Food

Stories related to food in Seattle, including Dick Stein and Nancy Leson's weekly commentary Food for Thought.

Paul Gibson

For many, the month of October means falling leaves, ghosts and goblins and pumpkins on doorsteps. It also brings the release of a number of pumpkin beers.

A recent find here in Seattle was Big Time Brewing Company's Hopgoblin Pumpkin Ale.

Dick Stein / KPLU

I clipped the steamed minced pork with salted duck eggs recipe pictured above from a Honolulu newspaper decades ago. After a few years and much use I transcribed and pasted it, apparently with oyster sauce, to the inside of that cookbook.  

I'll post a more legible version further down so keep reading.

Dick Stein / KPLU

Which would you rather mix up some cake or waffle batter in? 

My birthday present, that stoneware beauty pictured above, or some soulless plastic thing?

Shira Golding / Flickr

Some people come over and you love ‘em, but you have to hide the plastic bags, Tupperware and the Teflon pans just so you don’t have to “go there” with them.

Some are organic only (especially with children), limited or no red meat, fish only or vegetarian or vegan (all by choice and principle). And now for a growing number of potential dinner guests, it's locavore, too.

cute cupcakes

In this week's Food for Thought Seattle Times food blogger Nancy Leson rhapsodizes over New York style cheesecake. Who knew there were so many other kinds?

The Bulgarians top it with smetana, not the composer but a soured heavy cream. Ancient Romans made it with honey and a cheese similar to modern-day ricotta. The Bavarian Quarkkuchen is put together with quark cheese, not the elementary particle but a cheese made from soured milk. 

It seems almost every nation on Earth has its own version of the waist-thickening wonder.

Nancy Leson

We've just about reached the end of the season for home-grown tomatoes in these parts – to which Nancy Leson says yes. But to supermarket tomatoes Ms. Leson says "Blah." I say "blechh" to all tomatoes and will not willingly eat one.

OLYMPIA, Wash. — Washington health officials say five people in the state got sick from eating raw oysters that were harvested from an area of Puget Sound's Hood Canal and distributed to 23 states.

David Lytle / Flickr

RICHLAND, Wash. – Northwest wineries are working harder than ever just to keep sales flat. That's what winery owners and market experts are saying as wine lovers gather this weekend for the Columbia Valley's Catch the Crush event.

"We pay our bills," one winery owner told me. "There’s a lot of extra wine out there," said another.

Stein

I think I've found the secret and it's just two words:

Baking powder.  

Deena Prichep / Northwest News Network

PORTLAND – Starting over in a new country as a refugee can feel like landing a new planet.

It’s hard to understand daily life, much less face the challenges of finding a job. One movement in refugee resettlement pioneered in the Northwest helps people put down new roots – literally – through agriculture. But learning to be an American farmer can be a tough row to hoe.

Courtesy of Nancy Leson

Buy pork bellies! 

I've always wanted to bellow that phrase into a two-piece antique telephone while dressed up with top hat and money bag like the Monopoly millionaire.

But this time I really mean it. 

Swamibu / Flickr

OLYMPIA, Wash. — The Washington state Health Department has closed some beaches to oyster harvesting at Samish Bay and the Hood Canal near Hoodsport because several people who ate raw oysters were sickened by a bacterial disease called vibriosis.

... and you don't even have to be Polish to make 'em.

RICHLAND, Wash. – A Northwest wine science center is moving closer to reality with the promise of money from the industry and private donors. The center would be part of Washington State University located on the Tri-Cities campus.

Plenty of people study wine grapes and wine around the world. But each region is different and has different challenges in growing and producing top rated wine. That's why the Northwest wine industry wants a place to research, teach and learn of its own.

Anna King / Northwest News Network

RICHLAND, Wash. – Northwest wine grape growers are sure hoping their grapes hurry up. The countdown is on until the first freeze when grapes will lose their leaves and stop ripening. And certain red varietals need more sun-time than others to be ready for the bottle.

Nancy Leson

I'd teach my kid to cook if I had one.  I  have cats instead and they're not interested.  But if you do have a kid, there are lots of ways to get them to do the cooking.

Hawk Pingree

I sure did.  The ciders, too.  And the gin.  And I'm not much of a drinker.  I am getting better at it, though.

Steven List / Flickr

If it's not raining, it's nice to sit outside, sipping a drink or tucking into a meal. Outdoor cafes are great for this and now it looks like more of them are coming our way.

The Washington State Liquor Control Board this week has adopted an interim policy allowing Seattle restaurants to establish sidewalk cafes in more locations.

Nancy Leson

Yeah, I'm daring you to try tofu. If you hate it, it's probably because you've only had it as some horrible hippie concoction like Tofu Chili Surprise or whatever. There's only one way to eat tofu and that's Asian. 

Nancy Leson

I'd define "kitchen gizmo" as one of those things that you buy on impulse, use a few times and then stash away in the closet – or in Nancy Leson's case – a basement freezer. 

None of us are immune to the lure of the kitchen gizmo, even though I claimed otherwise in this week's Food for Thought. 

Associated Press

Eating a nutritious diet appears to mean spending a bit more on your groceries. That means poor people face an extra challenge trying to eat well, according to a new study of about 1,100 King County residents.

Dick Stein / KPLU

I was tempted by a recipe I found on the web for Poor Man's Lobster which called for boiling sturgeon in lime soda.  Intrigued but dubious, I chose a less bizarre preparation. 

Cheryl DeGroot

That sturgeon shot out of the water like a Polaris missile late for its appointment with apocalypse.

This was but my second fishing trip in 50 years and I was unsure what to do. "What do I do?" I yelled. 

Wikipedia commons

Two  corn cobs walk into a bar.  They notice a third, shady-looking cob trailing them. First cob turns to his friend and whispers ...

Courtesy of Nancy Leson

It's not that I envy Nancy Leson for all the fancy restaurants she eats at on the Times' dime. What I really envy is her energy. 

Tad Doviak

With my wife Calamity Cheryl off riding the range with her saddle bum pals I'm free to run wild in the kitchen.

The 18th century's John Montagu, Fourth Earl of Sandwich gets the credit, but as we now know the sandwich was probably invented no more than five or ten minutes after the appearance of bread.

Call them what you will: wieners, franks, tubesteaks, Fourth of July must-haves. In this reprise of Food for Thought, Seattle Times food writer Nancy Leson and our own Dick Stein discuss (burp!) everybody's favorite dog.

In this Food for Thought I had a lot of fun lording it over Nancy Leson about my garlic garden.

Nancy Leson

A happy restaurant experience comes from a combination of food,  people and  place.  While all that can come together as a lucky accident, more often it's the result of careful planning.

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