Tasty Eats

  • @FritzRay said in Tasty Eats:

    David: You & Mari eat so well & soooooo-elengantly,


    We do not eat "elegantly." Well unless "elegantly" means taking the stuff rich people don't want and turning it into food better than the rich people eat.

    Much of what we eat is from peasant cuisines all over the world. Yeah, okay, my post was about pork tenderloin rather than pig toenails, but when you look at the price, pork tenderloin is one of the best protein values you can find in terms of dollars per gram.

    And beef? When steak night rolls around, you can pay some bizarre price for filet mignon if you really want to, but I'm going to buy a hanger for about a fifth the price and get a better-tasting meal.

    Sometimes the whole food scene reminds me of the fashion scene. I spent 80% of the last twenty years of my working life in a comfy office dressed in jeans and a T-shirt, cranking out words, but the other 20% was as a host or panelist at international conferences where most people were dressed in $1,000 suits. Ha! I looked every bit as well-dressed as any of them, and my suits were $25 from whatever thrift store my wife felt like shopping at.

    At the local butcher, I can buy a whole pork shoulder for US$2.15 per pound. Cut off the 20% by weight of fat and braise with a few homegrown herbs and spices and I have a freezer full of pulled pork. Or stew it with some roasted hatch chilies and tomatillos (and cumin and garlic), and I have about ten meals of incredible pork chile verde.

    Elegant? No fucking way. Delicious? Damn right!

  • @David-Harris said in Tasty Eats:

    Elegant? No fucking way. Delicious? Damn right!

    Sorry David, but you are elegant in your dining & wines, by Idaho standards. Worse yet! That's a Costco wine on our table.


  • @FritzRay said in Tasty Eats:

    Sorry David, but you are elegant in your dining & wines, by Idaho standards. Worse yet! That's a Costco wine on our table.

    Yeah, I still have a few "elegant" wines in the cool room downstairs, but what is on our table most nights is just whatever we can find at the local government liquor store at a decent taste/price ratio. Supplemented by what I brew in the garage.

    And if you think pork chile verde, or hanger steaks, or braised lamb shanks, or any one of a hundred other inexpensive ways to feed yourself is "elegant" then I don't know what to say.

    Once this plague has subsided, you should come up for a visit, and a dose of peasant food.

    And, if you do, bring some asparagus.

  • So simple (i.e. non-elegant) and so good.

    A handful of green beans, parboiled, then fried
    Some white beans slow cooked in goose stock
    A piece of salmon from the local grocery store, baked for about 25 minutes.

    Easy, fast, cheap... and fucking delicious... especially with a little bit of balsamic vinegar sprinkled over everything.

    Salmon and beans.jpg

  • I always wondered, why, oh why, would anyone want to mess with the flavor of one of the best foods known to man: Fresh Caught Salmon!

    As a commercial fisherman, I got pretty spoiled. If it was not flopping on the deck a few hours ago it was not fresh. A little butter and lemon and yer' in heaven. Maybe bake it with some bacon. Hence my conceptual image rarely matches reality. And then I realized why some like to spice up salmon. I am allergic to garlic so I guess I noticed this trend, which seems to be correlated whether I am inland versus coastal. You're close to great salmon fisheries though (or were?) so I imagine you're getting the good stuff and it is a personal preference.

    Anyways, I just want to mack that bad boy, sans the vinegar. Especially if it was caught local. I do not even try buying seafood in Boise as to me it just does not cut it and I'd rather do without than be so disappointed. Oh yeah, and do not even get me started on farmed versus wild caught salmon.


  • @toby I'm with you on salmon being one of the best foods there is. And, like you, I don't want to mess it up with anything that will distract from its own flavor. You prefer butter and lemon. We often go with butter and lime (a bit of lime zest and butter grated onto the fish before it goes into the oven), or, as last night, a tiny sprinkle of balsamic vinegar when it hits the table instead of lemon or lime.

    As to location, yes, we are in salmon heaven. And I'm with you on the no-farmed-salmon platform.

    Salmon has an interesting history in the US. At the beginning of the twentieth century, salmon was some garbage fish that only natives on the northwest coast would eat. Well poor whites ate it too, if they had to, but if they had enough money they wouldn't touch it. If they had money they would spend it on chicken. Something that poor people could only dream of.

    One of the slogans that Herbert Hoover's Presidential campaign used in the 1928 election was "A chicken in every pot, and a car in every garage."

    How things change. Salmon, good fresh salmon, is now a luxury item far out of reach of the poor, while chicken is factory farmed in such stupefying quantity that it has become a staple food for people of limited means. (Real chicken is actually pretty good, but considerably more expensive than the tasteless, hormone and antibiotic riddled, mass-produced garbage that is labeled as "chicken" in most grocery stores.)

  • It is tough to get good "wild" salmon in south Idaho. That's sad, since there used to be huge Salmon runs up the Snake River to other Idaho rivers. Starting in the early 1900's, dams gradually eradicated Idaho's Salmon.

    The last straw, was 3 dams built on the lower Snake River in the 1960's & 70's. I was a Forestry student at the nearby U of Idaho at the time. My senior year, I took a required "Fisheries Management" course. The elderly prof explained that each dam on the Snake & Columbia Rivers killed about 8% of Idaho's migrating salmon & these 3 dams were a "tipping-point" towards extinction.

    50 years later, after massive amounts of taxpayer money going to subsidized those dams, & keep Idaho's salmon runs alive, mostly through fish hatcheries, we are close to Idaho salmon going extinct.

    We drive 90 miles north to Ketchum/Sun Valley & buy fresh Alaska salmon, air-freighted into a market that can afford to pay $25.00 - $35.00 a pound for fresh Alaska King (Chinook) salmon.

    Strange times.

  • @FritzRay Ah, yes. Cooper River Kings that have been air freighted. Passable. Well, pretty damned delicious compared to what is in the stores. I still want it fresher though. At least in an ideal world that no longer exists.

    @David-Harris Interesting history lesson. Former bro-in-law has 5 acres. He's Chinese and brought his folks over. They grow chickens and vegetables that they sell to locals. Get $20 per each for their chickens and folks are waiting in line. Indians also really want their fresh blood. But the Chinese hate India so they will not sell to Indians. They also do not speak English so that has led to some "interesting" situations.

    What we have allowed to happen to our formerly great natural resources in this country is a case study in mismanagement. And here's a little cluebat: The problem has not been the Biologists. But now we're drifting into a whole 'nuther mess o' sticky wickets best left for Big Q's.

  • Cornbread, fresh out of the oven. It's what's for breakfast (with a bit of maple syrup).


  • Is this the place to talk about...


    Seriously? You wanna post cleavage photos here? On a climbing forum? Where children might see them?

    Well, yeah, sure, why not?


    Yup, Mari made a pesto and then combined it with the leftovers from the lamb I roasted last night and put it all on a pizza.



    And all that was left...


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