A PERSONAL MILESTONE
50 years and counting!
Our confined celebration!
NO Travels (except on paper)
My oyster binge in L’AMPOLLA, Spain
California’s Historic Highway 395
Classes and presentations via ZOOM
A virtual cooking class with Spice and Leaf
Kitty chats with….
My NEW project
A new, family cookbook
News of Morocco and beyond
Links of interest
Despite all my good intentions, these Chronicles are about 6 weeks late. How can time fly by so fast when we are confined? As my mother used to say:
“C’est toujours vendredi.. It is always Friday.” So:
HAPPY (BELATED) FOURTH OF JULY!
The ongoing confinement and the subsequent Black Lives Matter protests brought to mind the “Long Hot Summer of 1967” race riots when America was once before in turmoil. I was confined to my apartment with my roommate for 4 days, while the inner cities of Milwaukee, Chicago, and Detroit were going up in flames. This was my first introduction to political unrest in the US, and it was an eye-opener.
The past weeks brought a sense of heartbreaking déjà vu at this turning point in our nation’s history. I remain a (grateful immigrant) optimist.
Memories of a 1967 confinement:
One outcome of my 1967 confinement: we avoided hunger pangs with cans of tuna fish (my cooking career evolved long after the riots!) Thanks to my wonderful American roommate, Ann, I discovered the subtle “delights” of tuna casserole: a basic white sauce, a can of tuna and a few frozen peas and voilà: a great topping for boiled rice! What a taste discovery! After 4 days confined to our first-floor walk-up, the casserole attained the rank of comfort food for me, although it will never top couscous in the style of Casablanca, or my French grandmother’s purée de pomes de terre (mashed potatoes)!
The present confinement reactivated my culinary juices. I finally put pen to paper with an idea that I had been harboring for some time: a cookbook combining family history with recipes from Alsace Lorraine, my mother’s birthplace (much like The Scent of Orange Blossoms, which featured my North African ancestry). Among the French documents I inherited, I uncovered the journal of my great grand-father, a French army doctor who served during WWI, and hand written recipes from his wife, my great-grandmother, who died at the hands of the Nazis just before the end of WWII. So what is a cookbook author to do? Immerse myself in cuisine bourgeoise de famille, and test and cook. Cook and test.
NO title yet…STAY TUNED!
Le confinement me pousse à cuisiner–très à propos car parmi les papiers de famille de ma mère, j’ai retrouvé des documents relatifs à ses grand-parents alsaciens–qui malheureusement ont disparu sous l’occupation nazie. J’ai donc hérité de photos, de documents de famille–et d’une centaine de recettes écrites à la main par mon arrière grandmère, typiques du Grand Est–en particulier de Châlons sur Marne maintenant appelée Châlons en Champagne, ville natale de ma mère. Que faire de ce trésor familial sinon écrire un livre en leur souvenir? choucroute, baekhopf, bredele (Alsatian cookies) et bien plus. Plus de détails à venir…
Mon but ce mois ci est d’écouler les bottes de chou friséMy present challenge is to cook with the bunches and bunches of kale and chard obtained from April Viles at SandnStraw Farm in Vista (CA). The farm stand is opened 2 days a week. Check out their website www.sandnstraw.com
Here are two recipes I developed:
Chard and Garbanzo Bean Hummus (Hummus au chou frisé et pois chiches):
1 (14-ounce) can garbanzo beans, drained
1 cup COOKED and chopped chard
2 teaspoons cumin
Salt and pepper to taste
A squeeze of lemon juice
¼ cup chopped cilantro
Sun dried tomatoes optional)
Blend all ingredients together, and voilà, chard hummus
Kitty’s Curried Chard and Zucchini Soup
Velouté de Courgettes au curry et chou frisé
I serve this hot or cold, depending on the season.
Prepare this a few hours ahead of time, and refrigerate.
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, diced (or leeks)
4 small zucchini, peeled and diced (courgettes)
1 cup COOKED, drained, and chopped CHARD and Kale!!!
1 small potato, peeled and diced
1 teaspoons mild curry powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups chicken broth
½ cup plain nonfat yogurt
Chopped parsley or cilantro, for garnish
In a skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, zucchini, chard, and potato. Sprinkle with the curry powder. Lightly brown the vegetables, stirring occasionally. Turn heat down to medium low. Cover and cook until vegetables are soft. Adjust curry powder and salt. Let cool.
Place half the vegetables in a blender or food processor. Add half the broth and half the yogurt. Blend until very smooth. Repeat the process until all the vegetables are used. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate. Sprinkle with herbs, and serve.
Feedback: Thank you!
I thought you would like to know that I tried your husband Owen’s recipe. I love Costco’s scallops…always a good quick meal. And, of course, I sear them. So I cut them up (frozen) into about 6 pieces each, sauteed them in butter, added lemon juice and white wine, salt and pepper, let them caramelize, and put them on top of a large salad (with avocados). (Steak salad without the steak:) It was delicious! Owen rocks!. . .
Just for you, a tall glass of freshly squeezed blood orange juice from our very own blood orange tree: Un verre de jus de sanguine?
Kitty in the media: PODCAST a new experience for me:
My host, Jessica, explained:
“I wanted this episode (the very first!) to be about Sephardic food in North Africa and to get to know you better (and your love of cilantro!) Jessica, A Jewish Convert Talks To A Global Community in her new blog..This is the link to my website, specifically the post about your wonderful cookbook, it was one of my first posts: https://newjewkitchen.com/the-scent-of-orange-blossoms/ I
Kitty’s recent published articles:
Staying put while roaming the globe before confinement:
California’s Historic Highway 395, along the eastern sierras.
My oyster binge in L’Ampolla, Spain
A night on the Queen Mary in Long Beach (CA)
Classes: ZOOM in on A virtual cooking class!
JOIN ME for this Fun event:
Sunday, August 2, 4PM Pacific
www.spiceitupwithdeb.com. Please open the link to view the menu.
I will chat alongside my energetic friend Debbie Kornberg, on
Spice It Up with Deb: A Live Cooking Experience.
- Pick your cooking class
- Receive a list of ingredients and recipes.
- Order your SPICE + LEAF products through AMAZON.
- Cook in your kitchen at the same time I am cooking in my kitchen all in real-time with guided instruction!
- Explore the flavors of the world without having to leave your kitchen!
- By the end of class, you will have a meal ready to serve.
Included in the class price is a copy of Edible Flowers: A Kitchen Companion
I got the books (Edible Flowers) today. They are beautiful. I really love them more than I expected and I had very high expectations. They are beyond beautiful and wonderful. So I put another check in the mail to you for two more books. . .” Carole
Links of interest en français et en anglais:
site bilingue pour les français aux USA.
Frenchly.us and French Books
Frenchly is the premier website for Francophiles in the US and abroad, covering news, arts, culture, style, and all things French. Check out their French books:
Voyages en France tout en restant chez soi:
How about touring France from the comfort of home?
Moroccan cookies anyone?
In time for the upcoming Feast of the Lamb (Aid el Fitr) or any celebration:
For the best mail order Moroccan cookies visit https://www.meskasweets.com. Made in New Jersey and shipped to you fresh. I guarantee you will not be disappointed!
From their website: “Our cookies are available in traditional variety as well as fusions with the trendiest flavors… As such we offer a Gluten Free Moroccan Macaron line with Organic Japanese Matcha Green Tea, Coffee… All of our treats are freshly made in NJ using the finest ingredients, have no preservatives and no GMO products. In addition to being delicious, our treats are Kosher (OU) Pareve.
Kitty still has copies of:
Shameless plug: If you have read any of the books, in English or en français, a review on the Amazon book site is always appreciated….
Min Tea and Minarets
Le Riad au Bord de l’Oued
and Edible Flowers: A Kitchen Companion
ALL downloadable on Amazon.com
Yes, even the Pope liked A Biblical Feast (via Mission San Luis Rey in Oceanside, CA) …the book is out of print. Downloadable, however
Morocco is (almost) out of the woods. Moroccans are allowed to travel to England but we are not! One reason perhaps: Even Moroccan buses wear masks….
and in the words of WOODY ALLEN