About Talking of Food
Talking of Food is a magazine website set up by a group of people who love not only food but also the diversity of its culture. It is not bound by ideology or momentary fads but has an open mind towards opposing views. Its contributors are often experts in their field and discuss wide ranging subjects such as antibiotics in the food-chain, the opposing arguments on GM food or the future of food. On a lighter note see how they make noodles in China or follow Elisabeth Luard's classic series on European Peasant Cookery.
Lockdown Food: Part 1
For the first helping of lockdown food musings, here are two poems, one about the iceberg lettuce and the other about the humble onion.
The Iceberg theory by Gerald Locklin
all the food critics hate iceberg lettuce.
you’d think romaine was descended from
Orpheus’ laurel wreath,
you’d think raw spinach had all the nutritional
benefits attributed to it by Popeye,
not to mention aesthetic subtleties worthy of
Verlaine and Debussy
they’ll even salivate over chopped red cabbage
just to disparage poor old mr iceberg lettuce
I guess the problem is
it’s just too common for them.
it doesn’t matter that it tastes good,
has a satisfying crunchy texture,
holds its freshness,
and has crevices for the dressing,
whereas the darker, leafier varieties
are often bitter, gritty and flat.
it just isn’t different enough, and
it’s too goddamn American.
of course a critic has to criticise:
a critic has to have something to say.
perhaps that’s why literary critics
purport to find interesting
so much contemporary poetry
that just bores the shit out of me.
at any rate, I really enjoy a salad
with plenty of chunky iceberg lettuce.
the more the merrier,
drenched in an italian or Roquefort dressing
and the poems I enjoy are those that I don’t have
to pretend that I’m enjoying.
Song To Onions by Roy Blount Jr
They improve everything, pork chops to soup,
And not only that but each onion’s a group.
Peel back the skin, delve into tissue
And see how an onion has been blessed with issue.
Every layer produces an ovum.
You’d think you’ve got three then you find you’ve got fovum
Onion on on-
Ion on onion they run,
Each but the smallest one some onion’s mother:
And onion comprises a half a dozen other.
In sum then an onion you could say is less
Than the sum of its parts.
But then I like things that more are than profess-
In food and in the arts.
Things pungent, not tony.
I’ll take Damon Runyon
Over Antonioni –
Who if an i wanders becomes Anti- onion.
I’m anti baloney.
Although a baloney sandwich would
Right now, with onions be right good.
And so would sliced onions,
Chewed with cheese,
Or onions chopped and sprinkled
Over black-eyed peas
absorbent of essences
eaten on New Years Eve
The Gold Rush
Of all the memorable moments in Charlie Chaplin’s film this may top the list. The Gold Rush is one of Chaplin’s greatest films and his scene of compensating for a lack of food by boiling a boot is one of the reasons.
One More Croissant for the Road
Felicity Cloake is an award-winning journalist and author specialising in food and drink, probably best known for her weekly column in the Guardian, How to make the Perfect… In One More Croissant for the Road, her first book to combine food and travel, Felicity crosses the channel for a culinary adventure.
The Drinks Aisle
New in The Drinks Aisle: Paul McCarthy's series on the wines of the Middle East and North Africa continues with the wines of Israel in Part 4.