e-mail me at billdeg@umich.edu



My fourth adventure from The Global Kitchen took Nicole and I to Korea earlier tonight for a traditional rice bowl dish called bibimbap. We both appreciated the mild flavors--fresh ginger, garlic in moderation, sweetness from apple cider vinegar and a little bit of sugar--and the healthy combination of veggies and other good things that converged in the bibimbap (it's fun to say!). The Korean chili paste gave the meal serious heat and was brilliant with the egg and sprouts. Another keeper.

Bill's Grade: A-
Nicole's Grade: B+


Uruguayan Fava Bean Salad

The year we lived there, a lot of cafes and lunch counters in Beirut served salads that combined various kinds of beans (chickpeas, fava beans, whatever) with herbs, veggies, and other fresh things. So interesting to see this very Mediterranean-sounding salad in the "South America" chapter of Global Kitchen. Uruguyan Bean Salad combines fava beans with parsley, onions, tomatoes, and oregano but dresses the combination with olive oil and vinegar. In Lebanon, lemon juice instead of--or in addition to--the vinegar--would likely be used, and I confess I kind of missed the lemony bite in this otherwise tasty concoction. Still, this was easy to whip up in about ten minutes to take with us to a birthday party--a more interesting contribution than a green salad. A keeper--but next time I'm going to include some fresh lemon juice!

Bill's Grade: B-
Nicole's Grade: B+



Dish #2 from Global Kitchen: Pastitsio (from the "Eurasia" chapter), a Greek casserole with pasta, feta cheese, tomatoes, onions, ground lamb (I used very lean beef because Nicole's not big on lamb), and milk. This was fun to make: a simple cream sauce from skim milk with a little flour and butter and an equally simple tomato sauce from the meat and tomatoes. Divide pasta among the two sauces, layer, and bake. Like a lot of Greek dishes, unusual flavors mingle--this time cinnamon, garlic, and loads of fresh oregano. We hosted the Berkley Democrats' annual holiday potluck last night and this was a warm thing to serve at a December gathering, though I could imagine making this year-round.

Bill's Grade: A
Nicole's Grade: A+


Blueberry Cobbler

I've fallen for a new cookbook called Global Kitchen, probably because the pictures are so beautiful and the chapters--more or less based on the continents--so varied. My photos aren't going to be anywhere near as gorgeous, but I'm going to try to cook some of the dishes and post some thoughts. No idea how often I'll post. I have no intentions of working my way through the book in order (what fun would that be?).

The "Cooking Light" folks put together Global Kitchen and one thing I love about "CL" is the simplicity. Which leads me to tonight's blueberry cobbler ("North America"), made from not much more than berries, flour, sugar, butter, skim milk, and lemon zest. You could really taste the lemon in every sweet bite. Keeper.

Bill's Grade: B
Nicole's Grade: B+