Author Archives: amck

How to post

Since many of you are new to WordPress, I thought it would be helpful to let you know how to post.

Here are instructions:

First, make sure to log in. Bring your cursor over “food and foodies in…” in the top left corner of the screen. A menu should drop down…it looks like this–>the BOTTOM “food and foodies in…”

hover and click on the BOTTOM, dark grey “food and foodies” text

You should select the following:

New > Post

This will bring up a new window where you can input and edit text, images, and other media. On the upper righthand corner of the screen are boxes that you can click to “Save Draft” and “Preview.” You can use these features while working on your post. You can also add tags (keywords for your post) by entering words and phrases into the “Tags” box in the lower righthand corner.

*Please do NOT add new categories; these are large, overall categories. Use tags to correspond to your particular essay.

When your post is ready to be published, click on the blue box that says “Publish,” and your post will be published to the blog. If you need to edit your post, you can click on the word “Edit” which will appear at the end of your post and then make any necessary changes.

Feel free to comment on each other’s posts.

Finally, I have added the “author widget,” which lists contributing authors and their most recent posts on the right side of the page. Hovering over an author’s name with your cursor will bring up his or her “hovercard” (a basic profile), while clicking on an author’s name will display all posts by that author.

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Reminder: how to post (from Tug)

I think you reviewed this in section, but for a refresher, here are instructions:

Since many of you are new to WordPress, I thought it would be helpful to let you know how to post.

First, make sure to log in. After signing into your WordPress account, go to the class blog. Bring your cursor over “food and foodies in japan” in the top left corner of the screen. A menu should drop down…it looks like this–>the BOTTOM “food and foodies in Japan”

hover and click on the BOTTOM, dark grey "food and foodies" text

You should select the following:

New > Post

This will bring up a new window where you can input and edit text, images, and other media. On the upper righthand corner of the screen are boxes that you can click to “Save Draft” and “Preview.” You can use these features while working on your post. You can also add tags (keywords for your post) by entering words and phrases into the “Tags” box in the lower righthand corner. *Please do NOT add new categories; these are large, overall categories. Use tags to correspond to your particular essay.

When your post is ready to be published, click on the blue box that says “Publish,” and your post will be published to the blog. If you need to edit your post, you can click on the word “Edit” which will appear at the end of your post and then make any necessary changes.

Feel free to comment on each other’s posts.

Finally, I have added the “author widget,” which lists contributing authors and their most recent posts on the right side of the page. Hovering over an author’s name with your cursor will bring up his or her “hovercard” (a basic profile), while clicking on an author’s name will display all posts by that author.

NY Times article on food studies as growth field @ university/grad level

Truly Food for Thought

By JAN ELLEN SPIEGEL
Published: April 13, 2012

THE study of food has had a home in higher education for generations. Agriculture was a founding mission of the land-grant university system started in the 1860s. Nutrition programs are commonplace. Culinary schools were around long before Julia Child turned Le Cordon Bleu on its butter-sauced ear.

Cheryl Senter for The New York Times

Sarah Jacobson, left, who is in the food studies program at the University of New Hampshire, is a food stamp representative at a farmers market in Rollinsford, N.H.

But in an era of widespread interest, if not downright concern, about how that ear of corn, destined for a pot of boiling water on a perfect summer evening is grown, processed, marketed, distributed and used — and what it means for health, commerce, the economy and even the ecological state of the planet — colleges and universities have come to realize that the classic food disciplines simply will not do anymore.

And so food studies was born.

This new academic field, taking shape in an expanding number of colleges and universities, coordinates the food-related instruction sprinkled throughout academia in recognition that food is not just relevant, but critical to dozens of disciplines. It’s agriculture; it’s business; it’s health; it’s the economy; it’s the environment; it’s international relations; it’s war and peace.

Food studies is being embraced by students interested in new careers in food safety reform, local-food businesses and anti-obesity, equity and climate efforts, as well as those seeking broader contexts for traditional disciplines like culinary arts and farming.

Continue reading article here

Worksheet for Tampopo shot-by-shot analysis

Here’s the template we used in class.

tampopo_worksheet

Menu of the first state dinner in Tokyo, 1871

The Meiji emperor went through a lot of re-training in order to become a modern monarch. One key ritual of statecraft was the banquet dinner. Here is the menu for one of the first state dinner parties, a banquet that took place in 1871 at the Tsukiji Hotel, aka the Yedo Hotel. Until 1890, this resto had the  reputation for the best “western” food in the capitol.

Potage [soup]

Puree de crevettes à la Bisque

Relevé

Bouchées saumon à la Genevoise

Hors d’oeuvre [appetizers, starters]

Bouchées à la Béchamel

Entrées [first course]

Roast-beef au madère

Tendrons de chevreuil à la Poivrade

Canetons de volaille au Sûpreme

Légumes [veggies]

Petits pois à l’Anglaise

Celéri au Jus

Rotis [meat course]

Pâté de gibier Truffé

Gallantine en belle vue

Gigon de mouton Rôti

Chapous truffé

Entremets

Pudding à la Diplomate

Macédoine de fruit[s] au kirsch

Nougat monté

Dessert[s] assorti[s]

Source: Katarzyna J. Cwiertka, Modern Japanese Cuisine: Food, Power and National Identity, pp. 13-14.

The cooking show revolution, 1976

Here is a 1976 excerpt from season 1 of The Muppet Show, in which the Swedish chef makes donuts. He’s riffing on the success of Julia Child, whose TV show began in 1963, and whose book de-mystifying French cooking, Mastering the Art of French Cooking [note: NOT cuisine], was written in collaboration with 2 French women, Simone Beck and Louisette Bertholle, and appeared in 2 volumes in 1961 and 1970.

1985 NYT review of Taillevent

This review by Patricia Wells appeared the same year Tampopo came out…

But what on earth does one do to get to the top and, more important, what’s the secret to staying there?

Well, first of all, you don’t even allow yourself to admit that you’re the best. And if you’re Jean-Claude Vrinat, the modest, steady, 48-year-old owner of Taillevent, you take a deep, hopeful breath each morning and tell yourself and your staff, ”We can do better.'” …

Most diners are aware that Taillevent’s food and service is special, but few are conscious of what makes it so. Who would know that the exceptional chocolates, made in the upstairs pastry workshop, are prepared fresh each day, a mark of quality that even the finest Paris chocolate shops can’t match? Or who would imagine that, nestled back in a special cupboard in the vaulted wine cellars beneath the streets rests a collection of handmade cigars that are turned each day so they remain at their peak?

If the silverware has a certain shine, it’s because each day the flatware is washed in a special, binlike machine filled with tiny metal pellets that tumble-clean and polish the silver at the same time. Then it is hand- rubbed and dried, and touched only with two fingers, by the edges, so that fingerprints never mar the shine.

The kitchen equipment gets the same fastidious treatment. Each of the dozens of copper pots is retinned four or five times each year, so as not to taint the stocks and fine sauces that are painstakingly strained through a fine mesh sieve before serving.

Taillevent’s reputation for generosity has not been developed by accident. The restaurant remains one of France’s least expensive grand restaurants – one can expect to spend $30 to $40 a person, not including wine – with one of the finest cellars in the world. All this is due to the fact that since 1946, every centime has been reinvested in the cellar or in renovation of the grand 18th-century townhouse, now known as Taillevent, at 15 Rue Lamennais.

”To begin Taillevent today, one would have to be a philanthropist,” says Mr. Vrinat.

How does the young “kaban-mochi” (briefcase-carrying flunky) deploy and interpret the image of Taillevent in Tampopo? Does he do “justice” to its philosophy?

The invention of “foodies,” 1981

The 1984 book that popularized the term "foodie"

British journalist Paul Barr reflects in 1987 on his co-invention of the term. This excerpt is from The Guardian and was published in 1987.

What started as a term of mockery shifted ground, as writers found that “foodie” had a certain utility, describing people who, because of age, sex, income and social class, simply did not fit into the category “gourmet”, which we insisted had become “a rude word”.

It separated out those who ate their lamb overcooked and grey from those whose choice of cheese was goats; it dismissed those who did not care what they ate so long as the wine was served at the correct temperature; and it applied to shopping as well as to eating, to domestic cooks and eaters as well as to those who worked in, profited from or ate in restaurants; to foodstuffs, to brands, to reading matter; and above all, to women as well as to men.

The moment the issue hit the news stands we knew that the word “foodie” was a cocktail stick applied to a raw nerve, and that a book should follow. Ann and I had already observed and collected the half-dozen foodie types that opened the book – such as “the squalor scholar foodie,” who frequents the Oxford Symposium on Food & Cookery but fillets fish with the nail scissors, and “the whole-foodier than thou” foodies, who have a totally organic marriage.

This next paragraph is especially relevant to Tampopo and the tensions between “democracy” and “distinction” that it explores…

Of course we were taking the piss – but it was new in 1984, when the book was first published. And if generations of yesterday’s yuppies, barrow boy rough traders, slippery spread-betters, hedge-fund trimmers and adventure capitalists learned from The Official Foodie Handbook not to order rocket salad with their sashimi – well, who’s complaining?

Paper topic for first “close reading” paper–Apr 26

You can choose to work with either My Year of Meats, or with Tampopo. The question is: “how does the use of an older genre guide your understanding of the contemporary story being told.” In other words, how does the other genre in the older text–which you will need to identify–provide a model, prototype, or inspiration for the newer story. You can talk about form, style, media, audience, or all of the above.

The paper should be 500w. It should have its own title, like “Blazing Noodles: Motifs of Western Movies in Tampopo.” Not just “Paper 1.”

Please post the paper on the blog by 5pm April 26. Tag it with appropriate tags–things that are special to YOUR post (not “Assignments,” etc.) This makes it easier and more fun for people to search–e.g. “Westerns,” “ramen,” “Itami Jūzo.” Mail a copy to me and Tug using word processing software (if not MS Word, Open Office or some other open source thing…). In the subject heading, please write “J70: Paper 1”.

Remember to define and state the significance of the genre that you choose near the beginning of your paper. And please keep plot summary to a minimum-only recount what you need for YOUR argument to come across. (This makes it different than a movie review, which is mostly plot summary.)

If you write about MYOM, please include page references for your citations (passages you quote). If you write about Tampopo, please include at least one screen shot, and please put a caption on it, giving your reader a guide of how to understand it in the flow of your argument.

Lunch for April 17–Tuesday

Here’s the menu, or list of available choices, for the Sunny Blue bentō lunch on April 17. They will run about $8–, for 2 onigiri (rice balls w/stuff inside), tsukemono (pickles), and edamame. Please email me and Tug by Friday 3pm if you’d like to join in. Tell me exactly which 2 onigiri you’d like (example: 1 hijiki, one spicy tuna). Full menu is here (click to make the one below bigger).

vegan options are duly noted above...