When did you start writing about Portland food and drink?
When did you start researching and writing Food Lover's Guide to Portland?
Do you like to cook?
I have three sets of tongs, seven spatulas, three large wooden cutting boards, two chef's knives, a pasta maker, a kitchen scale, two stoneware crocks, a drawer of spices and a rack of spices, a salad spinner, a water bath canner, a mandolin. In other words, yeah.
Do you like to drink?
At the moment my liquor cabinet (read: top of the fridge) is stocked with a Czech Republic Plum Eau de Vie, Clear Creek Distillery Douglas Fir Eau de Vie, 12 Bridges Gin, Tanqueray Rangpur, Pyrat Rum, Sub Rosa Saffron, Worker Bee Honey Spirit, a friend's homemade vermouth, a friend's homemade Irish cream. I don't keep all these things on hand to clean wounds. Well, depending on how you interpret that...
Do you have a garden?
I live on a 5,000 square foot lot in North Portland and have a 20-plus variety culinary herb garden, 4 fruit trees, 14 berry bushes, asparagus, artichokes, cardoons, horseradish, strawberries, and more. I usually plant anywhere from 50-150 garlic plants in the fall and everything from tomatoes, chile peppers, pickling cucumbers and green beans to brussels sprouts, fava beans and arugula in my annual vegetable garden. I love our old apple tree but wish it didn't hog so much sun.
What was the first meal you prepared?
I won't count my kid versions of egg drop soup (simmer Campbell's chicken broth, crack an egg in it) or nachos (arrange corn chips on plate, place American cheese strips on chips, nuke). Those early culinary accomplishments aside, when I was 8 years old I made dinner for my dad and brother, when my mom was out of town, with my 9-year-old best friend and neighbor. We worked through the day prepping sherry and soy marinated broiled chicken, sautéed asparagus with a mustard sauce and risotto. For dessert we made chocolate and coffee mouse layered and chilled in wine glasses, topped with chocolate chips. We made the dessert at her house, dinner at my house. That friend is now a food consultant and I'm a food writer.
Are there any foods you don't like?
I try to like sweet potatoes and yams but they usually taste like baby food to me. Even sweet potato fries. Sorry.