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Food posts but not necessarily recipes. Cookbook recommendations and more.

Pizza day

Actually today isn’t pizza day, but I am feeling nostalgic. When I was doing Renaissance Faire, well actually, Heart of the Forest Faire in Novato, Husband started Pizza Day. My friend, Harry and I ran the Monger’s guild and we used to ride to Faire together, along with our sons and occasionally other participants. Since we were in charge, we were the first to arrive and the last to leave, which when you factored in commute time made for a long day, even if it is supposed to be a hobby. So getting back to the pizza, even after Faire ended for the season we continued the Pizza Day tradition, in fact, Harry was inspired to learn to make pizza too, so I have to assume that Pizza Day lives on. So you can start your own pizza day tradition here is the recipe for pizza dough and to start you off, I also wrote out the plain cheese pizza ...

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Cultural food anomolies

I have been catching up on my internet reading today, including reading comments on other people’s blogs. Sometimes the comments are even more thought provoking than the original post. What does this have to do with food? Well, as Eddie Willers often does, a post of his started my brain whirring. Then the comments sent it off into outer space! I like ethnic foods, I love pozole, tinga poblana, falafels, samosas, spring rolls, gnocchi, all sorts of interesting foods. But some things weird me out, and the hot dog comment made me think of some of the foods here that I don’t understand nor like very much. What is with sandwichon? For my 50th birthday, (long ago kiddies, almost in the last century), Husband threw a surprise party. Actually,he gave money to Son and Son and the neighbor girls put it together. One of the delicacies was a sandwichon. I don’t blame Son, he probably thought it was a giant ...

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Vegetarian Cookbook Recommendation

Teresa asked me to recommend a vegetarian cookbook. I am stumped. Husband was a vegetarian for 15 years until we moved here, he decided to come join me as an omnivore simply because he didn’t want his life to be about what he couldn’t eat. I have a friend here who does mostly raw and living foods, which is pretty easy in some ways and difficult in others.There are so many styles of vegetarians, for me it has always meant, you don’t eat meat. By meat I mean beef, poultry, rabbit, game, fish, pork, mutton, goat, insects, crustaceans, invertebrates, fish and anything else that once was alive and breathing. If you chose to further restrict your choices by avoiding dairy, eggs and honey that means vegan to me.It used to make me nuts, “oh, yeah, I am a vegetarian except I eat fish, or poultry or whatever”, well, then you aren’t a vegetarian cuz you eat meat, you are on ...

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Cookbook recommendations

I woke up this morning feeling achy, it’s the 75º weather we are experiencing. If I wanted to be cold I would have stayed NOB. I was trying to think of something to blog about, but all I could think of is how much my knees hurt, then I found this Slate article recommending cookbooks to buy as gifts, and one of them is Madhur Jaffrey’s World of the East Vegetarian Cooking which I use all the time, I decided to pass the link on to you. I’m no longer vegetarian, I tend to think of myself as an omnivore, but regular cookbooks seldom have interesting vegetable dishes to offer. Besides, you can always add meat to a recipe, it isn’t always as easy to remove it.So enjoy the article, and if you do decide to order one of the great cookbooks recommended, and are buying through Amazon, then please use the Amazon link provided on my blog.

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Consider the humble chayote.

The chayote is not a favorite vegetable of mine. It’s a squash, like zucchini and has many of the same faults and virtues. One thing is that I have used it in place of zucchini in recipes with a lot of success, and I can’t resist a bargain and chayote often is just that. The chayote also goes by the name green bottle gourd (East Indian) , vegetable pear, and merliton. I don’t think of it as an exotic veggie, we had it in the supermarket NOB, but while reading Indian cookbooks (yeah, I am the sort of geck who reads cook books for fun, I also read encyclopedias, well used to, I don’t have one here), I got the impression that they haven’t always been so common. I bought chayote because they were $5.90 a kilo. I made cream of chayote soup for lunch today using the non-dairy cream of vegetable soup recipe with the addition of half a ...

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It was harder than I thought

You probably read where I said that I was going to try to keep track of how much I spent on food this week. Wow, it isn’t as easy as I thought. But I am working on it, the problem is that I don’t remember what I paid for some things. So I am backtracking and working on it, so instead of a daily report I think a weekly summary will have to be it. For example, I made bean with chard soup, well, it got some water added to it and some more vegetables and it ended up becoming 8 big helpings of soup for less than 5 pesos each. The way I decided to deal with water is to assume that one and half of those 3 garafons we use weekly is consumed by me, so I am just charging myself 4 pesos a day for water. When in doubt I am rounding up, like I said this ...

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What would you eat if you only had $3(usd) a day to spend on food?

I recently ran across this blog (forum?) called Chowhound, and this series of posts regarding eating well in San Francisco on $3 usd a day. From what I understand, some politicians tried to eat on $3 usd a day and concluded that it couldn’t be done without resorting to junk food. The poster took up the challenge with some great results. Then there was this article in the NY Times that stated that healthy food costs 10 times more than junk food. Wow! I have been pretty poor, and while I admit that my kids loved Ramen, when I finally read the label it stopped being a staple on our table, oh, it made it’s appearance on occasion because it is an easy, tasty and fast lunch. Oops, I got off on a tangent, anyway, there was not a lot of junk food in my house. I find that premise disquieting at best, also I don’t entirely agree. Junk food ...

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What would you do when faced with Halloween pumpkins?

In October, I bought some assorted pumpkins and squashes to decorate my sideboard. Not that the sideboard lacks for decoration, it’s already home to an enormous display of plastic fruit and the occasional basket of real fruit. I know you think it’s tacky but are too polite to say it.In my defense it’s nice plastic fruit and doesn’t turn into an overripe mess in 2 days like real fruit left out in the Yucatecan heat. We bought a smaller fridge because we thought that we would be eating more fresh fruits and vegetables here. Well, we do eat more fresh, but those fresh things go into the refrigerator instead of on the kitchen counter or the dining room table. When I watched the movie “Mr and Mrs Smith” (dumb movie, I didn’t even watch the entire DVD), I remember being struck by the beautiful bowl of colored bells on her kitchen counter. Doing that here is an invitation to disaster. ...

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Refilling the fridge

I have been gone for 15 days (una quincena, or as the British put it a fortnight) or as I look at it 2 weeks. Opening the fridge was a task that I have been dreading, Husband is not a slob, nor is he a slouch in the cooking department, but right now, he just isn’t into it. Fortunately, la Muchacha cleaned the fridge last Friday. I only added a questionable cantaloupe and a yucca to the compost heap. I take all the blame for the yucca, I bought it 2 days before I was leaving, what was I thinking? Oh, I know what I was thinking “Yucca!!! We all like yucca, and it was only 7 pesos a kilo”.I forgot that I was leaving, I had a senior moment. Wednesdays is grocery shopping day for us, it’s the dia de plazos at Megabalcones. Plazos wasn’t in my Spanish vocab so I looked it up on bablefish and it means ...

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There’s a whole lot of splattering going on!

I reset the posting to 8 posts, which is more or less 8 days if I post daily. But the poll runs for 6 days, and I’ll go with the majority of votes. Also if you are interested, there is subscribe to this feed button at the bottom of the post column. La Maestra often has get togethers at her house. We went to one where she served pozole, I seem to remember that she served 3 kinds, but besides red and green what kinds are there? I can’t remember. Basically, pozole is hominy soup. I see hominy for pozole in cans and in the freezer section of the supermarket in addition to the dried hominy. So how complicated can soup be? My stove top is now green, my shirt is splattered with green and I have little burns on my arms. I seem to have misunderstood exactly how to do this, or I missed a step. How did this ...

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