This article from Russ Parsons in the LA Times today is a perfect explanation about how to cook from your garden. I have learned that it can be really difficult to plan meals from one’s own garden in real life, as opposed to how they say it can be in books. Unless you have lots of time to plan and to put the effort into arranging your garden just so, there is not necessarily the correct amount of specific ingredients at any one time. But this passage describes how we often have to cook from our own gardens, though he is talking about what he picked up at the farmers’ market that day:
It was on mixed vegetable stews, free-form affairs based on what you have on hand and what you feel like cooking, or as Olney so much more eloquently put it, their composition “depends on the season and on whim and, insofar as they are never twice identical, one must, each time, more or less ‘feel’ one’s way through the preparation.”
I have really learned to appreciate a number of classic dishes such as rattatouille, realizing that these dishes did not originate in a brilliant insight of what would taste good together, but rather what was available to fill a hungry farmer’s stomach!
When I saw the news about the Redondo Beach fish kill, i thought, “hmmm, maybe I could collect some for some GREAT compost.
I’m NOT the only one!
yeah, you have to see this:
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I get completely surprised over and over again when I am reminded that most non-organic chicken HAS ARSENIC IN IT!!!! The poultry industry has been using derivitized arsenic, which is directly less toxic than mineral arsenic, in chicken feed for over 80 years when it was approved by the Roosevelt administration. Needless to say a few things have changed since that time:
1. We understand the toxicity of Arsenic better
2. People eat a lot more chicken than they used to
3. Concentrated feed operations mean that millions of pounds of Arsenic are released in a single site.
This is a particularly egregious example of low-level pollution that we are carrying out on a wide scale and is difficult to pinpoint precise effects, but it doesn’t take much common-sense to recognize that eating food with measurable amounts of carcinogens in them, and dumping tons of that same carcinogens into waterways is a bad idea.
I just read this amazing article in the LA Times about the discovery, importation and secret cultivation of a new mandarin/orange hybrid that is just hitting the markets in CA. You really have to read this story. It’s kind of like “the King’s Speech” that way, the movie is way better than the description: “Uh, it’s about the king of England and his speech therapist talking n’ stuff”. It’s originally known as Dekopon in Japan, but is being marketed as Sumo in the states (kind of a lame name, in my opinion). I would have been hard pressed to imagine a story in modern times with so many twists and turns and secrecy.
So I have been on the lookout for the last two weeks at the local Whole Foods, hoping we would get some, and expecting them to have a high price due to the hype. Well I was rewarded over the weekend AND it only cost $2.99/lb. I guess not everyone else is a citrus nerd like me…
Anyway, with no further ado, here is my first look at the Sumo Citrus:
Flavorwise, it really is good. It starts out with a typical tangerine flavor and then hits you immediately with classic orange flavor. It is certainly firmer than a typical tangerine, in a good way. The membrane is thin like a usual tangerine/mandarin, but the flesh is definitely firmer.
Bottom line: it’s really good, and I look forward to buying more.
Thank you David Karp for your great article!!