THE KASBAH CHRONICLES
April to June 2022
Happy Fourth of July
Bestila filled with Sweet Shredded Chicken
Recipe in Mint Tea and Minarets (easier to make than it looks!)
A pet peeve: book theft
A quote from Gertrude Stein
Street Legacy, presents a new exhibit at California Center for the Arts
and an unusual opera created in Escondido
This morning’s crop
to make SALMOREJO (see below)
My tentacular passion fruit vine
is barely a year old and has taken over our gazebo!
Chef Ron’s Salmon Koulibiac (see more below)
Koulibiac de Saumon (miam!)
to A Biblical Feast and
Cooking at the Kasbah (in print for 21 years)
I am headed for Le Grand Est (Alsace Lorraine, Strasbourg, and Châlons-en-Champagne
land of my French ancestors. Any recommendations?
J’espère me rendre en France début septembre pour visiter la terre de mes ancêtres en
Champagne. Avez-vous des conseils à partager?
Links of interest en français and in English
Kitty is selling antique and vintage Moroccan items
I love feedback
My latest pet peeve and cautionary tale:
I shipped a box of 20 books to the Isabella Gardner Museum https://www.gardnermuseum.org/in Boston, which carries Edible Flowers: a Kitchen Companion in its lovely gift store. Imagine my dismay last week when the book buyer wrote me saying she received only 9 books. The box had been opened and 11 books “lifted”, box resealed and shipped to the museum. No one could explain this in the museum’s mail room. I had insurance and attempted to navigate the USPS nightmarish website to find the right forms. I gave up and have filed the claim via email.
I already “lost” a box of 22 books in the mail last January. Light fingered artists at work in the USPS system??.
Variation on a theme:
Purchase ceviche or make your own and drop
some into a cup of salmorejo
1 cup cubed day-old country-style bread, torn into pieces
1 cup broth or water
4 large, ripe tomatoes (1 ½ to 2 lbs), peeled, and coarsely chopped
1 clove garlic
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and chopped (optional)
3 ounces prosciutto, finely chopped (optional)
Soak bread in ½ cup broth or water.
Combine soaked bread, tomatoes, garlic, vinegar, olive oil, salt, and remaining broth in a blender. Blend for about 3 minutes until velvety smooth. Transfer to a bowl, cover, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or until well chilled.
Just before serving, test the soup for salt. Thin it out with a little broth, water, or tomato water if desired. Ladle into small bowls, garnishwith chopped eggs, prosciutto, OR CEVICHE!
Blood Orange juice is a good alternative to lemon juice
Blood oranges can remain quite acid, even after months on the tree. I squeeze the juice, and boil it down with enough sugar to make syrup. Drop a little into a glass of champagne.
The same goes for Passion Fruit juice. In Guadeloupe and Martinique, passion fruit is called MARACUDJA, and the juice is used instead of lemon juice to marinate fish. Hawaii know passion as LILIKOI. I freeze it in ice cube trays and use it as required.
Gertrude Stein has always fascinated me, as has her famed art collection in her apartment of the Rue de Fleurus in Paris.
“A rose is a rose is a rose,” she wrote. The Curious Home of Food Writer and Dilettante, Gary Allen, a most original site at http://justserved.onthetable.us/ list another of Gertrude’s quotes: “A vegetable garden in the beginning looks so promising and then after all little by little it grows nothing but vegetables, nothing but vegetables.” Soooo Gertrude!!!
A novel take on salmon:
Our friend and accomplished barbecue chef Ron Baker treated us to Coulibiac of Salmon, en français Koulibiac de Saumon or Saumon en Koulibiac. The salmon for Ron’s eye-popping rendition is imported and filleted on arrival by the experts of https://harborpelican.com at Oceanside Harbor. The professional fishermen specialize in locally-sourced fish. Fresh-caught salmon is the exception they imported from Norway. Ron butterflied and stuffed the salmon with rice, mushrooms and other mouth-watering ingredients, rolled it up and wrapped it in bacon. What’s not to like?
Ron, can we have a repeat??? New shows and events:
The California Center for the Arts has reopened with a new show called STREET LEGACY https://artcenter.org/event/street-legacy-socal-style-masters. The exhibit gathers art by renowned street artists from Southern California. I attended the opening and can tell you the art work once known as graffiti has come a very, very long way. Many artists attended the opening, and provided a spectacular fashion show as well. What creativity! What fun! And what artistry. I had no idea!
Make an appointment to view the galleries. Docents will return later in the year.http://artcenter.org
Slick and Bruce’s cars greet you at the entrance.
Marc Esquer is a well-known San Diego street artist whose artwork graces many a San Diego venue (and even Japan!) Escondido-based Zane Kingcade produces custom artwork, and sells art supplies on Grand Avenue in Escondido. The show features four of his creations.
A NEW OPERA OPENS IN ESCONDIDO:
I attended a chat with the producers, directors, and some of the artists for WITNESSES. The artists come from L.A, New York, and right here in Escondido. What a gifted bunch. This is the reason the opera is called WITNESSES: https://artcenter.org/education/ccae-conservatory/witnesses/
Practice your French:
Ready for more IDIOTISMES GASTRONOMIQUES?
More gastro news from France: Où sont passés les grands chefs de France?
New Asian market in Vista. It opened a few months ago at 1215 S. Santa Fe avenue. Here, you will find most of the items you need for your Asian-inspired meals, from rice noodles, to sambals and Asian vegetables. Friendly owner Thavy is from Cambodia and owns the market with his wife Julie Thach.
A Biblical Feast, now officially out of print
Cooking at the Kasbah: Recipes from My Moroccan Kitchen. I love this cookbook. I have to let it go after 22 years and ten printings. Wish I could find a publisher to have it reprinted!!
BITTER SWEET: A WARTIME JOURNAL AND HEIRLOOM RECIPES FROM OCCUPIED FRANCE
Not quite ready for prime time yet, but coming soon! Stay tuned.
KITTY is selling:
Please drop me a note if you would like pictures of Moroccan items I am selling: cookware, wood, lamps, lithographs, vintage Berber jewelry, antique rugs and textiles. Better yet, if you live close by: make an appointment to come by and see. Drop me a line.
May COVID remain in your rear view mirror.
I LOVE FEEDBACK!