Monday, January 25, 2010

Restaurant Review: One World Cafe (Everybody Eats), Salt Lake City, UT

Because John and I have the great good fortune of traveling to the Salt Lake City area a few times a year, I always seek out different things to do when I'm on my own and he's fishing with his dad. A few weeks ago, during our Christmas visit, I decided to try One World Cafe, otherwise known as Everybody Eats. The cafe is unique in that the diner sets his/her price for the food. In fact, if a diner wishes to volunteer time working at the restaurant, he/she can earn full meal vouchers.

The cafe is located in the university part of town, not far (driving-wise) from many interesting parts of the city, including the arboretum. The food I tasted included a variety of items from roasted potatoes to mixed greens and penne with sun-dried tomatoes to veggie stir fry. Overall, the food was tasty and warm (good for the cold days of winter). More importantly, I was grateful to help an organization that provides very low-cost meals to those who could scarcely eat elsewhere.

Go visit One World Cafe in Salt Lake City.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Yet Even More Great Art to See in New Jersey

If you can get to the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey, in Summit, before March 19, you will have the great luck of seeing their 24th International Juried Show. Additionally, both upstairs and downstairs are wonderful examples of encaustic-style works.

A friend and I recently visited the center and saw both the show and the encaustic art, and were fascinated.

Also, the center offers loads of workshops and classes for both adults and children. I'm looking forward to taking the encaustic classes and learning more about this unique technique.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Go See the Art As Action Exhibit at the Printmaking Council of New Jersey

From January 2010 photos

Last week, Tanya (whose back you see in the photo above) and I experienced the very powerful Art As Action exhibit at the Printmaking Council of New Jersey. Displayed in the photo above is a portion of Karen Guancione's Found Journal work. Throughout the Library Gallery are hung pages of handmade rice paper printed with selections from a diary, as well as items of clothing captured within pages of Ms. Guancione's paper. The diary is one the artist found while walking through Branchburg Park in Newark, N.J. in 1997. She tried to find the owner of the diary to return it (along with a pile of other belongings found at the park).

From January 2010 photos

The artist was unable to locate the diary's owner, but was so struck by the story contained within the notebook that she was determined to share this woman's tragic story with a larger audience through a large installation. Essentially, it is the stark telling of love and loss, colored by addiction and homelessness. The journal's writer acknowledges that she has made a series of bad choices, but will wait forever for her love.

From January 2010 photos

Walking through the Library Gallery, reading the pages that surrounded us -- some excerpts of the more complete pages, some single lines of text -- both Tanya and I were silenced by the words of one woman whose descent was chronicled from jail worker in love with an addict inmate to junkie and homeless prostitute.

From January 2010 photos

In addition to Ms. Guancione's moving piece, the Art As Action exhibit also included works by J. Catherine Bebout, Curlee Raven Holton, Doris Nogueira-Rogers, and Erik Ruin. I emailed all the artists to request permission to post photos of their work online here, but only Ms. Guancione and Ms. Nogueira-Rogers responded.

From January 2010 photos

Above is one of the beautiful pieces displayed in Ms. Nogueira-Rogers' section. It is Lace and Layer VII, one in a series of mixed media pieces that combine block printing and other techniques to achieve the layered affect. My photo does not do it justice.

I highly recommend going to visit the Art As Action exhibit at the Printmaking Council of New Jersey. You can find directions at the council's web site. Just so you can recognize the building, here's a photo of the exterior.

From January 2010 photos

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

The Soup That Conquered My Cold

From January 2010 photos

If you ever catch a cold, please, please, please try this soup. It kicked my cold's tush and tasted incredible to boot! The original recipe comes from my favorite new cookbook, Moosewood Restaurant Cooking for Health.

It's called Ginger Tofu Soup, and is definitely heavy on the ginger and tofu. However, the original is very short on liquid, so I added quite a bit more liquid; skipped the celery; and added mushrooms, carrots, and baby spinach instead. It makes quite a bit of soup, so feel free to freeze a portion or two, or share it with friends.

You might be wondering why my tofu looks a little different than fresh-out-of-the-package-creamy tofu. It's because I freeze my fresh tofu from the co-op prior to using it. When tofu freezes, it takes on a great spongy quality that I prefer over the less-textured variety.

From January 2010 photos

Now the recipe, greatly inspired by the Ginger Tofu Soup recipe on page 121 of The Moosewood Restaurant Cooking for Health book.

Cold Kicking Soup


8 cups vegetable broth (I made mine from low-sodium boullion)
2 cloves garlic, sliced thinly
1 2-in. piece of fresh ginger sliced very thinly and cut into 1/2-in. pieces
4 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1 1-lb package tofu cut into 1/2-in cubes (remember I used a package that had been frozen and thawed for extra texture)
3/4 cup chopped green onions
1 cup thinly sliced mushrooms
1 cup fresh baby spinach
1 cup matchstick carrots (basically carrots cut into matchstick-sized pieces)
1 1/2 cups cooked mixed rices (I used a Lundberg mix of wild and brown rices)


1. In a large pot or Dutch oven, bring the broth to a boil.
2. Add the garlic, ginger, and soy sauce to the broth and reduce the heat to a low simmer for 5 minutes.
3. Stir in the tofu cubes, then the vegetables, and simmer for 10 minutes.
4. Stir in the rice and simmer for 5 minutes.
5. Serve hot and enjoy!

From January 2010 photos