Thursday, November 20, 2008

cinnamon girl

Life is extraordinarily suave and sweet with certain natural, witty, affectionate people who have unusual distinction and are capable of every vice, but who make a display of none in public and about whom no one can affirm they have a single one. There is something supple and secret about them. Besides, their perversity gives spice to their most innocent occupations, such as taking a walk in the garden at night.
Marcel Proust (1871-1922) novelist, essayist and critic

Garlic is as good as ten mothers.
proverb and title of a 1980 documentary by Les Blank

Once you get a spice in your home, you have it forever. Women never throw out spices. The Egyptians were buried with their spices. I know which one I'm taking with me when I go.
Erma Bombeck (1927-1996) humorist and writer

There is no single face in nature, because every eye that looks upon it, sees it from its own angle. So every man's spice-box seasons his own food.
Zora Neale Hurston (1903-1960) American folklorist, writer, anthropologist

The sun doth shake
Light from his locks, and, all the way
Breathing perfumes, doth spice the day.
Henry Vaughan (1622-1695) Welsh metaphysical poet and medical practitioner

The food in such places is so tasteless because the members associate spices and garlic with just the sort of people they're trying to keep out.
Calvin Trillin (b. 1935) journalist

Variety's the spice of life, That gives it all its flavour.
William Cowper (1731-1800) English poet and hymnodist

notes on photos:
1,2,5,7 - herbs and spices at various markets in france

3 - the urban herbs spice booth at the west side market, cleveland

4 - after reading an article in the paper about the healing properties of these four spices (turmeric, cinnamon, cayenne pepper, ginger) I took this picture with the intention of writing a post. weeks then months passed, the clipping got lost, and the post has gone unwritten, but the photo remains. on a positive note, I have increased my use of these spices in food preparation. of the four, the most under-utilized in american kitchens is probably turmeric. this is unfortunate as turmeric is believed to be superstar of spices as it may have anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties. I couldn't find the article on the internet, however, I did find this piece - it includes nutmeg in its list of 'spices for life' - the article I read probably included nutmeg, but I know for a fact I didn't have any nutmeg seeds around! nutmeg is definitely an underutilized spice in my kitchen!

6 - spices at sahadi's market in brooklyn.

cinnamon girl as performed by neil young and crazy horse (1969) - classic young and a good slide show


R.L. Bourges said...

aï, aï, aï - as in ail de Lautrec, of course, which I use almost every day in this kitchen. But also for the photos, quotes and music - excellentissimouse, merci!

p.s. (do try a grating of nutmeg in your spinach - very tasty.)

Lora said...

I absolutely LOVE this post.

And I never eat spinach without nutmeg.

I was thinking about Thai in Chinatown for lunch, now I'm sure I'm going.

And picking up a ginger root while I'm in the neighborhood.

K. said...

You can't beat Neil! I've been a fan since my sophomore year in high school. He still makes good music -- check on Chrome Dreams II. My favorite obscure Neil Young song is "Campaigner," only available on Decade. And on YouTube, of course:

Premium T. said...

Reading this post was the best way to start my day -- thanks!

Megan said...

I had no idea that quote was Cowper.

What an amazing array of spices. There are so many I have not yet tasted (or if I have, I didn't know it!).

Gary said...


I am trying to get back into my blog routine after what feels like a long absence (3 weeks in blog speak is an eternity) and while I was reading Wat's blog I saw that you are dealing with a cold. Hope you feel better soon. Now to catch up on your posts!

Don't you just love Erma Bombeck?

Coffee Messiah said...

Great photos and that Brooklyn store looks like the place to go.

As do all the European markets ; )

jenclair said...

I've never tried spinach with nutmeg!

Spices are still exotic--mysterious, tempting, almost spiritual in their appeal. Such lovely, lovely photos!

mouse (aka kimy) said...

thanks for all the comments! I'm going try putting nutmeg in my spinach - maybe my love of spinach will overcome my nutmeg aversion (I have no idea why I don't care for nutmeg!)

yes, as gary noted I'm battling the classic change of seasons cold... trying to come up with the right concoction of herbs and spices to knock it out! but I expect like most colds it will have to run it's course.

and gary welcome back to blogging - along with colds - tis the season of blog breaks!!

k - chrome dreams rocks and it really has soul.... as a die hard neil fan, you bet I had it is asap....

Anonymous said...

Quantum Health, Cold & Flu capsule, 30-Count Packages

I'm at work and I keep these on hand to prevent such an occurence.

Get well soon! CM

lettuce said...

so, which one do you think she was planning to take with her?

kimy, you don't have to put in a lot of nutmeg - it will add something even if you can't really taste it

(but then, you don't have to put any in. smoked paprika is good with spinach too)

Turmeric helped heal my ears in the summer - mixed with honey - a great mixture for cuts etc. that are looking at all manky

Squirrel said...

Lettuce asked what i was gonna ask...which one did she take with her when she went ?

I would take tarragon or rosemary I guess.

Absolute Vanilla (and Atyllah) said...

Oh wow, what stunning and enticing images, Kim!

R2K said...

Love those images.

tut-tut said...

I had my post half-done, and then a deadline loomed! Yours is so spiffily spicy that I'll look through some more!

But nutmeg in spinach begs for a dollop of cream . . . hmm

Ladrón de Basura (a.k.a. Junk Thief) said...

I've had a few marriage proposals from women (not men) because of my spice cabinet and its organization. We're lucky to have some nifty markets to buy them here in SF. That's a good subject to document on my future trips. I went to an amazing spice market in Otavalo this February. This link is a slide show from that visit. Being a Latin American market, they had more meat than spices!

WAT said...

The guitar work on this song is perfectly wonderful.

NEIL YOUNG is wonderful. An CANADIAN treasure.

Salty Miss Jill said...

What a wonderful post! I think this one has to be my favorite of your yet. :)