Wednesday, April 2, 2008
Ramblings about Food
I think about food a lot. How much i like it, why do i eat so much, where does it come from, is it good for my body, can i grow it, how do i grow it, how can i cook it, what am i going to cook for dinner.... You get the picture. Tonight i'm making lentil stew for dinner. I like making flavorful mixtures of different ingredients. The stew has animal (diced pancetta ham fried into bacon bits for a garnish at the end- wonder where the pig was grown?), leafy vegetables from my garden, seeds (lentils ... don't know where they came from either), flowers (star anise, very popular among the chefs on the cooking shows i watch and learn from... mainly that fancy food is not good for you... fat, fat, and more fat), fungi (mushrooms), minerals (salt), bacteria (in the collard kraut i fermented which is tasting good now after about 5 weeks), probably lots of other microorganisms too.
I used a variety of cooking methods to prepare the individual ingredients for the stew; frying, sauteing, simmering, fermenting. The end result is very tasty, nutritious, a little fattier than it could have been. All in all it will be a very satisfying experience as soon as i'm done eating too much of it.
By the way, i did some research on star anise. It is the dried flower of Illicium verum. It is hardy to zone 8 and sounds fairly easy to grow so i'm going to plant some seeds and see if they germinate. The flowers are used in homeopathic remedies, chewed after a meal to aid digestion and freshen the breath, and are a main component in the preparation of Tamiflu, the drug that is supposed to protect us from the bird flu epidemic. Ya'll remember the bird flu epidemic don't you. Be careful with those chickens you are growing they might kill you.
Eat More Star Anise!