Who knew I’d find myself at a Time Gate Convention of dr. Who & Star Trek fans at a Holiday Inn in Atlanta? Surreal. I was there for a high school graduation…it was an accident. The elevator opened onto another world populated by unusual creatures and strange familiars.So much fun meeting characters in costume and touring the game rooms & talking to authors. I plan to watch my first episode of Dr. Who very soon.
Entering a new world….
The Way We Cook: Portraits of Home Cooks Around the World (James Oseland) is a gorgeous glossy coffee table book filled with photos of people preparing and enjoying food. You can almost hear the crackle of the crunchy fried pork chops, smell the delicious aromas of the spices used and feel the joy you see on the faces of the cooks and the people they feed. Sitting in my sunny yellow kitchen, this book is a passport to pleasure.
The same day I checked out The Way We Cook from my local library, a friend in Japan sent me a package of my favorite flavor: YUZU! Yuzu powder with sesame seed and Yuzu paste added to rice, noodle dishes or soup makes me feel beautiful inside. Yuzu is a Japanese citrus fruit. The flavor of the juice is tart and tastes like a lemon crossed with a mandarin orange. The menu at my house this week will reflect the fusion of the text and the taste of yuzu.
Most Saturday mornings I roll out of bed and walk to the nearby Farmer’s Market. I’m always happy to see bearded Ben with his large bundles of collard greens that look like huge church fans; Amanda and Marie ready with hugs and offering jars of wildflowers, crispy pink radishes, bitter braising greens and other produce they have planted and harvested on their farm; among others. I like knowing who grows my vegetables. I was inspired to make my version of Japanese pickled vegetables with my market purchases.
1 pound carrots cut in matchsticks
1/2 pound radishes cut into matchsticks (or use daikon)
3 Tablespoons sugar
1 Tablespoons of salt
5 Tablespoons of rice vinegar (or white distilled vinegar)
(optional: dash of sesame oil and two dashes of sansho)
2 cups warm water (Make sure there is enough liquid to cover the vegetables)
Dissolve sugar and salt in warm water. Let cool. Add vinegar and optional ingredients. Place vegetables in a jar. Pour liquid over vegetables. Store pickles in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. Left overnight the flavors will marry. Serve alone, add to a green salad or a sandwich. A friend recommended this quick spicy pickle: Thinly slice a seedless cucumber and place into a plastic bag. Add rice vinegar, sugar, salt, rice vinegar and red pepper flakes and water. Close the bag and squeeze gently for a few seconds. Let chill for about 30 minutes in the refrigerator.
The Reading Room will host a Book Swap on Saturday, May 11 from 4 to 9 pm. The private nature of reading will be turned over to become public in this participatory event designed to encourage conversation about reading. Swap out your discards for something new while enjoying cocktails and micro readings every hour on the hour by local literati. Shay Youngblood micro reading at 5pm. The Reading Room is located at 3715 Parry Avenue in Dallas, TX. For further information: Karen Weiner 214 952 4109 www.thereadingroom-dallas.blogspot.com