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Monday, Jan 13, 2014
I have a New Year's confession to make. I did not burn, scorch, mangle, or ruin. My sin was much worse. I threw out perfectly good food.

In the many food blogs that appear to be overtaking the internet, one never sees a mistake.


Nobody, it seems, in their perfectly appointed kitchens, has ever charred a chicken, torched a tomato, or just plain ruined a recipe. Nosiree, everything out there in internetland is gorgeous, parsley-flecked, and perfectly ready to eat.


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Wednesday, Jan 8, 2014
In the early hours of Tuesday morning, December 3rd, chef Judy Rodgers died of cancer. She was 57 years old.

Rodgers was famed both for her restaurant, San Francisco’s beloved Zuni Cafe, and the award-winning cookbook she wrote in 2002, The Zuni Cafe Cookbook.


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Thursday, Dec 12, 2013
“Why don’t you cook at home? That’s my crusade.”

Chef David Tanis, author of the widely beloved cookbooks Heart of the Artichoke and A Platter of Figs met with PopMatters to discuss his third cookbook, the recently released One Good Dish. We met in Berkeley, California, next door to Chez Panisse, where he shared downstairs chef duty with Jean-Pierre Moullé for 25 years.


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Tuesday, Nov 26, 2013
Happy Accident Soup began as a Lamb Tagine: the soup was a bonus. How often do you get two wonderful things from one?

Happy Accident Soup began as a Claudia Roden recipe from The New Book of Middle Eastern Food. My market has recently begun carrying high-quality, locally sourced lamb, and I’d purchased a pound of lean cubes labeled “kebab cut”, which were a dollar cheaper than the stew cut.


Having no way of preparing kebabs—that is, no grill—I began paging through my Claudia Roden cookbooks. Food writer and Food52 blogger Amanda Hesser calls Claudia Roden one of the “Mistresses of the Mediterranean”.  Who better to consult?


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Monday, Nov 18, 2013
Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi’s food is the Middle East on a plate: clamorous, intense, each bite demanding your full attention. This is food shrieking with yogurt and lemon, garlic and tahini.

Ottolenghi: The Cookbook is actually Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi’s first cookbook, originally published in England in 2008. It’s the last to be published in the United States, after the insane popularity of 2011’s Plenty and 2012’s Jerusalem. I’ve no idea why the reverse order of the books’s appearances, only that they’ve captured the American imagination on a startling scale.


For those struggling to obtain American healthcare, or absorbed by the former Hannah Montana’s poor performance choices, meet Ottolenghi and his business partner, Tamimi.  The men have much in common: both are professional chefs, born in Jerusalem, now living in London. Both are homosexual (they bring this up as partial reason for leaving the Middle East for England, where they met). But Ottolenghi is Jewish, born of an Italian father and German/Israeli mother. Tamimi is Palestinian.


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