Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Absinthe and Hot Squid Salad

Last evening was lots of fun. I'm so glad that a few of your could make it out to our first post-food writing course meet up. I PROMISE that we'll have another one soon.

It was a great thing to catch up with those who popped in. A number of interesting things came up:

1) Is Science Fiction a predominately teenage boy obsession? A casual comment I made about a great novel I just read, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz, was picked up on by Cathy and now I'm interested in my subconscious belief that science fiction (of which I am a fan) is a more masculine thing than a feminine thing. (Warning: the Junot Diaz book has loads of swearing and vulgarity, but it is brilliant...so unless that puts you off, I highly recommend reading it.)

2) I am currently reading Taras Grescoe's excellent non-fiction award-winning book Bottomfeeder: How to eat ethically in a world of vanishing seafood. My mid-point review is that it is a worthy winner of the Writers' Trust for Non-Fiction Prize in 2008. It's everybit as densely researched BUT completely readable as Michael Pollan's The Omnivore's Dilemma. It's nice to see food journalism getting such good recognition by the non-fiction world at large.

3) Hanne discussed her current fave "cookbook" which isn't really a cookbook but a fabulous reference: The Flavour Bible: The Essential Guide to Culinary Creativity,
Based on the Wisdom of America's Most Imaginative Chefs
by Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg. It's a guide to getting the most out of ingredients, with tips, tricks and pairings from some of the best chefs.

4)Then we talked about Okanagan Spirits -- some excellent distilled products made in Vernon, BC. They make an award-winning Absinthe...yes, Absinthe. Yes, it's legal. You can buy it around town at various places, including the Chateau Louis liquor store, Athlone liquor, and a few other places. If you want to find an outlet near you...go to the ALCB database lookup and search for "Okanagan Spirits." Let your fingers do the walking!

Next meetup? That first weekend in May? Maybe the Friday evening, May 1st??