Nothing’s gonna ever keep me down

Thai Fortune
I knew there was a reason I liked the people of Thailand. – fortune from Pearl Cafe.

Useless Cooking Tip #2: Fast Soaking Beans

Two years ago, in a night of cooking and drinking, a YouTube video was born

Thanks to the power of iMovie, it now has a sequel of vastly superior production quality

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Lunch Dilemma?

You’re working from home and it’s lunch time.  Your wife thawed hamburger that needs to be used, but you can’t find a bun.  But, ah, there’s some red wattle applewood-smoked ham.  You can make a sandwich.  But there’s not enough ham for a sandwich.  What do you do?

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Connecting the Dots

Photo of E.B. WhiteRecently I have been reading quite a lot, and to say I am fascinated by some people’s command of language would be a gross understatement.  Regretfully, I feel that while I can BS endlessly, I write quite poorly as a whole and am jealous of these people.

One book I’ve read recently–or reread as it were–is Strunk and White’s The Elements of Style.  The forward once again captivated me in a way that the subject rarely is, and as I neared it’s end and saw who wrote it, I am embarrassed to admit that I had not previously considered that the White half of Strunk and White, is E.B. White; the author of Charlotte’s Web and Stuart Little.

You see, of late I have also been reading Letters of E. B. White; all the while in shock that a man who is best known for writing children’s books writes with such grace.  Connecting the dots, it would appear I now have a new author to count amongst my favorites, and here is one food-related E.B White quote, from a letter he wrote to Bennet Cerf regarding Charlotte’s Web, that I am especially fond of.

A farm is a peculiar problem for a man who likes animals because the fate of most livestock is that they are murdered by their benefactors. The creatures may live serenely but they end violently, and the odor of doom hangs about them always.

I have kept several pigs, starting them in the spring as weanlings and carrying trays to them all through the summer and fall. The relationship bothered me. Day by day I became better acquainted with my pig, and he with me, and the fact that the whole adventure pointed toward an eventual piece of double-dealing on my part lent an eerie quality to the thing.

#stl Twits

St. Louis Restaurants on Twitter
St. Louis Restaurants on Twitter

St. Louis Restaurants on Twitter

St. Louis Restaurants on Twitter

For weeks I’ve scoured many of your Twitter feeds.  Sometimes I found the St. Louis restaurants, chefs, and other food-related accounts I hoped to. But then I also found things that would make for a bizarre demographic study of St. Louis foodsters.  Like, apparently, a lot of you are LeVar Burton fans.  At first I wondered, are you Reading Rainbow fans or Trekkies? And then I looked at LeVar Burton’s Twitter feed and along with learning that he felt The Who’s halftime show sucked and if you call him during Lost he will hurt your feelings, he has 1,607,229 followers.

But why the research?  Because Twitter blessed us with lists so that we can create organized feeds of people we don’t actually want to follow personally.  And that gave me the opportunity to waste my time assembling four lists that encompass every restaurant, chef, grocer and coffee shop located in St. Louis currently on Twitter. Word Up!

Click the links above and if I missed any, let me know @stlbites.

Get it Fresh: Intelligentsia Zirikana @ Whole Foods

Delivered Monday to Whole Foods Brentwood was a Direct Trade Intelligentsia coffee, the Zirikana, Rwanda: Bufcafe, that was roasted 2010.02.04.

Here’s what Intelligentsia has to say about the coffee..

Extremely fruit-forward and sincere. Peach nectar precedes a honeyed mouthfeel and an extended flavor of grape, lime and nectarine. A finish of cacao and walnut frame the experience.

Get it while it’s fresh…and sorry I didn’t mention it sooner.

Note: Because coffee is so much better fresh, I welcome any coffee roaster or merchant of specialty coffee in St. Louis, that has dated roasted products, to email me when you have a freshly roasted coffee.  I will post it for people to snatch up at its best.

»crosslinked«

From the Vault: Flaco’s Tacos

Flaco's Tacos LogoAlthough I’ve slacked a bit in recent years, for the meals outside of St. Louis, I have the vast majority of every restaurant menu I’ve ever eaten from over about the last 12 years.  Or at least that’s what I thought.  As it turns out, that must be a recent thing because I apparently used to keep them from St. Louis too.  Tonight’s find amongst a stack of assorted menus from the mid to late nineties, filed next to a two-year run of clipped Post Dispatch Patricia Corrigan reviews in which you can read again and again that quantity apparently trumps quality, I spotted the Holy Grail of shuttered St. Louis restaurant menus: Flaco’s Taco

Three shots at glory are yours, after the jump…

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From the Vault: Arthur Clay’s

Arthur Clay's Mailer

A mailer from 2003/2004 (or so) for a free martini in March at the always missed Arthur Clay’s Bistro in Maplewood, MO.