Morning. Sleep with scattered images of pigs running through flooded woodlands on the end of a vast sea reclaiming what always belonged to it and it alone. Woke up and walked out before coffee to see what the sky had brought us. Water on all sides, but a slight rise of earth and grass has … Continue reading Remembering Harvey / Chapter Three / One Hundred Years Of The Same Morning.
Storm coming. Storms having come. We made the decision not to leave the house, not to pull out on the highway in my 2003 Chevrolet Cavalier loaded with ourselves and the cats. I strapped myself to the iron fence like Ahab lashed to the great whale. Catastrophe in the air. What would the night bring? … Continue reading Remembering Harvey / Chapter Two / Pulled Pork And Gin.
Recently gave a talk about Houston to a group in Stockholm featuring the build-up to and experience of Hurricane Harvey. Returning to almost two years ago and stitching together what happened between the evening of Friday, August 25 and Saturday, August 26 offered a view of what in means to hail from H-Town. Begin the … Continue reading Remembering Harvey / Chapter One.
Five hours roasting at 150 Celsius or about 300 Fahrenheit and Maillard Reactions abound as lamb bone, flesh and skin browns, fat melts and a wondrous dark, umami aroma fills the kitchen and house. Carbohydrate molecules and amino acids change and change in dry heat as colors and taste merge. Fat molecules with the aid … Continue reading Roasted Spring Lamb And Veg With Several Calls To The Suicide Prevention Hotline.
Hours from now I’ll look at my aisle window and believe it’s Venice instead of Stockholm, eighteen-hundred and forty-six instead of two thousand and nineteen, and I’m navigating channels on a gondola in the “City of Water” on my way to a ball in ‘Going to the Ball (San Martino)’. Also, my name is Joseph … Continue reading Traveling Through Winter Dark and Light With Samuel Beckett And Assorted Food Options.
Cooking Houston has been a way of life for me the past thirty years, and now that I’m moving overseas I think it’s a good time to reflect over the next few posts on my kitchen, ingredients and loved ones. First loved ones. The hearth and all its cooking utensils exist to feed the family, … Continue reading Cooking Houston
Pedro Páramo and I walk into Gallo Pelón in downtown Raleigh. He insists that to read his pages I need to drink in earth and water of Oaxaca, and I need to do it now before I let my eyes fall on his first page, his first words. We tell the hostess we’re serious about drinking mezcal, … Continue reading Drinking Mezcal With Pedro Páramo.
Houston like any city from Ur to Rome to Hong Kong tells its story through food and those who bring food traditions from around the world to their neighborhood. A Brief History of Houston Barbecue offers such a tale, one where I stir a barbecue sauce in my Houston Heights home and wonder, whose sauce … Continue reading More Alchemy And Travels Through Space And Time With Barbecue Sauce.
White to rose to crimson this cow tongue’s muscle, fat, cartilage, and bone draws our attention more as anatomy than food, but food it is . . . simmer for hours, smoke for hours, roast, sautée, stew. Why paint such a raw scene? Gustave Caillebotte’s Calf’s Head and Ox Tongue (1882) exemplifies an everyday reality … Continue reading Transforming Tongue: The Alchemy of Cooking (“True Detective” Style).
A compelling view of hunger from Osage, Iowa to Houston, Texas to the Bronx, New York. http://www.nationalgeographic.com/foodfeatures/hunger/ This is also a good place for a book recommendation: The Stop: How the Fight for Good Food Transformed a Community and Inspired a Movement by Nick Saul and Andrea Curtis. A small food bank in Toronto, Canada … Continue reading Hunger In America