I’ve been following Patty Carroll on Instagram ever since I saw her creepily faceless and maximalist compositions on Colossal.
I wouldn’t use Twitter if I didn’t find it useful and rewarding. That said, some days logging on is like trying to solve a mystery: who is everyone subtweeting? What did that person do? What does it mean? Thank goodness for Vox explainers. Here’s one on the dustup concerning Alison Roman and Chrissy Teigen, which raised a thousand other issues about women and race in cooking. Eater gets into those implications in a thoughtful, wide-ranging essay that probes the role of whiteness in influencing food culture, absorbing “exotic” ingredients in trendy ways, and gatekeeping who is considered an authority in the food sphere.
Speaking of. I loved this conversation about race and recipe-writing between cookbook authors Priya Krishna and Yewande Komolafe. Years ago in college, I read a conversation between bell hooks and Carrie Mae Weems, and it gave me a jolt of insight, like–this is what academia can look like. This is what making and sharing knowledge can look like: warmly and thoughtfully deconstructing the very structures used to transmit knowledge. I felt a similar jolt in reading this conversation.
It is, how do you say, a hot take to make the case for letting the restaurant industry die as we’re all passing around lists of permanently shuttered venues and mourning the loss of local favorites. But Tunde Wey, a New Orleans-based chef, makes exactly that case and… you know, he is pretty convincing.
In the meantime, for my future reference and anyone else who wants it: Black-owned Philly Restaurants.
I started ordering not only meat (whole chicken, beef cubes) but local groceries (heirloom beans, tallow soap, fresh herbs) from my local butcher, the fabulous, woman-owned Primal Supply. Consequently a few pieces on sourcing meat during the pandemic caught my eye. According to Civil Eats, small-scale operations like Primal Supply and others had the flexibility to keep their supply chain stable. For a darker angle, Philadelphia Magazine says that Philly Should Quit Cheap Meat because the pandemic revealed some serious issues in big agricultural industries.
And so began one of the saddest consequences of the coronavirus crisis: Coast to coast, large farms had no choice but to destroy their surplus — even in times like this, times of need. Donations only went so far before farmers began plowing the spring’s bounty back into the land. They dumped their milk and smashed their eggs. Worst of all, they euthanized their animals for no reason other than that there simply wasn’t — isn’t — enough space (physical and otherwise) for them on this planet anymore. COVID-19 had spread into meat-processing facilities, forcing them to shutter. And in the world of Big Meat, unprocessed livestock has no earthly purpose.
In general, Helen Rosner.
Finally, no Link Buffet these days is complete without a reference to climate change. This one involves a potato museum in Peru and the race to breed vegetables that can survive the changing weather.