Thursday, March 31, 2005

send in the clowns

Dick Johnson must be hard up: Page Six resorts to chefs of dubious celebrity today and their little catfight about foie gras: Charlie Trotter served foie gras at a F&W party, even though he refuses to serve it at his restaurants. When the guy from Tru called him hypocritical, Trotter replied, with amusing grammar: "He can't be that dumb, is he?" Now, just because the other guy did completely miss the point, it doesn't mean that Trotter's not a douchebag. For more edifying discussion of foie gras, visit Derek [& pix].

Speaking of douchebaggery, the latest list of the most loathesome New Yorkers has our old friend Adam Gopnik at #12 (beating out Rocco, Bruni, and Thomas Krens among others). It is entertaining to watch others insult the objects of your own scorn, but this list is always so arbitrary it sucks the fun out of the excercise. For example, there is no way poor Gopnik is 3x more loathsome than Krens. And he should get off on a technicality anyway: isn't he a Parisian? Or at least a citizen of "the world"/Canada/Ohio.

However, that does not excuse his latest "review" of possibly the three most boring food books currently in print (along with two interesting ones). Nodding off, you'd swear it was really written by Louis Menand, if not for the telltale opening line: "There are two schools of good writing about food: the mock epic and the mystical microcosmic." Fuck, I'd rather read about clown food.

agnusdei

Since everyone apparently made lamb last week, there's no need to describe mine, except to say that it was good even though I overcooked it. If you just can't let it go, check out the Cod's greek gigot. Update: for next year, 14 recipes from Peter Hertzmann.

Minutia: Paparazzi pics of Slavoj Žižek's Beuno Aires wedding (wha?); Salmon farms are worse than you thought; Nature learns that Bt10 corn has an ampicillin resistance gene -- Syngenta just forgot to mention it; Because we're all about grain here, I should inform you of: Nike L. Ruibal-Mendieta et al., "Spelt (Triticum aestivum ssp. spelta) as a Source of Breadmaking Flours and Bran Naturally Enriched in Oleic Acid and Minerals but Not Phytic Acid," JAFC 53, 2751-59. From the abstract:

Results showed that, on average, spelt wholemeals and milling fractions were higher in lipids and unsaturated fatty acids as compared to wheat, whereas tocopherol content was lower in spelt, suggesting that the higher lipid content of spelt may not be related to a higher germ proportion. Although milling fractionation produced similar proportions of flour and brans in spelt and wheat, it was found that ash, copper, iron, zinc, magnesium, and phosphorus contents were higher in spelt samples, especially in aleurone-rich fine bran and in coarse bran. Even though phosphorus content was higher in spelt than in wheat brans, phytic acid content showed the opposite trend and was 40% lower in spelt versus wheat fine bran, which may suggest that spelt has either a higher endogenous phytase activity or a lower phytic acid content than wheat. The results of this study give important indications on the real nutritional value of spelt compared to wheat.

Also [from an earlier study]: "The claimed innocuity of spelt in gluten-sensitive patients was not confirmed."

[Page 6 and New Yorker links will expire almost immediately].

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