This was something I made while the O'Neills were here, it worked out very comfortingly with a mango-lime salsa, roasted garlic mash and those runner beans. It looks/sounds a little bit fusion-y but I think at least the pork is very close to an actual Surinamese recipe, though the Dijon may be pushing it a little bit. This would also work pleasantly on seafood as well.


pork tenderloin with soy, mustard, ginger, habanero.

1/4 cup brown sugar
1/8 cup Dijon mustard
1/8 cup soy sauce
1 medium scallion, chopped fine
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
2 tbsp minced garlic
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 to 2 tsp Surinamese piccalilly
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1/8 tsp ground cloves
salt and pepper to taste

4 small pork tenderloins

Combine everything except pork in a saucepan and gently heat until sugar is melted. Pour over pork and marinate for at least 4 hours, or possibly overnight. At dinner time, pour marinade into a saucepan and gently simmer for at least 10 minutes while pork cooks. Bake/broil pork for 10-15 minutes and let rest for 5-10.



rolled to the thickness of a pound coin.

I miss pizza.



face to face.

I just happened across some old photos and realized with a mild surprise that my reaction to them was almost purely devoid of melancholy, pretty much just pure happy memories. I mean really, this could mean something significant, cause that's pretty fkn uncharacteristic. At least it seems a good direction in which to head, because as we all know Nostalgia Will Waste You. Here's a sample, all circa 1997-1999: above, It Laid In Bed With NyQuil Eyes, location indeterminate but probably NYC; below, normal Atlanta kitchen behavior circa 1997-1999; below that, me obviously harassing my Nan in Phoenix, 1999.


surimi fasolatedo.

(EDITOR'S NOTE: Ha. So this morning I get a message from Blogger saying that a nine-year-old post of mine has been taken down for copyright infringement. My first thought is naturally WTF, but then quickly...well yes ok it's true I borrowed a few images back in those first weeks of blogging, but I thought I'd eventually mostly given appropriate foto credits.

So then I go look at what post they're talking about and it's the below, a total rant about gross food photography, which, really, is a case where giving a photo credit would've been more ugly and mean-spirited than actually allowing it to remain anonymous.

The photo in question truly is educationally nauseating if you consider its ostensible original purpose, I can only describe it in terms of sick excreted material and bloated viscera. Thus, though I can't figure out why you'd want to claim it as your own...yes it's gone now. But I hope Mars and I are going to both try and draw it by hand later for entertainment purposes and post our results.

Lastly, if you know Mars at all you know that the above photo did not need to be specially taken for this editorial moment, this was snapped last week at the central office with the O'Neill family.)


MOSTLY ORIGINAL POST (AUGUST 2005): I mean this in the nicest way, but...this photo could really only be European, couldn't it? Specifically...yes, German!!!

In other words, the above is not something I'm responsible for having cooked.

We had this fantastic, ghastly book in America called German Home Cooking, or Modern German Cooking, or something of equally nebulously promise, but all of the pictures in it are at least this puke-inducing, both in the presentation and physical consistency of the foods and the morgue/autopsy lighting and styling to which they were subjected. Except that additionally, most of the dishes include things that are actually far grosser than surimi and, uh..."salmon pate" (is what we'll call that puddle of muck) in the photo above. I'm talking about, yes...brains, organs, feet, ears, you name it ("eet ees how you say, vat zee leetle cow seenks viz.")

It was a gift, that book. In that it was given to us. Never did cook out of it much for some reason.

Anyway, before I get to the second spine-tingling installment of Indonesian sandwiches, I have a brief imitation-food-related interruption: what exactly is surimi, and why do I like it. I probably eat it because it reminds me of crab salad, which reminds me of mayonnaise, which who doesn't like to be reminded of. I guess the good news is that it's not too bad for you aside from 4000 artificial flavorings and colorings.

OK so crab salad. Surimi fasolatido? Think solfege, baby...just like you always do.




I could not recommend this grocery budget more. If you really need to save money on groceries, this is the shit. A kilo of coffee at 8 euros = an embarrassing amount of small change if you're down to €0.20 pieces and smaller.

The titular blacknuss refers however not to coffee but to rice. Black rice, "the new brown rice" I believe it was called back in 2010 when we accidentally bought the stuff we have thinking it was glutinous black rice. Why am I interacting with it now you may ask. We're cleaning out our "pantry" in an effort to avoid the complex math of checkout coinage, which means that yes we'll be seeing some esoteric shit like black rice right here any minute now.


What to make with it.


Hilarious new grocery budget in place starting yesterday which revolves around paying for all groceries with change from the change box. Boxes. First day was pretty easy b/c there were a few €1 coins, so we bought eggs, potatoes, onions, carrots, cabbage, and canned tomatoes for red sauce, just under €8 if memory serves. Today's purchase was €2.50/500g ground pork. Tomorrow we'll run out of coffee and I'll be looking under the couch.




Yesterday: De Kat, Puccini, Het Schuim, Baba, Mata Hari, Il Mare, and the Doubletree SkyLounge, quite a view and not necessarily as bad a place to hang out as it sounds. Great homemade spicy cocktail nuts made me wonder how the rest of the food was.

Sunday, before I forget: De Engelbewaarder and Bird Thai and surely something after that. Monday, De Prins, Belgique, and dinner at the central office. Tuesday, De Tuin, dinner at the western office, then Ellington downstairs. Wednesday La Perla, etc.



my funny valentines.

It's been a week of pizza and beer. And Thai, and beer. And frites. And etc. Somehow we have not gained 40 kilos, probably because we have covered nearly every square meter of Amsterdam on foot. I'll compile a full and fully impressive list of everywhere we went after today, since today is the last day of Living Like Someone Else.

Pictured: shockingly good pizza from Il Pacioccone, I'm almost sure it gives my current fave La Perla a serious run for their money; Vermeer; The Rijksmuseum; Dutch snacks at Cafe Loetje just before my brain doctor appointment.

Not pictured: Gollem in de Pijp, where Mike developed a man-crush on the bartender; our grocery-laden visit to Belgique, groceries that included Hertog Jan and requested birthday tompouces; Office Space, Super Troopers.

Also not pictured: Wednesday's visits to 't Aepjen, Cafe Karpershoek, Cafe de Tuin, De Kat in de Wijngaert and many other places. Please let it stop soon.


into the fire.

Sooo....The Past arrives tomorrow morning in the form of O'Neill and his lovely wife D. We will of course be taking it easy b/c we are now almost 75 fucking years old, but at the same time they did come all this way and if you're going to leave your brood at home to visit The Venice Of The North, well...we should show them a Northern Venetian good time, no?

Maybe no is actually the correct answer to this, but we'll never rilly know unless we try. Cautiously, cause we're old.




Been reading a good bit of what's been written in the wake of PSH's presumably unexpected departure, and while much of it has been either not-so-enlightening wonderings from the non-addict's necessarily outsider, sometimes romanticsometimes angry perspective ("Why did he do it?" "He had so much to give"), even from writers I enjoy, and some of it has been of the self-congratulatory and generally unhelpful "that could've been me, yo" POV (Slate again, The Guardian), there have been a couple of smart or at least genuinely inquisitive things written, which I will ideally gradually collect here so that I don't spend the rest of the day/week continuing to read them atm...there's accounting-related data entry to be done. And if there's any bright side of the PSH situation, at least neither he nor we had to bear this.

I thought this was a slightly better approach to the question about the ridiculousness of artistic responsibility: Does It Help To Get Angry With Someone With Addiction? (NPR)




Gluten Avoidance Syndrome continues, and not only does it continue but it's now done gone airborne: the Mara is now also experimenting with the GF lifestylez. So yesterday we made something which needs a new moniker, a name other than cabbage lasagna, which is what it was but man does that not sound appetizing, how about lasagne di cavolo, anyway the cooking process needs some refinement (what to do about all the excess liquid per esempio) but the results were extremely lasagne-esque, especially the next day out of the fridge when they tasted like cold pizza; and hey check out that random semicolon there, today MT made a GF Q, AIWRFG.

Initials got contagion as well. MT made a gluten-free quiche, and it was real flippin güt.


caramelized onion and gouda quiche.

2 cups almond flour
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp dried thyme
up to 1/2 tsp garlic powder, to taste (optional)
salt to taste
black pepper to taste

Combine all of the above, press it into a 9 or 10 inch pie pan, going up the sides at least an inch or so. Bake for 10 min at 175C/350F. Remove and let cool.

2 onions, sliced thin
1 cup canned, sliced mushrooms, drained, or, yes, fresh if you feel like it
1 knob butter
pinch thyme
salt and pepper to taste

Combine all of the above together and cook over low heat til onions are caramelized, adding a little more butter if necessary.

6 eggs, beaten with a fork
1 cup Gouda or other softish and mild but interesting cheese, shredded
pinch salt
pinch pepper
Parmesan or other hard cheese, for grating on top

Combine sauteed ingredients with eggs and shredded cheese mixture, pour into crust, place the whole thing on a tray and bake in oven at 175C/350F on a middle rack for 20-25 min, keeping an eye on it.