Is there a 12-step program for web addicts? Well, here’s my first step: I admit that I cannot control my addiction/compulsion to my laptop. Actually, it’s a bigger problem than that. I admit that I cannot control my addiction/compulsion to subscribe, like, follow, bookmark, save and read later a ridiculous volume of information on subjects ranging from travelling in Sicily and smoking fish, to the artists of Papunya Tula, American roots music and the life cycle of my favourite food, sea urchin (it’s possible that I may be trying to make myself sound more interesting than I am…)
I might be an addict, but no one could accuse me of being a selfish addict. I’m happy to share — frequently, if you’d like. Daily on Twitter and once every couple of weeks or so on this blog, I’ll share links to food-related content that I’m enjoying and recipes I’ve spotted from a range of sources around the world. Just don’t ask me questions later — I’m pretty sure not much of what I read is sticking around in my memory.
In Esquire, Tom Junod asks — “…what kind of man first cooked with Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup?” His essay is a lovely, loving and funny homage to a food item that he claims “defined an epoch of American (home) cuisine".
“So, the waiter says, “we have a green apple balloon where you can just put your lips to the balloon and inhale the helium out of the balloon.” At the famed Chicago restaurant Alinea, an “edible balloon” is on the dessert menu. And the digestiv? The Star Spangled Banner sung in a chipmunk voice. Watch and be amazed at this video on eater.com showing its creation.
Out celebrates the latest issue of Saveur by asking if it’s “the gayest mag this March?”. The issue, with a kooky pink-and-white layer cake on the cover, features “a mini wedding album” of Saveur editor-in-chief James Oseland’s marriageto his partner, Carlos, plus a “play-by-play” of the reception food. And the magazine includes the sad story behind the couple’s “truly Southern coconut meringue layer cake”.
A biting restaurant review by The Guardian’s Jay Rayner. Novikov is, he says, “…generally very, very bad: prices that knock the wind out of you and moments of cooking so cack-handed, so foul, so astoundingly grim you want to congratulate the kitchen on its incompetence".
“Art or food? — that’s the question to ask of a glorious series of photographs of “fruit and vegetables like you’ve never seen them before” on Smithsonian.com’s “Food and Think” blog.
When foreign correspondent Alissa J. Rubin moved to Kabul a few weeks after the fall of the Taliban she discovered that, in a war zone, food is more about calories than cuisine. She discovered that memories sustain, hard cheeses are great travellers and that the glossy pages of cooking magazines can be restorative. From The New York Times.
A Travel & Leisure magazine writer and his wife rent a villa in western Sicily: “… the butcher would wave when we approached; produce vendors offered us free samples — peppery fennel fronds, tart fragole selvatiche (wild strawberries). That storied Sicilian reserve quickly dropped away. Old women counseled us on which of the five varieties of melanzane (eggplant) were best for baking versus frying. An amiable Tunisian herbsman spent 20 minutes with Nilou, outlining the subtleties of his basil. Later that day he friended her on Facebook.”
And some recipes I’m going to be trying…
- Sicillian spaghetti with pan-roasted cauliflower from herbivoracious.com
- Malaysian lamb shank curry on MasterChef winner Adam Liaw’s blog
- Spiced nectarine cake on bonappetit.com
- Korean scallion (green onion) pancake on Rasa Malaysia
- Breakfast quinoa (with dates and maple syrup) on A Thought for Food
- Savoury sesame cookies on Chocolate & Zucchini
- Killer Mac’n’Cheese from Jamie Oliver
- Raw Tuscan Kale salad on 101 Cookbooks