Lamb Like You’ve Never Had It Before

Growing up with Jewish traditions, the Passover Seder was like our Thanksgiving. It was always a big to-do and the meal was always the same. Lamb. Lamb roasted over hot coals through the entire seder so you had this waft of amazing meat cooking, charring, and smoking making you eager for dinner. Lamb was always a normal thing for us. I never thought of it as weird but it was special. We only ever had it for Passover. Even now, when I buy lamb for any other meal, I kinda feel like I am cheating.  Continue reading

The Gordita Reinvisioned

When my husband and I decided to get in shape and start eating better we looked at what foods we love and if there were options to make them healthier at home. Well, spoiler alert, almost anything you make at home will be healthier than if you order out. One of the things we loved at the time was Chipotle. Specifically their burrito bowls. I started thinking about how I might be able to make these at home as an easy “take to work” lunch. Our first attempt was a disaster. Wet, soggy, and unappetizing. I gave it some more thought, removed one of the ingredients (corn), and re-shuffled the layer order. Presto! We had a winner. Continue reading

Tacos: Recipes and Provocations

tacos-cookbook

Do you love Mexican food? Do you suffer, as I do, from not having a drop of Mexican heritage to explain your desire and obsession for this delicious food? Have you ever thought of trying to replicate the flavor and authenticity in your own kitchen but then think somewhere in the heavens that the creator of such an ethnic cuisine would be offended that being a white dude (dudette) you even tried? Welcome to the world of Chef Alex Stupak and his wonderfully delightful cookbook Tacos. Continue reading

Pastrami Tacos

Pastrami tacos. Is this even a thing? What does that even mean? Wait, isn’t pastrami more Jewish deli and less Mexican street food? Though I understand these thoughts, as I had them myself when I first saw this recipe, it actually excited me. Here’s a cookbook that is not afraid to explore, evolve, and expand our own understandings and flavors. But hey, it’s not authentic Mexican! That might be true. Then again it might not. I am not saying pastrami is a Mexican creation. What I am saying is that I echo the sentiments of Alex Stupak in “Tacos” that calling something authentic is to limit it, to say it can not grow, evolve, or change, and that simply isn’t how food have ever worked in human history.  Continue reading

Homemade Flour Tortillas

Learning to make common things you buy at the grocery store at home is both rewarding and demystifying. The other effect is that you can often make something that tastes so much better. Items sitting on shelves in the grocery store have to be able to sit there for a long time. This means they have to have chemicals, preservatives, and other things done to them to keep them “looking good” for extended periods of time.  Continue reading

Street Tacos in Your Kitchen?

The secret to get ethnic foods isn’t where it’s made. It’s not where it’s served. It isn’t even necessarily who makes it. Well, Ok, who makes it matters but it’s not to say you can’t make it too… The real secret is guidance, technique, tools, and the combination of flavor. However the biggest secret is the one or two key ingredients that make all the difference. Continue reading