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1/2 c red miso
1 tbsp canola oil
1 tsp sesame oil
2 stalks celery
1 tomato
1 tbsp soy sauce
4 oz. apple sauce
Juice from half a lemon
1/4 c + 2 tbsp rice vinegar

Put in a reliable blender and make smooth (I of course use the VITA MIX 3600!!). The result? A very very good salad dressing in the style of that seemingly ubiquitous dressing you get at many Japanese restaurants. My current favorite rendition of this dressing is at O Bento Ya, and the recipe above doesn't even come close. But what I've made does taste awesome.
burnunit: (wooderson)
One of my prized cookbook possessions is by the old Minneapolis Star food and culture writer Will Jones. As far as I can ascertain, Jones is the one who really brought the concept of urban (and urbane) food and entertainment writing to Minneapolis, way back in the 50s and 60s (starting as early as the late 40s maybe? the internet has a paucity of information about Will). He broke a lot of ground for someone like our dear Dara Moskowitz. Well, his cookbook Wild in the Kitchen is a treasure. It's filled with great recipes and amusing anecdotes from a bygone era. Also, the artwork is outrageous. So when the mood strikes me, I dig out (and significantly scale down the size of) the recipe for

Golden International Spaghetti Sauce
1 medium chicken
3 large onions, coarsely chopped
6 large carrots, coarsely chopped
1 head celery, chopped
2# beef, cut into 1-inch cubes
2# pork, cut into 1-inch cubes
2# lamb,cut into 1-inch cubes
3 large cans tomato purée
1 tsp fennel seed
1 tsp dill seed
1 tbsp oregano
1 tsp sweet basil
1/2 tsp thyme
1 tbsp dry mustard
1 tbsp Madras curry powder
2 tbsp sweet Hungarian paprika
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 cup Japanese soy sace
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/2# dried Chinese or Italian black mushrooms, soaked and sliced
1 c mushroom water (the water with which the soaked mushrooms have been covered)
1 tsp instant coffee powder
1 tbsp chocolate sauce
1 tbsp peanut butter
4 or 5 dashes Tabasco
1/2 c strong tea
1 tbsp beef or onion soup powder
1 tbsp honey
1/2# cheddar cheese, grated
1 c parmesan cheese
2 tbsp grated green cheese (Sap Sago)
1 c dry table wine, red or white
1 pint sour cream
salt and pepper

Simmer the chicken, onions, carrots and celery in water to cover, with salt and pepper to taste, until the chicken is tender. Remove chicken from the broth and remove the meat from the bones, cutting it into one-inch chunks. Brown the beef, pork and lamb together in a slow oven, about 300 until fairly tender. Salt and pepper the meat as it cooks.

To the large chicken pot (be sure to leave all the fat and vegetables in the broth) add the chicken meat, with all the other meats and meat juices including any water that may be necessary to remove the brown crust from the bottom of the pan in which the meats are browned, and all the other ingredients except hte cheese, wine and sour cream. Rinse the tomato puree cans with water and put that in, too. Simmer at least two hours. Add the cheeses and continue to stir and cook until the cheeses are thoroughly melted and blended. Then stir in the wine and sour cream and serve the sauce with cooked spaghetti, green noodles or other pasta.

serves 30

Will includes a variant that's slightly faster and less expensive, but I'm not going to type it up here.

I assure you, it's delicious. I think some of the ingredients are half joking, and/or you can afford to leave some of them out, but I bet the strong tea adds a tannic punch, and the peanut butter and honey add a subtle roundness, and the curry powder probably adds color, etc. etc. So I usually make it close if not exactly letter perfect.

I reckon the real flavor comes in the upper third of the recipe, with the chicken broth, mirepoix and three kinds of browned meat. That and the care and time taken to reduce it slowly over a low fire.

He wrote "An especially rich and festive spaghetti sauce. I give the recipe for thirty people because it's a good way to feed large numbers of people exceedingly well, and I've never made it in batches any smaller."

A pot of this is on my stove right now.
burnunit: (wooderson)
When I was in high school (and into early part of college) I endeavored to work the omega symbol into my personal branding (you know, without being a DJ or getting into BBS and/or internet, it's actually pretty hard to create your own nickname in this world, unless you work for it intentionally). Jon O always worked pretty well, but once I learned a little greek, I also wanted to go by Jon Ω. I have a few books with that written on inside cover (and yes, one of those books is a 2nd Edition DMG). Now, with the presence of omegacon, that memory comes back. The HTML for Ω is Ω by the way.

So it was. A fairly lovely time was had. Better planning and prep will yield even better results in the future, count on it. It was actually more fun to have something to do, but I pushed it a couple times. No worries, please! It was instructive! Actually, save advice for the moment too, k? (save as in write down now so you don't forget, then email it to me privately in...let's say 10 business days, i.e., when I'm recovered and ready to listen?) Experience was going to be the #1 teacher in this case regardless; and to paraphrase, you can't be told how to run a consuite for 130, you have to see it for yourself.

For those of you having made the connection, the hot iron core (and thus, determinant of its magnetic true north) of this year's omegacon consuite experience is actually [livejournal.com profile] mrs_lovett, whom you will probably want to go friend immediately if not sooner.
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I'm a raw milk enthusiast as many of you may know. The taste of raw milk is so much more complete than the taste of homogenized and pasteurized milk. I mean, it's whole, for one thing (you wouldn't want raw skim eww) which means there's cream. And for another... oh it's bliss! Bliss! It tastes like it came from a place you know? On my recent trip to CA where I bought a quart in a glass bottle (and drank it out of a paper sack in the park, no less) I tasted the following: sweet cream, grass, sunshine*, fog dissolving in the morning, honey, brown sugar, clean cedar wood, and right at the end...smoke. Sure, the naive and foolish among you might say "what about milk?" Well, it tastes like milk too, but it's a very complex flavor is all I'm saying! bryant park project has another unfortunate story about raw milk. Why's it unfortunate? Because the dadblamed thing is all about whether or not it's healthy. I don't care if it has miracle properties, it tastes better! Dang!

Also, the hype about it being dangerous is just nanny state bullshit—the only way to safely deliver raw milk is if the cows are pampered and raised organically on grass. Under those conditions, where they're not eating a lot of corn and swimming in their own shit, and being overmilked, you're simply not going to have the kind of low-immune-system, disease risking, blood in the udders kind of problems! But also in the sense that consenting adults should be allowed to eat and drink what they want especially with a product that was consumed that way for many many years before attempting to transport it to cities + industrialization made it so ruinously unsafe. (I am of a divided mind when it comes to feeding raw milk to my kids. let them make up their own minds later) I don't need anyone jacking me up about milk.

But this whole culture aching for miracle cures from our food, just makes me wheeze. It also makes me thirsty.

*sunshine also tastes a lot like edible flowers. there's this one daisy-like flower I've had as a dessert garnish which basically made me feel like I was eating sunshine. it was a bit of a synaesthetic experience. That same taste more or less made its way into this quart of milk I was having.
burnunit: (Default)
When oh when? Why o why? Tasting the Faberge cocktail* at La Belle Vie** this weekend confirmed for me my creeping suspicion that I really really want to try creme de violette. Or as you can see, make lots of drinks like these at cocktailchronicles and dashofbitters.

*The Faberge sounds a lot like a variation on the Blue Moon, The Attention, or a violet-Aviation-- ingredients were gin, vodka, violet syrup and lemon. Well, that says to me that they don't have any violette on hand and are using vodka as the neutral grain spirit to punch up some sugared violet syrup (monin? built from scratch?) in any case, I suspect it won't be long after creme de violette reaches our city that the faberge gets that in an update. It did inspire me though, to try making another gin-vodka combo cocktail at home that I liked, but thought it was too cloying so I won't dish that info here. Once I figure it out though, keep watching the skies!

** you can expect a series of glowing reports about our La Belle Vie experience over the next several days.
burnunit: (yeeargh!)
cocktail blogs being all the rage now, I have been attending to their contributions with interest. this has been a good summer for cocktails, i tell you what. So anyway, I've finally gone ahead and plunged in to working out my own recipes. Here's one I made that I think has legs; let's call it the Northwoods Sling or perhaps the Smokehouse Sling:

Recipe makes either 2 lowball cocktails or 1 highball (iv'e developed this appreciation for smaller drinks lately, so I can have more of them, share, stay upright, etc.)

Northwoods Sling - standard
1.5 oz. whisky
1 oz. cherry brandy or liqueur
.5 oz. gin
dash of bitters
club soda

Pour booze into mixing glass with ice, shake. Strain into two glasses with ice. Dash in the bitters. Fill with soda. Squeeze and drop lemon. Serve and relax.

I can predict some good variations I look forward to attempting -- use blended scotch for a true smoky smokehouse version; use lemon sour or lemon soda instead of club; throw out the soda, double it, stir instead of shake and strain to a cocktail glass; push furhter into fizz territory with an egg white; would probably garnish with medium sized lemon twist regardless, but totally essential if served up. etc.

The original version involved some specific brand names of hooch. I'm not a total snob but I tend to keep hands off the bottom shelves. So I dunno. I guess if you want to experience it in the form I determined was what I liked at first, then here's the brand loyalty you need to display:

Northwoods Sling - original
1.5 oz. rye whisky (Wild Turkey)
1 oz. Heering cherry liqueur
.5 oz. gin (Brokers)
dash of orange bitters (Fee's)
club soda
shake booze with ice, pour over ice in 10 oz glass, perfume with bitters, top with soda, eschew garnish. Drink quickly and make another!
burnunit: (Default)
I'd never heard of Noka before, but a writer at the Dallas/Fort Worth site "Dallasfood.org" just did what has to be the best commercial bullshit takedown I've ever read in which these Noka fools are exposed as con artists. I don't know if the article is true, but this person was very thorough in their research and since it's public, could very easily have their claims tested by neutral third parties. So, yeah, wow.

On a related, horrifying note, here's a web page for a guy researching child slavery in chocolate plantations.
burnunit: (Default)
If there's any justice in the world, Joel Salatin would blow your freaking mind.
"Until we create agricultural paradigms that will romance the next generation into them we're wasting our time..." (emphasis mine. this is from him speaking at a conference - audio link)

He gets $4 per dozen for his eggs and doesn't use tractors or fertilizer.


I've always considered, and now I'm sure, when I can afford meat like he raises, I'm going to go back to eating it.


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May 2009

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