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  • Liz Crain Nov 22 2:47 PM - Comment
    commented on Fun factor.

    Thank you so very much Trista! You’re so sweet! We’re on the East Coast right now for book tour and we’re having so much fun! Pickled beets have been plattered up at every event along with all sorts of other tasty Toro treats. So fun! I hope you enjoy cooking from the book! I highly recommend the bacon sherry cream Brussels for Thanksgiving. Yum!

  • Liz Crain Nov 15 2:59 PM - Comment
    Fun factor
  • Liz Crain Jan 11 1:54 PM - Comment
    commented on Jacques Pépin.

    I’m so happy that you interviewed Mr. Pepin! I love him so much and I’m really looking forward to getting his new book. I like what he said about someone else’s recipe becoming your own after you cook it a few times and make adjustments. Great interview!

  • Liz Crain Oct 5 10:19 AM - Comment
    is now friends with
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  • Liz Crain May 24 8:27 PM - Comment
    commented on The modern hunter-gatherer.

    Thanks for the wonderful review Linda! I’ve wondered about this one but have yet to pick it up.

  • Liz Crain Oct 29 10:28 AM - Comment
    is now friends with
  • Liz Crain Oct 12 9:29 AM - Comment
    A GMO primer
  • Liz Crain Oct 6 12:07 PM - Comment
    commented on Is real cooking a lost art?.

    This sounds fantastic Linda! I’m hoping I can make it over to Powell’s today to get a copy. Thanks for the great review.

  • Liz Crain Feb 14 12:29 PM - Comment
    commented on Cure your own olives.

    I just checked on my two back parking strip arbequina olive trees this morning and they look great -- planted them last summer. I can’t wait to one day get olives from them although I know it’ll be a while.

    Thanks for the two methods you described here. The last time we were in Northern California we got to eat home water cured olives that a friend made from southern CA olives and they were dreamy. Thanks Linda!

    I too would love to know your source for fresh olives or any advice on sourcing them in the Northwest...

  • Liz Crain Feb 14 11:44 AM - Comment


    This morning’s breakfast -- sliced and fried some corn tortillas, sauteed a Gartner’s weiner and scrambled both with eggs, cream, red chile flakes and topped all that with grated cheddar. On the side: smoky salsa. Tex-me top o’ the morning.

  • Liz Crain Dec 20 4:06 PM - Comment

    Cheese breads

    This is an old family hors d’oeuvre that I always make for the holidays. Party rye topped with a blend of grated parmesan, mozzerella, mayonnaise and grated onion. Put them under the broiler for two minutes and they’re nicely browned and bubbly and ready to eat. Yum.

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Blogged about my homemade hard cider

From LizCrain — Blog by
March 25, 2009

Just want to let the hard cider drinking Culinate crew know that I just posted about this November’s home hard cidery at my house on my blog Food Lover's Guide to Portland.

I wrote about the sourcing, grinding, pressing and initial ferment of the cider. The post got too long with all the photos to cover the bottling, ageing and, finally, the tasting!! All I have to say is we’ll definitely be making our own again next fall. Well worth all the time and effort.

Stephen McCarthy writes a New York Times blog post

From LizCrain — Blog by
March 2, 2009

One of my book blog readers in Pennsylania alerted me to this recent blog post for the New York Time's by Portland's Stephen McCarthy. I think Culinate readers who enjoyed my interview with McCarthy would doubly enjoy his piece...

Please check out!

From LizCrain — Blog by
February 9, 2009

My site -- partly devoted to my spring 2010 Sasquatch Books title Food Lover’s Guide to Portland -- just went live. There are still a lot of placeholders in terms of images but the content won’t change too much. Well, the blog will just get bigger and bigger...

I’d love any feedback on it -- I’m most interested in the parts and content that you don’t like.

Thanks everyone!

25 Randoms

From LizCrain — Blog by
February 6, 2009

Thanks to Ivy Manning I just spent more than an hour working on this list of 25 random things about me and food and drink. Somehow I convinced myself that this was work and so it was ok to take time-out at the end of a busy Friday.

I had a really good time WORKING on it and was inspired by all of the touching and funny bits and pieces in hers.

Without further ado...

Random Food:

  1. When I was 3 years old I finished off half a bottle of Flintstones vitamins. When my mom found me sprawled out under the kitchen table burping quietly with a blissed out smile on my face, and my tiny fist around the empty bottle, she called poison control.
  2. I own two Ice-o-Matics. One is Pepto pink and the other fire engine red. I usually only use them when friends’ kids come over but I think they are two of my sexiest kitchen gadgets.
  3. The year my brussels sprouts plants grew taller than me I hugged them repeatedly.
  4. A few years ago I made cheese soda. I gagged and almost threw up after trying said cheese soda.
  5. I once spent an entire day working at home on a French Laundry recipe. I cried at one point. And then I was very happy.
  6. I started drinking coffee at the age of 6. I have always liked the smell and taste of it.
  7. When I was little and on family vacations my diaries generally contained lists and accounts of the foods I tried.
  8. I always have a little or a lot of home fermented kim-chi or sauerkraut in a crock or in the fridge. I always have a lot of homemade pickles in the fridge.
  9. My brother’s nickname is pickle because when he was 5 years old he hid pickles all over the house -- under rugs, cushions -- when my mom was in labor with me. He was scared that no one would feed him after I arrived. They didn’t discover the pickles until several days later when the house began to stink.
  10. I stabbed said brother in the hand with a steak knife when I was in 3rd grade. I still think he deserved it.
  11. Since college I have made potstickers several times a year. Sometimes I hide a king cake baby in one and whoever bites into it is due a very fortunate year according to me.
  12. Hidden foods are my favorite: from potstickers, samosas, empanadas, hom bau, beggar’s pockets, and croquetas, to poppers, corn dogs and stuffed olives. Anyway you stuff it or wrap it.
    Please refrain from lewd joke.
  13. One summer when I was in college my friend Rachel and I ran a restaurant for a week on San Juan Island. We also baked sweet and savory foods for and ran the restaurant’s booth at the local farmers market. I think we might have slept a couple times.
  14. When I was 24 years old I listened to Jean Michel Cousteau talk about drinking ancient Greek wine recovered from a wreck dive with his dad. After his story I ate dinner with him and others at a picnic table on Catalina Island.
  15. I have a habit of leaving cups and glasses precariously close to the edges of tables and counters. My boyfriend often shadows me and moves them to a safer spot.
  16. I think sweet potatoes and yams taste like baby food no matter how they’re prepared.
  17. My grandma used to make Wolfe eggs for holiday breakfasts based on a dish that the detective Nero Wolfe ate in the Rex Stout mystery series. Stout described the eggs in a few passages and then my grandma composed the recipe based on those descriptions. I have never made them but hope to one day.
  18. I usually have a tea jar in the refrigerator that I keep used tea leaves in to re-steep.
  19. The name pu’erh is funny to me every time I say it or hear it. I don’t laugh when I drink it though because I love it.
  20. My cat used to arrange dried beans into shapes under our bed. She would grab a bag out of the cupboard when she thought we weren’t looking and carry it under the bed. Then she’d wrest it open and usually arrange the beans in a square or rectangle. I’m not lying. I am very sad that she no longer does this. I am not lying about that either. Said cat is lounging in the above photo. In addition to counting beans she also likes to sit on seed trays.
  21. Hot cock (aka Sriracha) is my most used house condiment, just in front of homemade mustard, salsa and store-bought mayo.
  22. I didn’t know until this fall that strawberry plants aren’t perennial. Yes, they keep growing shoots but they will produce inferior fruit each season after a couple years until you just about cry over the loss of your Hoods. I kept fertilizing mine when that started to happen because I thought it was a soil problem.
  23. My favorite sandwich is a reuben. My big white dog’s name is Rubin.
  24. I once broke into a neighbor’s house when I was four and stole cookies from the cookie jar. I think they were chocolate chip but I wasn’t exactly thinking clearly.
  25. In my sleep people have always told me that I often make the sound of chewing. I think it must be because I so often eat and drink in my dreams. Or maybe it’s because I’ve just returned from sneaking down to the fridge and polishing off the last of the spicy pickled okra.

Deceased yeast

From LizCrain — Blog by
January 10, 2009

I’m determined to make some kind of use of the yeasty sediment -- the lees -- left behind from our racked hard cider.

I just read this in Sandor Ellix Katz’s Chelsea Green title -- Wild Fermentation. It applies to wine lees but I’m pretty sure cider lees can be substituted. I don’t know why not:

“When you rack and bottle wines, you are left with yeasty sediment at the bottom of the fermenting vessel. This sediment is not pretty, so generally it is not bottled or served. But all the deceased yeast is full of B vitamins. If you’ve ever used nutritional yeast, it is essentially the same thing as this.

“Wine dregs make a rich and flavorful soup base. Try following a recipe for French onion soup, substituting wine dregs for one-quarter of the liquid. Be sure to boil it for awhile to cook off the alcohol. Inhale the fumes for an intense sensory experience!”

Well, I’d love another intense sensory experience so I just might. We do have a lot of onions in the house...

Rack it!

From LizCrain — Blog by
January 10, 2009

Today I racked off our hard cider into a clean carboy. More importantly I got to try it for the first time since the early November press. The verdict: it tastes great! I am a little surprised to be honest. I’ve talked to a fair few local cider makers professional and otherwise and most agree that a good hard cider is the result of an interesting medley of apples. We used one type AND it was a fairly sweet fresh eat heritage red. Typically hard cider is made from a majority of tannic, sour and not-so-good-to-eat-fresh apples.

But it’s good -- honestly. And I’m hoping it’ll only get better as it ages and off-gases for another 1-2 months before add a final jump of sugar (the only thing we’ve added so far has been champagne yeast just after pressing) and bottle it. Then, another 1-2 months if we are really patient.

So all the thumb twiddling adds up to a pop and fizz March/April hard cider.
An ounce of patience is worth a barrel full of brains I guess...

Dreaming of gravy boats

From LizCrain — Blog by
December 8, 2008

The thought of dealing with all the edible Thanksgiving surplus was enough to send Tyler to the Land of Nod.

They caught it!!

From LizCrain — Blog by
December 7, 2008

Another great Thanksgiving potluck. Tyler cooked the turkey outside in the oven he built a couple years ago. For now we wrap the bird in lots of foil because the flames are so close but he’s redesigning the oven for more ambient/less direct heat. I made garlic cheese grits, standard and vegan stuffing with wheat sourdough lots of local butter (oil for the vegan one) and herbs from the front yard, and cheese breads -- party rye topped with a mozzarella, parmesan, minced onion and mayonnaise spread and broiled. Others dishes on the table: broiled brussels sprouts, Tofurky and roasted carrots, green beans, salad, plum and pumpkin pies.

The next day we made two stockpots of broth -- froze one in ice trays and bagged it, and made a spicy turkey rice soup with the other. I froze a lot of the turkey too. Way too much food as usual. I think I’m going to make mole and turkey enchiladas in a couple weeks. Thanksgiving keeps on giving.

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Liz Crain’s Content


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First Person

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The Culinate Interview

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The vegetarian-cooking pioneer


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