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This Saturday (tomorrow!), head over to Coolhaus in Pasadena, and buy some baked goods. Proceeds benefit the Philippine Red Cross. On the menu are Salted Caramel Ginger Snap Sandwiches, Arkansas Black Apple Hand Pies, Bacon Caramel Popcorn, Lemon Shortbread Bars, Ube Cupcakes, gluten-free treats, and even pre-made pie dough (hello, Thanksgiving shortcut). I made the Oatmeal Peanut Butter Cookies with Dark Chocolate & Cherry Chunks you see above, and they’re totally good.
Hope to see you there! Here’s the flyer:
An Italian sub can be a glorious thing, but cold cuts aren’t for everyone. If you’re a vegetarian, or if you just prefer a meatless lunch now and again, finding a good veggie sandwich can be a task. Sometimes all you get is lettuce, tomato and cheese. Talk about blah. Still, there are some satisfying veggie sandwiches out there that demonstrate real deliberation and craftsmanship. Here are three good ones:
The Trails Cafe: The Avocado Sandwich and The Trails in Griffith Park is one of the best citywide. Thick chunks of ripe avocado, tomato, red onions, alfalfa sprouts and cheddar cheese are stacked high between two slices of sweet squaw bread. Mayo and soy bacon bits complement each bite. It’s the kind of sandwich that you miss when it’s gone, but the lavender shortbread cookies they sell are will console you. 2333 Fern Dell Dr Los Angeles, 90068
It’s been a while, but I have another giveaway! This one is for the 2nd Annual Sunset & Dine. The event will kick off the Oscars Outdoor summer movie screening program at Academy Hollywood (6322 DeLongpre Ave. in Hollywood), the outdoor amphitheater on the campus of The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
If you win, you’ll get 2 tickets (they’re usually $30 a piece), which will get you free beer and wine, plus food from local restaurants, like Magnolia, The Cat & Fiddle, Doomie’s Home Cookin’, Fabiolus Cucina, Stella Barra, Village Pizzeria and more. They’ll also be screening “Sunset Boulevard”. Sounds fun, no? Event goes from 6-10 on June 13.
Here’s how to win:
- Follow Eastside Food Bites on Twitter or Facebook–if you’re already a follower, you’re good. If not, just click one of the corresponding buttons in the left hand corner.
- Comment below and let me know where you follow me (FB or Twitter), so I can check. Tell me your handle name.
- Enter by midnight Tuesday, June 11.
I’ll pick the winner (fair and square raffle style) on Wednesday morning and let you know who won by noon. If you don’t get back to me by 6pm that night, I’ll have to pick someone else. Once you’re confirmed, your name + 1 will be put on the guest list.
Easy as pie.
If you’d like to forgo the contest and buy a ticket, you can get yours here.
Admittedly, I’ve been bored with Malo for a while. I used to go all the time, but eventually my enthusiasm waned. Of course, I still had love for the habanero and cream salsa and ground beef and pickle tacos, but neither kept me coming back. For that reason, news that Chef Robert Luna had re-vamped his menu caught my attention. And as luck would have it, I was invited to try it.
The verdict: I liked the new menu so much that I’ve already been back twice.
What I’ve always appreciated about Malo is that it doesn’t purport to be authentically Mexican. Instead, it’s a re-imagining of good old-fashioned LA-style Chicano comfort fare—cheesy enchiladas, hard-shell tacos, chewy chips, sweet mole, etc. The new menu follows that line, but goes beyond its previous taco-centric limitations with a long list of starters, salads, and small plates.
Standouts include the Soyrizo Fundido, a decadently cheesy concoction that’s meant to be spooned onto thick pieces of bread. I preferred it as a chip dip. On the lighter, more nutritious side was the Kale & Seed Salad topped with flax and sunflower seeds, thick tomato chunks and pistachio dressing. Unexpectedly functional were the Kale Mole Enchiladas with Pumpkin. Mixing cheese and pumpkin shouldn’t work, but somehow it does.
I’m currently sitting on a stockpile of cinnamon rolls.
It’s true. They’re hanging out in a bag in the bottom drawer of my freezer, and every third morning or so, I break into it and enjoy one with some butter and tea. It’s quite the treat.
The best part is that I made them myself. That’s right—I made the dough, rolled it out, sprinkled it with cinnamon and sugar and lived to tell about it. The result is super wholesome, relatively nutritious (75% whole wheat) pillowy cinnamon rolls that freeze well and can be reheated in a toaster oven…because you deserve a nice breakfast even on a weekday.
You can do it, too. Just beware that yeast is involved, so you’ll need a few hours of prep time. Here’s how (see full ingredients list at the end of post):
Prepare the dough: To start, heat butter and milk in a saucepan and set aside. Next, mix white flour and 1 cup of whole wheat flour, water, yeast, sugar and eggs together at low speed using your paddle attachment. Now add the milk and butter mixture, salt, and the rest of the whole wheat flour. Don’t stop until it’s well blended.
If you have a kneading hook, now’s the time to use it. Start kneading, adding more flour (verrrrry slowly and in tiny amounts) if needed. The goal is to get a big ball of dough that doesn’t stick to the sides of the mixing bowl. Same goes if you’re kneading by hand. You want it to be moist but not sloppy. It should take about 10 minutes.
Once you get it right, transfer the ball into a large, oiled metal bowl. Cover with a towel, and put it in a warmish place.
Starting Monday, Downtown LA’s Cornerstone Theater will host Creative Seeds, a two-week event all around LA that brings together artists, food activists, farmers, chefs, food critics and thought leaders to explore a wide array of hunger issues.
I’m especially honored (and totally humbled) to be included in the November 15th panel, which includes Jonathan Gold, Good Food’s Evan Kleiman and Elina Shatkin of LA Weekly. Our panel will be held at the Bootleg Theater in Historic Filipino Town from 12-2 and will be hosted by performance artist and writer Luis Alfaro–the topic is “What do different generations of food critics hunger for?“
Other panel topics include:
How do we get food to people that are hungry?
How does our relationship with farmers shape our relationships with hunger and with food?
How are culture, ethnicity and class linked to experiences of hunger and fulfilment?
From multinational corporations to the corner store, what are the links between access, food choices, and money?
There’s a lot more too. Check out the program schedule and book tickets (it’s FREE!) to the stuff that interests you because seats are limited.
See you there!
This is pretty exciting! Eastside Food Bites was featured on Refinery 29 (one of my favorite sites) this week as one of “The Best LA Food Blogs to Bookmark Now.” I’m humbled to be on a list with such an esteemed list of bloggers including The Gastronomer, who I truly admire.
Thanks to writer Natalie James, who also write Fashion Intel, a idol-worthy blog itself.
UPDATE: BOMB! Salads is now BOMB! Foods, but you can still find them in the Silver Lake Farmers’ Market.
When Rowan Moore Gerety wrote me, he had two questions: a.) had I tried Tacos La Fonda in Glassel Park and b.) did I know about his salad stall at the Silver Lake Farmers’ Market. The answer to both questions was no, but I was easily lured by his description of BOMB! Salads—fresh salads made to order with produce purchased on the spot.
Sign me up.
Every Saturday until 2pm, Gerety and his business partner, Jesse, (who’s taking over while Gerety is away on assignment in Mozambique) whip up salads, soups and mashed potatoes from scratch. The menu and ingredients change depending on what’s in available at the market. On my visit, I tried two salads: one with chopped broccoli, julienned apples and cilantro (pictured above) and another with curly kale, gold beet, dandelion and cucumbers. Both were really delicious with a light dressing of sunflower with lemon and yellow mustard on the kale and green pea and peppercorn on the broccoli salad. The crunch factor of both salads (super fresh!) was a plus, and the plate-sized portions were a fair deal for $6.
Last summer I had a dramatic mole experience at the 3rd Annual Feria de Los Moles. Well, a few actually, but the most pivotal of all happened when I sunk my teeth into a succulent piece of pork souped-up in Pueblan mole verde from Antojitos de mi Abuelita. “Divine” is the only word that accurately describes the moment.
And the only word that can describe the moment I found out that the North Hollywood food truck would be showcased at the last installment of Street Food Mondays is “YAY!” It was enough to make me leave my house on a Monday night. Hosted by Street Gourmet LA’s Bill Esparza and Evan Kleiman of KCRW’s Good Food, Street Food Mondays brings the city’s best street food to Kleiman’s Angeli Caffe in the form of a 3-course meal.
Downtown LA is the last major obstacle between me and home on my daily west-to-east commute. Already battered by the indignities of the Santa Monica Freeway, I usually ditch the 110 and weave my way through the city streets instead. However traumatizing, this drive has proven a great tool for bringing restaurants to my attention.
One place I drive by and wonder about a lot is Zucca, so I was excited when I got an invite to try out the Italian restaurant’s new Piazza menu. The main perk of this al fresco service (menu is served on the patio) is that the large selection of small plates—antipasti, oven-fired pizzas, salads and pastas—are fairly inexpensive. Nothing over $12, all day from 11:30 to 9pm.