Eat this Book!
May 21, 2005

Small Bites:

Enterprise is sadly, mercifully over, and I had a bit of a rant about "chick wines" and panned the highly-rated Moroccan restaurant Aziza over at KQED.

Yesterday, Dr. Mathra and I went to see Star Wars: Episode III, Revenge of the Sith at the Metreon and it was pretty damn good. Best of the last three. We continued to ignore Portman and Christensen's insanely wooden performances and just enjoyed the fact that, although they made him do his patented scream three to many times in the first fifteen minutes, R2-D2 gave an Oscar-worthy performance. Plus, General Grievous was creepily awesome.

Large Gulps:

It was a painfully gorgeous day over at the Berkeley Farmer's Market as four of us Digital Dish contributors gathered to sign, push, and read from the new book.

Reading out loud

I'm really psyched about the book. I held it, I smelled it, I read from it, and I must say, the publishing company really did an excellent job with the entire production and design. I love everything about it -- from the cover paper choice to an index that that indexes the book by ingredient, website (or blog), and entry title. It's polished, hefty, and I'm right proud to be included in it with so many other prolific writers and cooks.

The other Bay Area cooks on hand to sign and talk were Owen of Tomatilla!, Ellen of Cheap Cooking, and Guy of MeatHenge, and I think we and everyone who came by had quite a swell time. There was even some lively audience participation at times.

Taking advantage of the Strawberry Tasting that was going on at the Farmer's Market that day, Owen demo'd a strawberry, almond, honey, and cardomom-scented yogurt parfait and followed up with a strawberry, mint, sorrel, and chipotle salsa. You read that right: strawberry and chipotle. One of Guy's reputedly many contacts in the food biz dropped off a special sealed packet of home-dried and home-smoked chipotles and Guy dared Owen to incorporate a bit of their smokey hotness into a strawberry dish.

That's often what cooking is all about -- the dares and the chances and the experimentations. In this case, the experiment was a ripping success and Owen produced a completely delicious salsa that wasn't for the faint of palate. Thanks to my father-in-law's patented Lucianovic's Powdered Fire, my palate has become quite strong over the years and was able to handle the salsa without a yogurt coolant.

The Strawberry-Chipotle Salsa isn't a salsa one would scoop up with chips, it's one that should be dolloped over grilled meats or fish. As soon as I get Owen's okay, I'll post the recipe but for now, drool over this.

Strawberry Chipotle Salsa

It was great meeting the other writers, and I loved hearing Owen read excerpts by writers from South Africa, England, and Singapore. I can't wait to read the piece about fried wine. Seriously, it's got Champagne and crispy foodstuffs -- how can any of that be wrong?

Anyway, tomorrow is the second part of the launch at the Lafayette Bookstore where I fully plan to extol the virtues of homemade vinaigrette in such a way that hopefully no one within listening (or reading) distance will buy that bottled crap ever again. Check back tomorrow for an update on that.

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