From Too Many Chefs -

January 21, 2005
Food Section Digest

This week, the food sections are trying to stay warm. Stews, greens, and slow cooked dishes pop up on plenty of pages. We also learn what the president and his admirers ate in Washington for Thursday's inauguration. Please, come join us for our semi-regular stroll through a week's worth of America's culinary news.

The wires (via the Corpus Christi Caller-Times) learned that when you cut portion size the customers complain, at least at chains.

The Napa news says that Syrah is in, but you're so cool I bet you already knew that. If you don't know Syrah from Shinola, though, they've also got tips for the novice vino buyer.

For those readers foolish enough to live in the colder climes, The Oregonian cooks up some winter greens.

It must be cold in Toledo as well, because they're making hearty one-pot meals. They've also got some oxymoronic recipes for healthy soul food, but what fun is that?

Out in Reno, the paper found a man who eats every inch of his hogs. Did someone say, "Bacon"? Speaking of obsessive, what do think it would be like to work for Cook's Illustrated's unber-geek Chris Kimball? He looks so friendly, but I'm afraid he might beat me if I overcooked a roast.

Dining in D.C. often has little to do with food, and the New York Times finds that particularly true during the inauguration. Here is a line to make any gourmand sick to their stomach: "The diners (from a Wisconsin law firm) expect to polish off the 12-course dinner ($135 a person with wine adding $70) between 5:30 and 7 p.m., when they must be off to one of the balls." R.W. Apple, Jr., wisely skips Washington all together and searches out the Asian food across the Potomac in Virginia. If I could find a bottle of Lebanese arak, I would have a few shots and forget all about politics.

At ground zero for the festivities celebrating Bush's second reign, the Washington Post takes a trip down memory lane with a history on menus of inaugurations past. The Italians, proud members of the coalition of the willing, are in a tither over pasta, it seems.

Gallo has made pleasing the American wine palate a science, and according the L.A. Times he's ready to import his marketing research to France. Quel horror! Every one's talking about the French secret to skinniness, but columnist David Shaw wonders why American eat so damn much. Carolynn Carreño learns that great cooks around the globe slip bouillon cubes into their dishes.

The Chicago Tribune reports that yankees have finally learned about gourmet grits. Glenn Roberts in South Carolina has brought back heirloom corn for the grits that gourmet chefs can't get enough of. A nice boiled lobster would be good over grit cakes, wouldn't it? Chocolate is always the perfect Christmas gift, and 18,000 people gave See's chocolates this year.

The Miami Herald discovers that African cooking is often vegetarian. Maricel E. Presilla identifies that signature flavors of Latin cooking: an acid medium (vinegar, limes) and aromatic spices like cumin or oregano. Popcorn, it turns out, might be the quintessential pan-American snack, according to Judy Stanley.

The Atlanta Journal Constitution catches up with writer John T. Edge as he eats his way across the South.

The Lunch Guys review the Wendy's Combo for the Palm Beach Post. These reviews of fast food restaurants run weekly, and I still can't tell if they're a joke.

Eat well this week! Please let us know of any English language food sections you would like included in future edition of the Food Section Digest.

Posted by at January 21, 2005 10:23 AM

Great selections. The signature flavors article from the Miami Herald was especially good.

Posted by barrett on January 21, 2005 at 11:09 AM

Thanks. I think the Miami Herald has one of the most interesting sections in the country. It's well written, and the Latin American focus makes it unique.

Posted by Todd in New Orleans on January 21, 2005 at 12:14 PM