Food and Drink


Cooking

Food

I like to cook. I've got a wok and a bamboo steamer, and I'm not afraid to use them. I suppose my specialty must be my family pizza recipe, which I learned from my father, who learned it from his parents (my grandparents always make it together). It's not real homemade pizza unless you make the dough and sauce yourself.

I've got a lot of cookbooks, including ethnic ones devoted to Greek, Ethiopian, Italian, and Native American cooking, and ingredient-based ones devoted to tofu and espresso.

Beverages

I'm into coffee. I've got a coffee grinder, an automatic drip coffee machine that I never ever use, a two-cup european plunge-pot that I use for making ordinary coffee, and two espresso machines (one pumped-pressure and one steam-pressure). I'll drink regular or unleaded. I'm in it for the flavor -- the buzz is an optional extra. On the other hand, I really do like the recreational uses of caffeine, especially taken in large quantities (about six espressos) in conjunction with alcohol (stimulant + deprssent = they cancel out and you just get side effects). No milk or sugar for me, unless it's something special like a cappucino (heavy on the cinnamon, please) or an Irish coffee.

[download mead.jpg]

The other beverage that I make is wine, in particular mead. There's something really satisfying about fermenting your own wine at home and serving it. Here's a picture of a batch of mead in my basement, sitting in a secondary fermenter.

I'm hoping to do something with apple wines or ciders this fall, and I'd like to experiment with beers at some point. Oh, yeah, I mean real beers, not this lager crap. I like darks and stouts. If I can see through it, I probably won't like it. Hail Guinness.



Likes and Dislikes

Meat

I'm not a vegitarian by any stretch of the imagination, but in general I don't like the taste of red meat, so I probably eat less of it than most folks. The exceptions are lamb and ham, both of which I really like. I'd like to try mutton and venison some day.

Fish

I won't eat fish -- cooked. The only seafood I'll eat cooked is shrimp (which I like a lot) and the occasional bit of tuna. That said, I really like sushi, even the stuff other folks sometimes consider disgusting like octopus and squid and eel. I've been warned against Uni sushi (sea-urchin genitals), and I'm inclined to accept the advice.

Fruits

Strangely, I really dislike most fresh fruit. I dislike banana, strawberry, watermellon, cherry, raspberry, and many others. I like oranges, lemons and apples (the green ones only, though).

Vegetables

I hate cucumbers, celery and carrots. Ick bletch ptui. I really like brocoli, cauliflower, spinich, snow peas, escarol, zuchini, and rose. Yes, rose. I've had rosepetal jam, rose syrup, rose candies, and rosewater mead, and I'm nuts about the flavor of the stuff.

None Of The Above

Believe it or not, I'm one of the few people on earth who actually actively enjoys tofu. I'll take the stuff straight and uncooked, slice it, and eat it by itself sometimes. I've got a 200+ page cookbook devoted entirely to tofu recipes. I do not like Spam.

Ethnic

My favoriate ethnic food of all is Ethiopian. Oh, yum yum yum. I also like Greek, Middle Eastern, Mongolian Barbeque, Chinese, Japanease, et al. I grew up with Italian food, so I guess I take it for granted and don't really consider it ethnic. I like some of it, and I dislike some of it. One peculiarity of mine is that there are very few tomato sauces that I'll eat, and it must be made at home from scratch or I'm sure to hate it. I hate Italian pastries -- yuck. I dislike French and German food for the most part.


Doug DeJulio
ddj@aisb.org