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Food Sites for January 2020

Friday, December 13, 2019

Cold weather means “forget about fresh summery salads—it’s time for winter vegetables.

Another new year is upon us—one that promises to be filled with anxiety and inflammatory rhetoric. Oh, and there will be news, too. A good time to stay at home and slow-cook our way into oblivion (or, at least, caloric/cholesterol-enabled bliss). 

Something that might be from The Curb Your Appetite Department: These are troubled times, and troubled times beg for frivolous diversions. In a search for something along those lines, we came across a kind of fairy tale—written long ago, as fairy tales are wont to do—and offer “A Simple Love Story” as your escape du jour.

Something from The Unlikely News Department: And, before you ask, this is not another fairy tale—even if it sounds like one. Every year, Choice Reviews (a publication of the American Library Association) digs through their year’s 6,000 reviews to select their “Outstanding Academic Titles” list. Less than 10% are chosen, and, of that list, only 21 books were about food and/or agriculture. This year, no doubt the result of some inexplicable fluke of planetary alignments, Sauces Reconsidered: Après Escoffier, was included among them.

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’s even an Amazon author’s page. Who knew?

Some wintery thoughts from On the Table’s culinary quote collection:

Skiing consists of wearing $3,000 worth of clothes and equipment and driving 200 miles in the snow in order to stand around at a bar and drink. P.G. Wodehouse
I know the look of an apple that is roasting and sizzling on the hearth on a winter’s evening, and I know the comfort that comes of eating it hot, along with some sugar and a drench of cream... I know how the nuts taken in conjunction with winter apples, cider, and doughnuts, make old people’s tales and old jokes sound fresh and crisp and enchanting. Mark Twain
The Highlanders regale themselves with whisky. They find it an excellent preservation against the winter cold. It is given with great success to the infants in the confluent smallpox. Tobias Smollett
Out of snow, you can’t make cheesecake. Jewish Proverb
January, 2020

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 corrections or tasty sites (this month we’re tipping our hat to Suzanne Fass), 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 —

(advertising cookbooks from a collection in Duke University’s Rubenstein Library)

(Alex Halberstadt’s Saveur article on shojin ryori, the temple cuisine of Japan)

(Nina Notman explores the science behind the complex flavors of Indian cooking for Chemistry World)

(Yes Magazine’s Liz Carlisle examines many aspects—agricultural, economic, culinary, and more—of the ancient grain movement)

(Alison Sinkewicz, at—of all places—Taste, on one company’s plans for a brave new world that far from a culinary utopia)

(Julia Moskin’s New York Times article on how Americans’ love-hate to get jiggly with their food)

(the BBC’s Martha Henriques, on the cultural, economic, ecological, and historical impact of the spice trade—from ancient times to the present)

(more spice history, from Ligaya Mishan in The New York Times Style Section)

(John Hooper, in The Economist, on Farrell Monaco’s recent work in gastronomic archaeology)

(Warren Belasco’s chapter from Bloomsbury Publishing, 2008 book Food)

(Jason Goodwin’s account of the glories of Ottoman kitchens, in Lapham’s Quarterly)

(Northwestern University’s digitized collection)

(Tim McKirdy and Danielle Grinberg take us from shrub to cup, at Vinepair)

(academic paper by Bill Ryan, Angelo A. Camillo, Woo Kim, and Patrick J Moreo in the International Journal of Hospitality Management)

(Reina Gattuso’s article about William Hughes, at GastroObscura)

(Robert Moss defends the faith in Serious Eats)

(GastroObserver article about a combination food history museum and candy store in Harper’s Ferry, WV)

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

— yet another blog —

— a little gallows humor —

— that’s all for now —

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

As an Amazon Associate, this newsletter earns from qualifying purchases made through it. These include my own books (listed below), and occasional books mentioned in the entries above. If you order any books via those links, the price you pay is not increased by my commission. 

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 for our books:

The Resource Guide for Food Writers
(newsletters like this 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

Sauces Reconsidered: Après Escoffier

Terms of Vegery

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

How to Write a Great Book

The Digressions of Dr Sanscravat: Gastronomical Ramblings & Other Diversions

Here endeth the sales pitch(es)...

...for the moment, anyway.


The Resource Guide for Food Writers, Update #231 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 ©2020 by Gary Allen.


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