Food of the Incarcerated: Metropolitan Correctional Center.

Food of the Incarcerated: The Metropolitan Correctional Center. I was thirteen years old when a federal judge sentenced my older brother to two years in federal prison. It was my introduction to our justice system, and everything about it was surreal. The judge himself was a pudgy middle aged White man, swimming inside a deep…

The Stuff Leaders Are Made Of (Or Not).

So what do Noam Chomsky, Serena Williams, Stephen Hawking, Tim Cooke, Joel Olsteen, The Pope, The Dalai Lama, Xi Jingpin, Angela Davis, and the founders of Black Lives Matter have in common? They all received an email from me asking “what do you eat and why?” Surprise! Surprise! I got a few automated responses and…

Do The Dead Eat?

Above is an image of a death anniversary, where departed family members are invited back to enjoy their favorite meals. It’s an annual oddity to honor the lives and achievements of the dearly departed. As a kid observing, I always wondered if the spirits thought: “This soup tastes like shit. Why can’t they ever get…

What Makes a Dish American?

There was an old episode of Pioneer Woman running on the FoodNetwork where Ree Drummond makes spicy “Asian” hot wings and presents her dish to a group of doubtful male friends. Their reaction? Well, not the greatest. And I don’t blame them- Ree offered what looked like burned wings in a splattered pyrex tray. One…

FOOD is POLITICAL

Believe in providence? I do. Each meal that arrives before you was meant for your consumption. But how did it arrive? What was its history? Who helped nurture the ingredients? Who delivered them from far off distances to the doorstep of your favorite restaurant?   No doubt that food shortages will be a part of…

How HATE Can Change Our Palates

When I was 14 years old, my mom decided to bestow upon me her cooking techniques. Her first lesson was on texture. With her hands, she snapped a celery stick into multiple stringy, off-putting chunks. Next, she finely cut almost invisible slivers of celery into a pile. “Put it in your mouth and chew,” she…

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