Sunday, August 28, 2011

[RFP favorite summer foods 2011: mabel tsang]

RFP favorite summer foods 2011: mabel tsang from k. barrett on Vimeo.

mabel tsang is a queer woman of color originally from the bay area. RFP had the pleasure of participating in a womyn of color spoken word workshop she co-facilitated at UCSD SPACES queer people of color youth conference. in this video, mabel shares with us her favorite summer food.

check out our previous entry for favorite summer foods w/ sarah won shim.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

[HELLA HEATED! summer food spottings 8/18/2011]

alright my RFP admirers,  this summer has meant dancing in the beach or on the rooftop for some of you, meant random finds of herbs in your garden, for me it's meant patience. finding patience and love in spaces were it seems to be scarce has been an active practice for me. witnessing y'all movements with food and the love of food also is inspiring with all the bustle of kickin' off interviews and gathering stories for the upcoming,  Recipes for the People: Documentary. 

below is your HELLA HEATED! all lavish in fruit and fresh food with people who bring some tastebuds in live action and give us the truth: people of color, specifically womyn and queer/trans people of color bring it beyond the table. in our very soil, in the earth before we built concrete buildings, and then, on our plates with chosen family filled with fits of inside jokes and sharp conversation. here you go eaters, growers, and change makers, here you go.

[via tara shuai  and tania lee--- fancy and tasty, above is a pillowy and comforting plate of french toast from brunch. piled on are crisp and sweet local berries and a nudge of powdered sugar. this is the time when despite summer, we still crave something with thickness, something sweet, something posed as sorta lunch but really is dessert. what is a better time than brunch to fulfill those longings? besides, when you have the privilege to support and grab anything involved with fresh local fruit, i'm telling you, your spirits get a good shine with or without french toast involved. though, for us non-vegans, the french toast surely is a motivator. honestly, when i first saw this photo i 1) praised the fancy blue ribbon, then 2) thought: i want a bed of french toast and berries to swim about in. perverse? possibly. leave it to tara and tania who are as on-point as they come, to go travel about in food loveliness, photographing their mastery along the way.]

[ activist dara cooper, is a board member of Healthy Food Hub, a reverse CSA supporting Black farmers as well as the senior project manager for Fresh Moves. Fresh Moves has created great and accessible processes to food distribution in communities living in food desert areas, specifically southside of chicago. you best believe her food tastes as powerful as her food awareness! her caption: "My really colorful breakfast (mostly) from the Healthy Food Hub (well, minus the veggie sausage)- purple potatoes, yellow corn grits, veggie sausage, and delicious organic cherries. Yeah, this was a bit gluttonous but it was soooo good. Those PURPLE potatoes are still blowing my mind!" how about the goodness on those grits above? this meal seemed to have a fly balance of texture and freshness. with the yellow of the grits to the deep burgundy cherries and the purple stunners that so happen to be potatoes, my eyes are getting hungry hungry hungry. personally, you cannot beat some gorgeous purple peruvian potatoes. when i used to work farmer's market days for henry's farm i grabbed these like they were gold, son.

i was deeply connected to those potatoes. i could get them local and by the plenty. seriously, i put them in everything i could just because they were equally as tasty, packed with super spud powers of anti-oxidants much like the ones found in blueberries. also, my favorite color is purple and to think this is the tuber's natural color, how fascinating and how it pops on a plane white plate! regarding texture they can be creamy and are versatile in salads and soups. usually, i'll roast some real crisp with red chili pepper flakes, olive oil, dried basil along with some onions or carrots. when i saw dara's plate, i knew her necessary work and eye for the potato had to get some RFP props!] 

[ now, after all that sweet toasty and salty, albeit breakfasts made with local ingredients and produce, i am thirsty. you thirsty? on my facebook where i received hella "likes," it wasn't for a poem or a funky picture of me dancing or even for my the brilliant dog in my life, cornbread siopao. the barrage of "likes" were for this beverage, a fresh lemon spritz with basil and rosemary simple syrup. the tinge of herbaceous green flavor swims in that lemon and bubbly reeaaaaalll nice. set: a stoop (or fire escape, window sill, you may improvise) under the sun in any given city that you happen to live in. characters: you, your dear ones, or maybe just you and your trusty pet sitting on that stoop in 80 degree weather. props: fuzzy herb lemonade, a couple sighs, and a book of choice to shake off stress and recuperate from a rough week of institutional ass-hat injustice.]

[ the photo above and to the left were shared by non other than chosen fam, poet, and militant queer womanist, zakiyah blake currently residing in philly. known to be a maker of a fiiiiiine vegan brunch herself, she and her roommate sheena sood go about their sunlight and rain tending to a local neighborhood garden with more a few plots involved.
queer and womyn of color politicizing also goes hand in hand with growing food for their neighbors, friends, and themselves. literally steps from their philly home, this garden is resplendent with their own mix of vegetables and fruits. that i geeked over, poked at, and giggled at during my last philly visit. some highlights are the watermelons and tomatoes. you also have to love the big smirks and sly eyes they both have, all proud about their gifts from girard garden.]

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

[No "Ramadan Mubarak" wishes this year from Whole Foods.] news


UPDATE: View the original, unedited internal email from Whole Foods.
Under pressure from right-wing bloggers who blindly associate Ramadan and Muslims with terrorism and burqas, Whole Foods has sent an email to its stores across the United States in which it specifically tells stores not to promote Ramadan this year.

Just last week, Whole Foods began its promotion of Saffron Road's line of halal products throughout the holiday, which ends on August 29, via writer Yvonne Maffei's blog, My Halal Kitchen. That promotion was waylaid by what seems like a very small amount of criticism, according to an internal email that the Houston Press obtained recently.

"It is probably best that we don't specifically call out or 'promote' Ramadan," reads a portion of that email. "We should not highlight Ramadan in signage in our stores as that could be considered 'Celebrating or promoting' Ramadan."

continue reading at houston press.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

[HELLA HEATED! summer food spottings 8/11/2011]

dearest summer: (a freewrite)
your heat heat hot-ass heat on the subway makes me feel, well most clearly, sticky. but i also feel wrongfully intimate with strangers in the summer. we bump into one another on packed sidewalks, pluck branches for the perfect berries, some of us have to deal with heat all day in the streets without any love or systemic support.  and that RAIN?!#@ mama/papa nature, thank you for the cleansing, the soil is less parched, but damn. your powerful reminders take us over! all that said, i am thankful for you summer, even as i see you with your east coast strut. the new adventures that come our way, if we are just plain lucky and given the opportunities, you connect us to cultures in our blood and breath. your flying kites in brooklyn rooftops, your shared fruit on the palms of friends, your generous gulps of concoctions over ice and political discontent, your raised eyebrows of lovers in mischief; smitten with that wizardry about you. i carry several losses when your season shows itself. grieve lost blood family and chosen, hands full and empty, summer you live it like halo-halo ube drippin', popsicle fruitas sweet hard tart, eager meeting bowls and meeting notes--- thank you for keeping me alive. thank you for basil mint ice cream touted by a smirking beloved after a day's productive amount of tears and body triggers. you got my back summer. trying is all i have for you. just when my trying wavers, the limbs of your sunset swung across our days prove me wrong.

*to ruckus & love, 

to ease our hearts and entice our bellies, let's take up some space at RFP. we have many a critical photo taking, food making, produce growing, slow dance to iced beverages kind of crowd. what better crowd is there? check out the summer food finds from technology specialists to dancers and martial artists. you'll certainly resonate with some luscious growing, cooking and eating  by way of west coast, midwest, AND east coast.

to submit your own summer food photos, journeys, and adventures, email:

[simple, eye-catching, and stunning, summer finds by tara shuai can't help but drive us to want fresh, local, and crisp foods. honestly, we cannot sing the songs of praise for the tomato enough. i know there are tomato dislikers/haters -- i see you eating that pasta but can't hold a plump tomato! some people like theirs freshly sliced with soy sauce or olive oil, herbs like basil strewn through out.  kicked with pungent garlic and vinegar as accompaniment to larger meals, tomatoes get magical up in that bowl. thanks tara for your previous fried green tomatoes love too. the peaches. well, we all have debates about our peaches, don't we? cobblers, pies, sliced and plopped in drinks, give us a shout by email if you have some fly peaches recipes to publish! tara's caption: Farmer's Market bounty! Basil, baby heirloom tomatoes, peaches, and bok choy. The only problem is figuring out in what combination I'll be fashioning all of it into tonight's dinner.]


 [via social network site, this magnificent plateful belongs to Militant. Black. Transsexual. Lesbian. Woman. future restauranteur, zoë j. c. collins. not holding back on summer soup, the dark crisp parsnips have a nuttier rounder taste. think earthy and for you savoryheads, akin other roots and tubers. this compliments with the sweet apple aspect of the soup. zoë pushes the nutty earth tastes via smoky eggplant and cheese.  loving her online political chops plus her ability to bring on this possible lunch or big snack. this is fruit and root tasty without question. i wish we could taste food through the computer, just reach in and yoink! hmmmmm... that sounds sort of colonial... so scratch that. submitted caption reads: Parsnip-apple soup garnished with parsnip chips and parsley. Breaded baked eggplant sandwiches (filled with aged cheddar and dusted with pecorino romano.)

[karla paola chueh-mejia resides in los angeles as shown with exquisite vegan tacos above.
all those sublime textures-- rice, beans, crispy or soft tortilla, with the bite of veggies... can you handle this? no really, how are we even looking at this without our taste buds not in a twist? all karla had to do was post this picture on her facebook profile and all i could do was post it. the proper caption: This was a great vegan restaurant! All vegan and mega yummy!!! i don't know where this place is (aside from the vague finger pointing to the west coast), but! seriously y'all, who needs words when your mouth is full of tacos? now now, that was not a jab at writers/poets (be easy!), just in awe of this food find.]

[green creatures make their space known. they expand and flourish, even under our stubborn human hands or in the dimmest light. the interjection of produce sprouting in urban chicago can't help but warm my heart, give me the fuzzies if you will. it also is that thorny balance of upsouth rural migration and midwest metropolis. ni'ja whitson,  a multi-disciplinary dance, performance, visual artist and martial artist grabbed this sight. always, a critical eater and mindful practitioner of various cultural/spiritual rituals. fun fact: she is a penchant for gluten-free vegan cupcakes. this queer woman of color's caption:          

this photo(s) come from the community garden space in the West Side Austin neighborhood in chicago illinois.  such a lovely treasure and necessary, given that Austin is one of the many food deserts in the city.  it is the largest neighborhood in chicago geographically and most populated.  predominantly black... it is not advertised very well, i happened upon it while walking pogi ifa (my dog) one day this summer and i have lived here for almost 3 years. combination of me not venturing out in different parts of my hood enough, too i could surmise. this picture is of one of the plots in the community garden designated for anyone to take food they need... the collaborative plants and tends the plot.  the people do the harvesting when they need food.  it is a really beautiful sight.  i'm going to pay it a visit tomorrow.

Monday, August 8, 2011

[ol' school summer recipes 2011]

previous RFP summer tastes include some fruit-inspiration all the way to some spicy for the sweltering months. soon, we'll have some new concoctions including citrus-ades, sodas, grilled delights, and possibly a pie suggestion or few. double dog pinky swear, which is some ol' school ish that you can believe in.

for now, it get goin' at your next meeting or cutely star bedazzled dinner date with any of the following old school, good flavored recipes below. there's a a good grasp on anyone's food wants and needs from they meaty to the raw vegan.

what are your favorite old summer recipes? do they involve-- hours of marinating? chopping/picking your own fruit? picnics by the beach in your favorite short shorts? a snack to take kite flying or on a hike?

share with us your iconic summer stand outs and also, test some of ours! some are more mobile, time-intensive, and more healthy than others, but i wouldn't let any of those little factors stop you.

sample possibilities:
* meal for the lover lover ohhhh: grilled sweet pork chops with a side of quinoa,  a red plum sorbet for dessert... and some privacy. y'thanks. 
beats choice: prince, call my name.

* the nudging afternoon wake-up: sweet and spicy watermelon salad, quinoa for entree, and close out with a crisp and fresh juice/smoothie of your choice. swirly straws included,  if you are adventurous. 
beats choice: the noisettes, wild young hearts.

*fruity for the company: sweet and spicy watermelon salad and after a few boardgames, some scoops of plum sorbet.  add some fresh mint or basil to garnish!  
beats choice: solange knowles, i decided.

RECIPES on their own:

[lunch, dinner, entree]

red plum sorbet
[snack, dessert]

quinoa for queers
[side dish, entree, dinner, lunch, snack]

[lunch, dinner, entree]

[snack, salad]                                    


Thursday, August 4, 2011

[HELLA HEATED! summer food spottings 8/4/2011]

here at RFP, summer has been quiet and laid back with only the scraping of forks, the jingling of spoons, and an annoying beep of the kitchen timer. though, i am a very chatty guy, wordy even as one could to obviously argue, this does not mean that in my spare time i don't appreciate a good picture show.

i have peeped out some glorious photos form QTPOCs who make a good plate, feed a fine purpose, and who'll pass you a swig of something, most likely homemade from their latest garden or CSA findings.  people featured may be in leadership of community orgs, be queer fashionistas, spin a dope set at your local party, perform across country and/or speak on issues critical in forums, but they have bellies too. bellies that have needs---- especially come summer. let's catch some of these highlights, shall we? drooling is allowed, i assure you.

to submit your own summer food photos, journeys, and adventures, email:

[brooklyn living tara shuai, facebooked this beauty. just looking at the salad, a salad i myself have had maybe twice this passed week, is a WIN! kale and fruit people, take note. the sweetness from nectarines/peaches/berries plus some element of acid/citrus makes this a summery and usually local savory fix. for meat eaters, i am sure the lamb burger speaks for itself. her caption:  The other week, I made lamb burgers with a side of sauteed corn & tomatoes and a kale salad with white nectarines, smoked almonds, and pecorino with a honey vinaigrette. ]

[tara shuai also impressed with a clear favorite of mine: fried green tomatoes. the texture on a perfectly executed fried green tomato and the crunch of cornmeal packs not only summer, but the pinnacle of comfort food. hot sauce accompanies mine, always, but that aioli looks like it'll do. =) the nectarines are lookers as well. the caption: This is what summer is supposed to be about: fresh peaches and fried green tomatoes with spicy paprika garlic aioli.]

[laura luna from creative xicana and jess pace have a Casa P-P breakfast. once,  i have experienced the brunch efforts of their powers combined. this photo is off the chain! how could you go wrong with tamales y café con leche? i mean you could, if you live in NYC and cannot find a decent tamale for days. (charming passive aggressive regional complaint) this is an LA photo friends. see the sunshine glimmering on that tabletop? probably isn't has big as the glow on the faces who made this lovely morning meal.]

[kit yan, poet and fellow brown round boi, tours his ass off and when he does, there are some perks. cheesy vegan grits is a perk! grits have a certain school of thought, one i will not involve myself with here. i will pass my vote to say i am a savory grits person and that paprika atop that plate makes it look salty good. here my homey sports some southern touches with a caption, "Sluggo's in Chattanooga, TN. Vegan cheezy grits!"  support kit and his efforts to fundraise for his upcoming album and check out his website.]

[dj. ang has been spotted all fruity and across the country, traveling. raspberry, blueberry patches have been in season for a minute and all the caption we need from ang is: REALLY TASTY.  let this be a core value as we eat on this summer, tasting fresh good green foods. also peep ang's fierce foodie contribution here.]

[savvy and spirited, erin o'brien does many a thing-- gardens, makes superb kale chips, is a performance artist who has been known to throw a pop-up dinner performance and steeps her oolong in the sun. sun tea is a basic and summer classic, but i love oolong is on that map of teas to soak up light.  other suggested sun tea successes i have usually in my fridge: hibiscus, ginger, jasmine.]

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

[delicious orchards / colts neck, nj.] review

[Rt 34 and CR 537
Colts Neck, NJ 07722
(732) 462-1989

 [some delicious sauces. i felt like this was a romcom movie set in small town, what's-it-called where the pimple-faced person making the fritters in the shack was miserable in the heat, yet respected the apple fritter.]

[bite with caramel sauce. yeah, this did not last long.]

[deep fried fruit? oh yes, please. though, i was terribly sick with congestion and heat flashes, i was obliged to accept this trip that included fritters, cider, donuts and pie. so much pie.]

Okay, if you want down-home small town market gone expansion, come here. All the pies are perfect, each has been atuned, tested and calibrated to paramount pie performance. Favorites are basic: apple, apple crumb, peach, and pecan. All pastries are pretty on-point along with the country packaging. The apple cider is also crisp, sweet, a slight tang, and refreshing.  As far as produce, there is an extensive array and not all of it is local, so keep that in mind while purchasing. They've recently created a seafood stand and indoor juice stand, all attributes that had local clientele in a hubbub. Gourmet and specialty food, an impressive cheese market, even a candy area focussed on taffy, maples, chocolates in the tri-state area, and freshly dipped and fried apple fritters outdoors, all occuring all at once. My partner takes her cherries from delicious orchards to a practically spiritual level, having been raised in that area.  I love this place. It reminds me of my own small rural michigan hometown where I'm from, but can leave once I realize I am probably the only person of color in the entire establishment. I like haviing that choice and having that choice over donuts and cider.