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food sites for September 2014

Friday, August 22, 2014


“A Colonel of Corn,” from Terms of Vegery



With September, harvest kicks into high gear, the nights grow cooler, and we begin to feel more like cooking and -- as the old timers said -- “putting food by.” This summer has been frantic, busier (and stranger) than any in our memory. Frankly, we’ll be happy to return to a slower life, with slower food, and maybe a few more calories than we’ve allowed ourselves. As Leslie Newman said, As the days grow short, some faces grow long. But not mine. Every autumn, when the wind turns cold and darkness comes early, I am suddenly happy. It's time to start making soup again. 

Regular subscribers to our updates newsletter receive these updates from our blog, Just Served, directly -- but there is much more at the blog that isn’t delivered automatically.

While you’re waiting for the happy little popping sounds that indicate that your home-canned foods might not actually give you a mid-winter case of botulism, you can follow us on Facebook, and Twitter. Still more links to our online scribbles are posted at A Quiet Little Table in the Corner.

Not corn, this time -- but another member of the Poaceae tribe -- in this month’s excerpts from On the Table’s culinary quote collection:

Rice is a beautiful food. It is beautiful when it grows, precision rows of sparkling green stalks shooting up to reach the hot summer sun. It is beautiful when harvested, autumn gold sheaves piled on diked, patchwork paddies. It is beautiful when, once threshed, it enters granary bins like a (flood) of tiny seed-pearls. It is beautiful when cooked by a practiced hand, pure white and sweetly fragrant. Shizuo Tsuji
Rice is born in water and must die in wine. Italian Proverb 
Eating rice cakes is like chewing on a foam coffee cup, only less filling. Dave Barry 

Gary
September, 2014



PS: If you encounter broken links, changed URLs -- or know of wonderful sites we’ve missed -- please drop us a line. It helps to keep this resource as useful as possible for all of us. To those of you who have suggested sites -- thanks, and keep them coming!

PPS: If you wish to change the e-mail address at which you receive these newsletters, or otherwise modify the way you receive our postings or -- if you’ve received this newsletter by mistake, and/or don’t wish to receive future issues -- you have our sincere apology and can have your e-mail address deleted from the list immediately. We’re happy (and continuously amazed) that so few people have decided to leave the list but, should you choose to be one of them, let us know and we’ll see that your in-box is never afflicted by these updates again. You’ll find links at the bottom of this page to fix everything to your liking.



---- the new sites ----

(four journalists “dig up the roots of American food”)

(database of archived materials, worldwide – a search, using keyword “food,” found over 29 thousand archives)

(article by Jaime Jurado)

(“…website for all things associated with the Historic [Tudor] Cookery Team at Hampton Court Palace”)

(Adam Gopnik on the nature of food writing, in The New Yorker)

(NPR story about a course being offered at Washington DC’s American University)

(a taste of luxury from the time of George II)

(article by Eric LeMay, in Alimentum)

(an aggregator of interesting food articles from around the world)

(spoiler alert: the pots are older than agriculture)

(Michael Ruhlman’s blog post on the subject)

(article does not specify if a dry rub was used, nor what style of sauce was served)

(“Feminist Food & Culture Quarterly… that aims to disrupt the canon of mainstream food and cooking magazines”)

(article by Tamasin Day-Lewis in Saveur)


---- inspirational (or otherwise useful) sites for writers/bloggers ----








---- yet another blog ----

Cooking the Books (not the same as the forum above)


---- that’s all for now ----

Except, of course, for the usual legalistic mumbo-jumbo and commercial flim-flam:

Your privacy is important to us. We will not give, sell or share your e-mail address with anyone, for any purpose -- ever. Nonetheless, we will expose you to the following irredeemably brazen plugs:

Want to support On the Table, without spending a dime of your own money on it?

It’s easy. Whenever you want to shop on Amazon. Com, click on any of the book links below, then whatever you buy there (it needn’t even be one of our books) will earn a commission for this newsletter.

The Resource Guide for Food Writers (Paper) (Kindle)

The Herbalist in the Kitchen (Hardcover) (Kindle)

The Business of Food: Encyclopedia of the Food And Drink Industries (Hardcover) (Kindle)

Human Cuisine (Paper) (Kindle)

Herbs: A Global History (Hardcover) (Kindle)

Terms of Vegery (Kindle)

How to Serve Man: On Cannibalism, Sex, Sacrifice, & the Nature of Eating (Kindle)

Here endeth the sales pitch(es)...

...for the moment, anyway.

______________

“The Resource Guide for Food Writers, Update #167” is protected by copyright, and is provided at no cost, for your personal use only. It may not be copied or retransmitted unless this notice remains affixed. Any other form of republication -- unless with the author’s prior written permission -- is strictly prohibited.

Copyright (c) 2014 by Gary Allen.





REMEMBRANCE OF PETS PAST

Friday, August 1, 2014


Yesterday, I said goodbye to Smokey, the cat who spent the last thirteen years of her alloted span of twenty with us. It's been a long time since I've had to go through the experience--but, today, I recalled that I had written about it, ages ago. 

It's not for the squeamish.
________________

It is no easy thing, living the life of a literary cliché, but there’s no avoiding the fact that I am a writer who lives with cats. I have always lived with cats. There is little doubt that I shall continue to live with cats. Individual cats are inextricably tangled in all the threads of my experience. 
I have measured out my life, not in coffee-spoons--as did Eliot’s Prufrock--but in deceased cats.
My first cat, Frosty, died of classic altered-male-cat-urinary-problems. He was an ugly, mean-spirited gutter cat who spent his last miserable days soaking all the rugs and furniture with his dribbling excreta. Thus, he guaranteed that we would remember him--not so fondly--whenever the weather turned dampish, for years afterwards.
My mother vowed never to get another cat. 
A week or two later, our next-door neighbor handed her a little gray female kitten. Twinkie (short for Twinkle Toes) was--fortunately--everything Frosty was not. She was charming, loyal, companionable--walking me to the school bus-stop in the morning, waiting for me in the afternoon. She would even follow me fishing--‘though it meant negotiating a half-mile of swamp, hopping from dry spot, to rotten log, to weedy tussock, to floating board to be with me. 
When she was hit by a car, in front of our house, I was convinced that my knowledge of science was enough to prevent her demise. I explained to my father that she was merely wounded. I was eleven or twelve, and full of confidence in the invincibility of knowledge--but she was furry and dead.
I cried for six or seven hours, partly for her loss, partly for mine. We buried her in the backyard.
In college, I continued co-habiting with cats. One lovely--but dim-witted--tortoiseshell, was named George C. Scott because she always wore what appeared to be an oddly knowing sneer or twist of her upper lip. Her sister was Peggy Sue, a smart and sexy calico. They shared my house with a sweet motherly tabby named Jane Goodall--the first of several “Jane cats.” After a summer spent on a commune in New Mexico, in 1969, I arrived home to find a feverish George sitting in the kitchen sink with cold water dripping on her head. She died of distemper at the vet’s a couple of hours later. 
Some years, and many cats later, I was given a huge, peach-colored, altered male named Cicero--as soft and floppy and comfortable as a well-loved toy. One day, he didn’t come home. A stranger came to the door to tell us he had been hit by a car. He was in bad shape, but alive, at the vet’s office. We went to see him immediately. His head had been crushed and he looked like he should be “put to sleep.” My girlfriend couldn’t even look at him. 
I stayed to comfort him, petting whatever parts did not seem too bloodied, and he seemed to respond. Day after day, I went back, and each day he got a little stronger. When we took him home, he could barely walk. The only way he could get around the apartment was to lean against the wall, and shuffle along edge, circling the entire room to reach the opposite end of the threshold from which he started. We nursed him back to near-health, and he was as grateful as a cat can be. 
One day, as I was leaving the house, for something that seemed important at the time, I spotted him between two parked cars across the street. When he saw me, his eyes lit up with joy. I yelled for him to stop, but he ran towards me, across two unbroken lanes of traffic.
He was hit two, maybe three, times, his body twisting and lurching involuntarily on the double yellow line. I grabbed him from the moving lines of cars, trying to hold his thrashing body close to me.
I have seen his terrible, trusting, blissed-out face, across the road, thousands of times since then. 
Still more years, and more cats, passed through my life. I had four cats: two city cats who moved to the country (Alice and Electra) and two country cats (Sebastian and Jane). The city cats were wimpy non-entities but the country cats were wonderful. Sebastian, huge and black, as gentle and kind as Cicero. Jane, another tortoiseshell, was sweet, soft, with golden eyes. Jane, one hard winter, drank some water that contained Drano or antifreeze (we’d had terrible plumbing problems that year) and developed a wheezing cough. I was about to drive to Florida to visit my parents, so I dropped her off at the vet. I made him promise to call us about her condition.
He never called. 
A couple of days after Christmas, I called him. He told me he “did what he could but... .” He asked what I wanted done with the body. Very calmly, I told him to keep it ‘til we got back and I would take care of it.
After returning to my cabin in the Catskills, I chopped a Jane-sized hole in the frozen soil, then drove to the vet’s office. When I arrived, the receptionist seemed uncomfortable, and tried to avoid making eye-contact. She called for the vet to come out to the waiting room. 
He explained that there had been a mistake, that Jane had been hauled off for disposal at some anonymous pet disposal center. He apologized profusely, and handed me his bill. I paid it and left. A half mile down the road, I had to pull over because I couldn’t drive through the tears.
When I got home, I buried my soggy hankerchief in the grave I had dug for Jane.


Food Sites for August 2014

Friday, July 25, 2014


“A Bronx Cheer of Raspberries,” from Terms of Vegery 



August is fast upon us -- and that means sweet corn is readily available. It also means we have an endless list of corny puns about corn that could be foisted upon you, but we’ll spare you that (just this one time).

In other news, our big herb reference book, The Herbalist in the Kitchen is now available in Kindle format -- which means it's much more affordable and is easily searchable. That's handy, because a truly functional index would have required a second volume of an already expensive book (and the University of Illinois Press would never have agreed to that). So, if you ever need to find out about hbok or oba, the answers will be literally at your fingertips.

Regular subscribers to our updates newsletter receive these updates from our blog, Just Served, directly -- but there is much more at the blog that isn’t delivered automatically. If you are so inclined, you can follow us on Facebook, and Twitter. Insomniac gastronomes can also find links to all of our online scribbles posted at A Quiet Little Table in the Corner

I know, you thought you might get out of here without corn puns, and you were almost right (this time) – but sweet corn seems to make writers wax nostalgic, so we‘re serving up these amaizing excerpts from On the Table’s culinary quote collection:

Nothing rekindles my spirits, gives comfort to my heart and mind, more than a visit to Mississippi... and to be regaled as I often have been, with a platter of fried chicken, field peas, collard greens, fresh corn on the cob, sliced tomatoes with French dressing... and to top it all off with a wedge of freshly baked pecan pie. Craig Claiborne
Hunger makes you restless. You dream about food -- not just any food, but perfect food, the best food, magical meals, famous and awe-inspiring, the one piece of meat, the exact taste of buttery corn, tomatoes so ripe they split and sweeten the air, beans so crisp they snap between the teeth, gravy like mother's milk singing to your bloodstream. Dorothy Allison
In the light of what Proust wrote with so mild a stimulus, it is the world's loss that he did not have a heartier appetite. On a dozen Gardiner's Island oysters, a bowl of clam chowder, a peck of steamers, some bay scallops, three sauteed soft-shelled crabs, a few ears of fresh picked corn, a thin swordfish steak of generous area, a pair of lobsters, and a Long Island Duck, he might have written a masterpiece. A.J. Liebling 
It is not elegant to gnaw Indian corn. The kernels should be scored with a knife, scraped off into the plate, and then eaten with a fork. Ladies should be particularly careful how they manage so ticklish a dainty, lest the exhibition rub off a little desirable romance. Charles Day
Gary
August, 2014

PS: If you encounter broken links, changed URLs -- or know of wonderful sites we’ve missed -- please drop us a line. It helps to keep this resource as useful as possible for all of us. To those of you who have suggested sites -- thanks, and keep them coming!

PPS: If you wish to change the e-mail address at which you receive these newsletters, or otherwise modify the way you receive our postings or -- if you’ve received this newsletter by mistake, and/or don’t wish to receive future issues -- you have our sincere apology and can have your e-mail address deleted from the list immediately. We’re happy (and continuously amazed) that so few people have decided to leave the list but, should you choose to be one of them, let us know and we’ll see that your in-box is never afflicted by these updates again. You’ll find links at the bottom of this page to fix everything to your liking. 

---- the new sites ----

(Anita-Clare Field’s post about the classic Scandinavian groaning board)

(Nicholas Blechman takes a graphic look “Behind the scenes at a Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese producer;” in The New York Times)

(“Queen of food writing” -- Dalia Lamdani, in an interview in Haaretz -- “serves an answer”)

(Jan Whitaker remembers the food at the World’s Fair, fifty years later)

(much ado about Citrus hystrix, by Maryn McKenna in National Geographic)

(another historical nosh from Anita-Clare Field)

(an interview with Adrian Miller in The Times-Picayune)

(archaeological evidence about the real paleodiet)

(Laura Kelly recreates ancient Mesopotamian dishes; in Saudi Aramco World)

(Joel K. Bourne, Jr. on the corporate take-over of arable land in Africa; the first of a series of articles on food in National Geographic)

(Eric Hansen, on the “fragrant feasts where the trade winds meet;” in Saudi Aramco World)

(Cynthia Bertelsen on the “craziest-ever hearts of palm salad [that] sums up Florida’s food history”)

(Elisabeth Luard on a culinary tradition that is barely a memory today; at Zester Daily)

(Nacho Caballero explains the science behind the phenomenon)


---- inspirational (or otherwise useful) sites for writers/bloggers ----




(requires subscription to Publishers Weekly)







---- yet another blog ----



---- that’s all for now ----

Except, of course, for the usual legalistic mumbo-jumbo and commercial flim-flam:

Your privacy is important to us. We will not give, sell or share your e-mail address with anyone, for any purpose -- ever. Nonetheless, we will expose you to the following irredeemably brazen plugs:

Want to support On the Table, without spending a dime of your own money on it? It’s easy. Whenever you want to shop on Amazon. Com, click on any of the book links below, then whatever you buy there (it doesn’t even have to be one of our books) will earn a commission for this newsletter.

The Resource Guide for Food Writers (Paper) (Kindle)

The Herbalist in the Kitchen (Hardcover) (Kindle)

The Business of Food: Encyclopedia of the Food And Drink Industries (Hardcover) (Kindle)

Human Cuisine (Paper) (Kindle

Herbs: A Global History (Hardcover) (Kindle)

Terms of Vegery (Kindle)

How to Serve Man: On Cannibalism, Sex, Sacrifice, & the Nature of Eating (Kindle)


Here endeth the sales pitch(es)...

...for the moment, anyway.

______________

“The Resource Guide for Food Writers, Update #166” is protected by copyright, and is provided at no cost, for your personal use only. It may not be copied or retransmitted unless this notice remains affixed. Any other form of republication -- unless with the author’s prior written permission -- is strictly prohibited.

Copyright (c) 2014 by Gary Allen.





food sites for July 2014

Monday, June 23, 2014



Summer: a time when real men sacrifice heroic chunks of animal flesh on the altars of grills or smokers (and others just bake quiche).



Another year has gone by, and with this issue of the updates to The Resource Guide for Food Writers, we have completed fourteen years of continuous publication. Some of you might even remember the earliest incarnations that went out via e-mail (or possibly strapped to the backs of rodents who were trained to scurry through the Intertubes). We had no idea, starting out, that we’d still be doing this – after 165 postings. In recognition of this anniversary, we’ll offer the usual clichés: “slow and steady wins the race,” “all things are possible,” and – most apropós –“ignorance is bliss.”

In other news, due to scrupulous attention to portion sizes, there is 20% less of your correspondent than there was at our last anniversary issue. We suspect that many people will be disappointed to learn that this information merely reflects 20% less avoirdupois, not verbiage.

As we can certain the bard never said, “Ya’ gets whatcha’ pays for – and, sometimes, not even that.”

Regular subscribers to our updates newsletter receive these updates from our blog, Just Served, directly -- but there is much more at the blog that isn’t delivered automatically.

If you are so inclined, you can follow us on Facebook, and Twitter. If that does not sufficiently addle your pate, links to all of our online scribbles posted at A Quiet Little Table in the Corner.  Roll Magazine recently published an expanded article on Black Cows Redux, the roots of root beer floats (with a few summer-appropriate recipes).

We’ll conclude this month’s introductory remarks with a self-referentially-consistent excerpt from On the Table’s culinary quote collection

[A] quotation is a handy thing to have about, saving one the trouble of thinking for oneself, always a laborious business. A.A. Milne
Gary
July, 2014



PS: If you encounter broken links, changed URLs – or know of wonderful sites we’ve missed – please drop us a line. It helps to keep this resource as useful as possible for all of us. To those of you who have suggested sites – thanks, and keep them coming!

PPS: If you wish to change the e-mail address at which you receive these newsletters, or otherwise modify the way you receive our postings or – if you’ve received this newsletter by mistake, and/or don’t wish to receive future issues – you have our sincere apology and can have your e-mail address deleted from the list immediately. We’re happy (and continuously amazed) that so few people have decided to leave the list but, should you choose to be one of them, let us know and we’ll see that your in-box is never afflicted by these updates again. You’ll find links at the bottom of this page to fix everything to your liking.



---- the new sites ----

(Cliff Kuang’s article, in Wired, features some very interesting ways to look at food data)

(Nancy Stohs reviews Kimberly Wilmot Voss’s The Food Section: Newspaper Women and the Culinary Community for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

(Harold McGee, at Discover Magazine)

(“promoting critical thought about sustainable agriculture and food systems” daily)

(“never trust the lean and hungry,” warns Emily Toth – and Shakespeare)

(Rebecca Onion‘s article on Slate)

(how urban food systems work, world-wide; site maintained by The Food Lab at the University of Texas, Austin)

(“Your Guide to Mustard Varieties” from Serious Eats)

(Mark Vanhoenacker examines how – and why – Americans hold their eating utensils the way they do, and why they need to change)


---- inspirational (or otherwise useful) sites for writers/bloggers ----





---- yet more blogs ----







---- that’s all for now ----

Except, of course, for the usual legalistic mumbo-jumbo and commercial flim-flam:

Your privacy is important to us. We will not give, sell or share your e-mail address with anyone, for any purpose – ever. Nonetheless, we will expose you to the following irredeemably brazen plugs:

Want to support On the Table, without spending a dime of your own money on it?

It’s easy. Whenever you want to shop on Amazon. Com, click on any of the book links below, then whatever you buy there (it doesn’t even have to be one of our books) will earn a commission for this newsletter.

The Resource Guide for Food Writers (Paper) (Kindle)

The Herbalist in the Kitchen (Hardcover)

The Business of Food: Encyclopedia of the Food And Drink Industries (Hardcover) (Kindle)

Human Cuisine (Paper) (Kindle)

Herbs: A Global History (Hardcover) (Kindle)

Terms of Vegery (Kindle)

How to Serve Man: On Cannibalism, Sex, Sacrifice, & the Nature of Eating (Kindle)



Here endeth the sales pitch(es)...

...for the moment, anyway.

______________

“The Resource Guide for Food Writers, Update #165” is protected by copyright, and is provided at no cost, for your personal use only. It may not be copied or retransmitted unless this notice remains affixed. Any other form of republication -- unless with the author’s prior written permission -- is strictly prohibited.

Copyright (c) 2014 by Gary Allen.





Food Sites for June 2014

Wednesday, May 21, 2014


When life gives you lemons... or it just feels a bit like summer...


Oh frabjous day! The manuscript for our latest book, Preserving Food, Preserving Culture, was sent to the publisher (Reaktion) ahead of its due date. Which means we hardly know what to do with ourselves.

Well... there is the kitchen to re-do. And yet another book peeking over the horizon. And then there are those thirteen articles to write for Oxford University Press’s Savoring Gotham by July.

Speaking of which, Savoring Gotham still has a number of topics in search of authors – if you’re the sort of caped hero (or heroine) who can swoop in to write for this new encyclopedia of New York food, let us know, and perhaps there’ll be a match made in Metropolis. I promise to avoid making any other comic-book allusions (but only because neither DC nor Marvel have published a series on The Scribbler: “mild-mannered super hero by day, unrepentant wordsmith under cover of darkness”).

Regular subscribers to our updates newsletter receive these updates from our blog, Just Served, directly -- but there is much more at the blog that isn’t delivered automatically.

You can (if so inclined) follow us on Facebook, and Twitter. You can also find links to all of our online scribbles at A Quiet Little Table in the Corner. Leitesculinaria has reposted twenty-two of our backlisted (and vaguely historical) LC pieces here.

To celebrate glorious spring -- fully arrived, foreshadowing the better parts of summer, and none of its drawbacks – a few items from On the Table’s culinary quote collection:

Live in each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influence of each. Grow green with the spring, yellow and ripe with autumn. Henry David Thoreau
In the vegetable world, there is nothing so innocent, so confiding in its expression, as the small green face of the freshly-shelled spring pea. William Wallace Irwin 
You needn't tell me that a man who doesn't love oysters and asparagus and good wines has got a soul, or a stomach either. He's simply got the instinct for being unhappy highly developed. Saki

Gary
June, 2014


PS: If you encounter broken links, changed URLs -- or know of wonderful sites we’ve missed -- please drop us a line. It helps to keep this resource as useful as possible for all of us. To those of you who have suggested sites -- thanks, and keep them coming!

PPS: If you wish to change the e-mail address at which you receive these newsletters, or otherwise modify the way you receive our postings or -- if you’ve received this newsletter by mistake, and/or don’t wish to receive future issues -- you have our sincere apology and can have your e-mail address deleted from the list immediately. We’re happy (and continuously amazed) that so few people have decided to leave the list but, should you choose to be one of them, let us know and we’ll see that your in-box is never afflicted by these updates again. You’ll find links at the bottom of this page to fix everything to your liking.


---- the new sites ----

(Rachel Laudan looks at the way foods – and cooks – travel)

(Scott D. Seligman’s article on the early days of Chinese food in America; in Beijing’s The Cleaver Quarterly)

(a review, with photos, of a book by Dinah Fried; posted in BrainPickings)

(Dawn Starin’s article in Scientific American)

(“the Chicago-based culinary chat site”)

(Korean recipe site, with cooking videos and ingredient information)

(everything you might want to know about Clupea pallasii)

(an online exhibit from Seattle’s City Archives)

(a paper -- by Chun-Yuen Teng, Yu-Ru Lin, and Lada A. Adamic – that analyses the way choice of ingredients does, or does not, predict the success of a recipe; in Proceedings of the 4th International Conference on Web Science)

(online magazine on food, drink, and culture, from Drexel University)

(Monica Kim thinks about the unthinkable, in Modern Farmer)


---- inspirational (or otherwise useful) sites for writers/bloggers ----






---- yet more blogs ----




---- that’s all for now ----

Except, of course, for the usual legalistic mumbo-jumbo and commercial flim-flam:

Your privacy is important to us. We will not give, sell or share your e-mail address with anyone, for any purpose -- ever. Nonetheless, we will expose you to the following irredeemably brazen plugs:

Want to support On the Table, without spending a dime of your own money on it?

It’s easy. Whenever you want to shop on Amazon. Com, click on any of the book links below, then whatever you buy there (it doesn’t even have to be one of our books) will earn a commission for this newsletter.

The Resource Guide for Food Writers (Paper) (Kindle)

The Herbalist in the Kitchen (Hardcover)

The Business of Food: Encyclopedia of the Food And Drink Industries (Hardcover) (Kindle)

Human Cuisine (Paper) (Kindle)

Herbs: A Global History (Hardcover) (Kindle)

Terms of Vegery (Kindle)

How to Serve Man: On Cannibalism, Sex, Sacrifice, & the Nature of Eating (Kindle)


Here endeth the sales pitch(es)...

...for the moment, anyway.

______________

“The Resource Guide for Food Writers, Update #164” is protected by copyright, and is provided at no cost, for your personal use only. It may not be copied or retransmitted unless this notice remains affixed. Any other form of republication -- unless with the author’s prior written permission -- is strictly prohibited.

Copyright (c) 2014 by Gary Allen.


The Libro-Emporium

Doorstops and lavatory entertainments abound in our book store.