09 March 2010


Carbs of Color: My dear friend Dena's mention in her great food blog about a recent post of mine made me realize that, in typical fashion, when I talked about our "non-white food diet" (i.e. whole foods and grains as much as possible, processed foods and 'white' carbs as little as possible), I alluded to the increasingly well-known health benefits, but neglected to mention the equally important personal reason was, as time went by, whenever I ate processed carbs, I would fall into a "carb coma," feeling tired and sluggish after meals. Now, even with whole grains and less processed carbs, I try to limit grains and starches at breakfast and lunch, since feeling a little sleepy after dinner is actually a good thing :-P And yes, that does mean no white potatoes, too.

Ecumenical Beans: To follow up that explanation and requests, here's another legume meal that we love: Black Bean Soup over brown rice (often called Moors and Christians in Latin America) and Braised Broccoli Rabe. The little egghead-y touch we love is the Chinese fermented black beans or sauce I add--I kinda love the idea of black beans and black beans--and it adds a nice salty/smokiness.

Soaking the dried beans overnight results in an approximately 45 minute cooking time the next day: I brown sliced turkey bacon
in hot olive oil in a hot pot; saute large-diced onions, carrots, and celery until soft; stir in diced green pepper, sliced cremini mushrooms, minced garlic, and ginger, fermented black beans or sauce, sage, and bay leaves; stir in some diced tomatoes or tomato paste and red wine; add the drained black beans and stock to cover; bring to a boil and lower to a simmer until the beans are tender; adjust the salt and pepper added at each stage. Serve with parsley and lemon wedges over brown rice.

Slice off any tough parts of broccoli rabe stems. Heat olive oil in a hot pan; add sliced garlic, ginger, and hot pepper flakes; add broccoli rabe (no need to dry from rinsing) and salt and pepper and cook until tender; squeeze some lemon and serve.

The Ultimate Food City???: Dena's post also reminded me about March's Saveur, a magazine I usually love because of the great way the focus on the food of a place and culture in each issue. But this cover story focused on L.A. as the "ultimate food city," and waxed poetic about their pizza, farmers' markets, Asian cuisines, and local food. Um, at the risk of offending you Angelenos, NOT. I admit I have a strange love-hate relationship with Lala-land, but compared to San Francisco, New York, smaller places like Portland (OR and ME) and many, many other places, there is good, innovative food, but definitely not the best and not even a place incubating new trends or tastes (unless you count 80's Wolfgang Puck pizzas as a good thing)--and how can anything be local when you have to drive thirty miles of seven-lane highways just to get to dinner?


  1. Carbs of color? I am CRACKING up.

    Also, yum yum yummy black beans.

    And BOO on Saveur. What on earth were they thinking? Or: who blew who to get them to say that?

  2. Oh ALSO -- your adorable photographic lineup of ingredients made me think of The Pioneer Woman... good footsteps in which to follow!

  3. the more i think about it, i think it reflects a certain racism, or at least an appreciation of the peculiar balkanization and stratification that is the socio-ecomnomic,cultural, and physical geography of L.A. The Bay Area and other American cities are definitely segregated, but in L.A. there are these huge monoculture enclaves (whose acreage and populations compare to a mid-size U.S. city) where a Saveur writer could "go native" in a "foreign," "exotic," upscale, retro, or hipster culture...

  4. hey, oops,for another yummy version please see dena's black beans: http://denasrecipeexchange.blogspot.com/2007/11/denas-black-beans-rice.html


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