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Shamayel seeks a little lamb
And finds it not far from Portland at all
Twenty-one years ago Shamayel Kargar and her husband had a hankering for good lamb.
| July 27, 2011
Peanuts are white, folks
And they got here by traveling the world
I'm into peanuts these days for a handful of reasons. I recently learned how to cook an awesome peanut soup from Ghana.
| June 29, 2011
Mastering a Latin classic
Learning a basic, but complex, Panamanian dish
As I was picking my daughter up from school, my ears perked up to a woman telling a child it was time to go.
| June 01, 2011
So you think you can foufou?
Learning to cook, and eat, an African staple
African foufou is not something you learn once and get. I've had three different teachers, Kenyan, Congolese, and Ghanaian, and I can "do" it, but I still look like one those unbelievably bad dancers on So You Think You Can Dance?
| May 04, 2011
Enjoying the fruits of a Sudanese farm in Maine
Cooking standing up
I'm heading into a public-housing duplex. It's two stories: red bricks on the bottom and cream vinyl siding on top.
| April 06, 2011
What the Miyake family eats
Visiting a chef at home
Finding out your daughter's classmate's father is this city's most eye-opening chef makes you feel special.
| March 09, 2011
Azerbaijani meat with chestnuts and sour plums
A Valentine's Day invitation
If the Committee of Basic World Knowledge had given me a surprise test, a world map with directions to fill in all the country names, I would have missed Azerbaijan.
| February 09, 2011
Fou fou is hard work
Getting pounded by flour while making an African staple
The cassava flour was light beige, slightly more fine than corn meal. I'd bought it by mistake. Three pounds of it. I had no idea what to do with it.
| January 12, 2011
Ah, a Bolivian afternoon
Mashed yuca cakes and little cheese breasts — I mean breads
Standing in front of the chest freezer at my local Latin market (La Bodega Latina, 863 Congress Street), I pull out a plank of frozen banana leaves.
| December 15, 2010
'The most alive salmon'
Exploring Swedish cuisine in America
"But you can't get fresh fish anywhere in Portland on Monday," the Swede said. We were having a scheduling conflict.
| November 16, 2010
Seven centuries of hot sauce at Korea House
Here's to longevity!
Two weeks ago if someone had asked to play word association, starting with the word "Korea," I would have said: "Nuclear bomb." Now, you say Korea and I say: amazing spicy fish dish with seaweed salad and secret hot sauce . Much better!
| October 20, 2010
Cooking classes taught by refugees give the real scoop
Sumac and citric acid
The kitchen of St. Pius X Church at the north corner of Payson Park was particularly steamy on the muggy, unusually hot night of October 1.
| October 07, 2010
Prepping for a Congolese cooking class
In my car are a 62-year-old mother from Congo, her 27-year-old daughter, and their 18-year-old friend from Rwanda.
| September 22, 2010
Giggling through life
And making spring rolls with love
When you chomp into Suu Le Martin's crispy, hot, handheld treats, you understand she took sheer human love, wrapped it in courage, and glued it all together with a scramble of prayers.
| December 08, 2010
Revelations at Asmara
Eritrean ingera with spicy chicken
I've always wanted to learn how to cook ingera, a spongy crepe served at Asmara, an (well, the ) Eritrean restaurant in Portland, with gorgeous piles of creamy orange lentils, cabbage and potatoes, kale, and spicy chicken.
| July 28, 2010
A Congolese feast
Beans and rice, with African flair
I met Constance Kabaziga at the checkout at Mittapheap World Market. She was buying frozen cassava root and dried beans, and I really wanted to know what she was going to do them.
| June 30, 2010
Live to be 106
The Nicaraguan secret: tortas de espinaca
Jenny Sanchez learned many of her magical dishes, including chancho frito and gallo pinto (previously featured here), from a family helper when she was a young girl.
| June 02, 2010
Making Uzbek lamb and rice
Cooking tips: exercise free speech, eat osh, and take a walk
A friend told me I had to cook with her friend, Momen Abdullayof. He’s from Uzbekistan, a country I would have been really lucky to fill in correctly on a geography test.
| May 05, 2010
For richer, for poorer
Romanian polenta with sheep’s milk feta
Laura Coroi saw my “Immigrant Kitchens” poster at the YMCA and introduced herself.
| April 08, 2010
'Herring in a fur coat'
Tasting a Russian party dish
This time of year I look at myself in the mirror and shrink. My face looks like it belongs on the canning shelf with the beans, asparagus, and cukes.
| March 10, 2010
A painting, a letter, upside-down peppers
It all goes into making Vietnamese papaya salad
"While I wait, I beat the peanuts," says Hop Nguyen, a custom clothes designer in her home kitchen in Yarmouth, Maine. She's teaching me how to make green papaya salad from Bac Ninh province in northern Vietnam. She's waiting for the spaghetti-like strips of unripe papaya and carrot to lose their stiffness as they soak in salt water.
| February 10, 2010
The Current Issue
Table of Contents
Where To Follow Me
| March 24, 2013 at 11:09 AM
Mo Takes His Turn
March 21, 2013 at 12:59 PM
[Q&A] KMFDM's Sascha Konietzko on art, Columbine and having balls
On The Download
| March 18, 2013 at 3:22 PM
See this film series: The Belmont World Film Series @ Studio Cinema in Belmont
Outside The Frame
| March 18, 2013 at 11:00 AM
See this film: This is Spinal Tap [with post-film talk by expert from Acoustical Society of America] @ the Coolidge
March 17, 2013 at 12:00 PM
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