Archive for August, 2009

Julie & Julia: Movie Food, Obsession, & Boeuf Blog-uignon

Julie & Julia: Movie Food, Obsession, & Boeuf Blog-uignon

| August 18, 2009 | 11 Comments

The film doesn’t sufficiently sell Julie’s decision to blog about cooking her way through Child’s celebrated book. That on-screen moment is weak, her impetus glossed over like ripples in a cake’s frosting. Once Julie gets going, her resolve blossoms into a slightly creepy, worshipful obsession.

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Foodie Movie: Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs

Foodie Movie: Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs

| August 17, 2009 | 3 Comments

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs — a movie based on the children’s book of the same name by Judi and Ron Barrett — might very well be the next Ratatouille for mini foodies and their parents.

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Pie Crust and Sebastopol Gravenstein Apple Fair

Pie Crust and Sebastopol Gravenstein Apple Fair

A lot of books make a big fuss about technique, so much that anyone would be convinced that you need an advanced degree from Pie Crust U to turn out something worth eating. But I’m here to tell you that what you need is flour, butter, a little salt, and lard. Yes, lard.

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Swish Steak: Camp Food

Swish Steak: Camp Food

| August 14, 2009 | 0 Comments

Yes, Swish Steak.

Among my cookbooks, there is a recent acquisition I consider to be the jewel in my crown– a must-have for anyone who fancies herself (or, of course, himself) Queen of the Kitchen: The Gay Cookbook by Chef Lou Rand Hogan* (Sherbourne Press, 1965).

The Gay Cookbook: “the complete compendium of campy cuisine and menus for men… or what have you” was first brought to my attention by Celia Sacks of Omnivore Books on Food, who had a copy proudly displayed in her store window the last time I visited. She always seems to know what will pique my interest.

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Chateau’s Lentil Soup: A soup rich in food clichés

Chateau’s Lentil Soup: A soup rich in food clichés

| August 13, 2009 | 2 Comments

Some might say that lentil soup is an odd thing to prepare in the summer. That would be true in Sacramento (where I live). But in the Bay Area, where it is often cold and foggy, a lentil soup is just the thing to be enjoying on a back patio. I learned this basic recipe at Oliveto, one of many perks of working as a galley slave (intern).

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Are You There, Goat? It’s Me, Andrew

Are You There, Goat? It’s Me, Andrew

| August 11, 2009 | 0 Comments

Then, I started slipping.

The process was slow but steady and natural. Animal by animal, each meaty notch on my fork, the fresh flavors and the associated stories, people, and places, has marked my memory. I’ve returned again and again to this timeline of tines, to reflect upon my gradual path — from devout vegetarian to comprehensive meat-eater.

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SF Chefs. Food. Wine. Highlight Reel

SF Chefs. Food. Wine. Highlight Reel

| August 10, 2009 | 6 Comments

SF Chefs. Food. Wine. hit on a winning combination of accessibility to hometown celeb-status chefs, utterly delicious food, fine wine, education, and awareness of important issues in food politics. It was fun, multi-faceted, and full of passion. It was, in a nutshell, San Francisco.

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Cocktail Culture at SF Chefs. Food. Wine

Cocktail Culture at SF Chefs. Food. Wine

10:30 a.m. on a weekday morning is not my usual cocktail hour. But with a cheerful SF Chef. Food. Wine volunteer putting a cute pink drink in front of me with a flourish, saying “Breakfast is served!”, well, what could I do, say no?

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Fenugreek: The rough-and-tough seed

Fenugreek: The rough-and-tough seed

| August 8, 2009 | 2 Comments

When you look at the squat, rectangular and extremely hard seeds of fenugreek, you may wonder why anyone would take any trouble to work with it. But this unyielding spice is accompanied with a nutty, bitter and mellow flavor that could not be replicated by anything else.

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Espetada: Meat-on-a-stick, the Portuguese Way.

Espetada: Meat-on-a-stick, the Portuguese Way.

| August 7, 2009 | 4 Comments

This Portuguese dish is the forefather of Brazilian Churrasco, which goes back to the days when Portugal was a major world player (read: a very, very long time ago.) Espetada is typically served with skewers of tomato, onion, and/or zucchini or other squashes. This preparation deals exclusively with the meat. I however, think that onion and tomato are important to the success of this dish. Especially the tomato. Rub a bit of the charred stuff on some bread which has been soaked in the meat juice. You will thank me for it, I promise.

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KQED Forum: Novella Carpenter’s “Farm City”

KQED Forum: Novella Carpenter’s “Farm City”

| August 6, 2009 | 0 Comments

Novella Carpenter took over an empty lot next to her apartment in Oakland’s gritty Ghost Town neighborhood, and over the years turned it into a lush garden and farm complete with bees, chickens, rabbits and even pigs. Urban farms are popping up in even the most cramped corners of densely populated cities, fueled by a desire for good food and a closer relationship with what we eat. Carpenter joins Forum to talk about her new book, “Farm City: The Education of an Urban Farmer.”

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Berkeley Bowl West

Berkeley Bowl West

| August 6, 2009 | 5 Comments

After seven long years of planning, negotiating, and building, Berkeley Bowl has opened a new warehouse-style market just off Ashby in Berkeley near I-80. This is great news for anyone who loves what Berkeley Bowl has to offer but detests actually shopping there. With two large parking lots, a new and clean interior with pretty much everything the old store offers, plus a large café with ample seating, it’s the new go-to East Bay market.

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Summer of Otsu

Summer of Otsu

| August 5, 2009 | 9 Comments

Lately, I’ve been obsessed with this buckwheat soba noodle recipe I spotted on one of my favorite healthy food blogs, 101 Cookbooks. The recipe is originally from Pomelo, a fresh little restaurant serving “global cuisine” in Outer Noe Valley and the Inner Sunset, and let me tell you, it is a keeper. I just cannot seem to tire of it. It’s healthy and light, yet substantial enough to make up a full meal. Plus, it’s a breeze to whip up…and the flavors!

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Pie: A Separate Piece

Pie: A Separate Piece

| August 4, 2009 | 0 Comments

We may be approaching gastronomic Thunderdome, a new quasi-post-apocalyptic condition of eating through recession, where restaurants, having struggled, gradually shutter and practically disappear altogether, surrendering the pitted scene to scrappy, subsistence-level free-agents — wagon-pushers and van vendors — with no regard for increasingly irrelevant health code regulations, much less entrepreneurial convention.
Pie Truck is one of the latest freelance foodie endeavors to garner city-wide attention and, as it turns out, it’s a lovely, deserving operation.

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