Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Plotting International Nibblies

Some friends of mine are throwing a party in June. These parties are absolute juggernauts. It runs for an entire weekend, and this time we're going to have *two* bands. One of them knows the music for one of my favorite karaoke songs, "It's The End Of The World (As We Know It)" by REM. That should turn out interesting. Now if only the party wasn't out at 319th Avenue!

But anyway, this is a food blog, back to the food. At these parties, I throw a smaller party for the people who are helping make the party happen so that they have a chance to relax. This time, I'm going to offer a variety of snacks from around the globe. I'm trying out different possibilities, and I greatly enjoy both of the ones I've done so far. The first are fried peanuts in a Southeast Asian spice blend (Madras curry with a little sweetness added), and North African cheese mantecaos, little cheese pastry balls spiced with cumin and cayenne. The flavor of the mantecaos is wonderful, changing as you savor one. I'll likely do the mantecaos with either a really good sharp Cheddar or some Emmentaler. Also on the menu so far are hummus with pita triangles, cha siu pork, Brazilian brigadeiro (an intensely chocolaty dessert), and a tropical dried fruit medley. I'm tempted to do the Tuscan Hummus recipe I have from California Pizza Kitchen; I've tried it before and it's very tasty, but at the same time I think traditional hummus would be pretty nice too. I think I have a pretty decent selection of exotic locales, with North Africa, China, Southeast Asia, Brazil, the Middle East (or maybe Northern Italy), and Polynesia... should I include anything else?

Monday, May 07, 2007

On Location: Welcome Diner, Phoenix AZ

I'm sitting at the counter at the Welcome Diner on 10th Street and Roosevelt near downtown Phoenix. I am most impressed so far, everything is just perfect. everything is unpretentious and greatly enjoyable. I have a feeling I'll be a regular in no time.