June 28, 2005
Great Apes For Food
This article was interesting. When I got halfway, I got disgusted at the many ways you can cook a gorilla. But it makes sense to eat bushmeat when there's so little other protein available. It amazes me to find out that it costs more to buy bushmeat than to buy regular pork or beef. This is fascinating because they don't value beef or pork like we do. They value other meats because of it's potency. It's interesting to find out that the gorilla meat can be used to cure backaches, help with pregnancy, and give men strength. All these uses hold traditional values that the African people have. I guess everyone has their preferences. Personally, I don't think I'll be eating any gorilla hands or feet anytime soon. I know that for sure.
June 26, 2005
Your Trusted Friends
Wow. I never knew that Walt Disney and Ray Kroc knew each other. I didn't even know that it was Ray Kroc that invented McDonald's. Reading this article gave me a lot of information that I never knew before. This is a good thing because it gives you insight into something that's never been known. I don't think a lot of people know about all these facts. It's interesting to see the struggles both entrepreneurs faced while building up their empires. It's also crazy to learn of their dark sides and the sacrifices they had to make. But it was good to see that at some point both partners collided, even if it didn't work out as intended. Both were very successful in the end with what they started from scratch. It gives you incentive and motivation to be that successful yourself. It's crazy how advertising for kids can grow from nothing to an empire within a couple of decades. Consumers are wanting more and more from these big name companies. Scholsser uses a great number of resources for this article. One thing I liked most, he experienced most of it himself. Instead of reading about McDonaldLand, he went there. This gives him great credibility. His sources are reliable.
June 23, 2005
It's so interesting to find out that writing about food can be a form of porn. I guess I'm so used to to fact that most of what I encounter as food writing is recipes. Hardly would I ever actually read food articles. In reading "Food Porn" I've come to realize that there's two distinctions. This can be a good thing because that way people can differentiate between what they want to read and what they need from a recipe. It's up to the reader to decide on which is best for them. To be more credible though, the reader needs to do their research. I think this way is best. I wouldn't trust the judgment of someone who knows nothing about Thai food. Research is a must!
I thought that the story on how chocolate is made and the different techniques used were great! Steve Almond did a great job in describing all the different aspects that went into creating a new candy bar. It's very interesting to find out that it takes a long time to create different flavors, mix ingredients, and all that. His writing style is good too because it helps us as the reader to relate to him and his experiences. I also enjoyed reading about Simplot. The french fry making industry is dominating. I never knew that Mc Donald's got their fries from the Simplot potato farms. And that the taste of their fries is due to the oil they use. Very interesting facts.
June 21, 2005
I thought that the reviews by Jeremy Iggers were very interesting. It was fun to see what a food critic thought of restaurants all over the Twin Cities. I eat out a lot, and for him to recommend certain places being the best, I enjoyed that. His review of the Longfellow Grill made me want to visit that sometime in the near future. I am familiar with that area, and grew up around that area-but have never dined there. One of the great things about that place from Igger's review is that the place is cheap but the food can be of quality. His review of Murray's was good too! Again, I've never been there myself-but the recommendation is something to consider. It's funny how you would never think you'd let a food critic decide where you should and shouldn't go, but somehow I guess them being the ones with the expertise, their opinion matters. What they say, pretty much sometimes goes. It's good to have someone critique the Twin Cities restaurants because you know someone's looking out for you. Ever since reading his reviews, I know I'll look forward to reading more. =)
I thought that the most interesting thing I've read in all articles is that poverty has risen 852 million within the last 10 years. To me, that's devastating because you don't realize what an impact that is on your own peace of mind. I guess everyone just goes about their own way without even knowing such facts. There's always something that needs to be done and not enough people are caring enough to want to do something about it. It's reading these kinds of articles that it hits you about what's going on beyond your own little niche. There's so much more out there that we all don't realize. We choose to see what we want and fail to see the suffering in others. I know I've never done much in my life to help that aspect in the world, but I think that it's a real eye opener. Much of what we eat we sometimes waste, and when you think about it-that last bite could have gone to feed a little kid. We take food for granted. That's sad to say, but it's true.
June 15, 2005
Farm Fresh Produce
I liked all the articles. I can relate to them all because when I was younger, my mom farmed a lot, and I helped her. I liked how the first 3 articles in the book was from each author's individual experience. This helps with their credibitlity and expertise in the subject that they're talking about. They seem to have a lot of knowledge and they're open to new possibilities. The reading online was a good one too! I like how it focuses on the fact that locally grown produce can help reduce a lot of costs that a farmer would have to pay to have their produce shipped. Plus, it saves them time and money when the produce is sold locally. I think that locally grown produce (even from your own backyard) always tastes the best. Growing up in a family where farming was a big thing, I've always had that luxury and I'm glad. I can taste the differences between both sides, and the local is always better. =)
From Jerk to Devil w/A Red Apron On
I liked both pieces a lot. They both reflect on how values can be cherished and passed on in certain cultures. I found that making jerk bbq can be time consuming. I didn't know it can take that long for ribs to be cooked! To me, that's amazing! It was cool of Cooper to take such a journey for something he's passionate about. He finally found out about the history or jerk and his trip was definitely worthwhile. I also liked how he described the scenery around him as his trip progressed. It gave me a great visual of a place I've never been to. His way of wording things helped me picture myself there with him.
Leite's piece was also a great one. I liked how he described wanting to learn his mom's recipes, but weren't able to because there wasn't any. I like how the cultural background helped him identify with the foods his mom made. It's a piece that I can relate to. In my culture, there's not a lot of measuring, it's pretty much by your own standards of what's enough and what isn't. I like how he ended it by being able to prepare a homemade meal with his mother's approval. That can be one of the greatest compliments that you can receive from your mom, being that she was the one who taught you how to cook and follow your instincts.
June 14, 2005
From "Ode to an Egg" to "Let's Be Frank"
I think that writing about food can be a very challenging thing. In Wildgen's piece, she mentions a lot about how versatile an egg can be, which amazes me. In my opinion, an egg is an egg. Her sophistication with her writing leads a person to go beyond their own imaginations on the many uses of an egg. At first the language was hard to understand, but you get the overall message that she's a avid egg lover and her love for food shines through. In Tsing Loh's piece, the language was a lot easier to understand because she relates it to average things that people do. She knows she's not perfect like her many L.A. neighbors, but she's herself and she finds nothing wrong with loving beef franks. This shows that she's comfortable with herself and her eating habits. She has a certain simplicity to her that you know you can understand. Overall, a common bond that both authors have is that they love food. I think that's one thing that our whole world have in common, good food. Now who can turn that down?!?!? =)
My Food ID
1.) My least favorite food would have to be fish. Any kind. I am not a big fish person, even though I love seafood. All kinds. I hate how you have to be careful because of all the bones and you barely get any meat. I know that fish is a good source of protein and iron, but I'll only eat it if I'm starving. My favorite food would be Pad Thai. I can eat it anytime, and my favorite place to eat it at is Ketsana's. They have the most authentic Thai food that I've tasted so far! Anything Thai goes for me! The curries and spices are awesome!
2.) My favorite place to have dinner at on a free Friday night would have to be at either Ketsana's or Saigon. Both places are good because the prices are cheap, but the food is real quality. Ketsana's has my curry and Pad Thai, whereas Saigon has my Vietnamese sandwiches and spring rolls.
3.) A food that my family loves to eat whenever we have family get together is a curry noodle soup we call, "Khoob Poob". The sauce base is coconut and curry, and you pour it over the noodles and add cilantro and basil to it. The flavors itself is unbelievable! I always stuff myself to the max whenever my family cooks it! I would say this dish is one of my top five! Another big meal that we would prepare at family events is salad. This isn't just your regular ordinary ranch dressing salad-we put only certain items in. We would just add the lettuce, eggs, green onions, salt, pepper, ground cooked pork, and as the dressing-lime juice. I know that this sounds weird, but the overall taste of this salad is great!
4.) The most unusual thing that I've ever eaten would have to be raw oysters. I am a big seafood person, but the fact that I've never had a raw oyster, nor know how to eat a raw oyster-made the whole situation weird. To start off, the fast chewing and the sound of the sand that's still within the oyster was not a good sign. Swallowing the oyster was the hardest since I wasn't able to chew the oyster to a good texture. It was slimy and it pretty much slithered down my throat. I've only ate one oyster, and I don't think there will be another try.
5.) I think that I am a pretty good cook. Whenever I encounter people who can't cook, it amazes me. For as long as I can remember, my mom has always encourgaged me to learn how to cook. It was a preparation for my so-called "future husband". In our culture, cooking is an essential part of the woman's role as wife and daughter. The funniest thing is that I can make just about any asian/Hmong dish, but when it comes to simple American food like mac'n'cheese, I haven't the faintest clue on where to start. I'm so used to always cooking at home that I would say I eat at home 90% of the time. My mom would always lecture us on eating out because what's the point when there's food at home. One of the most common meal that I make at home is stir-fry. It's a meal that I know I can make with my eyes closed. My boyfriend is amazed at how I can easily put together a stir-fry mean like it's nothing, whereas when he makes it, he sweats over it and all the ingredients he puts in.
6.) A typical weeknight dinner would be of me coming home from work and school, having my brother tell me that he's hungry so I should cook, and slaving over a hot stove for the next hour. I would usually glance in our fridge to see what's available to cook, and grad all the ingredients, and start cooking. My family hardly has the time to really eat together at the dining room table. We all would grab our portions and take off elsewhere. Either in each other's own rooms, or in front of the T.V. I would be the one to cook or if I get home late, my sister would have cooked. It's usually a tradeoff between me and her.
7.) When I was growing up, my mom did all of the cooking. Once again, cooking was a woman's job-her wifely duties, and my mom was a superb cook. My older sister would occasionally help, but other than that, my mom had that burden all to herself.
8.) Most of our food at home comes from the grocery store, or from a garden that my aunt has. My mom has her own little garden in our backyard, but the bulk of our food comes from asian grocery stores and Cub Foods. Now that the summer's here, I know that a part of that will also be from the Farmer's Market. One thing I can be sure of, there's plenty of vegetables always!