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Comments by YACCS
Thursday, July 06, 2006

The great leftist blogger barbecue collective

All hail Kos, our benificent

Ok, this all starts with a trip to the Metropolitan Museum of Art with my father, niece, nephew and Jen.

When I arrived with the kids, she was sitting on the Museum steps with a large bag from Kalyustan's, the local Indian spice store.

How much?

What I got at Kalyustan's:

Sandalwood soap (Mysore) 3 bars
Sandalwood incense (Mysore) 6-pack of boxes
Large box Nag Champa incense
Jar tamarind concentrate
Jar ghee
Jar of green jalapeno powder (stupid hard to find for some
reason; not even the Mexican shops near me have it)
Yemenite couscous (looks like buckshot; cooks up big)
Black beluga lentils (looks like what it sounds like;
thick-skinned and tiny; good for salads)
Steuben yellow beans (I was intrigued by their old-variety
sounding name and the yellow eye on them)
Spinach couscous (yes it's green)
Anasazi beans (look like Jacob's Cattle beans but
smaller--probably good with chili)
Chinese black forbidden rice
Bamboo rice (if someone can tell me what the hell this is,
it would be great--more fun to hear it from you than to
Google it)
Himalayan red rice (ditto)
Gulluglu (a Turkish sweet made from nothing but grape
paste dried around a core of walnuts--NOT the version made
with Turkish delight or other gum--popular in Georgia (the
ex-Soviet state not the US state).
Sour salt (to make my Grandma's amazing sweet and sour
meatballs, stuffed cabbage, etc)
Baharat (7-spice mix from the Middle East--again, any
suggested uses welcome)
Black Salt (kala nimak) for Indian cooking--diitto
Berbere (Ethiopian spice mix)
Grains of Paradise (a medieval spice--this one I know what
to do with actually--studied a LOT of medieval
cooking)(VERY hard to find)
Cubeb berries (ditto)
Urfa-biber (smoky Turkish red pepper)

Now, I swear, I only went in there for the incense and
sour salt. Really. I didn't MEAN to spend $113.00 with
tax in there. Honest.

At least this inspired me to cook; I am bringing Middle
Easternish Salad to a party today (made with the black
lentils and Yemenite couscous).

Also cracked open the tamarind paste to make Hot and Sour
chicken thighs (harare sauce from a jar mixed with
tamarind and loosened up some champagne that I had to use
up). I used that mix as a marinade; we'll see how it
grills up.

Thank G-d we were sorta near a NY Sports Club. Too bad I
also had to stand in line at Modell's to buy a damn

Oh yeah, the Met is going to get a letter from me about
this. They used to let you check anything that wasn't
dangerous or messy--note that EVERYTHING was in factory
sealed bags, NOT twist ties or anything
Yeah. $113 of spices, incense and other shit.

That bag was heavy, btw, when I picked it up.

And of course, the guards wouldn't let her check it. She got upset and wanted to go home, and I said, no, let's find a place for it. She wound up stashing it in a gym nearby.

The whole idea was for us to spend the day with the kids, and my dad came along, since I couldn't meet him for breakfast. Usually, we go to iHop with the kids, because they like the place.

So while we waited for Jen, we went to have lunch at the cafeteria. The Met's food isn't cheap, but they had $8 sandwiches and $16 prime rib. That's right, medium rare prime rib for $16. Which is what my father and I for lunch while the kids snacked. I recommend it myself, but I did miss some good mustard to go with it.

We spent some time in the American wing, and the Luce exhibit, which is basically open storage for the stuff not on the floor. The last time I'd been in a place like that I was an employee of the New York Public Library.

We also toured the Arms and Armor exhibit and the Musical Collection. But then my niece crapped out from the walking and we went to dinner at a new place on 109th and Bway called Rack and Smoke. The food there is good and they make a killer fried chicken and pulled pork.

Sunday was the great leftist barbecue collective in an undisclosed corner of New York. Once we had sacrificed a baby goat to our overlord Kos, we got down to fixing chicken thighs marinated in harari and tamarind paste, german weiners, sausages of many types and salads and other such things.

See, us New York bloggers must occasional conspire together over drinks and food to plot how we serve our overlord Kos that much more faithfully and create blogofascist directives.

Jen and I bring ridiculous amounts of food there because we live in apartments and cannot grill. It's insane, but our hosts love us. We worry about taking over, so we limit what we will do. Of course, there's always negotiations involved between me and Jen on what to bring. We always worry about bringing too much,

It's fun because we lounge around, talk like adults and have a good time. One of the problems with being a blogger is the general isolation of the work. So socializing with them is a good way to make friends and not feel so isolated. It's also fun to be in a room of smart people.

We tend to do these things every few weeks, mostly because it's fun. What I think Jane Hamsher, who is now in Connecticut, is going to find is that socializing with bloggers is a lot more fun than you'd think. It's something more of us need to do more often.

posted by Steve @ 4:38:00 AM

4:38:00 AM

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