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Category Archives: Food

Old Salem farmer’s market

I don’t get out much. But spring weather and the prospect of food are pretty good motivators. One of the best farmer’s markets in this area is the Cobblestone market at Old Salem. Old Salem is the Salem half of Winston-Salem, a place with colonial roots going back to the Great Wagon Road from Pennsylvania […]

Chow mein (approximately)

As I mentioned in the previous post on Polish pierogi, if you can’t make things authentic, at least you can make things good. The fact that we don’t have either the skills or the ingredients to do exotic cuisines authentically doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t take inspiration from those cuisines and do the best we […]

Pierogi (approximately)

I have never seen a filled dumpling or a filled pastry that I didn’t like. Have you? Earlier today, I came across a list of comfort foods from every American state. What a list! Here it is. The one that kept my attention, though, was Ohio — pierogi. The only thing holding me back was […]

More about barley

Click here for high-resolution version Back in January, when I wrote a post about fried barley polenta, I was using organic pearled barley, because that’s what I had at the time. However, pearled barley (though it’s very good) is not really a whole-grain product. Hulled barley is. Today, while it was snowing outside, I did […]

Oh no. More low-end grocery stores.

I went into a Lidl store for the first time yesterday. I had no idea what it is, any more than I knew what an Aldi store is the first (and last) time I went into one. I was shocked that this is the way the grocery business is going — extremely wide aisles, not […]

Fried barley polenta

A good New Year’s resolution would be: Eat less bread, but eat more barley. They didn’t call the gladiators “barley eaters” for nothing. I think we tend to scorn barley, because it’s old fashioned and common, in favor of fad grains such as quinoa (which I detest for its taste and texture and overpriced fad-itude). […]

Improvisations on foo yung

Szechuan-style foo yung with yellow squash and store-bought pot stickers. The chickens are laying so well and I am so rich with eggs that I’ve been eating far too much egg foo yung — and, of course, running experiments. This is a post about Szechuan-style sauce. It’s also a post about MSG. First, about MSG. […]

Two-course breakfasts?

The French conceive of breakfasts in two categories — sweet and salty. I suppose we Americans do, too, though I don’t recall anyone ever asking, “Would you prefer a sweet breakfast or a salty breakfast?” Usually we choose. But this morning the cool, gray weather — and the devil — led me to do both. […]

Foo yung to the rescue

I hadn’t made egg foo yung in many years. In fact, I hadn’t even thought about it in many years. I recall that, thirty years ago before I moved to San Francisco, egg foo yung was a popular item in Chinese restaurants in the South. And yet I don’t recall ever seeing it on menus […]

Domesticated muscadines

From my years as a young’un, I have clear memories of picking strawberries by the gallon. Mama made strawberry preserves. Mama also made grape jelly, but for some reason I don’t have recollections of picking grapes wholesale for the kitchen. Wild muscadines, though, grew in lots of places at the edges of the woods, and […]