Comments by joanmenefee

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All bergamot considered by joanmenefee on Feb 7, 2014 at 10:47 AM PST

Sorry I missed this, Ken. I have heard of it, but I have not read it. It’s a wonderful concept in that it moves more cooking judgment (and therefore power) onto the cook (and away from the recipe writer or other). I am a fan of empowering cooks.

The rural food desert by joanmenefee on Aug 22, 2013 at 11:32 AM PDT

Interesting post, Caroline. Here is more analysis of the issue:

Science-based cooking by joanmenefee on Aug 5, 2013 at 7:58 AM PDT

I have to admit, Krista, evolution doesn’t scare me; it makes me feel less alone on the planet; humans are going through the same processes as all other organisms--sentient and insentient, animate and inanimate-- around us. That connection is much of what makes the world beautiful to me.

Yes, Scott. It also makes sense for all of us who cook and eat to see ourselves as data collectors for the common good. Scientific knowledge is produced as an adjunct to everyday life knowledge. Merging the two ways of thinking and data collection mechanisms could be exciting, I think.

Recipe etiquette by joanmenefee on Apr 23, 2013 at 4:06 PM PDT

Sorry I didn’t see this follow-on anonymous. I am afraid your question goes beyond my experience, because I do not write recipes. However, other Culinate regulars surely can offer advice. Intellectual property is in freefall right now. I don’t know how you can protect your original recipes if you are interested in developing an audience online. If you feel you co-own the recipes with the rest of your family, then my opinion is that you have to respect their wishes. But again that’s just a personal opinion. My understanding has long been that if you share any information on-line, you understand you are freeing it to be copied and distributed infinitely. Others’ opinions?

Can you cook a food you dislike? by joanmenefee on Apr 9, 2013 at 1:20 PM PDT

Thanks, Tara. I still have never cooked squid. I found another egg reference in my on-line travels today. Check out #64:

Cooking and connecting by joanmenefee on Mar 1, 2013 at 12:38 PM PST

I love the phrase “no can chicken noodle.” I was saying it instead of “no can do” yesterday. The Gardeners Gala would be particularly for a group of people working side by side in a community garden. After all, they have to be eyeing up each other’s produce sometimes.

The end of potluck? by joanmenefee on Jan 14, 2013 at 1:14 PM PST

I love the ingredient ID thought and also think it would be great to standardize such cards, with boxes that can be checked of commonly problematic ingredients. This would be a fun DIY project. But, as you point out, having to talk about the food one is proffering can be anxiety-producing for the less confident among us. That’s why the cards are a less intimidating option that would probably be easy to make part of potluck culture.

I am glad to hear people love potluck as much as I do. It’s like a pop-up food museum.

Apple of my eye by joanmenefee on Nov 26, 2012 at 10:44 AM PST

An heirloom Red Delicious sounds intriguing. Devin tells me that soil and weather conditions can also influence the flavor of a variety dramatically. I had some Pink Ladies that I disliked on a trip home a couple of years ago that puzzled me since until then I had considered them foolproof. He’s planning on planting Redfield and Liberty this spring. I think maybe FedCo had Spencers, but I have to admit that I am experiencing nursery catalog vertigo right now.

Recipe etiquette by joanmenefee on Oct 5, 2012 at 7:20 PM PDT

I forgot that Nigel Slater’s Toast features dramatic recipe withholding-- Slater competes with his step-mother for his father’s heart.:

Recipe etiquette by joanmenefee on Oct 5, 2012 at 10:30 AM PDT

What an interesting bunch of analyses and observations. I had known yet not really appreciated how dishes preserve relationships and memories; so many of your stories get at that truth. I do want to make sure that we keep sight of the big picture. Judgments of an individual cook’s choice aside, we cannot deny the complex ways in which a cook’s capacity to wow a group with her kitchen skills dove-tails with her social identity in general. Secure or insecure, nice or not-so-nice; skilled, unskilled, or deskilled, we all are constantly being read by others when we present food. If we are to preserve some sense of harmony and kindness--of sisterhood, brotherhood, and family-- we need to explore our divisive impulses.

As I have said before, cooking doesn’t necessarily contribute positively to our existence, but I think it can and should. Culinate is doing wonderful work to promote my ideal cooking world.

Recipe etiquette by joanmenefee on Oct 1, 2012 at 10:39 AM PDT

Of course, Amanda! Recipe giving emotions and actions depend on context. We learn about our relationships through unusual stresses on them. (It’s kind of like figuring out who you feel comfortable asking for a ride to the airport.) This means that we sometimes cook for people we dislike. Also interesting.

I am now wondering what I would do if someone I disliked asked me for a recipe. I might also demure. Or what if my boss did (can’t imagine that but. . . )?
Cooking and Power, 101.

Thoreau and compost cookies by joanmenefee on Mar 22, 2012 at 2:47 PM PDT

The coffee did add some texture. The cookies grew on me a bit. But I was a little disappointed with the chips. I guess I expected more salt. (This reminds me: I put peanut butter and maple syrup on vanilla ice cream last night and it was fantastic.) Anyway, I agree that I like a wide margin between my virtuous snacks and my naughty snacks. If you are into naughty snacks, you should give the compost cookie a whirl.

Do-over fever by joanmenefee on Feb 28, 2012 at 8:59 AM PST

I surely did caleb bo baleb. I am sure there was a little jelly essence condensing on my window panes. I am glad I am not the only one who has experienced jelly “do over” mode. Home-made grape jelly really is eye-popping, though-- totally worth it.

Holiday buzz by joanmenefee on Feb 7, 2012 at 2:49 AM PST

@drfugawe, We used to call ourselves “Deli Dogs” and “Kitchen Cats.” And fighting like the proverbial cats and dogs was precisely what we did at times. In part, that was because most people who worked the counter were college students and those who worked the line were not. There must be a way of making more of what we learn about class and experience during those early jobs.

Foodstuffs and stuffed foods by joanmenefee on Dec 8, 2011 at 7:59 PM PST

Gourmet went on a trompe l’oeil rampage too:

Deer tales by joanmenefee on Dec 5, 2011 at 2:22 PM PST

I have been eating venison for about twelve years now and though I struggled initially to find recipes for the meat (because I was unaccustomed to preparing meat in general), I am now a great fan. My favorite is still pan fried quickly on top of a green salad and roasted french-fry cut potatoes, a recipe I first encountered in Belgium.

Thanks for reading!

Potato salads by joanmenefee on Sep 28, 2011 at 3:43 PM PDT

Sadly, I am a chronic undercooker. It’s a joke in our household: “If Joan says the potatoes are done, wait ten more minutes.”

Urban peasantry by joanmenefee on Jul 22, 2011 at 10:40 AM PDT

You’re hitting the nail on the head, as I believe you already know. Please keep hammering. From your friend who lives near farms (and farmers!) and also struggles with the “feed the bulldog/do things the right way” conundrum.

Almost meatless by joanmenefee on Jun 21, 2011 at 2:02 PM PDT

_Eating Animals_ made a big impact on me as well. Though I am still eating venison, wild caught local fish and locally raised bison and chicken, I continue to tip the balance toward vegetarianism (I have to admit I am too mentally lazy to touch veganism, so far...). I have had the discussion about the morality of eating non-human animals with myself so many times, I have to chuckle every time I wonder about it. Yes, we have canines; yes, we need protein; those facts suggest meat eating is defensible. Nonetheless, the energy and imagination devoted to creating healthy vegetarian meals is admirable. And people who actually think about where their food comes from are vital to the more sustainable world so many of us pine for. So I support you fully in your work (because it is work) and when I hear people defending some form of the status quo, I can’t help but feel they are reacting to feeling threatened or judged by vegetarians. I know that I have felt that way in the past. Good luck in your quest.

Shore lunch by joanmenefee on May 27, 2011 at 1:57 PM PDT

I like the phrase “wild kitchen.” I did not find any morels this year, but did get some fiddleheads. The nettles were there, but I sort of ignored them, for reasons I can’t explain.

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