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Food Sites for February 2020

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Eggplant—a key ingredient for so many middle eastern dishes: baba ghanoush and moutabel, Turkish imam bayildi, maghmour (Lebanon’s take on Greek moussaka), or Israeli roasted eggplant with za’atar.

News stories from the Middle East, of late, have been filled with so many terrifying events and fist-shakings that they have nearly put us off our feed. 


It takes a lot to make us stop eating. Instead, it has us thinking about making peace by sharing the foods that come from that stress-filled region. Five years ago, Roll Magazine published “Moors and Christians: Comfort Food for an Uncomfortable Season.” That was before the latest saber-rattling, on both sides, made the season even more uncomfortable. Cold weather, and the hope of cooler heads, might call for revisiting the article’s recipe. A quick google search will find recipes for all the dishes listed below this episode’s photo.

More recently, Roll has published two excerpts from our book, Sauces Reconsidered: Aprés Escoffier. The article’s title is, oddly enough, “Two Tastes of Sauce”... 

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?

In the interest of commensality, we’re serving a few Middle Eastern sayings from On the Table’s culinary quote collection:

“The origin of the destruction of the body is the removal of dinner.” Iranian proverb
“Eat according to your own taste, but dress according to people’s taste” Arabian proverb
“Look and keep silent, and if you are eating meat, tell the world it’s fish.Arabian proverb
“Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a beggar.” Arabian proverb
“He who wants to eat honey should endure the stings.” Lebanese proverb
“He who inserts himself between the onion and its skin, will only gain its smell.” Arabian proverb
“Eat breakfast alone, share lunch with a friend, and give your dinner to your enemy.” Iranian proverb
“The unlucky person finds bones in his tripe dinner.” Egyptian proverb
“He who eats alone chokes alone.” Arabian proverb
February, 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 Cara De Silva), 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 —

(Anna Kate E. Cannon’s article, in The Harvard Crimson, on the origins of the Schlesinger Library’s culinary collection)

(review of Ned Palmer’s book in The Guardian; spoiler alert: mass production doesn’t make for great cheese)

(Jan Whitaker’s Restaurant-ing Through History looks at the beginnings of a Jewish tradition in America)

(report of a South African discovery in NewScientist)

(Amanda Borschel-Dan’s article, in The Times of Israel, on an archaeological site of an ancient garum factory)

(PDF of E.N. Anderson’s 2005 book)

(Cheryl Fenton’s Boston Globe article about stylistic changes from 1960s to today)

(video captures in the collection of The Library of Congress)

(the author of Diet for a Small Planet “...wants to do the same for our democracy”; David Marchese’s article in The New York Times)

(English translation of Jonathan Morris’ article in 100% Espresso Italiano)

(Jai Ubhi’s GastroObscura article on the origins of that noble drink; surprise, it didn’t begin with Dom Perignon)

(George Monbiot, in The Guardian, on work being done by Solar Foods, in Helsinki)

(the library at University of Texas, San Angelo, contains some 1,800 cookbooks, dating back to 1789; so far, 47 have been digitized)

(Alex Maltman explains the phenomenon from several vantages for Decanter)

(eighty-two downloadable cookbooks from the collection at Duke University’s John W. Hartman Center for Sales, Advertising & Marketing History)

(Robert Moss stirs the historical pot at Serious Eats)

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

— yet another blog —

— changed URL —

— 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 #232 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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