food

Food Language And Small Aggressions

I caught myself. I was doing it. It was minor, but it was exactly the kind of thing that rankled me when others did it.

He had simply said "no" when offered coffee. And I had rudely asked "Oh, you don't drink coffee?"

He launched into a defense of the simple choice not to drink coffee at that time. 

The Real Costs of Cooking

“You should spend less time on food and more time on your career”

A boss actually said this to me once. I was the bad employee who took a full hour for lunch. And didn’t just slurp a bowl of microwaved glop while reading tech listservs like some of my co-workers. I also left at the end of the working day to join friends at dinner or to go home and cook a meal rather than reading documentation until the sun went down. 

The Worst Part of Scotland Was Leaving It

 
 My travels started when I made an off-hand comment to a friend in the UK about WWOOFing in Scotland
 
“I really want to WWOOF in Scotland for some reason.”
 
For the uninitiated, WWOOF stands for “World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms” and it’s a loosely organized international directory of farms that accept volunteer labor, usually in exchange for some degree of room and board. 
 

Just Kale Me: How your Kale habit is slowly destroying your health and the world

Note: if you do not plan to read the whole post, please skip to the last section

Kale is one of those vegetables that everyone thinks is so healthy. From kale chips to kale salad, kale has become an extremely trendy vegetable. But people have embraced kale without thinking enough about the chemicals it contains and its effects on the Earth. What you don't know could kale you.

A Good Paula Deen is Hard to Find

 “I was always conflicted about being from the South” says Andrew Beck Grace at the beginning of Eating Alabama, a documentary about attempting to eat local which I watched while I was in Alabama.

The Green Land

 My last name came from Scotland. I’m not sure how the McEwens ended up in the United States. The last in the line I can trace is to an overcrowded Philadelphia tenement. They seem to have been very poor. There are rumors of a murder, a flight to South America, and then somehow they ended up in Arkansas.

The Sup Club

My friends and I got a mention in the Chicago Reader's Food Edition for our themed dinner club that we call The Sup Club. It's been a fun year of cooking with them. We've cooked foods inspired by all kinds of places and times.

Chicago Restaurant Recommendations

 Since I get regular emails on this subject, I thought I might as well create a whole post on restaurants (and a smattering of bars) in Chicago that I think are worth recommending.

The time I was happy about fungi in my bathroom

 A few months ago I had some serious fungi in my bathroom. And unlike the time it appeared, grey and speckled, in the dark dank bathroom of my old rat-trap Brooklyn apartment, I was thrilled. This time it wasn't mildew, it was oyster mushrooms. 

Home, here, there, and abroad: The best of what I ate this year

 An incomplete list of my favorites- I set the timer on 30 minutes to sift through my photos (makes me realize why I take them- Schwa, Ruxbin, Blackbird's dinner menu are absent because I didn't take any) and here is what I picked.

@home: lingonberry(frozen w/ no sugar/crap added from Erickson's Delicatessen & Fish), seaweed (Seasnax), reindeer pate (Smoking Goose Meatery), and buckwheat pancake (buckwheat from Chicago winter Greenmarket, soured in sour cream for a day, mixed with egg, cooked in butter)