Archive for August, 2010

Breakfast Relearned

Posted in Uncategorized on August 31, 2010 by aliaalafaireet

Chai french toast and vegan chick pea breakfast sausage

Beat one egg, and add a little milk if you’ve got some. Add cinnamon, sugar, and a smashed cardamom pod. Let a piece of bread soak in the mixture on both sides.

Take cooked chick peas and smash in a bowl. Cook them in a skillet with some chopped garlic, sage, and salt.

After cooking the chick peas and putting them on your plate, put the soaked bread in the skillet and cook for a few minutes on both sides.

Dizzle the french toast with honey.


Zuchinni sandwich inspired by trendy new yorkers

Posted in Uncategorized on August 26, 2010 by aliaalafaireet

Like some people might read a fashion magazine be be compelled to buy jeggings, I like to read the NYT dining section each Wednesday and look for wacky food trends. Lately I have noticed a lot of articles about the use of various asian barbeque methods being incorporated in American dishes. These creations are often coveted by the hipest of hip on both coasts. Like this article I read in late July, for example, about Korean barbeque taco truck sweeping the nation! They apparently missed the Mid-West. Last week I wandered around Chong’s oriental market on 7th street for an hour while it  rained outside. I bought a bottle of oyster sauce and a jar of garlic chili sauce. I sat them on the top of my bookshelf, my “pantry” for the time being. They sat there, gleaming with newness, beguiling me with there charms everytime I walked by and that was all I needed from them, like jeggings in the back of one’s closet. That was until I got stuck inside the Root Cellar due to yet another rainstorm. There was a lot of what we call “subprime” produce. I went home with quite the booty of summer fruits and vegetables. I mixed some of the chili garlic sauce with two more cloves of garlic I roasted in the oven, honey, and soy sauce. I halfed two zuchinni and cut them into thick slices and marinated them with my new, completely inauthentic concoction. I fried cooked the zuchinni steaks in a skillet over medium heat. Then my friend Noah came over. We made sandwiches. The zuchinni, sliced bell peppers and tomatoes, greens, mint and pepper jack cheese on toasted ciabatta. Yum.

White wine with grapefruit syrup

Posted in Uncategorized on August 26, 2010 by aliaalafaireet

When I stayed in Lyon my french family and I would often drink rose pamplemousse, or rose with a small amout of grapefruit syrup. It was apparently all the rage among the young, hip, and French. The other night, a hot night after a very long day at work, I decided to make some. I couldn’t find any rose because the great wine shop that is within walking distance of my house was closed. I couldn’t wait, I’d already invited my friend Danny over to drink it with me and relive about our France days. I went by the brewery next to the Root Cellar and bought a bottle of sauvingnon blanc. At home mixed grapefruit juice with water and sugar and reduced it down to make the syrup. I let the syrup cool in a big jar and then added the bottle of wine and let the whole works chill in the fridge for an hour before Danny’s scheduled arrival. My French mom once told me to always drink out of stemmed glasses because they made every occasion and every drink, even water, feel special. But such elegance was not needed. Danny and I, and a few of my housemates served the wine out of the jar with a ladel into chiped mugs, and for the first time in a while, I felt relaxed.

Magical fruit

Posted in Uncategorized on August 6, 2010 by aliaalafaireet

“No one had noticed him at the table until the first bunch of bananas had been eaten. Aureliano Segundo had come across him by chance as he protested in broken Spanish because there were no rooms at the Hotel Jacob, and as he frequently did with strangers, he took him home. He was in the captive-balloon business, which had taken him halfway around the world with excellent profits, but he had not succeeded in taking anyone up in Macondo because they considered that invention backward after having seen and tried the gypsies’ flying carpets. He was leaving, therefore, on the next train. When they brought to the table the tiger-striped bunch of bananas that they were accostumed to hang in the dining room during lunch, he picked the first fruit without great enthusiasm. But he kept on eating as he spoke, tasting, chewing, more with the distraction of a wise man than with the delight of a good eater, and when he finished the first bunch he asked them to bring him another. Then he took a small case with optical instruments out of the toolbox that he always carried with him. With the suspicious attention of a diamond merchant he examined the banana meticulously, dissecting it with a special scalpel, weighing the pieces on a pharmacist’s scale, and calculating it’s breadth with a gunsmith’s calipers. Then he took a series of instruments out of the chest with which he measured the temperature, the level of humidity in the atmoshpere, and the intensity of the light. It was such and intriguing ceremony that no one could eat in peace as everybody waited for Mr. Hebert to pass the final and revealing judgement, but he did not say anything that allowed anyone to guess his intentions.”

-From One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia-Marquez

One Hundred Years of Solitude is a wonderful novel that is mostly about a family but partly about the establishment of banana companies destroying parts of Latin America. Knowing this information, I often wonder if a person living in Missouri, like myself, should be eating bananas ever. Especially when I consider that everyone in this state everyone can recognize a banana, a very exotic thing, and probably on ly 20% if that can recognize a pawpaw which is a native fruit. When I read this section of Marquez’s book I think about this Mr. Herbert seeing the magic of this tiger-striped banana and trying to measure and calculate that magic for the purposes of business. Now that bananas are everywhere, have you ever seen such a magical fruit?

"People not Profits"


Posted in Uncategorized on August 5, 2010 by aliaalafaireet

I learned how to make crics with my french mother, Babette. “Cric” probably doesn’t sound particularly French, and that is probably because a cric is something completely Lyonnais. Basically they are fried potato cakes, but on an other level, and in my opinion, they are one of the most comforting things in the world to eat. To make a batch of crics peel and grate 4-5 medium sized old potatoes. Babette stressed to me, and then later to my french professor who came over for dinner one night, the importance of using old, even a little squishy, potatoes. I am sure there is some chemical, scientific reason for this, but all I know is I am lucky to work in an organic produce shop where I can take all the gosh darn squishy potatoes I like. After you grate the potatoes squeeze all the liquid you possible can out, trust me, water and hot oil are not best friends. Then grate in 3-4 large cloves of garlic. Mix in one large egg, salt and pepper. Heat about 3/4 inch of vegetable oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Use the spatula to form you crics, just pile on some of the potato mixture and squish it to the spatula with your hand. To place the cric in the oil, gently push it off the spatula into the pan. Let the crics cook for 4 minutes on each side.