Sausage Would be Really Good in This


For years I belonged to the paradigm of not mixing fruits and vegetables. And actually, for most of my life I didn’t know that intersection even existed. I despised green salads with dried cranberries, the first instance of tasting this dangerous mingling. But it was the tiny mandarin orange that changed my mind, documented here on ES:

With the force of BS (and his pro-fruit agenda) behind me, I chose the mandarin orange and cranberry salad over mixed greens rather than the tired Romain. And I can’t lie, it was fabulous. The little bits of mandarin became a pop of flavor, letting the light vinaigrette mingle in the background with the assortment of cucumber slices and carrot shreds. Now I can’t say I’m a total convert, but once in a while I will worship to the alter of fruity salads. (Maybe I Am a Little Fruity, Feb 2008)

But that didn’t mean I actually created this combination in my own kitchen. I won’t automatically dismiss it in public, but in private, that’s something else.

And then I saw this recipe. I have no idea why I liked it. I don’t like fruit in my dinner, especially with the inclusion of cinnamon and cloves, but I went for it. Barely following the original recipe, of course.

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Never Can Say Goodbye


I don’t care that it’s 50 degrees out and windy and rainy and my body is begging my wallet to buy a winter squash for a warming soup.


I refuse.

If there are still tomatoes and eggplants and zucchinis at the farmers market, then I’m holding out for summer’s brightly colored bounty to keep me happy in the kitchen. And because of this ridiculous self-induced rule, I also over-buy, which is easy when 6 long and slender eggplants only cost $2.

What to do with that many eggplants?

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Iowa Doesn’t Have Squat on Minnesota

A week or so ago, BS shared with us the best the  Iowa State Fair has to offer.  Well, as many of the comments on BS’s post suggested, when you’re talking state fairs and you’re talking food, the Minnesota State Fair is really where it’s at.

Now I really am not one to toot Minnesota’s horn without cause.

I’m an East Coast gal (not born but bred), and I have a sufficiently obnoxious amount of regional and state pride.  I attended undergrad in Saint Paul, Minnesota and I was routinely disappointed with a lot of its food: cheese, bagels, pizza, Chinese. I was lactose tolerant then and had to school those MNers about the travesty that is Wisconsin cheddar; the closest thing to a sharp Vermont Cabot was Canadian Black Diamond cheddar.

However, Minnesota has the State Fair food superiority on lock down.


Exhibit 1

Check out the video above by Minnesota Public Radio’s Curtis Gilbert. The dude only eats MN fair food and then visits a doctor to measure the presumptively deleterious effects on his health.

At the fair Gilbert gorged himself on scotch eggs on a stick, big fat bacon on a stick, deep fried gator, deep fried twinkies and pork chops among other foodstuffs (I hope he didn’t forget the fried cheese curds!)

Surprisingly Gilbert finds that binging on the fair food, for one day, actually brings his bad cholesterol level down…Could it be that MN State Fair food is actually good for us? Well the deep fried twinkies most certainly are.

More proof after the jump…

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Boob Jobs for Chickens

The other day I was lounging on my couch watching horrible reality TV shows and they all seemed to be about breast implants!!! Like the Real Housewives of whatever city where women are obsessing about their boob jobs, and then Addicted to Beauty about MORE people addicted to plastic surgery and boob jobs, and suddenly it all just becomes too much for me to handle. I decided to turn off the tv and replace one screen with another and check my email – and what do I have in my inbox? An email about CHICKEN PLUMPING and how companies are INJECTING chickens to increase their weight! Because CLEARLY the chickens need some work done too!

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Perfect Pattypans


Hey ESers, did you miss me? I missed you!  I’m afraid I’ve been gallivanting about for about a month and I have severely neglected ES in the meantime (and cooking in general).  I’ve been back for a week, and I must admit that my brain is a bit rusty and my cooking thus far has been less than inspired.  Does that ever happen to you all after a long time away from your kitchen?

I mean I was missing my kitchen the entire time I was gone, but my cooking muses seem to have expired during my brief journey, leaving me with only enough energy to cook a few stir-fries and throw together some salads.  Ugh….  Cookers’ block.

However, lucky readers, before I left for travels, I was struck by no such affliction.  In fact, just before I left I hosted a dinner party for which I pulled out all the stops. With my favorite summer ingredient at the ready  I made my most delicious  and complex pattypan dish yet:  Chickpea and Pesto Stuffed Pattypans:

stuffed pattypan with chickpeas topped with pesto

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Paul and Yoko Break the Ice — Over Food

Yoko Ono and huzband

Press people the world over are in quite a lather about the historic reconciliation of Paul McCartney and Yoko Ono.  The two frenemies were brought to the bargaining table around (what else?) food.


Yoko and PaulMac reunited just to plug the Meat Free Mondays global campaign. Okay fine, they probably reconciled eons ago; I don’t really follow the Yoko v. Beatles feud, I just know I’m on her side. I personally have always loved the eccentric, feisty, ethereal Yoko more than John Lennon’s band members.  If she can stomach PaulMac to join him in promoting the idea of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by reducing our consumption of domesticated critters, then more power to her.

Paul and Yoko’s idea is to slowly pull the meat-eaters of the world into the land of vegetarianism by urging people to go meat-free one day a week.  The Meat Free Mondays site is chock full of recipes I need to try (as if I can follow a recipe…), food porn, and (oh yeah) information about the effect of excessive meat-eating on the environment. Like PETA, MFM also tries to lure us into vegetarianism with a list of celebs who don’t dig on flesh (Judi Dench, who knew?)

What do you think, ESers? Are you carnivores willing to give up one day of meat to save the planet from extinction? And what about you hard-line veggies? Are Paul and Yoko sell-outs for telling eaters they can just give up meat once a week instead of going the full monty? And yea or nay on Yoko’s hat?

(Pics: Frank Barratt/Getty Images via Black is the New Black and Sydney Morning Herald)

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What’s the Deal with Eggs?

Is the Verdict STILL out on eggs?
Is the Verdict STILL out on eggs?

Have you all noticed the recent trend of medical professionals/nutritional scientists overturning the findings of other medical professionals/nutritional scientists? It’s kinda driving me batty. For instance, a few years back “they” all encouraged us to drink a glass of wine a day to ward off heart disease and obesity and to increase our longevity, but now “they” say as little as a glass of wine a day can lead to certain cancers in women. Granted, neither study influenced my wine intake one way or another, but I get peeved when “they” give me such a good justification for my propensity to sip a glass of Pinot with dinner only to yank away my pro-wine-imbibing talking-point willy-nilly, without the least consideration for my feelings on the matter (or the havoc that this news might wreak on my ability to persuade my tea-totaling family members to join me in a toast).

But the wine thing isn’t the controversy I want to hash out with ESers.  My concern stems from the GREAT EGG DEBATE. And where better to discuss eggs than ES?

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