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Jinmyo

What's For Dinner?

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Thank you for participating in this Q&A.

I lend my battered copy of On Food and Cooking to anyone who works in my kitchen. I also tell them that if what I tell them to do seems to contradict something in your book that's just tough. :biggrin: I'm concerned with people being interested in what happens during cooking, not hanging on to explanations.

I was wondering what kind of foods and cuisines that you yourself are most fond of or interested in. In other words, what do you tend to cook or eat?

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I’m glad to be here!

It’s important for cooks to trust their own experience and observations, no matter what book or boss or other form of received wisdom that experience seems to contradict. Facts are facts, and if they don’t fit the received wisdom, then the wisdom needs to be revised. And it’s being revised all the time. Of course it’s trickier to disagree with a boss than with a book!

As I say in the introduction to the new edition, I welcome questions and corrections. The time that I spend reading and writing is time that I’m not cooking, and people who cook a lot have logged more direct experience of foods and their behavior. I’m grateful for their input.

I’m interested in the variousness of foods and cuisines, so I like to explore—but not at the edge of outer space! My mother was born and raised in India, and I’ve had Indian food all my life, love it, and enjoy making it. I’ve also been a big fan of Mexican food since my first Patio TV dinner decades ago, and especially enjoy making moles (which have a lot in common with Indian dishes). I’ve done a fair amount of bread baking, though not so much right now. Weekend slow roasts on the grill are another pleasure. Day-to-day standbys are quick pasta dishes, risottos, stir-fries.

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Hi, Harold. Thanks for sharing some words of wisdom with us.

You would probably be interested in knowing that one of our members, Rachel Caroline Laudan (username caroline) wrote an article called "The Mexican Kitchen's Islamic Connection," which was published in Saudi Aramco World. Here's an excerpt:

...while (Octavio) Paz was right to point out that mole resembled curry, he was wrong to imagine that Mexican cooks had created mole as imitation curry, or that Indian cooks composed curries in an effort to emulate mole. He would have done better to picture both moles and curries as vestiges of the cuisine of medieval Islam, a cuisine that was enjoyed from southern Spain in the west to northern India in the east.

If you're interested, have a look at this eGullet thread, which includes a link to the article as well as discussion of it.

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Thanks for the reference, Michael--I know Rachel Laudan's work from the Oxford symposia and Petits Propos Culinaires, but had never heard about this article. I'm off to get it right now!

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