Author Archives: foodgal

Where I’ve Been Getting Takeout of Late: Tacos Buenrostro

The birria taco from Tacos Buenrostro.
The birria taco from Tacos Buenrostro.

Ever since watching the Netflix series, “Taco Chronicles,” I’ve been a little obsessed with birria tacos.

The Jalisco specialty is typically lamb or goat stewed slowly until tender, then folded into a tortilla that you dunk into an accompanying bowl of the resulting broth.

Yes, think of it as the taco version of a French dip sandwich.

I have friends Nate and Annie to thank for turning me on to Tacos Buenrostro, a taco truck regularly parked at a gas station at 3295 Sierra Road in San Jose. After seeing the Facebook photos of the two of them happily devouring the tacos, I knew I had to pay a visit, too.

While the truck has an extensive menu, we honed in on the beef birria — and only the birria.

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Cookies That Taste Like Marmalade Toast

These creative cookies get rolled in panko and filled with your favorite marmalade.
These creative cookies get rolled in panko and filled with your favorite marmalade.

Like bread popped up from the toaster, all crisp and golden, then immediately slathered with sweet butter and jam.

That’s exactly what these cookies taste like.

Since toast with jam is my go-to breakfast most mornings anyway, I just had to try these fun cookies called “Jam-on-Toast Thumbprints.” They are ingeniously rolled in panko before being filled with sticky marmalade.

This clever recipe is from the “Fabulous Modern Cookies” (The Countryman Press) by Chris Taylor and Paul Arguin.

If you don’t know married couple, Taylor and Arguin, they are a true dynamic duo who are both scientists and bakers. Taylor is an epidemiologist specializing in Alzheimer’s and aging, while Arguin is the retired head of the CDC’s domestic malaria unit. These over-achievers also have won hundreds of amateur baking contests.

Yes, the rest of us can now officially feel like total sloths.

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Three Delicious Things to Do In May

Read “Tofu Takes Time”

May, which is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage month, is the perfect time to check out the new sweet little book, “Tofu Takes Time” (Beaming Books), of which I received a copy.

Will charming illustrations by artist Julie Jarema, this children’s book is inspired by author Helen H. Wu’s own childhood spent making tofu alongside her grandmother.

It tells the story of a little girl named Lin who learns how to make tofu from scratch with soybeans from her grandma NaiNai. She learns how bean curd, eaten in China for more than 2,000 years, takes many steps and loads of patience to perfect. And along the way, she realizes the most important lesson of all: that good things come to those who patiently persevere.

Chew on Jelly Belly Gum

Everyone’s favorite jelly bean company, Jelly Belly, now also makes chewing gum.

Launched last year, the sugar-free gum comes in four flavors: Watermelon, Berry Blue, Island Punch and Very Cherry.

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Cornish Game Hen Soup — To Sooth and Satisfy

Cornish game hen in a total comfort dish.
Cornish game hen in a total comfort dish.

Our fickle spring weather may be warm one day, and chilly the next. But this is one recipe to keep handy whenever you need a restorative slurp that’s like a great big hug in a bowl.

“Cornish Game Hen Soup” is all that, and straightforward to make, too.

It’s from the new “Korean American” (Clarkson Potter), of which I received a review copy, by the gifted New York Times staff food writer Eric Kim.

In this wonderful cookbook, Kim tells the story of being born to Korean immigrant parents trying to make a new life in an Atlanta suburb, where there was no Korean grocery to be found. So, his mother, whom he frustratingly says never measures anything nor ever gives out an entire recipe willingly, adapted and made do. The Korean home-cooking he grew up on was not necessarily completely traditional food, but a delicious amalgamation of cultures and countries flavored with unmistakable can-do spirit.

With bright technicolor photos, the book brings to life his bold, playful, and comforting dishes such as “Creamy Butatini with Roasted Seaweed,” “Meatloaf-Glazed Kalbi with Gamja Salad,” “Kimchi Sandwiches,” and “No-Churn Ice Cream with Dalgona Butterscotch Sauce.”

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What I’ve Been Drinking of Late, Part 19

A rosé that delivers on much more than taste.
A rosé that delivers on much more than taste.

2021 Monarch Challenge North Coast Rosé

In 2016, Carlo Mondavi — yes, grandson of Robert Mondavi — created the Monarch Challenge to bring attention to the plight of the beautiful Monarch butterfly, whose population has been devastated since the advent of Roundup.

Every year since then, he and his brother Dante have produced a limited rosé through their RAEN Winery in Sebastopol to bring attention to this environmental calamity befalling this invaluable pollinator, and to inspire other like-minded vintners to do the same.

I had a chance to try a sample of this year’s 2021 Monarch Challenge North Coast Rosé ($30), sales of which will benefit the conservation organization, the Xerces Society, and Sonoma County Wildlife Rescue, dedicated to rescuing and rehabilitating sick or orphaned wildlife.

Produced from RAEN Pinot Noir grapes and old-vine Grenache, all farmed organically, this pale salmon wine is an exuberant expression of strawberries and raspberries, with a hint of guava. It is crisp, tangy, and laced with minerality. It’s pure deliciousness.

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