It’s 5 o’clock, and you’re leaving the office in search of some post-work libations and snacks before dinner. You could go the traditional happy hour route — where you’re limited to a few drinks and small bites within a short window of time — or you could up the ante and visit a Japanese izakaya.
Archive for May, 2009
For about as long as I have been talking about eating food from local farmers, I have been talking about Gary Paul Nabhan. He is the author of a book called Coming Home to Eat which definitively changed my life’s course and really made me focus on talking about eating local food.
I decided to start my mocktail quest off with that simplest of drinks, the gin and tonic. With multiple nuances brought on by using different gins, it’s probably my favorite cocktail — biting, tart, and tinged with bitterness, it reminds me of myself on my best days.
In my last post I wrote about the Bay Area’s diverse selection of brick and mortar wine shops. This time, I’m covering online retailers. I’ve also been building up a surplus of tasting notes since I last posted. I will share the most interesting set which comes from a recent tasting I did with Napa Valley’s Tom Eddy.
Look at me, I’m eating peas. I’m nearly 40 years old and I’m eating peas. Who says middle-aged men don’t have growth spurts?
I never cared for peas as a child. Perhaps that’s too mildly put. I had always hated peas. No, still not enough. I had a terror of peas as a child.
That’s more like it.
I would not touch them, I hated looking at them, and I certainly would never eat them. If I saw them on television, I would either cover my eyes or run from the room, just as I did anytime I saw two people kissing. Peas,for no good reason, caused me acute emotional distress. When it was beef stew night in our household, I thought my mother was making it specifically to torture me.
I have tried many chocolate cake recipes over the years, always searching for the perfect one. But as with a search for anything great (say a life-changing novel or the perfect kiss), so much can go wrong. Some had a deep chocolate flavor, but were a little dry, while others just weren’t chocolaty enough. Worst of all were the cakes the barely held together. Like sloppy kisses, they were well meaning, but a little too wet. After many calorie-filled attempts, I have settled on a recipe that I feel is truly the ultimate for chocolate cake.
It’s an exciting time around the farmers market these days. I hadn’t been to the market for about two weeks, and was amazed at how much the market changed in a short amount of time. There is a promise of summer fruit in the air, and the spring vegetables are in abundance. Here are some of the things I am looking forward to this month.
Ruth Reichl is best known for her work as editor in chief of Gourmet Magazine, but she’s also a best selling author who tackles subjects outside the world of food. Her new book, “Not Becoming My Mother: And Other Things She Taught Me Along the Way” examines her mother’s life as a woman in the early 20th century.
Family Meals: Creating Traditions in the Kitchen author and chef Maria Helm Sinskey, her husband (acclaimed organic winemakerRobert Sinskey) and their two girls are adorable, the styling is charming, the recipes look both tasty and accessible, and alright, I’ll admit it: by page 50, I was envious (those chickens! that lavender! those sweet dirty carrots!), and by page 260, I was downright suspicious.
Rhubarb. I have loved it for years. And why not? It’s a tart, refreshing, and completely extraordinary thing when handled properly.
Of course, it is also highly seasonal. It’s one of the first bits of produce to show up in markets when the ground warms up in the spring, it hangs around in the summertime, when the living is supposedly easy, but it has a predictable habit of disappearing when the weather gets rough. It’s a fair weather thing. And, though most commonly lumped together with fruits, it is, in fact a vegetable– a truth I’ve found very difficult to grasp over the past few years.