A great article on how a beer company survived Prohibition.
When the Government Banned PBR, Pabst Made Cheese Instead
By Mark Hay
“ . . . Yet as America moved towards Prohibition, the folks at Pabst recognized that their beer empire was about to dry up. So, soon after the nationwide ban on alcohol went into effect in 1920, Pabst pivoted to making a “delicious cheese food.” They called it Pabst-ett and sold it in block and spreadable forms, as well as in cheddar, pimento, and Swiss flavors . . . ”
My posts have been a little irregular for the last two weeks. It had nothing to do with the corona virus. Two weeks ago I spilled a glass of wine on my keyboard. You should try to never do that. It killed my laptop. The was nowhere to quickly get it fixed or buy a new one. Bridget had an old one which I’m now using and although it took a while to gather all of the programs I needed to produce them, Reveries and Recipes blog posts are back. (Although I’m still having trouble with the new post notification email.)
Every night at 7 pm New York opens its windows and with 2 minutes of applause and cheers, thanks the medical and other essential workers.
“In most western households, forks are a basic part of a table setting — unless you’re all eating is soup. The relationship Italians have with the fork is certainly crucial. How could we eat spaghetti without one? When I was a kid, my dad spent hours teaching me how to twirl my fork so that not a strand of spaghetti hung down as I lifted that incredible tool to my mouth. He also taught me you don’t use a fork and a spoon to eat pasta. Twirling spaghetti against a spoon is for children and at a certain point I had to grow up . . . “
An interesting recipe – turmeric pasta – from Sue Li in the New York Times. I think of turmeric as a typically Indian ingredient but it really works with pasta. I made a couple of changes to her recipe replacing butter with olive oil and heavy cream with ricotta. You can do it either way.
1 lb. small pasta
Olive oil for frying
1 small onion, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 ½ tsps. Turmeric
1 cup ricotta
1 cup Parmesan cheese
4 tbsp. chopped parsley
Start a pot of salted water to cook the pasta. Drain the pasta when done, reserving 2 cups of the pasta water.
Saute the onion and garlic in oil in a pot. When the onion is soft add the turmeric and stir it into the onions for about 30 seconds. Slowly whisk in the ricotta and bring to a simmer. Stir in the Parmesan and add enough of the pasta water (you may not need all of it) to thin to a sauce consistency. Add the cooked pasta and parsley, blend and serve with additional cheese.
Interview: Kids Around the World Photographed Surrounded by Their Weekly Diet
The revolution in diet and sameness of what kids around the world are eating—ultra-processed packaged foods, empty calories. The children I met have distinct personalities and diverse hobbies, yet they’re often eating in eerily similar ways. Compare the diets of Paulo from Sicily and Isaiah from Los Angeles.
Whenever I go to New Orleans I over eat. It’s that combination of ingredients that you get in NOLA classic dishes that can’t be beat. With Cajun spice, shrimp and green onions this one really comes together.
Escarole and potato soup – sometimes my mother made it with soprasade and other times with beans. You can try it with both. That one clove of garlic was my idea, not my mother’s.
Olive oil for frying
½ lb. soprasade cut into thin slices
1 chopped onion
1 minced garlic clove
2 pealed potatoes cut into ½ inch pieces
6 cups coarsely chopped escarole
4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
3 diced plum tomatoes
Salt and black pepper to taste
Put the soprasade in a pot with some oil and cook for a few minutes – don’t brown. Add the chopped onion and cook until translucent and soft. Add the garlic and potatoes. Add oil if yuou need it. Stir and cook for another 5 minutes.
Add the washed escarole. It may seem to overflow the pot but add ½ cup of water, cover and simmer for 5 to 8 minutes until it wilts. Stir until all ingredients are well mixed.
Add the tomatoes, the stock, and vinegar. Mix thoroughly and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 1 hour. Check for seasoning and serve with a drizzle of olive oil and grated Parmesan cheese.
My doctor says everyone should eat more beans and greens and less red meat. I’m trying, so here’s another bean and something recipe – Shrimp and Bean Soup. This one is from Evelyn. She adapted it from an old family recipe. You can use any kind of dried beans you like. I’m using Goya’s habichuelas blancas (small white beans).
To start – Pick through the beans and rinse them. Put them in a pot with 4 cups of water and bring to a boil and turn off heat. Let them sit for one hour. Or you can let them stand in 4 cups of cold water overnight.
In the meantime – Hear some oil in a large pot. Cook the trinity until it’s soft, about 10 minutes. Add 6 cups of water, the beans, and bay leaf and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 2 hours or until the beans are tender.
Remove a cup of beans and puree them in a blender or food processor and return them to the pot to thicken the soup. Add the Worcestershire sauce. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper. If the soup is too thick, add water. Put the shrimp in the pot, stir and cook for 5 – 8 minutes until done. Serve in individual bowls with a sprinkling of olive oil.
Place the sausage in the freezer for 20 minutes. This makes it easier to slice and hold its shape. Brown the sausage in oil in a stock pot. Remove when done and leave the oil and fat in the pot.
Add the tomato paste and cumin to the pot and cook and stir for 2 minutes. Add the trinity and garlic. Cook on medium until the vegetables have softened.
Stir in the beans, 8 cups of water, thyme, rosemary, and bay leaf. Bring it to a boil, lower heat and simmer until the beans are cooked – about 2 hours.
At this point remove about a cup of beans and puree them in a blender or food processor and return them to the pot to thicken the stew. Return the sausage to the pot and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the vinegar, taste and adjust seasoning.