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Food Sites for October 2018

Thursday, September 13, 2018

You don’t know jack...

October is one of the rare months when we try to do things with common foodstuffs that don’t involve cooking or eating. Maybe it’s because, at harvest time, there’s just too much of everything to even consider eating it all?

The first—very rough—draft of our novel (Future Tense: The Remembrance of Things Not Yet Past) has been completed and is out for comments from a few selected victims. When comments come in, we’ll consider what to do next. Meanwhile, we’ve started work on yet another (and very different sort of) novel. Its working title is Cenotaphs. Doctor Sam once said—probably to James Boswell, who scribbled about everything Johnson said: “No man but a blockhead ever wrote except for money.” 

We are neither amused nor comforted by that.

An update from the non-fiction section: we’ve received the galleys for our latest book, Sauces Reconsidered: Àpres Escoffier, and have compiled its index, and made final corrections. Our work is finally complete (at least until post-publication marketing kicks in). It’s now slated for release in January!

You can, if you wish, follow us on Facebook (where, among other things, we post a LOT of photographs), and Twitter. Still more of our online scribbles can be found at A Quiet Little Table in the Corner.

There are better things to do with pumpkins than smashing them in the street or frightening children (not that frightening them is an altogether bad thing). Here are few comments from On the Table’s culinary quote collection:
What calls back the past like the rich pumpkin pie? John Greenleaf Whittier
My favorite word is ‘pumpkin.’ You can’t take it seriously. But you can’t ignore it, either. It takes ahold of your head and that’s it. You are a pumpkin. Or you are not. I am. Harrison Salisbury
Vegetables are a must on a diet. I suggest carrot cake, zucchini bread, and pumpkin pie. Jim Davis (as Garfield)

October, 2018

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 who have pointed out tasty sites (this month we’re tipping our hat to Abe Opincar), 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 ----

(Niraj Chokshi describes, for The New York Times, some really really well-aged cheese)

(Mark Hay, at Gastro Obscura, on Zahir Al-Din Muhammad—Aka, Babur—sixteenth-century proto-foodie)

(Jan Whitaker proves that art of writing menu copy is not what it used to be, at her blog, Restauranting through History)

(Natalie Anderson, at, looks at Chris Woolgar’s study of how medieval people regarded their meals: “Contemporary science teaches that objects that shine reflect light, but medieval people saw these objects as the source of light, and the divine qualities of light made them virtuous in their own right.”)

(Jennifer Stewart Kornegay, The Local Palate; not Mexican tamales, but Delta tamales, like the ones Robert Johnson sang about: “if you got ‘em for sale…”)

(Sophie Egan peels away the mysteries for The New York Times)

(Cat Wolinski, at VinePair, on the role of brewsters in medieval England)

(Anne Ewbank, at Gastro Obscura, on an early Japanese cookbook that incorporated ingredients and methods from the Iberian Peninsula)

(Soleil Ho, at Taste, on something more significant than fusion food)

(Dwight Furrow, in debunking mode, at Edible Arts)

(Dwight Furrow, continues in debunking mode, at Edible Arts)

(Howard Miller, Aat An Eccentric Culinary History, on the history, chemistry, and processing of corn into nutritious masa and hominy)

(site accompanying an exhibition at Cornell University in 2008-2009)

(James Gaines, at Inside Science, on how Purdue’s Saliva, Perception, Ingestion, and Tongues Laboratory discovered that “taste influences diet, but diet might also influence taste“)

(Elizabeth Pennisi, in Science, on recent work by the International Wheat Genome Sequencing Consortium)

---- inspirational (or otherwise useful or amusing) 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:

Occasionally, URLs we provide may link to commercial sites (that is, they’ll cost you money to take full advantage of them). We do not receive any compensation for listing them here, and provide them without any form of recommendation—other than the fact that they looked interesting to us.

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 help On the Table, without spending a dime of your own money on it?

It’s easy. Whenever you plan to go shopping on Amazon, click on any of the book links below, then whatever you buy there will earn a commission for this newsletter without adding to your cost (it doesn’t even have to be one of our books).

The Resource Guide for Food Writers

(these newsletters merely update the contents of the book; what doesn’t appear here is already in the book)

The Herbalist in the Kitchen

The Business of Food: Encyclopedia of the Food And Drink Industries

Human Cuisine

Herbs: A Global History

Sausage: A Global History

Can It! The Perils and Pleasures of Preserving Foods

Terms of Vegery

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

Here endeth the sales pitch(es)...

...for the moment, anyway.


The Resource Guide for Food Writers, Update #216 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 ©2018 by Gary Allen.


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