My Dinner With Zal
Did I ever tell you about my day with the late Zal Yanofsky, former lead guitarist for the Lovin’ Spoonful? Decades ago, long before I was the upright citizen you see today, I was a struggling young illustrator/designer, living in an empty apartment in … Continue reading
Mayo on a Burger?
Let me say – right up front – that I’m against it. On principle. “What Principle?” you ask. The same one that tells a Chicagoan that it’s just wrong to put ketchup on a hot dog, but sport peppers, bright green relish, and celery salt are de … Continue reading
St. Even’s Challenge
As night closes in around our virtual campfire, let us hearken again to the days of yesteryear, when giants strode the earth and men were men — even if they looked like women. Long, long ago, in a tiny hippie-infested hamlet ninety miles north … Continue reading
Roquefort cheese has been made in the caves of Combalou, Roquefort-sur-Soulzon, at least since Gaul was occupied by the Romans — Pliny the Elder spoke highly of it, and – while he liked his food —he was not the sort who normally gushed gourmet … Continue reading
How to Decide?
Many years ago, I began writing a book about herbs, The Herbalist in the Kitchen and one of my first tasks was to define them, to distinguish between herbs and spices. That turned out to be difficult, as culinary differences tend to … Continue reading
Not Really A Book Review
Several people have suggested that I should consider reviewing my book — Sausage: A Global History — under pseudonym. There is, after all, a long history of authors surreptitiously writing reviews of their own books (“long” and “history” usually have the word “noble” stuck between them, but … Continue reading
Moors and Christians: Comfort Food for an Uncomfortable Season
When winter makes the outside world a brittle and unfriendly place, we prefer to stay in the house — ideally beside a fireplace or in the congenial glow of a wood-stove, the air filled with the aroma of slowly cooking foods. Nothing comforts us like … Continue reading
A Vegetarian Unmade
Back in the late Sixties, I was, for a time, a vegetarian. Today, we might call it Politically Correct or Globally Responsible — but back then it was just the thing to do. A craving for meat was regarded as a sign of spiritual underdevelopment. A craving for red meat indicated something approaching depravity.