Today’s adventure in Pointlessly Gendered Products and the People Who Sell Them is brought to you by the Wall Street Journal via Anne Marie Chaker’s piece “Groceries Become a Guy Thing: As Men Shop More, Packaging Aims to Win Them Over; ‘Inner Abs’ Appeal” (16 Oct. 2013).
Can cookies, whole-grain bread and frozen yogurt be manly? Food makers are changing their products to signal, quietly, to men that they should eat them. Anne Marie Chaker and father of three Jeremy Alinder discuss.
First of all, I wasn’t aware that the proper bread- and delicious frozen treats sections of the grocery were barred off from anyone on account of their gender identity/expression (even though we know the reporter is really talking about cisgendered straight-identified men who are probably also white, middle-class, and able-bodied for good measure, because “default”). By “discuss,” Chaker means “shame a father of three who seems like a decent guy into saying that somehow gender plays into food when he basically tells her the opposite.”
Let’s get ready to rumble!
Hosting two Thanksgivings in Japan taught me to love the holiday and its food again. My friends are amazing cooks, and the sheer sense of community, of getting together to remake a tradition in our own way really made the holiday feel special.
Last year, I did a recipe-roundup of our meal. This year, I’d like to offer more recipes and suggestions for making Thanksgiving special in Japan or wherever you are.
Recipes marked with an asterisk indicate that the recipe contains ingredients that may be unavailable in a standard Japanese grocery store but are available at import stores and gourmet stores. (And there’s notes, as always, either on the recipe page or by the title if it’s off-site.)
For some on-point snark about women being left out of narratives about chefs and restaurants, check out “Amanda Cohen on Time Magazine and Female Chefs” on Eater.
The most boring story in the food world is this one: magazine puts together a list of the most important/best/most influential chefs, which doesn’t include any women. Or it drops in one as a token, and people react with incredulity and/or outrage. An editor of a magazine does an interview to say that they are not to be blamed, they are simply holding a mirror up to nature, just like Shakespeare. Even I’m bored of this cycle.
Check out the rice section in your local supermarket in Japan for other grains, and you’re often find zakkoku (雑穀) / kokumotsu (穀物), mixed grains and beans, which often includes millet. Millet is called awa (粟) or kibi (キビ) and is often sold by itself as uruchikibi (うるちキビ ) or mochi kibi (モチキビ).
This muffin recipe from Heidi Swanson’s Super Natural Every Day is a great way to try millet, and it’s easy to make in Japan and the US. If you’re in the US, millet can be found with the other grains or the bulk food section. The texture of the muffins is moist and rich, and the millet adds a nice seedy pop to it.
Happy Halloween, readers! How about a spooky chocolate-pumpkin cake with cupcakes that you can make in Japan?
Lupicia is one of the Japanese companies that has really embraced Halloween marketing and does it incredibly well.
I went to QFC tonight to pick up some pumpkin beer, and there was only one kind on the shelf. One. Normally I”m not overly concerned with Christmas decorations coming out before Halloween, but how am I supposed to celebrate the spooky season with no pumpkin beer?
EDIT: I raided the local QFC a week later and got these:
The day is saved!
So, before all the fantastic pumpkin beers go, here’s my opinion on this year’s best and most pumpkiny. I’ve included notes, so if you prefer a more fruity pumpkin to a spicy one, you can make your own choices.
Last year’s Halloween-themed pumpkin-flavored Mister Donuts doughnuts were delicious. This year, they’ve added a ghost and Hello Kitty shapes, and it appears that the batter is normal but the icing is kabocha-chocolate flavored.
Mister Donut Hallowe3n Doughnuts 2013
A nice bright salsa to end the summer (never mind it’s been over for a month). This recipe is very simple, and I love the way the flavors and textures work together.
I like to serve this with homemade tortillas (or rice or quinoa), avocados, and roasted kabocha tossed with cumin and cayenne.
In a country full of pumpkin-spice everything, I found special Halloween Kit Kats in Seattle, and they were somehow not pumpkin flavored. The American Halloween Kit Kats this year are orange-colored white chocolate abominations, as they apparently are every year.