I just found out that we have the same birthday! How perfect! I have been thinking hard about a way to post a “California” entry. I know I could use anything that has touched me while here, including people, destinations, ingredients, ceremonies, as a point of departure. But that list goes on and on. And on! I truly love it here, and feel grateful to the point of bursting on most days. So, speaking of gratitude, I was recently the recipient of a really nice gift. The gift of Alvin Ailey. Yes, it was at someone else’s expense, but their busy schedule (sorry Ron 🙂 ) gave me the opportunity to experience an immersion of creative expression, dance, history, physicality, spirituality, and diversity. This is exactly what I have at my fingertips every day living in San Francisco. And many have shared much with me over the last 10 years. Thank you! Menu and meal to follow. Stay tuned.
orecchiette, honeyed rosemary carrots, anchovy January 20, 2008
I have been poking around in the kitchen here and there, but I haven’t made a meal worth blogging in a while. This one is in celebration of my favorite vegetable purveyor (Golden Produce) opening their new grocery establishment — Golden Natural Foods!!! I truly love this family, and am very happy for their success. I also should note that I am grateful for the MLK holiday, and appreciative of what it took of others for me to be who I am today.
This new store is beautiful, and if you’ve never had the pleasure of visiting their produce market, GP, you should. That is, if you enjoy fresh, organic, low cost, high quality, abundant produce. I picked up some orecchiette pasta, some fresh parmesan, and anchovy fillets. There was rosemary in the refrigerator, and honey on the countertop. I spied a carrot in the crisper, and took all these ingredients as a sign. I sauteed the carrots in a couple tablespoons of olive oil, added the honey and rosemary, and seasoned with salt and pepper. When the pasta was done, I added it to the pan, along with the anchovies, and topped with peels of the parmesan:
By the way, have you ever tried Lindemans‘ lambic/gueuze called Cuvée René?
It is delicious, my new favorite beer ever. I mean ever. And I like many beer flavors. Long story short, it is available at GNF, along with a pretty nice selection of beer and wine. I was pleased. Go find out for yourselves!
PS. I love the GP family.
pacific northwest thanksgiving November 22, 2007
I thought I’d be the only one, or at least one of few, who would prepare what I started thinking of as a “pacific northwest” thanksgiving. But a quick goog– search later and I realized that Sara Moulton and Epicurious had tried their hands – giving a nod to the plank cooking of fish and meats, common practice among indigenous peoples of the Americas (and I’m sure elsewhere), which has gained popularity in “modern cooking“. I guess where I’m going with this is that how appropriate that my “original” thanksgiving meal was already a deeply rooted cultural norm. Just not mine. I like this!
I cannot list all of my thanks here, but I have been moved beyond words by recent generosity and support. I especially wrestle with holidays, asking for favors, loving unabashedly, saying goodbye and I am grateful for you (plural) who’ve translated my code, if you will. And I feel ecstatic! Thanks to those of you who have put to paper such kind words of support. I plan to muster another entry on food thankyous… Onward, SOPHAS!
Now here is the ATL thanksgiving… at least some of it.
harvest dinner – I made out like a bandit!! November 7, 2007
(photo credits: larisa and bianca)
Day of, Larisa arrives with her cart (name pending) containing the following items:
potatoes, thin green beans and maple
broccoli with sicilian sauce
squash with chestnuts and pomegranates
scary cheese ball with garlic crisps
pear beet greens with champagne vinaigrette
magical sangria ingredients
pumpkin roll cake
pumpkin cookies with brown butter icing
savory stuffed puff pastry roll
and a totally yummy dessert that is just like my mom’s prized pumpkin bread!
Usually this blog displays foodvisuals, but this night was captured in a slightly different way. Thanks to all of our friends who shared their nights and hearts. And a special thank you, Larisa, for making this a truly mesmerizing day and evening!
honey challah September 17, 2007
This bread tested me. I had so much doubt while making it! The dough needed to rise twice, in 3 hr increments, doubling, then tripling in size. The process spanned two days, and I often wondered if I’d have to let go and try again, thinking to myself, if this is a sign of the New Year, what exactly was this challah saying? I’ve just torn off the first piece. It is warm, it is sweet, rich, aromatic, and I feel better.
hooray, labor day!! September 3, 2007
I am grateful for today. According to “the first proposal of the holiday”, in the 1880’s, “a street parade to exhibit to the public ‘the strength and esprit de corps of the trade and labor organizations’ of the community” was in order, along with a festival celebration for “workers and their families”. (Wiki-what? you don’t see too much of this original meaning these days. Today’s SF Gate front page news was about the Bay Bridge closure.)
I did enjoy a day of rest from work, let me tell you! I was invited to brunch with Heather and Arpi (left to right), a couple I find mesmerizing – individually, as well as together in partnership. They celebrated their ninth anniversary this weekend and still made time for me. Wow.
Arpi made a delicious meal! We had gourmet coffee, moist and delicate corn muffins, and omelets. Let’s talk omelets for a moment. These were fluffy, half moon pillows filled with just the right textures, including a perfect dice of creminis, and red bell pepper. Mmm-mmm!
All that, AND we went on a walk to visit with the neighborhood cats! What a day. Thanks, Heather and Arpi!!