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So, I don't think I'm ever allowed to talk about regional failures of vegetables in local Asian, i.e., local restaurants using "local", non-traditional vegetables in dishes because they are a) cheap, b) available, and c) familiar to local palates. It's really the last one I object to, because it's kind of lazy, and I miss having fabulous cabbage in every Japanese soup ever.

However, am currently making a curry with farmers' market yellow squash and green pepper, with sweet corn off a friend's family farm.

Authenticity = fail, but NOM = win.

Of course, it's totally making me miss France and my fabulous roommates there, who (seemingly happily) ate curry at least once a week, because I like cooking curry.

Class starts again in three weeks, which does not make me super happy, and I've loads of stuff I need to get on top of before that happens, which makes me even less happy, but c'est la vie.

Think I shall put on a movie and eat my nommy curry and try to pretend it's not August.


( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Aug. 4th, 2011 04:15 pm (UTC)
You know, there are a couple of things about authenticity.

One of the key things about both the immigrant experience and the colonial experience is people cooking their own dishes in new countries with new ingredients. Italian-American cooking is very different than Italian cooking, because of what was available to the immigrants when they got here, and then that became its own sort of cultural heritage. And while in the late 70s and 80s there was a move away from the "red-sauce Italian" toward cooking that was more "authentically Italian" we've circled back with the New American movement, to honoring those cultural roots.

I think that if you're not a restaurant that has a lot of money to import ingredients and you're promising authenticity, then you don't owe it. One of the real tenets of home cooking is being able to make something out of the stuff laying around in your house. You don't owe anyone to make something that's truly authentic in a Japanese sense as long as you aren't telling them that it is. And honestly, before the global food market, any Japanese immigrants in your area would have been doing the same exact thing that you're doing.

It's funny because authenticity definitely conflicts with the whole Alice Waters/locovore movement. There's a balance to be struck, for sure. But I leave the worries about achieving authenticity to the pros, who have the resources to do so. Heck, I can't even make authentic Maine food much of the time. I figure, as long as I know the difference between authentic Mexican or Tex-Mex food and the stuff I'm making in my house, there's nothing wrong with making my burrito exactly the way I want to. I'm the one eating it after all!
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )


The eyes have it. watching.
Corn-fed sushi lover

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