persian persuasion

The one interesting thing about moving around so much is the spectrum of people you meet. It’s not like we meet the same lot of people over and over again. For instance, in Nashville folk were uber friendly, Chicago people were a little scruffier but nice once you got to know them – like they were trying to act like New Yorkers but deep down they couldn’t fight the urge to be the sweet people they are – and South Florida? Um?…it is very international… and mostly on the elderly end.

Working retail, especially in a “high-end” grocer (loosely quoted), there’s the weirdos who come in for their hemp bread and patchouli, but aside from that, people from different cultures. I’ve gotten to know a wonderful Persian woman, who happens to be vegetarian and a master cook. Perfect that she works at a grocery store that more or less caters to alternative diets, she shops for her vegetables and vegan cheese, which she says is really good.

She has owned her own Persian restaurant, written a cookbook and now… makes food for me. How did I get so lucky?

I went to her house for lunch and left not only tipsy from her wine, but so tummy happy from her food I could’ve floated home.

Samosas, spinach-stuffed filo, saffron rice, tabouli (or tabbouleh)…. she is brilliant.



And for dessert? Not only fresh fruit but rosewater ice cream with pistachios. Perfection.

…of course, she brings me her nothing less than fabulous hummus and falafel paste and tells me how to make the falafel. “Little bit of oil in the pan, roll it up like a golf ball and poke your finger through the middle.” Done.

The woman is exquisite!

..enjoy your Persian meals!

C

 

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viva la revolution!

I first saw Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution show when my mom was visiting in April. Β It’s grown and gotten all kinds of hype but somehow I’m always a day late with most things…

So, I knew he was doing something like that in the UK a couple years ago… I recall watching something on BBC or Food Network… pushing English ladies around in their own school kitchens and throwing away all the gar-bahge. Pretty entertaining but also enlightening. Seriously. Why do we let children eat crap at school!?! I guess because some parents let the children eat crap 24/7. I wish I would’ve gotten “gourmet” lunch at school! Damn! Are these people who resist the change insane!?
But! Jamie Oliver is onto something and I want to be apart of it. Why should school cafeteria’s be a convenience haven of fried, processed food… let it be a sanctuary of healthy, fresh meals. πŸ˜‰

Join me!

Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution

To follow Jamie on twitter and get FR updates, click HERE.

extra! extra!

Alright the web chat was so great… EXCEPT.. somehow the forces of nature and God decided that I wasn’t worthy of sitting in on the chat in its entirety and the internet connection was sabotaged. It was cloudy yesterday so I’m going with that.
Anyhow.. Aida Mollenkamp was so knowledgeable and sweet and answered 3 of my questions – which not to put anybody down who participated – but I thought were really great questions! Too bad that’s all I could get in…. ugh.

You can view the whole chat by clicking HERE: (password: California)

To read my short report about the contest and Aida, click HERE.

Thanks for reading! (35 of you thought I was read-worthy yesterday, for me, that’s incredible! haha. Thank you!)

enjoy your meals…
C

hold onto your pants…

Another recall! Good lord. Every time you turn around (slowly?) there’s another recall on our food. I’m gonna put my little faux-journalist hat on and report what’s on the wire today:

The FDA announced that HVP manufactured by Basic Food Flavors has been recalled, and an estimated 10,000 products are affected by this recall (REALLY?!). Hydrolyzed vegetable protein (HVP) is a flavor enhancer commonly used in processed foods. <—RIGHT THERE. There’s the kicker. Like I mentioned in my latest examiner.com article, go local and fresh!

HVP is found in snack foods such as potato chips and pretzels. It’s also used in dry mixes for chip dips, gravy, au jus and marinades. HVP is also used in frozen foods (such as taquitos and quesadillas) and in fresh foods such as potato salad and fresh dips. In addition to these items, it is also used in many other grocery products.
The recall was issued due to possible salmonella contamination. Salmonella is one of the most common causes of bacterial food-borne illness in the United States. It can cause fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain.
(So if diarrhea, which might be bloody, doesn’t turn you off, maybe the nausea will make you think twice about purchasing any of the following products):

The following soup and dip mix products are included in the HVP recall.
Castella Chicken Soup Base
Concord Foods Vegetable Dip Seasoning – Homestyle
De la Casa Spinach Dip
Dean’s – various brands of soup/soup mix & dip/dip mix
Delicioso Spinach Dip
Follow Your Heart Beef Au Jus
Fresh Food Concepts Garden Fresh Spinach & Spinach Dip with Real Yogurt
Great Value Ranch Chip Dip
Healthwise Cream of Mushroom Soup
Homemade Gourmet Tortilla Soup Mix
Johnny’s French Dip Powdered Au Jus
Kroger Onion & Beefy Onion Soup Dip Mix
McCormick French Onion & Vegetable Dip Mix
Mrs. Gerry’s Crab Creole Spread & Old Home/Old Fashioned Spinach Dip
Oak Lake Farms French Onion Chip Dip
Publix Beef Flavored Stew Mix
Reser’s soup and dip mixes
Rojo’s Garden Fresh Spinach Dip
T. Marzetti soup and dip mixes

Bouillon products
Herbox chicken, beef & vegetable bouillon

Dressing and dressing mix products
Follow Your Heart Organic Creamy Ranch Dressing
Reser’s Ranch House Dressing
Trader Joe’s Organic Creamy Ranch Dressing & Dip

Flavoring base and seasoning products
Garden Harvest Special Blend Seasoning
Minor’s Bacon Base
Publix Meatloaf Seasoning

Gravy mix products
McCormick Onion Gravy mix
Publix Mushroom & Au Jus gravy mixes

Sauce and marinade mix products
Durkee Spaghetti & Marinade Mix
French’s Thick Spaghetti Sauce Mix
Weber Grill Creations Italian Herb Marinade Mix

The following is a list of snack and snack mix products that are included in the HVP recall.
CVS Honey Mustard Pretzel Bites
Great Nut Supply Honey Mustard Pretzels & Bar Mix
HK Anderson Honey Mustard Pretzel Bites
Tim’s Cascade Hawaiian style snacks
Herr’s Sea Salt Flavored Kettle Style Potato Chips
National Pretzel Company (various)
President’s Choice Honey Mustard Onion Pretzel Bite snack
Pringles Restaurant Cravers Cheeseburger & Family Faves Taco Night
Quaker Baked Cheddar Snack Mix
Rouses Louisiana’s Best Snack Mix
Safeway brand Honey Mustard Onion Nugget Pretzels
Spec’s Wines & Fine Foods
Sunflower Markets Honey Mustard Nugget Snack Mix

Frozen foods
Casa Solana Shredded Mini Beef Taquitos
E-Z Eats! Beef Taquitos
El Pasado Shredded Beef Mini and Beef Taquitos & Grilled Chicken Quesadillas
Giant Eagle Steak Taquitos
Jose Ole Taquitos
Posada Corn & Shredded Beef Taquitos
Tornados Ranchero Beef & Cheese

Prepared salad products
Reser’s Redskin Potato Salad
Safeway brand Redskin Potato Salad
Walmart brand Redskin Potato Salad

Ready-to-eat meal products
Follow Your Heart Ready-to-Eat Meals

Stuffing products
McCormick Corn Bread Stuffing

Be careful out there in the grocery stores and enjoy your whole foods πŸ™‚