“Forks in the Road”: Sippin’ and Snackin’ in San Diego

Another tasty, fun-filled jaunt — this time to San Diego! It was a jam-packed trip that included visits to 11 breweries/taprooms, and that just scratched the surface of the local beer scene. The beers certainly did not disappoint. All were really good, and the only ones I didn’t much like were just styles of beer that aren’t my favorite. Arguably the U.S. capital of craft … Continue reading “Forks in the Road”: Sippin’ and Snackin’ in San Diego

“Forks in the Road”: Sated in Seattle

By design, my travels often include some wonderful culinary adventures. Here’s a sampling of what my tastebuds enjoyed during a recent trip to Seattle – it’s wonder I didn’t gain 45 pounds! Slurp-tastic! Sure, there are other places to go for oysters in Seattle, but why bother. Elliott’s Oyster House has “Oyster House” in its name for a reason. There’s always a broad selection of … Continue reading “Forks in the Road”: Sated in Seattle

Shishito vs. Mothra (Well, sort of)

A few years ago, I noticed that shishito peppers started showing up on a lot of Asian appetizer menus, especially in Japanese restaurants. Akin to the Spanish padrón, the peppers were usually served grilled to the point of blistering and tossed with sesame oil and either soy sauce or sea salt. After I’d ordered them once, I was hooked. Small, slender, and thin-skinned, the bite-size … Continue reading Shishito vs. Mothra (Well, sort of)

Basil Up!

(A version of this piece originally appeared in the Spring 2015 edition of the Solstice Green Directory) By Katy Budge A popular culinary herb throughout the world, Ocimum basilicum – aka basil – has a long and intriguing history. Native to India and cultivated there for over 5000 years, basil was considered sacred, a status that helped garner its “basilicum” moniker in the Western world. … Continue reading Basil Up!

“Forks in the Road”: San Francisco Treats

Whenever I go to a city, my cultural exploration always revolves around food, and recently I got to indulge that passion in San Francisco. There’s always a theme when my besties and I go out and about in this wonderful city (this time it revolved around SF Beer Week), but a continually underlying theme is also “old school” spots, especially those on the SF Heritage … Continue reading “Forks in the Road”: San Francisco Treats

Gleaning Among the Ghosts

    I’m involved with a local gleaning program, GleanSLO, and usually it’s a slam dunk win-win-win all the way around. The GleanSLO volunteers go to a property – either commercial or private, to glean leftover produce and take it to our local food bank. Hungry people get healthy food that would otherwise go to waste, the property owner gets a tax credit and the … Continue reading Gleaning Among the Ghosts

Off with Your Heads, Pandalus platyceros!

I’d always been curious about spot prawns, the colorful wigglers I’d see from time to time in the live tank at Pier 46 Seafood Market in Templeton. They seemed at once so ethereal, so primitive, so delicate, and so … sharp! Spot prawns, aka Pandalus platyceros, are technically shrimp, and not even prawns at all. That moniker comes from their reign as the largest member … Continue reading Off with Your Heads, Pandalus platyceros!

Picking Flowers for the Food Bank?

A few weeks ago, as the promise of much needed rain was teasing the Central Coast, a ripe opportunity arose for the Glean SLO program. John Rourke and Chris Freitas of San Luis Berry Farm had gotten as much of an organic strawberry harvest as they could before the rain would hit, so they invited a couple local groups, including Glean SLO, to pick as much … Continue reading Picking Flowers for the Food Bank?

Favas: A Fav to Eat, But Not to Prepare

In the course of writing an article on a local CSA (Talley Farms’ Fresh Harvest, Arroyo Grande, CA), I ended up with a couple bags of freshly picked fava beans. I also ended up with a big dose of appreciation for any chefs and home cooks that serve these delectable broad beans on any sort of regular basis. Fava beans are essentially the vegetable equivalent … Continue reading Favas: A Fav to Eat, But Not to Prepare