hard time getting rid of it. Yesterday I assembled a bunch of cooked and raw vegetables for a sort of veggie "Grand Aioli," and tonight I briefly entertained thoughts of a Bourride, but it was so hot out, and like a jackass I had the oven at 500 degrees already for some French bread. The thought of turning on a burner was just too much, at least until we put in our stupid air conditioners. (See Note 1, below.) So it's just a tuna salad sandwich, not that there's anything wrong with that, but it's also got a little extra: it's made with homemade aioli on homemade bread. It tasted pretty good. I also put together some Biga (a firm batter of flour, water and a little yeast that will bubble all night, creating flavor for future breads), which I'll use Monday and Tuesday. I got my hands on some actual Italian "00" flour (their white flour), so I thought I'd make a Pugliese and maybe some durum wheat bread with my "00" Biga: For tomorrow: I dunno. I can never plan ahead. My wonderful wife got me this great gift for our anniversary: It's the seven quart Le Creuset (we have an oval five already, I think). Give me some ideas. What should I make in this pot? If I like your idea I'll use it on Monday or Tuesday! Also: I got these beautiful radishes at the greenmarket on Saturday: I dipped some slices in aioli yesterday. What else should I do with them? Put them in a salad? I haven't the faintest idea. Help me out. See you tomorrow (or later this morning, really). It's late. Note 1: This is what most of us New Yorkers do, by the way. We take down our air conditioners in the winter because otherwise we'd freeze, and we store them in closets, or in the corner, or wherever we can, and then when it's hot again we risk our backs picking them up and we install them in our windows, blocking our pathetic views of alleys and neighbors in their underwear. Glamorous, huh?
  7. I'm packing up to hit the road for our summer family reunion. My mother, daughter, and younger son will be driving from Atlanta to Dune Allen Beach in south Walton County, Florida -- one of the string of communities between Destin and Panama City along highway C-30A that comprises some of the most beautiful beaches in the country. Tomorrow, we will meet up with my older brother and sister-in-law, and a couple of days after that, my younger brother will show up with his three kids. Because I'm in a hurry at the moment (it seems that the last few hours leading up to a vacation are the most stressful), I'll cut to the chase, and we can get more into the area and the setup details later. When I take a trip like this, where I'll be doing a lot of cooking, I like to pack a few things to make prep a little easier. There's the tools: and the bar equipment: a few spices, because what you usually find in rental units is old and limited: Like I said, just a few items. The thing is, the trouble that it is to get this batterie together is repaid in convenience and currency saved at the destination. And anyway, everything but the very biggest stuff gets tucked away in this: I apologize for cutting this off quickly, and not rhapsodizing about where we're going, who we're meeting, and all the great things we're going to eat and drink when we get there, but like I said, I'm in a bit of a hurry. I need to duck out for about nine hours; I'll go on to the point of boredom on all of those subjects when we've arrived and I've gotten back on line. In the meantime, there's some background on the area in Steven Shaw's Daily Gullet piece on Sandor Zombori (whose restaurant, alas, is now closed), and you can catch me picking the brains of our cocktail peeps in the Beverages forum thread, Vacation Bar. Happy reading. Thanks for stopping by, and I'll see you tonight.
  8. My fellow eGulleters... Hello there, my real name is Mike, I live just outside of Washington DC, and Uptown tagged me. We'll see how this makes my week a lot different food-wise. I have some bad dining habits mixed in with my own pretty-good-for-an-amateur cooking along with some meals from some excellent, or at least reliable, restaurants in the DC area. Can I start with last night? It's been so cooooold. And for whatever reason, braising seems to be the way to go when it's chilly. So, I went to visit my best friend, his wife, and my twin Godsons, armed with a bunch of short ribs, carrots, onions, celery, beef broth, red wine (lots of it), garlic, parsley, tomato paste, anchovy paste, and a can of fire roasted tomatoes. A delicious meal ensued. More details later as this PC at my friend's place is misbehaving, and the Indian carryout just arrived.
  9. Welcome to the first eGullet Foodblog Tag Team. This is the first of what we hope will be semi-regular recurring threads and a special feature of the eGullet Foodblog. Two Society members will be blogging and will be coordinating menus throughout this week. Out of nine days, they will commit to a set number of matched meals, in this case three. (This number may change in future installments, depending on the participants, their schedules and other factors.) The execution doesn't have to be the same, or even the recipe, but the overall meals have to be essentially similar. Previous installments featuring slkinsey include Of Opera Singers, Food and Ferrets and Thanksgiving Haute Cuisine. He appears in Still Life With Tenor And Ferrets in a supporting role. Marlene, on the other hand, was seen in Driving The Food Bus and most recently in Mrs. Claus And The Canadian Food Sleigh. Marlene and Sam will post later today, but in the meantime, here are a few things to look forward to: Saturday, 28 May: Braised something. Sunday, 29 May: Dinner party along the lines of cocktails followed by a big steak dinner with various accoutrements and bread pudding for dessert. Any cut of steak, but not a roast (although the steak can be roasted). Monday, 30 May: Hot soup featuring garlic. Tuesday, 31 May: Chicken with spring vegetables. This can be, but doesn't have to be, roast chicken -- could be poached, etc. Wednesday, 1 June: Something creative with leftovers or free. There will be steak leftovers, braised leftovers, broth, etc. Thursday, 2 June: Italian restaurant outing. Friday, 3 June: Pasta with meatballs, or variations thereof. Saturday, 4 June: Catered dinner/restaurant outing. Sunday, 5 June: Mystery ingredient dinner (basically a mystery basket tbd by you, the audience. ). Since this is kind of a first for this type of thing, we've started the thread a day early so that everyone can orient themselves and get their bearings. I hope it'll be as fun for you as it will be for our two co-stars. In addition to all of the above, they will also be blogging about their daily eating. Ok, enough from me. Let the cooking and discussion commence! Soba
  10. If I wasn't a chef I'd definitely be into cooking. Well I used to be into cooking......and I'm actually not a bad cook but it just doesn't fit into my life style anymore. I suppose that sounds weird so I better explain myself. I spend all day everyday preparing food for other people that when it comes to thinking about what I'm going to eat and preparing my meals, I'm totally spent. So I've fallen into the habit of eating whatever requires the least effort to aquire. So I'm guessing most of you would think, "o.k. so she eats alot of easy meals, like sliced fruits and vegetables, quality cheeses and breads, simple pasta dishes etc...." but you would be wrong! That type of eating requires effort, typically more effort then I attempt on working days. I'm a Pastry Chef and well what's effortless around me to eat, is: pastries. I feel like I need to post this. Warning: I apologize to all of you in advance, because this blog will probably scare you. The following eating has been done by a professional and shouldn't be attempted by non-professionals. I'm not writing that as a cute ploy (cause it's not cute, it seems pretty stupid right now) but it's true. I have a feeling I might been seen as the poster person for horrible eating habits. My eating habits are extreme and so I'm highly embarrassed to expose this to you all. But my love for all things pastry and desire to share override my embarrassment. My days off of work are Sunday and Monday. That's when I do eat more normal/healthy meals. Although, I've been panicking and thinking I better actually prepare "meals" during this week......so I won't be embarrassed.........well, we'll see.... that depends upon what's happening at work and how much time I have after work. I do sort of start my day off like everyone else, so I'll start my blog off like others too. Bear witness to this, my daily breakfast: Technically the container it comes from says it's "Gourmet Cappuccino, French Vanilla".........but I don't know of any real cappuccino drinkers that would let this mixture pass thru their lips. O.k. soooooo it's sort of like a hot chocolate/coffee mix and nothing like a real cappuccino. I used to drink real coffee, but my system can't take it anymore and it definitely can not be consumed by me when my stomach is empty. I tried to very hard to switch to becoming a tea drinker, but it just didn't take. I never prepare breakfast at home. If I'm starving I might grab a couple cookies or whatever is fully prepared laying around and instantly ready to eat. When my husband is home we do always eat breakfast, he can't live with-out it (that means he gets really cranky with-out it). But then it's rarely prepared in our kitchen but sometimes he likes to cook. We normally go out for breakfast every weekend. This weekend we were busy gardening so we ate what was available 'instantly' at home.......because I actually had something at home to eat. Here's what our breakfast this past Sunday consisted of: (I hope it's o.k. to talk about past meals too?) I took the photo of the rolls that were left and then I proceeded to finish them off while typing. I had made too many of these at work for a brunch party we had. They didn't all fit on the serving platter so I snook the extras home for my hubby. He really likes these! As we ate, he talked about how we should open a store selling only pecan sticky buns, blah, blah, blah. Of course he's thought up the easy to imagine name of the company and what our sales literature would look like. "Let's call it, Sticky Bunns and have a photo of two buns looking like a "back" shot." That's cleaver..........I teased him. Knowing full well we'd never actually start another business.....but we had a little chuckle over the whole concept. I have to leave for work and I'm not certain when I will return online. So I'm going to pack in as much info. as possible so you can barely get thru these opening posts before I return. This is me, exactly like how I work, when I'm at work (I'm preparing these posts in advance, on Monday and I've got my photos all loaded and ready to go in advance). I hate getting caught short so I ALWAYS work as much in advance as humanly possible..........and I always seem to go over board!! I'm shaking my legs as I type unconsciously (until now)......that's me too, always got to be in motion, ready, ready, ready. Wait, I suppose I should get this out of the way. I wouldn't want to break tradition and not post a animal member of my family right off the bat (I think thats the 'hook' to these blogs. We're are more then mear foodies, we are also a bunch of animal lovers.). It's very rare that I sit at the computer by myself. Just like everyone else I too have a cat that is certain he must accompany me at all times when I'm on the computer. That's his job and he does it to excess just like me...well he is just like me, too much. He's certain I'm his sole mate (cause he treats me like another cat not a human) and he's always at my side when I'm home. When I sleep he checks me all night to make sure I'm still alive (he drives me crazy! and sometimes he bites me). This is Hawkeye: He isn't a cute cat, his legs are far too short for his long body with his front two legs being shorter then his back two. Nor is he sweet, we often refer to him as "the devil cat" and our other cats definitely agree. He was the last kitten of his litter sold at the animal shelter....well the last kitten from all of their adoptive cat litters. We're certain there was a reason for that (but, I love him dearly anyway). I believe what our whole family eats is fair game for blogs so I thought I'd mention Hawkie only eats to survive. Sometimes when he's laying in front of me at my computer I hear his stomach growling. He forgets there is always food out to eat or he just hasn't linked the feeling of an empty stomach can be solved by eating. I have two other cats who live to eat and if I can't think of anything else to write about I'll drag them into this blog too. Hum.........what else. Oh I remember, I was going to show you where I work, the kitchen, my ingredients etc... in my intro. to welcome you into my work life. I took photos already (just to be prepared) so I'll post a whole bunch of them so you can get the lay out. If things go slow at work I'd be happy to make anything pastry wise anyone wants to watch me eat. Most of my eating takes place at work, heck I eat all day long at work so I believe that makes most of my work fair topic to post about according to the blogging rules. I was sort of hoping to focus on my work as a pastry chef throughout this blog. I'm open for requests. Any requests, like: do you want to see my actual work/pastries (which I do eat, all day everyday) and what items: petite fours, breakfast pastries, cookies, cakes, wedding cakes, novelty cakes sweet tables, candys, anything about the savory side at my work (I eat their food too), photos of what I've made previously (I certainly tasted all of that), photos of what my day consists of as a pc (I eat constantly thru that), requests for recipes or techniques I can show (before I eat it)????? ...............Oh, maybe I should mention that I live about 1 1/2 hours drive from Chicago in the Northwest suburbs. I could take you on a tour eating my way across Chicago-land bakeries on my day off, if that interests anyone (besides me)? Wait, while I was typing the other two cats desided they needed to be included. I promise no more photos of pets........maybe a cutie kid photo thrown in later....... if you all begin to fall asleep.
  11. Hello Everyone! I am starting this off a bit early since I am on the West Coast and by the time I finish running around tomorrow it may be a bit late for some. I live in the South Bay of Los Angeles, on the city versus the ocean side. This is a view from the peninsula looking out to the ocean. Catalina Island is 26 miles out there but obscured by haze. To the right is the newish Terranea Resort on the grounds of what long ago was Marineland - the original home I think of Shamu the killer whale. To the left is the Trump golf course. I, however, live on the city side in an old small formerly rural town called Lomita. This is a shot I took in January of the hay truck offloading at the old feed store. As an example of the diversity of the Los Angeles that I love, the Christmas decorations are still up on the light poles, and the building in the background is the Chabad Center. I used the book "An Embarrassment of Mangoes" in my teaser photo. Really Los Angeles is an embarrassment of food diversity and my little property is a citrus heaven. I hope to introduce you to a few of my local markets and restaurants and also give you a look at my cooking.
  12. If you missed it, we recently relaunched the eG Foodblogs with our own Fat Guy kicking things off here. After a short break, another great eG Foodblog is under way. FoodMuse is sharing a week with us -- click here to read along and participate. And don't worry, there won't be a long break before the next one. On deck for next week, we have a blogger who has shared this picture with us:
  13. In Northeast Minnesota, what they call the Iron Range, Where men are men and that is that, and some things never change, Where winter stays 9 months a year, there is no spring or fall and it's so cold the mercury cannot be seen at all... -- So begins Garrison Keillor's Ballad of the Finn Who Would Not Take a Sauna. It's a fine read, if you like that sort of thing (I do), and it's even better if you can hear Garrison himself recite it. It's also as good an introduction as I can think of to this corner of my world. As luck and good timing would have it, I'm blogging during that all-too-brief time that is NOT winter, and might be called summer if you were to squint. Summer here is the despair of gardeners. It started this year around July 4, as it frequently does. Tonight is August 17, and the temperature is predicted to dip to 39F. We're on the fast downhill slide from summer into fall, all right. I can't speak for everyone around here, but I'm clinging hard to the last vestiges of summer. It isn't that I don't like the fall - I do - but summer and its produce here are too ephemeral to wish them to hurry away. This blog is to be a bit of a tour for you, to show you around the area and its produce, and to celebrate summer as it starts to slide in earnest. My area of coverage is pretty broad. I live near Duluth, which is at the pointy end of Lake Superior, but I spend a lot of time working up the North Shore of Lake Superior, and somewhat less time inland on the Iron Range. (Do not let my blog title and the poem confuse you: Duluth is not the Iron Range is not the North Shore. From a distance they may look alike, but the residents will no more appreciate being mislabeled than, say, a Scot would appreciate being called English.) If you look at a map of Minnesota and imagine lopping off the northeastern quadrant, going roughly straight north from the end of Lake Superior, you can see why it's called the Arrowhead. The cultures and foods of the areas I visit are different enough that they're all worth exploring, and I'll do that to the best of my ability. I'll add a couple of words about my work and the way I imagine this blog will work, and then post this to get things going. First off: I work two jobs - one full time, one less so. Sometimes I'm near a computer during the day, but I can't count on it, so my main activity is likely to be during the evening, or first thing in the morning. The full-time job is only indirectly related to food. The part-time job is as a flight instructor, and it isn't at all related to food, although there's likely to be an airport lunch sometime this week. However - both jobs involve a lot of teaching and communication! I cannot abide posting or lecturing in a vacuum, so I hope you'll ask lots of questions or post comments. I plan to solicit opinions and suggestions for some cookery I intend to do, too. While I've been typing on this, I've been having an evening snack: Nectarine-plum ice cream based on Ruth Smith's Peach Ice Cream, the original recipe, and Folie a Deux Menage a Trois wine, an inexpensive blend of zinfandel, merlot and cabernet sauvignon. Mmm. Ice cream and red wine are a nice combination, especially at this hour. Welcome to my world!
  14. Tere õhtust (that’s „Good evening“ in Estonian)! I’m very, very, very excited to be doing my first ever eGullet foodblog. Foodblogging as such is not new to me – I’ve been blogging over at Nami-nami since June 2005, and am enjoying it enormously. But this eGullet blog is very different in format, and I hope I can ’deliver’. There have been so many exciting and great food blogs over the years that I've admired, so the standard is intimidatingly high! Also, as I’m the first one ever blogging from Estonia, I feel there’s a certain added responsibility to ’represent’ my tiny country A few words about me: my name is Pille, I’m 33, work in academia and live with my boyfriend Kristjan in a house in Viimsi, a suburb just outside Tallinn, the capital of Estonia. I was born and schooled in Tallinn until I was 18. Since then I've spent a year in Denmark as an exchange student, four years studing in Tartu (a university town 180 km south), two years working in Tallinn and seven years studying and working in Edinburgh, the bonnie & cosmopolitan capital of Scotland. All this has influenced my food repertoire to a certain degree, I'm sure. I moved back home to Estonia exactly 11 months and 1 day ago, to live with Kristjan, and I haven't regretted that decision once Edinburgh is an amazing place to live, and I've been back to Scotland twice since returning, but I have come to realise that Tallinn is even nicer than Edinburgh I won’t be officially starting my foodblog until tomorrow (it’s midnight here and I’m off to bed), but I thought I’ll re-post the teaser photos for those of you who missed them in the 'Upcoming Attractions' section. There were two of them. One was a photo of Tallinn skyline as seen from the sea (well, from across the bay in this case): This is known as kilukarbivaade or sprat can skyline A canned fish product, sprats (small Baltic herrings in a spicy marinade) used to have a label depicting this picturesque skyline. I looked in vain for it in the supermarket the other day, but sadly couldn’t find one - must have been replaced with a sleek & modern label. So you must trust my word on this sprat can skyline view The second photo depicted a loaf of our delicious rye bread, rukkileib. As Snowangel already said, it’s naturally leavened sour 100% rye bread, and I’ll be showing you step-by-step instructions for making it later during the week. It was fun seeing your replies to Snowangel’s teaser photos. All of you got the continent straight away, and I was pleased to say that most of you got the region right, too (that's Northern Europe then). Peter Green’s guess Moscow was furthest away – the capital of Russia is 865 km south-east from here (unfortunately I've never had a chance to visit that town, but at least I've been to St Petersburgh couple of times). Copenhagen is a wee bit closer with 836 km, Stockholm much closer with 386 km. Dave Hatfield (whose rural French foodblog earlier this year I followed with great interest, and whose rustic apricot tart was a huge hit in our household) was much closer with Helsinki, which is just 82 km across the sea to the north. The ships you can see on the photo are all commuting between Helsinki and Tallinn (there’s an overnight ferry connection to Stockholm, too). Rona Y & Tracey guessed the right answer Dave – that house isn’t a sauna, but a granary (now used to 'store' various guests) - good guess, however! Sauna was across the courtyard, and looks pretty much the same, just with a chimney The picture is taken in July on Kassari in Hiiumaa/Dagö, one of the islands on the west coast. Saunas in Estonia are as essential part of our life – and lifestyle – as they are in Finland. Throwing a sauna party would guarantee a good turnout of friends any time Finally, a map of Northern Europe, so you’d know exactly where I’m located: Head ööd! [Good night!] I'm off to bed now, but will be back soon. And of course, if there are any questions, however specific or general, then 'll do my best trying to answer them!
  15. I never imagined that my first post in my first eGullet foodblog would be so difficult to begin. With so much to share over the next week, I hardly know where to start. I want to make these next several days engagingly fun, witty, and intimately personal so that anyone so inclined may easily immerse themselves into my food-obsessed world. My goal is to bring enough of my (hopefully) unique personality and perspective to make this blog as interesting as possible. And, of course, I welcome any questions, comments, feedback, or musings that you all may have. Together, I think we can make this a really fun week. With that said, let's begin. First, a little on my background for those who may be unfamiliar. As you may have surmised, my name is Bryan. I'm currently living in northern central New Jersey and am 19 years old. During the school year, I attend Duke University in Durham, NC and am actively involved in the food community both on campus and in the surrounding area. At home, I cook a lot and work a little, much to the chagrin of my bank account. I'm half-Japanese, in case you're wondering, and this identity has played a relatively significant role in my culinary philosophy. By the way, I turn 20 on the 15th of July, in the midst of this foodblog. This scares me to no end; my childhood is but over. I'm more than willing to talk further about my background, culinary or otherwise, if anyone is interested. Just ask. Now let's introduce some of this week's crew. First, the Girlfriend. Offical taste-tester and capable of eating her own body weight of, well, just about anything. You know the stereotypical jock boyfriend (usually a football player in those TV family sitcoms) who eats his girlfriend's family out of house and home, my situation is eerily similar. She also apparently picks herbs while looking mysterious and deep in thought. Next, the Mother. Pays for groceries and other toys. Provides general financial and moral support. Drinks a lot of wine, as seen here. Finally, the Sister. Takes care of the pastry stuff that I'm too lazy to do. Baking, ice creams, sorbets, all that jazz. I must confess to not being on eG much in the prior week or so. Just a couple of days ago I returned from a trip to Anguilla and French St. Martin, two Caribbean islands known for having very good food. Perhaps fittingly, in Anguilla we stayed at the Cuisinart Resort and Spa, a great luxury resort owned by the Cuisinart kitchen appliance people. I'm not sure if this is directly relevant to food per se, but I'm more than willing to reflect on the meals of my recent travels if anyone is interested. Bringing us to the here and now, this week marks the beginning of New York City's Summer Restaurant Week 2006. While Restaurant Week has it haters and admirers--I'm of the latter camp--it does offer the opportunity to eat at many of the city's top restaurants on the cheap. Today, Monday, I have two lunches and a dinner planned as part of Restaurant Week. After that, I swing downtown to see a concert at the Bowey Ballroom and perhaps stop by at Room 4 Dessert, Will Goldfarb's (akwa on eG) hypermodern dessert bar. On Wednesday I have two more lunches and another dinner. On Friday the family is off to California for a weekend trip. We're driving from LA to San Francisco up the coast with an overnight stop in Carmel. Then on Sunday I've got meals at Bouchon and Gary Danko. Then, this blog must unfortunately come to an end. Of course, I'll be cooking a good deal, too. Some of the things I'll be playing with this week include carbonated fruit, a recently purchased commerical induction burner, my new mini-water bath, and trying to figure how to make alginated butter orbs (the plight of many a molecular-inclined cook). Much more on all this in the coming days. Finally, I'm working on a long-term project of opening up an underground restaurant in my apartment/dorm next semester, similar to the late and great StudioKitchen in Philadelphia. If people are interested in this or have advice to give (or legal counsel) please post. My concept is called Z Kitchen. The site is up and running but still in beta development. My Z Kitchen e-Lab, HEAVILY influenced by the brilliant people at ideasinfood (twodogs on eG), is also in its infancy. So, yeah, a lot to do and only a week to do it in. I hope you all continue to tune in and participate and ask questions and all that fun stuff. ETA: My mother requested I add a picture of myself. So, Hi.
  16. Good morning! What an auspicious day to begin my eGullet foodblog: If you've checked the news or are living in the northeast, you know that the Boston area was hit this a.m. by a nor'easter. (Actually, I haven't yet checked the news this a.m. -- they were saying nor'easter last night.) The subhead of this week's blog is "Where the garden is bare, and the pantry bursts." Indeed, I'll be showing you pictures of my poor garden later this week and maybe you can imagine the glory it is come July. I’m not a power-poster on eGullet, thus why it was probably next-to-impossible to puzzle out my clues (more on those below). When I do post, it’s mostly on the New England forum. I spend huge amounts of time reading the forums, though, especially the food blogs. So last summer, I gingerly approached Snowangel about blogging. I had visions of sharing the bounty of a New England summer with you all – the bounty from my garden, the hauls from our local CSA, the flats of berries we lug back to the kitchen from local u-pick farms. Ah, but no, Susan had other ideas: how about blogging in January? January?!? Was she insane? This is my garden in January. I haven’t even received a bill for the first installment of my 2008 CSA season, never mind a tender handful of spring greens. (Those won’t come till June.) Moreover, those beautiful flats of berries were all transformed into jam, of which we have exactly one jar left. The idea grew on me, though. I keep a huge pantry. I spend a lot of time during the summer preparing food that will get us through April of the following year. Why not show my readers how all that work pays off in the winter? So I hope you'll pull up a cup of tea (or coffee; I do not discriminate) and visit my little corner of the world this week. I do have a weird, wonderful pantry to show off, as well as a special treat for restaurant foodies tomorrow, a possible trip to King Arthur's Baking Center in Vermont on Saturday, plus day trips around greater Boston, where I live. Not to mention you'll get to see how my crazy little household eats in a given week.
  17. Hi everyone! tammylc tagged me for the next week and I'm starting today since my menu will be a little more interesting since it's (Canadian) Thanksgiving dinner at my parents' house. Starting tomorrow, however, you will be following me as I peruse the supermarket aisles looking for whatever's cheap, on sale, and halfway edible. I've been lurking on egullet for awhile, so I guess I should introduce myself. I'm a 4th year English major at UBC currently living in sin as I am staying with my boyfriend. Right now, we're trying to support ourselves while saving up for an apartment, and one area where we've had to drastically cut down on spending is groceries. I'm in school full-time, and work part-time as a private English tutor. I also work Saturdays at a tutoring center for peanuts. Anyway, onto Thanksgiving. I've been preparing food for tonight's dinner since Friday! It's my first time making an entire Thanksgiving meal by myself. I guess I should mention that though I'm on a shoestring budget, I do appreciate good food. I live in Vancouver, and my bf and I have dined at some of the nice restaurants like West and Lumiere. I enjoyed my food at West more. (BTW: I hope David Hawksworth reads my thread...he is my hero ) Today I woke up late and had to grab breakfast on the run. I ate 10 sourcream Timbits (from Tim Horton's, a sandwich/soup/donut chain in Canada) and a few fun-sized chocolate bars (Mars, Twix). I should mention that today's menu might shock some of you b/c of the plethora of junk food consumed, but I assure you I don't eat like this all the time. I just got caught on a bad day. Tim Horton's sourcream donuts are my favorite. The sourcream donuts are very dense, with an almost creamy interior. Not covered in a cloying sugary glaze. I brought donuts for my student...raspberry-filled, a couple of chocolate ones, some chocolate and coconut. Mmm... After our 2 hour lesson, I drove to Save-on-Foods to buy a pumpkin pie. Yesterday when I was there, I ate 8 samples from the (unmanned) sample tray. (BTW: That was basically yesterday's dinner. I told you I was poor. ) Today the sample trays held pieces of supermarket-quality Black Forest cake, birthday cake, olive and asiago ciabatta bread (which I love) and garlic toast. I had a sample of the Black Forest. Bleah. Got home, and ate a large piece of pumpkin pie. Since then, I've been picking at the rest of the pie every few minutes. I've already eaten more than a quarter of the 9" pie. No one else in my family will go near pumpkin, so I buy myself one every Thanksgiving. Also ate a handful of chocolate-covered macadamia nuts. I then got started on a pistachio sponge cake and the cornbread. Cornbread doesn't seem to be very popular in Canada; I've actually only eaten it twice in my life. For the cornbread, I combined ingredients from 3 recipes that I found earlier in the week--1 from Epicurious and the other 2 right here in the egullet recipe archive! (I used mamster's Yankee cornbread and Rachel Perlow's skillet cornbread). Both the cake and the cornbread look good. The turkey is in the oven and I just poured 2 bottles of beer over the big pan of veggies. This is what I'll be eating for dinner tonight: -turkey/gravy/cranberry sauce -sausage, artichoke, sourdough bread, cheese stuffing--found the recipe on Epicurious, and I followed it but doubled the amount of sausage -cornbread (thanks mamster and Rachel) -taboulleh salad -garlic bread (No veggies or roasted sweet potatoes for me when there's so much better-tasting stuff around). For dessert, I made the pistachio sponge cake and I'm serving it with whipped cream. I also made this Cappucino-Fudge cheesecake on Friday for tonight's dessert. Here's the link to the recipe: http://www.epicurious.com/run/recipe/view?id=106231 I used Callebaut chocolate since you can get it in the bulk section of Superstore for 99 cents/100 grams. Unfortunately, my cheesecake doesn't have a pretty lattice top since my (cheap) pastry bag exploded when I was trying to pipe the ganache. I bought the pastry bag for 6 bucks! What a waste of money... I had to instead pour the ganache over the top of the cheesecake. Decorated it with chocolate covered espresso beans.
  18. Jensen contacted me earlier in the week and asked if I would take over the Foodblog for the coming week. I agreed with the caveat that I would not start until Sunday night. I am still standing by that, but I thought I would go ahead and do some kind of intro as I am at work and have nothing better to do . This blog is going to begin and end with crawfish boils (kind of a compare and contrast thing). It is that time of year down here and everyone with a hundred bucks and an 80 qt pot is having a crawfish party sometime in the next two weeks. They are really fun social events and take absolutely no prep other than getting out all of the cooking gear, cleaning up the yard and the patio/deck/barn/dock, going to the seafood market, and going to the grocery store. All of the action (cooking and eating) occurs outside so you don't even have to spend a day shoving all of your junk into closets and under beds in order to fool your friends (who know better anyway) that you live a "Martha Life". Tommorrow's boil will take place in the backyard of my old next door neighbor (she moved, I stayed) and friend Robin. She has a beautiful house by Lake Pontchatrain in Mandeville and her swell new husband is a great cook (as are many men in Louisiana-it is very common here for men to be the primary food preparers in a household-always has been). This will be a small operation (150 lbs. of bugs or so) and about thirty people. Lots of beer, soft drinks, and laughter. Simple and easy and everyone will help with the set up and the cleanup so the hosts don't have to kill themselves and besides, that's half the fun of this type of entertaining. Next Sunday's boil (end of blog) will be a giant deal. It is my company party and there will be a huge trailer set up to boil TONS of crawfish. There will be a couple of hundred people there along with a band, tents, kid games, and the rest of the trappings of company parties. An entirely different vibe than a party in someone's back yard. Still prety fun, though. In between I will keep you up to date on the daily food doings in the Mayhaw Household. I will be roasting a turkey in a very unusual manner early in the week (so that we can eat it for the rest of the week in various disguises) and then I will take the carcass and make a little gumbo out of it. I will also be making some shrimp ettouffee one night, chicken creole another, and at some point I will be doing a little bbq'd redfish (it depends on when I get the fish). If I take a day off during the week and have the time I will probably do some kind of real BBQ on my open brick pit (that thing is da bomb ) over pecan wood. Probably brisket. I will also throw in some baked goods (I bake alot, much to my wife's and my waistline's dismay) and this week, for the sake of the blog, I think that I will just do the Southern thing-chess pie, pecan pie, peach pound cake, and probably some yeast rolls one night. I would imagine that you will see a fair amount of vegetable sides as the market down the street (awesome veg. stand 2 blocks from my house) is starting to fill up with spring veggies. Fear not- we will have some okra. You won't be seeing much about breakfast food or lunch except on the weekend, as I am not home when the boys eat it (I leave for work at 6 a.m.) and none of us are there for lunch (which is usually, for both my wife and I, a brown bag affair consisting of leftovers) and both of the boys take their lunch to school as well (even though they are both in private schools, the food is uniformly uninteresting and generally awful and they won't touch it). Incidentally-I have been married to my wife Mrs. Mayhaw (Robin) for 20 years and have two boys, Miles (14) and Graham (11). My children are unusual in that they will eat damn near anything (except blue cheese and one of them, inexpicably, does not like okra in any form-and they don't eat escargot-it's a long story) so they are very easy to feed. Frankly, I am not sure that he is mine and have been considering a DNA test to prove paternity ). I will do my best to provide regular photographs but I am not promising anything-even though I make my living using all of the new technology, photo gullet is still something of a mystery to me and I may be pm'ing some expert or another for a little help. Anyway, I am looking forward to the week and I hope that you enjoy it.
  19. Good Morning, all. Thank you, Ronnie Suburban, for a great blog! It would be hard to deliver such an appealing display of foods! Hopefully we can provide continuing enjoyment to all, as eG food blogging travels south, especially to those of you who dream of a warmer climate, like we used to! I will start this, and acquaint you with my husband, and his own introduction will follow soon. We are pleased to be food blogging during this time of year, when many think that Florida is at its best (well, except for all the election controversies). Fall does hold some of the best weather in this sunshine state, and the weather affects our cooking and eating almost as much as anything else. We have been having days in the mid to high 80’s, and nights in the high 60’s recently, with mostly clear skies. We hope to show you that Florida is much more than strip malls, the hanging chads of 2000, hurricanes, and who knows what by the time this Election Day is over; and we hope to share some of the joys of being here and living our dream. We will both be leaving for work shortly, and so until we get home and continue posting, we welcome you to our home, our kitchen, and our eating places. Come on in: Here's an outside view of the porch: Our kitchen, as you enter from the dining area: From the other end: And, from the living room, looking across the bar: For those who know me from the eG topics I frequent, especially the Dinner thread, it is no secret that our eating place is usually our porch. What is more of a secret is that we have a TV on our porch and we often watch a lot of sports and some other programs while we eat dinner. Some of our most romantic dinners were with a baseball or soccer game, a NASCAR race, or other sports event on TV, and a beautiful place setting with candlelight and flowers on the table. It’s been a tradition for us for a long time. I often post on eG about the enjoyment my husband and I have in cooking together, or cooking for each other; but as you may have gathered, Russ reads a lot more than he posts. When he introduces himself in this blog, it will be his second post! I asked him to join me in this, since so much of our cooking involves him. (He might say that I threatened him in some way if he didn’t do it.) So after I have introduced myself to those who don’t know me, Prepcook will introduce himself. Then we will proceed to journal our eating! I work part time and he works full time, so most likely I will have more entries and most of his will probably be early morning or evenings. Unfortunately, neither of us can access eG while we are at work, but please don’t hesitate to ask if you have any questions, and we will respond as soon as we’re back home and online. I grew up in a food-loving home, and my parents were good cooks. They bought a restaurant when my brother and I were teenagers, and spent most of their waking hours there for several years. I first learned about meal planning and cooking from my mom, but she did not teach me about what she did. She was one of those people who, for reasons unknown to me, didn’t share her knowledge of home cooking and kept many of her recipes “secret.” After I was grown and on my own, my mom and I began sharing recipes, and I began developing my own tastes and my own cooking styles. I have loved cooking ever since. Up until our move to Florida, I always worked full time and more, except for the first five months of my son Michael’s life. With rare exception, Russ and/or I cooked a nice dinner from scratch every night, no matter how many practices or games or other activities were going on, and we always sat down to eat together. Some nights back in the days of Little League baseball, Pop Warner football, and all the school teams, we ate dinner at around 10 PM! We all loved it, and our home was where all our boys’ friends wanted to come for dinner, and often did. …All that was making a short story long, to say that I am a self-taught cook. After the boys grew up, and were going to college and all that, my love of cooking and food became a passion. As much as I have always enjoyed cooking, it is even more fun now to cook for just the two of us. We do love the empty nest syndrome. There were a couple of years after I retired and before moving to Florida that I did some food consulting/ recipe development/ food writing/ food and wine education -- mostly for a wine shop where Russ and I both moonlighted. I owned a small company and had a web site called Culinary Passions. However, since moving to Florida, I have only pursued these activities as play, rather than work. This morning I am having my usual black coffee, even as we speak (type). On work days, I rarely eat breakfast and usually not lunch. If I get hungry and take the time, I’ll eat just a little on the run at around brunch time. I’m not sure how today will be, but I’ll keep you posted.
  20. Hello everyone and welcome to my foodblog. I'm a relatively new member of eGullet so I will follow in EatNopales footsteps by providing a short introduction. I grew up in rural Indiana on my parents' farm which my dad is still operating to this day. When I was younger we raised hogs (commercially) and chickens (our own use) as well growing corn and soybeans (~900 acres), but now he only does the corn and soybeans due to the plunge in the hog market in the mid to late 90s. Growing up in that place and time (80s/90s), my exposure to food was rather narrow. My mom taught me and the rest of my siblings how to cook and bake, but in mostly typical midwestern ways - cookies, cakes, pie, meat & potatoes. I had and still have a great deal of fondness for the desserts of my youth and I will certainly be sharing my pie making with you this week, but as for the savory side of things.... well... it's a bit different. I cook and eat more ethnic food than I had ever imagine existed as a child. For instance, I never had Indian food (what a revelation) until I was in college. Speaking of college, I spent my junior year studying abroad in the island nation of Malta. For those of you who are not familiar with Malta, it is a small island south of Sicily with strong Italian/British/Arabic influences in the cuisine and culture. One of my fondest memories of my time in Malta was walking to the local bakery and devouring the still warm bread. As a side note, I like warm bread and I don't care what the experts say. It is so much more enjoyable that way. Cuisinewise though, Malta is rather forgettable. My apologies to any of you who are passionate devotees of Kinnie or pastizzi. After college, I moved to Chicago which was where my interest in food truly blossomed. Living truly on my own for the first time, I began cooking to save money and to eat somewhat healthier. As time went on, I became more and more interested in cooking and attempted every more ambitious projects and dishes. I also began exploring the restaurant scene of Chicago - from fine dinning to the multitude of ethnic restaurants scattered throughout the city. Two years ago, I moved to Philadelphia to be with my (now) wife who is in medical school here. While I was disappointed to leave Chicago in some ways, I was excited to be able to do a great deal of my shopping at the Reading Terminal Market. For all of its size and grocery options, Chicago lacks a great public market. Enough history - on to the food. I don't really have a cooking philosophy or theme other than I like to do things myself so I tend to buy very little that has been prepared or processed already. In terms of cuisine, I tend to make whatever strikes my whim while doing my menu planning but most of what I make is Italian or Italian influenced to the dismay of my wife who sometimes longs for the Chinese food that she grew up eating and I have little notion how to make. Charcuterie has also been an interest of mine for the past 4 years or so hence the antique meat slicer. I've made, with varying degrees of success, guanciale, pancetta, salami, chorizo and a number of fresh sausages. I have noticed that many of the people who are interested in charcuterie are also interested in molecular gastronomy/modernist cuisine and I am no exception. I'm not sure if I will be doing anything in that vein this week, but it is something that I enjoy dabbling in. One of my roommates in Chicago referred to me as the cookie monster due to my proclivity for vacuuming up any homemade cookies that were around. I must admit, I have an incredible sweet tooth and I enjoy making desserts. I have already mentioned my love of pie but I do like making other desserts as well. I have been making a tremendous amount of ice cream this summer ever since we were given an ice cream maker as a wedding gift. It's interesting how much I crave ice cream now since before I had the machine, I ate ice cream perhaps once a month and only during the summer. This will be a mostly typical week from me. I tend to attempt more ambitious and time consuming projects on the weekends and cook simpler meals on weeknights. Since I cook nearly every meal my wife and I eat we usually only go out to eat a couple of times a month. That being said, we're going to be going out a couple of times this week to give everyone a taste of the Philadelphia restaurant scene.
  21. FOOD! GLORIOUS FOOD! The word "BLOG" is a familiar one in our house. My hubby Bill, is a prof. in the Faculty of Education, and "blogging" is one of the requirements for his Communications and Computer technology courses. But, I have never been involved in blogs until this invitation...and this sounds much tastier! Thanks for the opportunity. Life is much more relaxed now that we have retired from the restaurant biz. http://home.westman.wave.ca/~hillmans/soosera.html Since 2002, I have been teaching half time at our university in the EAP program with international students. This leaves me the rest of the day to cook . . . what else? Brandon is a rural city of 44,000. Dining out does not include gourmet meals, tasting menus, etc. Until I found Egullet, a tasting menu was a 9 or 11 course Chinese banquet, complete with a 26 oz. bottle of Crown Royal ;-) My cooking these days involve learning traditional family recipes from my 95-year-old mother, pulling out old recipes from pre-Soo's Restaurant days, and trying out ideas from Egullet and my overflowing collection of cookbooks. This week will be a hectic one for blogging. My sister and family are visiting from Burnaby, B.C. so lots of food will be involved. On top of that, hubby, our kids and myself are performing Saturday and Sunday at the celebration of the 20th anniversary of the Brandon Folk Music & Crafts Festival. We will have out of town musical guests . . . so more food! Good thing I am on summer vacation this month. DAY ONE I love my mornings. When university is in session, I am up at 5 a.m. so I could do my prep. while the house is quiet. These days, I can sleep in until 6 a.m. I take our daughter to work at her summer job at the hospital, then I get to relax with my breakfast and 2nd cup of coffee. Today, I sat out on the deck with a cup of Tim Horton's brew-at-home with Coffee Rich creamer, 2 slices of toast with my home made peach/apricot/pineapple conserve. I love this stuff on toast, ice cream or just by itself as a snack. The recipe is one handed down by hubby's Nana Campbell. She even used bits of apricot pits in her recipe! It added a touch of crunchy bitterness to the sweet and tang of the fruit, but not enough arsenic to topple us. For lunch, my daughter packed a roll-up made with whole wheat tortillia, poached chicken breast, a handful of spring greens with raspberry vinegrette, shredded carrot and juilenne cukes. At home, we had wonton soup with shrimp egg noodles, Shanghai bok choy, shrimp and lap cheung.
  22. Good morning, everyone and happy Monday! It's me again....that girl from Kansas. This is VERY spur-of-the-moment. I was sitting here yesterday thinking of all of the canning etc. that I needed to do this week and I thought, well, why not ask you guys if you want to spend the week with me while I do it? I got the ok from Smithy so away we go! This will not be nearly as organized as my first blog was. But, really, when does a sequel ever measure up to the first? Most of you know all about me--if you missed my first blog you can read it here. Nothing much has changed around here. Same furry babies, same house, same husband . Right now we have field corn planted all around the house. In the outer fields we have soybeans that were planted after the wheat was harvested. Sorry for the blur....it was so humid the camera kept fogging up. I just came in from the garden. I snapped a few pictures....for more (and prettier) pictures you can look in the gardening thread. I always start out saying that I will not let a weed grow in there. By August I'm like..."Oh what's a few weeds" lol. Here's a total list of what I planted this year: 7 cucumbers 8 basil 23 okra 4 rows assorted lettuce 20 peppers-thai, jalapeño, bell, banana 4 rows peas 5 cilantro 1 tarragon 2 dill many many red and white onions 7 eggplant 3 rows spinach 57 tomatoes 5 cherry tomatoes 7 rows silver queen sweet corn 11 squash 4 watermelon 2 cantaloupe 6 pumpkin I killed the cantaloupes...and I tried damn hard to kill the squash lol.....sigh...squash bugs came early this year and we sprayed with some kind of stuff. WOW the plants did not like it, but they've come back and are producing. I just love okra flowers Found some more smut
  23. Good Morning from beautiful, sunny Vancouver Island. My name is Ann and I live with my husband Moe in Duncan, British Columbia right in the heart of the Cowichan Valley on Vancouver Island. We have a son, Matt, who is 24 and lives just an hour south of us in Victoria. My blog theme is planned around all the wonderful foods that are available here on the island, mostly in the Cowichan Valley and the Victoria/Sidney area. I have a friend visiting from Toronto this week and Sandra and I plan to drive all over the southern part of Vancouver Island visiting farms, markets and wineries. It is my intention to cook most of our meals using local in-season produce, meats and seafood also from the area. We got started early by going to a couple of the farmers’ markets in Victoria on Saturday and the Cedar Farmer’s Market on Sunday. Duncan has a wonderful farmer’s market that is open every Saturday 12 months of the year and I very seldom miss it. I love this time of year. Each week the selection at the market just gets better and better. I can’t wait until the corn and tomatoes are available. Actually this week won’t be too much different from the way that I normally cook and plan meals. I’ve always shopped on a daily basis and I’ve never minded driving some distance to find what I want. Here is a picture of Saturday’s take from the Markets. The garlic is from the James Bay Market and the rest of the produce came from the Moss Street Market. It's early here, just 6:15 AM so I'm off to the kitchen to make coffee.
  24. We're 50 something Aussies who enjoy travelling, eating, cooking, markets, kitchen shops, cooking utensils, animals & plants (often food related), architecture & photography (both kitchens and food) and exploring different cultures (of which food is a big part). The trip was January 14 - February 6, it was just marvellous. My favourite meal is now masala dosa with sambar, I had many. Here's some highlights of the food. A late afternoon snack of Sichuan pepper squid was washed down with a beer at the Ajantha Seaview Hotel on the promenade in Pondicherry. It's a colonial building with a first floor terrace overlooking the colourful display of women in their finest, and the Bay of Bengal. We're here on a Monday public holiday for the Pongal festival, a four day celebration of the harvest, with many different ceremonies and traditions. A visual bonus, cows (and sometimes goats) get their horns painted and wear flower garlands or other decorations.
  25. Hi everybody! Breakfast on this sunny Saturday morning is a small bowl of milk & granola: When I am not Chufi, I am Klary, and I live with my husband and 2 rats in Amsterdam. I work parttime and when people ask what I do on the days I don't work, my answer is: I'm always busy with food I'll be taking you on a tour around my favorite shops and foodplaces this week. Ofcourse I'll get some cooking and eating done as well! I hope my english will hold up. If you don't understand me, please say so and I'll try to explain! off to the shops now, see you later
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