From the Museum of Culinary History (1990)Welcome to the Museum of Culinary History. MOCH (pronounced mooch) is a virtual culinary arts institution I discovered about 20 years ago while doodling in my journal. I had placed four American culinary legends on pedestals and titled the image “From the Museum of Culinary History.”
When Food Was Underwear (2008)
Can there be a gastronomy of art, cuisine’s reﬂection in the mirror of art history and its classic two-dimensional formats: portraiture, the human body, landscape and still life? We answer, “Yes, as long as there is food on the plate and people to eat it, there is still life.”
Two Performance Artists (1987)
Prior to the transformation of the culinary arts into a branch of the performing arts in the second half of the 20th century, chefs were artists in their ateliers, working their magic behind closed doors, out of public view. There was something hermetic and mysterious about the art of cuisine, even religious.
And One Giant Leap for Gastronomy (2009)
I left the restaurant amused and dazzled by the sheer technical display. This was gastronomic territory light years away from Webster’s definition of a meal: “The portion of food taken at a particular time to satisfy appetite.” But was Chef Patterson’s food at San Francisco's Coi "edge cuisine" or over-the-edge cuisine?
Al Peet, The Original Mr. Coffee (2009)
No, Dutch-born Al Peet was quiet, taciturn and somewhat imperious in the Old World style, which many customers remember as simply crusty. He was a ﬁne looking fellow, it should be noted, albeit with thinish lips and a prominent, not quite aquiline, nose — both well suited, it would appear, for cupping, the professional coffee-taster’s practice.
Blanquette de Veau (2009)
It’s true that a fabulous Blanquette de Veau, such as the one I enjoyed recently in Paris, is not art in the same way that a painting by Claude Monet is art. For one thing the Monet can hang on its museum wall indefinitely, if properly preserved, whereas an ephemeral Blanquette rots away before it can make it up the museum’s steps, through the doors and onto a pedestal.
Home Cooking (2008)
Growing up in the 1950's in a family where women were trim and swanky, and the men big and beefy, I've vacillated all my life, morphologically speaking, between husky and plump. Neither describe the more ectomorphic body type that I, and the women in my life, have wished for me.