Andrew Sachs
Los Angeles, United States

Everything in moderation, including moderation.

Coffee drinkers the world over should set down their latte’s and observe a moment of silence for Alfred Peet who has passed away at the age of 87. Peet, who is best known as the founder of the exceptional chain Peet’s coffee can be argued to have been the father of the quality coffee movement that has swept across the globe. For it was Peet in his famous Berkeley shop who was approached by a group of entrepreneurs from Seattle to provide his high quality roasted beans for their new venture. Peet not only provided the beans but showed the young founders of Starbucks how to roast them. Were it not for Alfred Peet’s quest to restore a lost taste, coffee drinkers around the world might still be drinking lousy diner brew.

See the LA Times obituary for more.

Southland Bakery of California, the make of Wonder Bread, announced today they will be discontinuing the famous white bread. Once marketed as the healthy nutrient rich way to “build strong bodies” the ubiquitous white bread has fallen out of favor. The company claims their bread has fallen victim to the changing tastes of an increasingly health conscious market. There may be some truth in that argument, but it does not tell the whole story.

Yesterday the Trust for America’s Health issued a report drawing upon federal statistics that childhood obesity is increasing at alarming rates. In the District of Columbia the childhood obesity rate is a staggering 22.8 %. Think about it — nearly 23 out of every 100 children in the nations capitol are not simply fat but obese.

So what does this have to do with the demise of Wonder Bread? Everything. Because Southland Bakery is not discontinuing sales of Hostess Twinkies, Ding Dongs, Ho Ho’s and its other snack foods. So although some parents may be rejecting white bread for healthier options, the truth is our nation is embracing junk foods at an alarming rate. The proof is in the waistlines of our children. Sad news indeed.

Sources: LA Times Baker Slicing Production & the Trust for America’s Health

Today we had Grilled cheese and tomato soup. Yummm!

Ox tail soup tonight. I can’t wait. I’m working on posting the recipe and trying to figure out how to take a good picture of soup.

My slightly older sister got into cooking first. It was the late 80’s and I suspect it was her proximity to Fairway and Zabars that kicked it off. Or maybe it was her innate sense of taste, but whatever it was I used to visit and was all the better for it. But something always confused me. The better her meals got the more sparse her refrigerator looked. It took me a while to figure out that what she had was the basic ingredients. There was no need for the pre-packaged junk I was accustomed to when you could whip up a tasty meal. I learned a lot from my ill conceived junk runs to my sisters fridge.

Here are my top five recipes for a Monday evening.

  1. Sidecar
  2. 3-2-1 Margarita
  3. Bloody Mary
  4. Mexican Caesar
  5. Pig around a Blanket

“Tell me why I love Mondays”

Recently I asked a fanatical film buff what was on his top five list. He thought for a moment and then replied that it depends on the day, mood, and one-hundred and one other critical factors in making such a list. Immediately I understood. Here is my top five list for early dinners on a balmy sunday while listening to jazz on the random setting of the itunes.

  1. Classic Chicken in Vinegar
  2. Sidecar
  3. Chicken Souvlaki with Tzatziki sauce
  4. Black cod with miso
  5. Windows on the World Broiled Shrimp with Feta Cheese

Tomorrows list will most likely be completely different. It all depends on the mood.

We had a Maryland style crab feast last night at my place. It was a decadent taste of my childhood and oh boy was it good!

Amen to that!

Indeed — Sundays are a special cooking day when the whole family has time to savor the preparation as much as the meal itself.

Every day’s for cooking! Sundays are for cooking slower perhaps. And drinking wine.

Sundays are for cooking and today we have a friend coming over to cook Filipino food. I can’t wait.

While the rest of the world gobbles the last delicious morsels of the Harry Potter series, I have been devouring the excellent and inspirational early biography by Jaques Pepin. He may have been at the center of the revolution that has shaped the American culinary landscape, but it his passion for both life and cooking that has captured my imagination in a compelling grip.

A thorough recommendation for the Apprentice: my life in the kitchen is forthcoming.

The other night I grilled grass fed rib-eye over a wood flame and served it with Mum’s roast potatoes and a simple salad. Not only was the meal a tasty delight, but every bite was purchased at the farmer’s market. Better yet every bit of it was grown or raised not more than 20 miles from where we consumed it. If eating local is this good and this simple then sign me up!

My children may not be the most well mannered or behaved, but while making brownies with her aunt my daughter thought to save the spatula for me to lick. That’s about as close to perfect as they can get.

Sundays are for cooking. Tonight I am grilling grass fed rib eye and I am taking my sweet time mulling over the other possibilities.

Last night I made Summer flank steak with Israeli Couscous it was delicious! I am embarrassed to admit this, but for as many times as I have made the flank steak I have never cooked it on charcoal. Oh is it nice!

Sundays are for cooking with family.

The answer is Mac & Cheese. I made this for my daughters birthday party. Even though I was a inadvertently heavy handed with the cayenne pepper, there was nary a morsel left.