Friday, June 15, 2007

Friends and Food

Spur of the moment invite to have dinner at the Remys and EVH on Sunday. Awesome time, as always. They've reconfigured the family room with the addition of a love-seat and a big, comfy chair. And yet, they still have tons of room. Makes me wonder about how efficiently I'm using my space (not very).

John has a summer project to work through Le Cordon Bleu at Home, a book which is supposed to teach classical French cooking technique to the home cook. Well, we had a lovely roast chicken, cooling cucumber salad, and a yummy fruit salad for desert. Success! We spent time chatting about food topics, with Jana staking out the "eat local" ground (despite STILL having not read Michael Pollan's The Omnivore's Dilemma. I express my indignation that she hasn't read it, and the conversation naturally flows to my long-ago promise to lend them my copy of Pollan's Botany of Desire: A Plant's-Eye View of the World Didn't they actually have it in their possession when they relayed it back to me from SL?! I'll have bring it back to them, I guess. And what a shocker, someone brings up Jared Diamonds's Guns, Germs, and Steel. That someone might have been me.

John is staking out the position that there are other things which need to be taken into account other than how local a food is. Like general environmental impact, immediate cost at the register, safety, etc.

I manage to discuss grass-fed vs. organic dairy without ranting about feeding grain to animals. Without ranting much about it, anyway.

Reminds me that this article has intrigued me:
The Red Label Bird with Gold Medal Flavor

I thought of it during Jana's discussion of a search for local producers, but what I like to think of as local, artisanal producers. Like Winchester Cheese, for example. I don't think we have access to artisanal poultry, though. Well, I do have access to eggs in La Habra, but I'm talking meat.


  1. It's always good to have you in our home. :)

    I'm already having second thoughts about the course. We're not big meat eaters, and to us, the meals seem to consist of little satellite appetizers and salads revolving about a Jovian meat dish. I also prefer the complex flavors with simple preparation we've encountered in other recipes. I like what you said about using the book to learn techniques, though.

    This is all new territory to me, to actually think about where the food comes from and to take the time to savor it.

  2. That doesn't differ too much from a veggie-oriented meal. You have a protein dish and satellite dishes. Maybe when you're doing veggie, you have two protein dishes, but that's not mandatory.

    And you can size your chicken (for example) to your meat consumption as a family, emphasizing the side dishes more. Now if you're saying the sides aren't a balanced vegetable serving, that's a different argument...