Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create an account.

heidih

eG Foodblog: heidih (2011) - A slice of life in the South Bay of Los A

Recommended Posts

re:Penzeys. We went in Santa Monica on Thursday so we could use the coupons they sent us( any half cup jar for free). I gotthe Vietnamese Cinnamon and Fox Point. They also gave us 2 magnetic stickers. Love People, Cook them good food.

I planted a dwarf meyer lemon tree on my balcony.It has tons of flowers. I hope next Winter I'll have lemons.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Those are oranges? They look rather yellow.

You don't have problems with birds trying to eat the fruits when they're small? My parents have been having that problem.

I think the only close up I posted was of the grapefruits. Birds are not a problem with citrus at all. The villains are 'possums, squirrels, and raccoons with anything soft! Even with the stone fruit like the plums, nectarines and peaches it is minimal as to birds but the critters are quite busy at night. Birds do go for the "cheeks" when the stone fruit gets that rosy cheek- if the fruit was any good I would use netting, but they are old trees and not worth the drama.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Agh! No fair! Do you preserve any of the bounty or do you mostly eat it as it comes? If you've got stuff growing all year it might be hard to come up with a time to use the preserved stuff. That's what we do in Portland when it rains for 8 mos :rolleyes: .

The use of what is abundant is something I will address. Using what is there versus buying something has become a challenge that I take seriously. Stay tuned :biggrin:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am going to check out for today. Tomorrow we will head to a small farmers market that I have been faithful to for years. My favorite vendor was an elderly Japanese woman who had a little table with very small quantities of her items. In strawberry season her fingers would be stained fuschia along with the dirt cracks. She picked them in the morning before she came. I treasured every berry. She is no longer there unfortunately. I miss her spinach too. That type with the thick pointy wrinkly leaves. I am a vegetable fiend.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

YAY !!!!!! A South Bay blog ! In some ways, I know that area even better than Long Beach, since I actually spent more TIME there when I was working in Torrance ! I have been at that feed store a million times....they were my regular source for wild bird seed when I was still feeding the birds (before the thug pigeons took over).

The first Thai food I ever ate was at Thai Tiffany on Lomita Blvd. This is going to be so sweet !

There is such a marvelous selection of food outlets in that area, and influences from all over. Go Heidi, I'll be watching with GREAT interest and GREAT nostalgia.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lovely kitchen and garden, Heidi! And I didn't miss the tub of gochujang in your fridge either. :laugh: Looking forward to your blog very much.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the midst of a crazy, absolutely unneccessary winter snow blizzard here in Manitoba, I so needed your blog from sunny California! The splash of sunshine in your first kitchen shot, the grapefruit tree, the views from your kitchen windows all provided the warmth and sunshine that's missing from my windows this weekend. Thanks, Heidi, and I'm looking forward to the week!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am, as the British would say, gobsmacked by your photos of your house and garden as always. Now I can't decide whether to fly directly to your house for a week or two, or to cut you completely out of my life because of soul-destroying envy. :raz:

Do you at least have a mat you stand on in front of your sink?

I have two thriving calamansi seedlings in my front window now in the great frozen north...although not as frozen as Brandon Manitoba...and if I live another 25 years I might get a crop.

Blog on, Heidi. I hang on your every word. :wub:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fantastic, Heidi. I am so looking forward to this blog. I'm glad you didn't do this during the depth of winter, I don't think I could have looked at those gorgeous garden pictures without sinking into self-pity.

I hope you'll give us a glimpse of some of the small local grocers and restaurants I've heard you mention. I seem to recall a Japanese bakery and an Indian grocery that had me envious.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Heidi, as someone who lives directly North of you, (way North of you where it is still snowing), I have a question about the citrus trees. How long do they bear fruit? Do they have a short season like peaches and pears or do they provide fruit for months?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Heidi, as someone who lives directly North of you, (way North of you where it is still snowing), I have a question about the citrus trees. How long do they bear fruit? Do they have a short season like peaches and pears or do they provide fruit for months?

Citrus are magical. The fruit can stay on the tree for months and not lose much quality. The tangerines being the exception as they start to lose juiciness. If you pick most of your fruit there will be a gap between crops. The citrus trees were fully loaded around January. I invite neighbors to come and pick, although in this area many of them have their own trees. I would pick the tangerines and perhaps freeze the juice and preserve the peel in some way but the fruit is way high up and if you use a picker with them, they open up at the stem attachment and you have to use them right away. I may borrow a picker this week and see what we come up with. Will be posting some pics in a bit of the trees.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

YAY !!!!!! A South Bay blog ! In some ways, I know that area even better than Long Beach, since I actually spent more TIME there when I was working in Torrance ! I have been at that feed store a million times....they were my regular source for wild bird seed when I was still feeding the birds (before the thug pigeons took over).

The first Thai food I ever ate was at Thai Tiffany on Lomita Blvd. This is going to be so sweet !

There is such a marvelous selection of food outlets in that area, and influences from all over. Go Heidi, I'll be watching with GREAT interest and GREAT nostalgia.

Thai Tiffany is still around (on Pacific Coast Highway at Narbonne). My neighbors like to walk over on the weekend and do the buffet.

I have been going to Lomita Feed since I was a girl. You can't beat the smell of fresh alfalfa hay.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The bread dough looks happy and is going into the fridge now.

dough.JPG

I picked this baby just now (hazelnut next to it for size reference) Hopefully it will ripen by the end of the week and I will make some guacamole and a salad.

avocado.JPG

My landlord grew the tree from a pit a few years ago. Everyone told him he was a doofus and that it would never bear fruit, that he needed to get a grafted tree from a nursery. Well a number of months ago I noticed some little pea sized fruits and we ended up with 10 of the behemoths. There are a number of huge avocado trees in the area and we have lots of bees so I think whatever pollination had to happen was facilitated by nature. Of course the pit is proportionately sized but there is lots of creamy sweet flesh. I have had one. Two fell and were cracked so I gave them to a neighbor having a party the next day, and several went to the landlord.

Here is the little tree.

avo tree.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was just going to ask about avocados. I am so jealous! They are my very favorite food and I would love to have my own tree. Maybe I'll just go ahead and plant the next pit and keep my fingers crossed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is the tangerine tree

tangerine.JPG

The grape vine is looking good. I get really nervous when I prune it way back and it looks like life will never happen again.

grape vine.JPG

The baby grapes are thriving

babygrapes.JPG

As I mentioned in this topic last year, the grapes are seedy but flavorful. I am looking forward to making the syrup again. Looking out the window at the thriving vine I know it will require some pruning in a while and it will be time for stuffed grape leaves.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here are just a few more garden shots before I head up the hill to the farmer's market.

Milkweed to attract the monarch butterflies

milkweed.JPG

The only open area that I could vegetable garden in has horrible soil with big chunks of concrete mixed in. I adopted a solution I saw on line to use kiddie pools as instant raised bed gardens. I find them on the curb all the time because people throw them out when they spring a leak. I have four of these going now.

pool gardens.JPG

And just because they make me smile - one of the 40 roses bushes. The first massive flood of blooms is waning and they are getting ready for the next explosion

roses.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here are just a few more garden shots before I head up the hill to the farmer's market.

Milkweed to attract the monarch butterflies

milkweed.JPG

I don't understand. Which are the milkweed? Could your milkweed look that different from ours in East Central Ontario?

Just looked at the googled images and apparently it can and does...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Back from the farmers market. It is hot today - expected high of 82.

Coming into the market

FM.JPG

One of the stands I like- it was already 11 am and hot so things are a bit picked over and droopy. They label "organic" but do not display a certificate

organic.JPG

Japanese greens

Japanese.JPG

The best Fuji apples and super nice farmers

Fuji.JPG

The Crepe stand - they do a rip roaring business with the young families - serving both sweet and savory crepes. I caught them in a lull

crepes1.JPG

crepes2.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

More Farmer's Market

Chicken on the grill

chicken.JPG

Inside view of the big kettle corn vat- he does about 50 to 75 pounds of seed at this small market- every little kid is clutching a bag

kettlecorn.JPG

The most unusual mandarins I have ever seen. They are really bumpy. The flesh is a deep orange, firm, and very sweet. I think I prefer a bit more tang in mine, but I can see these as a hit

mandarins.JPG

I picked up some opaka from this fish vendor

fish.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And more FM

These guys are so charming - their comments are peppered with French words - one would buy from them without tasting the product. Their product is fresh and lively and lovely. I could live off an assortment of it in the summer along with fresh corn and tomatoes.

babaguy.JPGbabaproduct.JPG

I could smell these deep red strawberries from several stands away

berries.JPG

This stand sells citrus and specializes in large bags of juice oranges. They are at the edge of the market so that people can just drive up and have them loaded into their cars

oranges.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is another of my favorite stands. The young woman is very enthusiastic about their produce. A few years ago she got me started on cooking fat green beans until just tender in salted water and dipping them in mayo mixed with a bit of soy. Her grandmother served them to the kids as a snack. The beans are not trimmed so the water does not seep in. Clever, simple and delicious. In the first shot she is trying to whisk a stray plastic bag away so as not to detract from the vegetables.

sweetie.JPG

sweetie2.JPG

This stand has a fantastically fresh and varied selection of produce focusing on "Asian" ingredients. They farm in Fresno and came down to Los Angeles early yesterday for the Torrance Farmers Market, and stay the second day for this one. That is one long drive. I am in awe of the hard work these farmers do.

Asian1.JPG

Asian2.JPG

Asian3.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I plucked off some wild fennel the other day on a walk and that scent memory has been haunting me. I kept thinking about the fennel fronds with seafood. Since I picked up some fish at the farmer's market, I decided to stop at a trail well off the road and gather some for tonight.

fennel.JPG

I also stopped to get a shot of one of the big old avocado trees in the 'hood

bigavo.JPG

And here is the haul from the market

haul.JPG

The list is green garlic (kinda mature- I missed the baby ones), green onions, little beets with their tops, cauliflower, fava beans (also on the mature side), a bag of baby kale, Japanese cucumbers, a container of taboulie from the cute guys, as well as something they called a layered dip consisting of feta, sun dried tomato, pesto made with walnuts, parsley, basil, oregano and olive oil. It is really good.

I have been munching on tastes of the taboulie (very fresh, light and heavily weighted on the parsley end), and the "dip" with some broken bits of baked pita. I will admit to also picking up a passion iced tea from Starbucks to carry me through the outing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the therapeutic trip to the market, from chilly, grey Chicago. Those greens and daikon from the Asian farmers look amazing. :wub:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the therapeutic trip to the market, from chilly, grey Chicago. Those greens and daikon from the Asian farmers look amazing. :wub:

The greens really are wonderful. I have to rein myself in at the market. That is one of the things I wanted to discuss on this blog - using what you buy. There was a time when I would come home with so much produce that there was no way to use it to good effect before it lost its vitality. Today I am committed to using everything I purchase. I will be posting a list of my proposed dishes in a bit. I usually cook or prep everything within a day or two. A super fresh well cooked vegetable reheated is better to me than a geriatric vegetable prepped well past its prime. PLUS - there will a farmstand to visit in the next day or two, as well as some vibrant produce at some Asian markets.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The first teaser shot showed iced tea in a vintage pitcher so I thought I would address my iced tea. It is my all day beverage. Several years ago I picked up a brewing method from a friend that is simple and works for me. I nuke a cup of water in a pyrex measuring cup and then add 4 to 6 tea bags, depending on the type. Today I used 3 bags of the Safeway brand black tea and 2 of Bigelow Perfect Peach. I let it steep for a few minutes, again depending on the tea, pour into the pitcher and fill with water from the tap. As summer approaches I will have different flavors going in pitchers. Anyone an iced tea fiend?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

  • Similar Content

    • By Duvel
      “… and so it begins!”
       
      Welcome to “Tales from the Fragrant Harbour”!
      In the next couple of days I am hoping to take you to a little excursion to Hong Kong to explore the local food and food culture as well as maybe a little bit more about my personal culinary background. I hope I can give you a good impression of what life is like on this side of the globe and am looking very forward to answering questions, engaging in spirited discussions and just can share a bit of my everyday life with you. Before starting with the regular revealing shots of my fridge’s content and some more information on myself, I’d like to start this blog and a slightly different place.
      For today's night, I ‘d like to report back from Chiba city, close to Tokyo, Japan. It’s my last day of a three day business trip and it’s a special day here in Japan: “Doyou no ushi no hi”. The “midsummer day of the ox”, which is actually one of the earlier (successful) attempts of a clever marketing stunt.  As sales of the traditional winter dish “Unagi” (grilled eel with sweet soy sauce) plummeted in summer, a clever merchant took advantage of the folk tale that food items starting with the letter “U” (like ume = sour plum and uri = gourd) dispel the summer heat, so he introduced “Unagi” as a new dish best enjoyed on this day. It was successful, and even in the supermarkets the sell Unagi-Don and related foods. Of course, I could not resist to take advantage and requested tonight dinner featuring eel. Thnaks to our kind production plant colleagues, I had what I was craving …
      (of course the rest of the food was not half as bad)

      Todays suggestion: Unagi (grilled eel) and the fitting Sake !
       

      For starters: Seeweed (upper left), raw baby mackerel with ginger (upper right) and sea snails. I did not care for the algae, but the little fishes were very tasty.
       

      Sahimi: Sea bream, Tuna and clam ...
       

      Tempura: Shrimp, Okra, Cod and Mioga (young pickled ginger sprouts).
       

      Shioyaki Ayu: salt-grilled river fish. I like this one a lot. I particularly enjoy the fixed shape mimicking the swimming motion. The best was the tail fin
       

      Wagyu: "nuff said ...
       

      Gourd. With a kind of jellied Oden stock. Nice !
       

      Unagi with Sansho (mountain pepper)
       

      So, so good. Rich and fat and sweet and smoky. I could eat a looooot of that ...
       

      Chawan Mushi:steamed egg custard. A bit overcooked. My Japanese hosts very surprised when I told them that I find it to be cooked at to high temperatures (causing the custard to loose it's silkiness), but they agreed.
       

      Part of the experience was of course the Sake. I enjoyed it a lot but whether this is the one to augment the taste of the Unagi I could not tell ...
       

      More Unagi (hey it's only twice per year) ...
       

      Miso soup with clams ...
       

      Tiramisu.
       

      Outside view of the restaurant. Very casual!
      On the way home I enjoyed a local IPA. Craft beer is a big thing in Japan at the moment (as probably anywhere else in the world), so at 29 oC in front of the train station I had this. Very fruity …

       
      When I came back to the hotel, the turn down service had made my bed and placed a little Origami crane on my pillow. You just have to love this attention to detail.

    • By KennethT
      OK.... here we go again!!!  While this post is a bit premature (we don't take off until around 1:30AM tonight), I am extremely excited so I figured I'd just set up the topic now.  As in previous foodblogs, I may post a bit from time to time while we're there, depending on how good my internet connection is, and how much free time I have... but the bulk of posting will really get started around July 9th - the day after we get home (hopefully without too much jetlag!!!)
    • By Ian Dao
      Hi everyone, 
       
      Recently, I just found this paradise for Foodie and it is my pleasure to be here. My name is Ian and I am from Salzburg. I love to eat but have to hold myself back before I could roll faster than walk. Last month, I started my own food blog (mostly about restaurant, travel and stories). Reasons I want to be here are to improve my knowledge about food/wine and to learn more how to describe ingredients around me. 
       
      Thank you and have a great week =D 
       
      Guten Hunger (German)
      Mahlzeit (Austrian) 
      --> Enjoy your meal =D 
       
      www.iandao.com
    • By sartoric
      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.

       
    • By Christy Martino
      Ciao!
       
      I'm Christine and I'm a born and bred New Yorker. I’m an Italian by blood (and at heart, of course) since my parents actually came from Italy. My father was from Sciacca, Sicily while my mother was from Sondrio, Lombardy. Despite coming from different regions, or because of it, love for food and cooking has been one of the mainstays in my family home life growing up. And I’ve always loved the dishes my parents prepared during special occasions, and even on regular days.
       
      And of course, I love cooking (and eating) Italian food and I have a few recipes from my mother, but I'd really love to collect some more, especially the traditional ones. And if anyone can contribute some historical background to each dish, that would be really great.
       
      Grazie mille!
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×