Monday, January 3, 2011

New Year's Resolution

I recently had the opportunity to hear Mark Bittman speak to a packed audience about his food philosophy. Happily, the discussion mirrored my own approach to a healthful, convenient and delicious diet. He describes himself as a "home cook", a title to which anyone with a working kitchen can ascribe themselves. His everyman approach (and his love affair with the food processor) inspired me to gift his latest cookbook, Food Matters, to my mom (who shares his unnatural desire for the food processor).

In this latest tome (quite large for kitchen countertop cooking), Bittman expounds upon the necessity of bringing food closer to home, and cooking back into the home. These are simple ways to foster nurishment of our bodies, families, communities and farmland. I challenge you to incorporate home cooking into your inevitable "lose 10 pounds" New Year's Resolution. "By becoming a cook, you can leave processed foods behind, creating more healthful, less expensive and better-tasting food that requires less energy, water and land per calorie and reduces our carbon footprint. Not a bad result for us — or the planet," Mark Bittman, NY Times, December 31st.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Drop the Bottle Habit

I commend the Florence water utility, Publiacqua, for attempting to break the water bottle habit. Too often I attend environmental meetings and food security meetings to see more than 85% of the attendees are drinking from brand-name, one-use, plastic bottles. This is the exact audience that should be setting an example for others to follow. I refill and bring my 16 oz., BPA-free, reusable bottle with me always. It is crucial that we all take steps to reduce our dependency on water bottles and the commercialization of a resource. Please follow my example and purchase your reusable bottle and remember to use it!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Pie in the Sky

Yesterday, I had the privilege of competing in my first pie contest at the Malibu Pie Festival. This was the 21st Annual Malibu Pie Festival hosted by the Malibu United Methodist Church. There were over eight pie categories. I entered the Fruit Pie category - blueberry pie with a streusel crumble.

I dropped off the pie early in the morning, and I now know how my mom felt leaving me on the first day of kindergarten. It was so hard to hand over my baby to fend for herself in the Fruit Pie category. When I returned for the pie eating and judging, I was very excited to see that my pie was a definite crowd favorite. It was the first pie to sell out! Later that afternoon, I happily accepted a Third Place Ribbon in the Fruit Pie Category. I can't wait for next year!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Thanks, LA Observed!

Yesterday, I became the 5,000th Twitter follower of @LAObserved. Thanks for the shoutout LA Observed!

Monday, July 12, 2010

A Break from Work

Culver City lunch spots cater to broad audiences from self-acclaimed foodies and health-nuts to deli lovers. The city has a wide-swath of lunch options that will deliver a short respite from the rat race.

Tender Greens

One of the most established restaurants in Culver's downtown revival, this cafeteria-style restaurant serves up hot and cold entrees. The assembly-line, open kitchen serves up food as quickly as your school cafeteria, but with fresh, organic ingredients that appeal to the vegetarian and meat-lover alike.

9523 Culver Blvd. - 310.842.8300 -

Choppe Choppe

The recently renamed (previously Skratch) lunch spot aims to please the on-the-go diner. They have an efficient order and pay system that moves patrons from the chalk board menu to the outdoor seating. This healthful, flavorful lunch option is a surefire pit stop.

3867 Hughes Ave. - 310.558.3400 -

Roll N' Rye

Los Angelenos are deeply dived on the best delis in the city, but here you will find an inviting and satisfying Jewish deli. Diners have the option of booths or stools at the counter and will never leave hungry with large portions and a matzah ball the size of a grapefruit.

10990 Jefferson Blvd. - 310.390.3497

M Cafe

By far teh most health-conscious lunch choice, M Cafe expounds a "contemporary macrobiotic cuisine" which simply means no refined sugar, eggs, dairy, red meat or poultry are used. Some may ask what makes the food so flavorful, but you can taste it in the global approach to seasoning.

9343 Culver Blvd. - 310.838.4300 -

Cafe Surfas

You may already be familiar with Surfas, the famous cooking supply store of the same name. This cafe, attached to the store, rings true with its customer base providing clean, inspired lunch options. The soups, salads and sandwiches remind us why cold cuts just don't cut it.

8777 W Washington Blvd. - 310.558.1458 -

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Surfas + BeeGreenFarm

Bettina with BeeGreenFarm was at Surfas this morning selling seedlings - tomoatoes, rhubarb, spicy greens, you name it. All of the seedlings were certified organic. I got some beautiful roma and heirloom tomato seedlings. She had some great tips on using ordinary home by-products to increase the health of your garden. The most interesting tip - use ashes from a campfire or firepit to increase the potassium in your plants. I would encourage home gardeners to visit Bettina next Saturday at Surfas from 1 - 4 p.m.

8777 W Washington Blvd.
Culver City, CA 90230
(310) 559-4770

Monday, January 11, 2010

Colorful Dining

Samosa House East's curries are as colorful as its decor and clientele. The Crayola-colored dining room is filled with families, foodies and tattoo artists. This is the new branch of the original Culver City dining option of the same name. Vegetable curries of all varieties come in an affordable combination plate ($7.99).

There was a line to the door (or out of it) for my entire meal. This was due to popularity of the newest Culver City restaurant, but could have been remedied with an additional person behind the counter dishing out the delicious curries. The counter could also be shortened by about two inches - the height of the counter required both server and me to stand on our tippy-toes to hear each other.

The dining room had both private and community tables which was condusive to fast dining without the guilt of french fries. Samosa House East is a nice compliment to a rather junky area of Culver City. I can only hope it inspire other restaurants to consider developing another downtown.

Samosa House East
10700 Washington Blvd.
Culver City, CA 90232