Conflict Kitchen

In Pittsburgh, PA we have “Conflict Kitchen” a project created to spark discussion about the cultures that the United States is currently in conflict with. Starting in October, they began featuring Palestinian cuisine and that’s when all hell broke loose.

The latest development occurred today because of an article in the Post-Gazette to report that organizations that had funded Conflict Kitchen had been contacted  and asked to disavow their support of CK, including the Heinz Endowments, who donated the money to help CK move their restaurant to a different neighborhood.

In this case, Conflict Kitchen has done exactly what it was created to do – start a conversation and expose people to ideas that they might not otherwise encounter.

Conflict Kitchen’s Website

I haven’t had the opportunity to go into Oakland to eat there, so I can not report on a personal experience with this version of Conflict Kitchen. I visited the Cuban and Iranian versions and appreciated the way that they structured the information and provided a face to the culture that they were featuring.

Given the amount of discussion this has caused, CK is probably thrilled to pieces that they were able to impact the community, even if it means the possibility that their next version will be funded by Kickstarter. One that I will certainly be donating to.

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette – Conflict Kitchen Wrappers Spark Conversation on Foundation’s Roles

CBS, Local Pittsburgh affiliate – People Conflicted with the Conflict Kitchen

Jezebel – Total Idiots Offended by Conflict Kitchen Featuring Palestinian Food. Note: Insulting to the City that I love, but right on with the core issues.

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Food History Links #foodhistoryfriday

This week’s focus is going to be archaeology. An archaeological perspective gives us a different vantage point from which to view food throughout history.

The Trouble With Blood by Julie Powell from Archaeology Archive. This is an abstract, but you will be able to click through to the more detailed information.

Thomas, R. 2007a. Maintaining social boundaries through the consumption of food in medieval England, pp. 130-151, in Twiss, K. (ed.) From The Archaeology of Food and Identity. Center for Archaeological Investigations Occasional Publication No. 34, Carbondale.

Prehistoric Europeans Spiced Up Their Food. From Popular Archaeology.

The Archaeology of Food Preference. Made available by the University of California – Los Angeles Anthropology Department.

Using Contemporary Archaeology and Applied
Anthropology to Understand Food Loss in the American Food System
. From the Green Design Reading Group, Carnegie Mellon University.

What I’m reading this week
This week, I’m continuing to read up on the court of Richard II and how that may or may not have influenced the choices made in “Forme of Cury”. This is all in preparation for an event in October. My goal is to create the most authentic experience that I possibly can. One of the things that I very much wish to focus on is the environment – table settings/service/entertainment.

If you have any suggestions for where I would find information on these things as they pertain to later 14th century English culture and the court of Richard II. Please send me email and put “Richard II” in the subject header.

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Food History Links #foodhistoryfriday

Audience Participation
I know that you all have a blog or organization or group that is your regular go-to for research information or inspiration. On Fridays, I encourage you to share your favorite food history links on Twitter and use the hashtag “#foodhistoryfriday”. Sharing knowledge makes us all better researchers and writers.

Food History Links – Collections
Smithsonian Magazine Articles Tagged Food History. This is a collection of articles that spans the breadth of history and includes quite a number of subjects. This is useful if you’re just looking for a good read, have some specific research, or need some inspiration for your next experiment or article. From Smithsonian Magazine.

Food 52: Food History 101. Food52 features food history articles from time to time and this is the page where you can browse what they have so far and as articles are added, will appear when you visit again. The articles are not scholarly (for the most part) but the writing is engaging. Being a more scholarly sort, I found the articles very interesting and it inspired me to change up how I write about food because sometimes a story is a nicer read than an analysis.

What’s Cooking Uncle Sam? (photo set). This is a Flickr set that was shared by the National Archives in conjunction with the exhibit “What’s Cooking Uncle Sam?” in 2011. The pictures are very interesting and include a nutrition chart from the 1940’s that includes butter as its own food group.

The birds and the ants: Animal-inspired algorithms can optimize bakery production By Kacey Culliney (08-Aug-2013)
Using animal-inspired evolutionary algorithms can improve production efficiency and cut costs in bakeries, new research finds.

Extremely Useful Things
Measurement Guide. This is a list of equivalencies for measurements to make increasing or decreasing recipes easier. It also helps if you’re in a “field situation”* or are enjoying your first apartment and haven’t quite made the trip to the dollar store to pick up a cheap set of measuring utensils and only have what the previous tenant left. From Clotted Cream Recipe. From