Oct 28, 2009

Here and Now/And Nowhere & The Auerglass

If you haven't been at Deitch Projects in NYC, now is the time! I went to see my new pal Tauba Auerbach perform with Cameron Mesirow (check out her music 'Glasser') on the wooden organ Tauba designed. They do this every day at 5 Tuesday through Saturday. We played a gig in NYC recently and we all ran over to Deitch to catch the performance. It was a mind blower! Just watching how this thing works and to have 2 spirit girls playing these guided melodies like a ping pong game. Watching them back and forth- and their bodies helping the organ find it's breath. You can really hear the air being breathed into the organ to create these beautiful tones. Check out Tauba's work, there is so much to feel from. I am a big fan of her alternative typography and word plays. Later, they came and danced at the Rubies gig and it felt like tying the life knot.

Oct 23, 2009

I have finally met Geoff McFetridge. It involved a secret light orb.

So thanks to a top secret glowing object that Adrian made and working with Erlend and the Whitest Boy Alive - I have finally met Geoff McFetridge. I feel that my work and lifestyle has had me running around in circles and in one of those circles has been the amazing talent of this dude sitting there, shining, and inspiring. People said it was a matter of time. Thyme. There was talk of a vortex. A dark vortex and the circle of radness. Meeting of the minds. I had met Yongki up at the Solitary Arts (the company of the skateboard kind that Geoff and Yongki run) headquarters (see their blog post on Rubies) with Nat and Dan recently and achieved instant bro-dom. Yongki is Captain Good Vibes. I gave him a Rubies cd and tripped out on his radical jukebox while being surrounded with some Geoff creatures in 2 D. Cut to 2 nights ago. Yongki, Geoff, D, Adrian, and I. Glowing see-thru-ness, Tacos, stories about Calgary, Nanaimo bars, Skiing, and the best way of getting to know someone. At a dinner table. I wanna go skiing with Geoff while eating a Nanaimo bar. I'm picturing the tracks made by our skiis would end up being mind blowing geometric designs. Mainly because it will be Swiss snow. Helvetica anyone? Tell me this is possible.This is the light orb that lives in the mirror. Only can survive in a room with silver & zodiac wallpaper. 2 people can collectively conjure this dude.

Oct 14, 2009

Rösti, Spätzle, Chanterelle, Shitake, Salty Yoghurt & Other Snax: An Ongoing Saga

First off. This might be my longest entry to date. Hang in there....So in order to stay fluent in the culinary esoteric-cult-obsession, I present you a recent account of some foods that I've either delighted in or prepared. Showing the pictures in reverse order. Santa Barbara (my sister and I cooked for my mother for her recent birthday), Montreal - Poutine at 'Banquis' with Adam Gollner (whose upcoming article will be featured in the final issue of Gourmet magazine next week- on a rad restaurant in Montreal called 'Joe Beef' and a long train ride into the woods with the Owners), Toronto (a Persian breakfast with buddies), Grindelwald, Switzerland (Swiss chocolate, wienerli, pumkin soup, and other yum things in my other hometown) , Paris (a moroccon inspired stew with poached eggs, yoghurt, chanterelles, etc), Berlin (Heiko makes Spätzle and my new favorite falafel and salted yoghurt drink). Ready? Get hungry.
We made flammkuchen, a pizza like tarte originating from the Alsace region. A tarte/pizza-like crust (super thin) with crème fraîche, smoked bacon or pancetta, onions cooked in apple cider (not vinegar), chives. No cheese. Soooooo good. Also, a salad with bulgarian feta (i like it best), roasted shitake mushrooms, pickled golden beets, sungold tomatoes, apples, honey vinaigrette, and butter lettuce). Lambic (rasberry beer from Belgium) and Adrian rocked some homemade bread. D made a genoise layered cake with strawberries, lemon, and cream. Happy land.

Poutine! Montreal! Fresh cheese curds and gravy on fries. After our show at Le Gymnase for Pop Montreal. I think this gets them through their extreme winters. This would definitely qualify as an extreme food. Along with the quesadilla suiza from el farolito in san francisco.
Persian breakfast inpsired by a conversation Daniela and I were having. Cinnamon tomatoes, poached eggs, toasted israeli couscous cooked in coconut milk with saffron, herbs, and nuts, pomegranate seeds, persian cucumbers.
Turkish coffee! We read our horoscope through the coffee grain lines. Coffee tarot. dig. In mine, there was a mountain with wings. The meaning flourished.
Slabs of the best chocolate I've tasted. Honeycomb, cornflake, pink peppercorn, mountain berry, dark with chili, candied almond and hazlenut. Bleeding heart over here.
The coconut was way better than I imagined.

Alpkase means 'alp cheese' and 'zu verkaufen' means 'to sell'. These signs are outside most of the houses in the alps in this village of Grindelwald. Grindelwald means 'stone forest'- the most famous of the swiss alps are here. Eiger, Mönch, Jungfrau. The 3 mountains sit quietly by each other. The cheese from these hills are so complex. It tastes of all of the wildflowers, the air, and the dirt. The Swiss do it better. P.s. after mucho cheese research- the 'pleasant ridge reserve' cheese from Wisconsin would be the American counterpart. It's the only cheese that comes close.
My sis and Adrian. After a bunch of Feldschlossen bier.
Everyone has leeks in their garden. Oh and chard. In Switzerland they don't say 'swiss chard'. Ha.
Little chanterelles and candy caps in cream on toast. Chanterelle in German= Pfifferlinge. French = Girolle. Swedish = Kanterell. Italian = Gallinaccio.
Pumpkin soup with pumpkin seed oil. Wienerli- my favorite of the sausages. They snap! All the tables have mustard in tubes called 'Thomy'.

The menu underneath explains this guy. Spätzle is really common. Small egg dumplings boiled then sauteed. Traditionally in the fall you get red cabbage with roasted chestnuts, a half of a pear that has been roasted and filled with currant or berry jam, with venison or chamois(a goat-antelope that lives in the alps) with mountain mushrooms like chanterelles. Cozy food. Delicious. Mainly because I grew up on food like this. Lots of heavy food in the alps!
Rösti was my favorite food growing up. It's basically hash brown potatoes (grated potatoes) covered with gruyere cheese and herbs. Lots of people add things like a fried egg, smoked or air dried meats, pickles and pickled onions... Such a good meal when you're hiking. All the mountain hut restaurants in Switzerland serve this.
More spätzle. More chanterelles mixed with other small mountain mushrooms. Candy caps? Venison. Puff pastry. I'll have know that I did see some small boletus mushrooms in the mountains... Last year in Grindelwald our family friend Salvi prepared them with homemade papardelle. Radness.
My brother Peter and sis Danielle. Doing 'chaos'. A thing we invented when we were li'l. A way to show excitement with a big group of people. Throw your hands together and shake your fingers super fast and intertwine them. Later when we were in college we started coming up with variations. The 'slow down' was a good one. Ask me to show you.The more people the better. Energy!
The sparkling apple juice rules. Super tart and not sweet. Maggi and aromat on all tables.

Custard filled! Fluffy vanilla-y dough. Um.

The morrocan inspired stew with goat cheese, harissa, merguez sausages, and poached eggs. Herbed couscous.
My new favorite yoghurt in Paris with apricot jam. Doesn't get better. Comes in these beautiful blue pots. Use them for holding toothbrushes or something.
The desert to a dinner I made for friends in Paris. Super sweet figs, rasberries and vanilla ice cream.
Pickled fennel with dill and apple cider vinegar, radishes, butter lettuce.
Couldn't help myself from cooking with chanterelles! They are $30 a pound here in California. I got a whole bag for 3 euro. Real saffron for the yellow color in the risotto. We had rotisserie chicken too. The french know how to roast a chicken.
Later we danced to 'kokomo' and played a lot of air instruments.

This is how herbs come when you buy them in Paris. Happy thymes.

The macaroon. Meringue on the outside, buttercream on the in. side. go.od.
Currants, pears, almond cake.
At Chez Jeanette. One of my favorite bars on the planet. This was for our new buddy Hans' bday.
Falafel in Paris. I love how they layer things. Roasted sweet eggplant. Vinegary red cabbage. Harissa (super spicey!), and real good falafel.

Egg alcohol at the Berlin airport. Whoa.
Salty caramel crepe in Berlin- inspired by the Brittany style crepes from France. They do it right. How has salt stolen the show lately? Gotta be careful about blowing our taste buds.
Did I mention salt? This salty yoghurt drink is grubski. My friend Dena from Bulgaria grew up drinking this. Why do I have memory jealousy? I wanna remember drinking this when I was little but alas, I had my 'first' last month here. Firsts are special.
Ok my dudes and dudeskis. My official favorite falafel. From 'king falafel' in Kreuzberg, Berlin.
It had this ground nut & seed spread that took it to a whole new level. Simple though. The falafel was super fluffy and freshly made. The pita was different. It was a very thin bread. Tons of mellow vibey flavor. The older couple that ran the place were grumpy- but somehow it made my food taste better? We can talk about that later. The point is is that I had no expectation. Plus the woman brough us spiced and fragrant tea (clove? cinnamon? nutmeg? black pepper? vanilla?)- near the end of the falafel. A total mind melter.
Dena and I at king falafel. She gets to go here whenever she wants. Man oh man.
The pomegranate nut spread. That sounds funny when I read it. This is what MADE the falafel. Plus I've never tasted anything like it. That and the salty yoghurt 'ayran'. 2 firsts. 2 firsts make a right.
Berlin buddies! The next day I had all kinds of regional schnapps with Thordis at one of my favorite restaurants, 'Lebensmittel in Mitte.' Mirabelle and plum schnapps. It heats your whole body.
Homemade spätzle (you have to put the dough on a wooden board or paddle and scrape it into boiling water- Heiko brought his grandmothers paddle!), more chanterelles, goulash, and my cali inspired salad with grapefruit, more pickled fennel and dill, salted radishes, crème fraîche dressing with lots of chives, butter lettuce. PHEW. This entry took me a super long time. It might be my longest. If you've made it this far, email me. I'll make you dinner if you tell me a good story.