Around this time every year I am usually fermenting grapes from the backyard. But the rats got them before I did, I mean every single grape, before they were ripe. Oh well, I guess they have to eat too. But I did manage to find some bottles of wine from last year and had a pleasant day making absinthe. It is not only local but small batch to a ridiculous degree as you can see. If the wine was about 12% I guess this is not bad for three bottles. It was soaked with dried Artemisia absinthium, which a friend brought me (the only imported ingredient) with herbs from the backyard including southernwood (a close relative), rue, sage, bay, beebalm and fennel. Then distilled. It was the slowest distillation I've ever done, not sure why. Maybe it was all the herbiage. Next to it is the tiniest batch of distilled mead made from 2 lbs of local honey. I'm not sure if anyone on earth does make a honey distillate, and I can certainly understand why they wouldn't. From about 1.5 liters of mead I got a few shots of hooch, which I guess makes sense if it was about 5%.
Food Historian at the University of the Pacific.
Author of Eating Right in the Renaissance, Food in Early Modern Europe, Cooking in Europe 1250-1650, The Banquet, Beans (2008 IACP Jane Grigson Award) and Pancake. A cookbook with Rosanna Nafziger THE LOST ART OF REAL COOKING.
Coeditor of The Lord's Supper with Trudy Eden and Editor of A Cultural History of Food: The Renaissance.
Co-editor with Lisa Heldke of the journal Food, Culture and Society.
Food Cultures of the World Encyclopedia (4 vols.) Three World Cuisines: Italian, Mexican and Chinese recently won the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards Best Foreign Cuisine book in the World. The Routledge International Handbook to Food Studies is in print.
A sequel to the cookbook - entitled THE LOST ARTS OF HEARTH AND HOME.
Coming soon: Grow Food, Cook Food, Share Food from Oregon State U Press, a little book on Nuts from Reaktion and a Food History Reader from Bloomsbury. Not to mention THE BEAST: The Food Issues Encyclopedia for Sage. Still in the works.