Immediate Venture Bitcore Surge



I must have been born under a lucky star, at least as far as friendship is concerned. I have friends everywhere, and where I don’t, I have friends who are happy to share their friends with me. This is what happened when I went to China. I had introductions to the most delightful people who have now become friends. Not only that, but Mei, my wonderful friend who founded Wild China, offered me a great three-day foodie tour of Beijing which made all the difference to our stay there. We also struck it lucky with our guide Steven, who couldn’t have been more charming. He took us everywhere from the serene Temple of Heaven to the spectacular Forbidden City to the fabulous Great Wall, and in between we ate at delicious restaurants, visited the most amazing markets and learned how to stir-fry and make dumplings and noodles. And I discovered a new favourite street food, jianbing which is the Chinese equivalent of both the French crepe and the Emirati regag, depending on who is making them.

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horse slaughter 1 copy

I have appropriated this amazing picture and the one further down from a Russian blog post to which I have linked below. I would have liked to acknowledge the photographer but as I said, I don’t read Russian and can’t understand who to credit. Sorry.

Anissa: It has been a very long time since Charles Perry did a guest post here. He’s been ‘unusually busy’ (his words). Still, he has just sent me this very interesting post on eating horse meat. We didn’t have pictures which is not surprising. Charles lives in LA and I in London with no boucherie chevaline anywhere to be seen. Fortunately, I have the most wonderful friend, Victoria, who found me this Russian blog post where they show the whole process, from catching the horse, to killing it, butchering it and finally preparing the meat and sausages. The photos are pretty amazing. I assume they were done by a professional photographer or a very good amateur one. I can’t tell as I don’t understand Russian and google translate wouldn’t translate the page for me. It just went to another page. Anyhow, here is Charles’ fascinating post together with a recipe that calls for smoked horse meat sausage! I actually tasted it once, thanks to Bob Chenciner who has strong connections in Daghestan and who has written about it. He had some at home one day I was visiting and he gave me a taste. It was strong and fatty but very tasty and it may have been the karta Charles mentions below. Must check with him.

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catfish rest copy

A fried catfish restaurant in Memphis where I was taken by Paul and Angela Knipple and their son Patric

As you know, I travel a lot but it is not often that I go to places I haven’t been before except for this month when I visited  two new countries (Thailand and Australia — posts about both to come) and one new region (the American south). I loved them all. Thailand because of my wonderful friend, Vippy and her fabulous hospitality and because everything there is so exotic. Australia because it reminded me both of Lebanon and England and because it was great being part of the World Chef Showcase, seeing old friends and making new ones. And the American south because of the landscape, the architecture (I dream of owning a house with a wrap around porch) and the incredible warmth of its people, as well as the lovely Lebanese/Americans emigrés who were interviewed by Amy Street Evans for her wonderful oral history project.

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When I was doing the research for my baking book, I kept coming across variations on the same breads throughout the Mediterranean, especially when it came to multi-layered breads. In some countries, the multiple layers are achieved by flattening the dough, folding it, then flattening it again (Moroccan r’ghayef, Tunisian mlawi or Algerian m’hajjib). In others, it is done by flapping the dough in the air to stretch it very thinly, then slapping it against a marble top and folding it (Egyptian fiteer or Turkish katmer), or it is achieved by rolling a disk of dough into a sausage, then squishing the sausage into a ring, and flattening the ring (Moroccan melwi).

Well, as you know I was recently in the Emirates, and while there I came across their own version of warqa which they call regag. They also have their own version of r’ghayef, called mukassab and their version of qatayef or beghrir which they confusingly call lgeimat (used normally to describe saffron-infused fritters drizzled with date syrup).

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