For a brief moment, LP released a series of 45 rpm 7-inch records under the auspices of the Lucky Peach Record Club. Installment #2 was a thematic accompaniment to our All You Can Eat issue, a disc of two anti-Monsanto songs, one by Michael Hurley and another by Wes Buckley.
Hurley is one of America’s great folk singers, with a discography that reaches back to the sixties and includes a wheelbarrow’s worth of records that have a habit of staying on the turntable once they get there. He’s also a visual artist, a painter and drawer and comic-book-maker, with a distinct and compelling style and cosmology of characters that are always on his album covers and sometimes even in his songs.
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Canadian songwriter Tamara Lindeman’s songs each offer a vivid yet fleeting mise en scène. Her specific, detailed visuals are not opaque, but rather offer a portal for the exploration of enigmatic emotional relationships: parabolas and possibilities and perspectives. They show, don’t tell.
Lindeman, who performs under the name The Weather Station, first found her creative footing as an actor. After playing in a number of bands in Toronto, she released her first solo album All Of It Was Mine in 2011 on Canadian label You’ve Changed Records, followed by What Am I Going To Do With Everything I Know in 2014.
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Growing up, soft pretzels were one of the few junk foods my brother and I were allowed to eat. On the rare occasion that we went to the mall, my mom would treat us both to a soft, hot, overly-salted pretzel, pulled with tongs from spinning warming racks by some ambivalent high school teen at the Hot Sam Pretzels stand.
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This Saturday, seven new D.C. bands with names like King Donut and the Road Sodas, IRL Stine and Jerkhole will take the stage at St. Stephen’s Church. For all the bands on the lineup, it’ll be their first gig, and probably also their last.
The randomly formed groups — composed of both seasoned musicians and newbies — have been playing together for a little more than two months as part of Hat Band, a project devised by Shira Mario, a library associate at D.C. Public Library.
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In spring when we're craving the taste of fresh fruit, but still waiting for early strawberries and rhubarb to ripen, I like to opt for desserts made with jam. They offer a great opportunity to use up the stock of last summer's preserves, work well with frozen berries and, if you are lucky enough to get your hands on some spring fruit, you can use it in a quick jam. Baked goods with jam are also perfect for the tea party occasions spring offers: Easter, Mother's Day and Mem`orial Day. Though earlier in the season, the featured dessert of Purim–hamentashen–also features the pairing of pastry and preserves.
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On Saturday evening, I found myself in a white-out blizzard, driving up steep and curvy West Virginia back roads. Normally, I would have admitted defeat and turned back. But I kept going, propelled up the mountain by thoughts of the unique Mardi Gras foods and festivities that awaited me in an improbable-seeming Swiss village at top.
Helvetia, population 59, is an incongruous place — an Alpine village nestled in the isolated wilderness of West Virginia. It was settled in 1869 by Swiss craftsmen drawn by the large tracts of cheap land, beautiful mountains and plentiful forests of game. The town is situated along the Buckhannon River in a high mountain valley, and as I was reminded on my drive, is not very easy to get to.
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Here at the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage, we have a meta-foodways tradition. Whenever a staff member travels to an interesting place—whether foreign or to their hometown, it is customary to bring back a traditional food item to share with the office. News of a shared treat generally comes by way of an inter-office email: “The Original Derby Pie brought back from my home state of Kentucky, now in the kitchen while supplies last,” it might read, or “Back from Jakarta, I offer Bangkit Jaghe (a spicy ginger cookie) from Macassar in South Sulawesi.” We’ve had kiffles from Hungary,ampelmännchen gummis from East Germany, and a favorite: peanut butter-filled taffy chews from a third-generation Bakersfield, California, confectionery company.
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While I love the ritual of sitting down to a pie with a group of friends and family, hand pies are a more personalized treat and offer the ability to take and eat on the go. This is the reason pastys—a variety of hand pies— became popular among Cornish miners, as they could take the pastries to work and enjoy a complete meal without the need for utensils.
Served for holiday feasts, hand pies present a different take on the classic pie, and can be served not just in the dessert course, but throughout the meal. These Cranberry Hand Pies, made with a quick cranberry jam, can be made more savory with the addition of goat cheese—making them ideal for appetizers or dessert, while the Pear, Gruyère, and Caramelized Onion Hand Pies make a lovely accompaniment to a main course.
Read on in Edible DC