The definition of healthy cooking is a different meaning to everyone. There are vegetarians, pescatarian, only chicken and fish, paleo and the list goes on. In this household, I’m weary of our mostly vegetables, poultry and seafood diet. A couple holidays ago, Dad placed a few smoked pork chops in front of Jacinto and me. In less than ten minutes, except for the 2 pork chops Dad quickly saved, we ate them all. The flavor was juicy, savory and different. Since then, I often think about ‘diversifying’ our protein sources.
Life pulls in various directions. And, it’s okay. We got this. I hope. The last few Saturday’s we have hosted friends and family in our apartment. Meanwhile, I apologize to my landlord about the weeds growing in the pots on the stoop (she laughed). In between hosting, traveling and new projects, my Saturday mornings are the only time to regain a few hours of extra sleep. And as Saturday morning ends, I’m often torn between a sweet or savory brunch.
I first learned of Kwanzaa after graduating from college, when a Nigerian-American friend invited me over to her family’s dinner to celebrate the occasion. Years later, I would celebrate Kwanzaa in my home and use it as an opportunity to explore cuisines from the African diaspora: Caribbean, South American and Southeast Asian while contemplating on one of the daily principles. This year, our Kwanzaa could be influenced by Senegal because of the beauty of Pierre Thiam’s cookbook, From Senegal: Modern Senegalese Recipes from the Source to the Bowl.
Do you know the difference between hard cider and apple cider beer? The public relation’s representative for Angry Orchard gently reminded me when a recipe for Angry Orchard Summer Ale Hard Cider Beer Shrimp Boil was published last summer. Oh… well that was quite an error on my behalf. But, I did notice a few friends mention how they love “…Angry Orchard’s Apple Cider Beer…” Wait… Am I the only one who mistakenly thought it’s the same product with various names or brands? According to Time Magazine, the production of American hard cider more than tripled from 2011 to 2013, from 9.4 million gallons to 32 million gallons. Which means, there could be quite a few people who are confused about the difference. If we’re part of a growing trend of increasingly purchasing hard ciders, perhaps we should learn more about it.The Angry Orchard’s public relation’s representative accepted my request to interview Ryan Burk, Angry Orchard’s Head Cider Maker. Cheers to learning about hard cider in the interview, and towards the end, get a recipe for Roast Curry Hard Cider Chicken and Cabbage.
During my mid-twenties, I stopped drinking and eating dairy products. My circle of friends declared it evil. We thought it had too much hormones and antibiotics. Furthermore, so-called health experts said dairy products were bad for people of color, because milk wasn’t consumed in Africa. It wasn’t until a trip to Europe changed my views about dairy products. After all, who can resist European cheese, yogurt and butter? The day my dietary restrictions were thrown away, was the moment I was guiltily eating fresh baked bread from a danish bakery. It was a moment when a soothing thought crossed my mind, “Please eat everything. When is the next time I will visit Europe, again?” My guilt disappeared, as I feasted on European dairy products to discover I didn’t have a milk allergy. The irony? During the summer of my European feast, I lost weight. And, I fell in love with dairy-based ice cream. Read more →