Welcome to our dinner party!
Not sure who let you in…Google probably sent you over. Its tentacles run deep into the cracks of the World Wide Web like an errant ant searching for sucrose to feed the colony. This site is my personal meditation on food. It’s a labor of love that gives my life purpose and structure (and distracts me from bothersome thoughts like my own mortality). The only reason it’s online instead of hidden in a precious notebook or in Evernote is for the 0.00000000000000001% chance that you could benefit from the information, pictures, or dad jokes.
Since you’re here, welcome to my little corner of the Internet. Melting Potluck is our Internet home (who is our? Read the About page) where I collect a hodgepodge of recipes, illustrations, photos, rants, tips, nostalgia, and more.
Are you looking for a communal take on food from different cultures? Do you like to eat diverse foods authentically made next to one another rather than horrifically combined in “fusion” cuisine? Do you like cringe-worthy puns and wordplay like “melting pot” and “potluck” stuck together?
If this sounds appealing, then we’re going to be friends fast.
Why read this food blog?
I’m not sure you should. After all, I know you have many choices for recipes, including from famous cookbooks like the “Joy of Cooking”, “Mastering the Art of French Cooking”, and anything that America’s Test Kitchen or Mark Bittman published.
If you’re looking for an all-purpose chocolate chip cookie recipe or a non-offensive banana bread recipe, you won’t find it here. Go to Serious Eats or All Recipes or the NYTimes Cooking section or YouTube to find your recipe. Those sites are solid, and I’ve relied upon them for years. Stick with Ina Garten and Martha Stewart for the classics.
Unless somebody’s long-lost Spanish half-brother cooked the recipe in a rustic kitchen in the Argentinian wine country in a once-in-a-lifetime situation, you won’t find that recipe here. (Yep, my standards for recipes are that high.)
I only post recipes that are meaningful to me because someone special shared the recipe with me or cooked with me like Chas’ French Onion Soup. Or I inherited the recipe, like Grandma Jo’skohlrabi. Or I made the food in a memorable — and sometimes weird — scenario in my life. Or it’s Kiwi cooking because childhood recipes are important, and it’s hard to find New Zealand recipes. All my recipes have stories I desperately cling to and that’s why I document them here (again, that mortality thing).
You’ll see illustrations. I like photos. But some things are hard to express through a photograph. No food porn here. Check out BuzzFeed, FoodGawker, and Reddit for that. My illustrations and cartoons are for capturing “the essence”, something I am trying to get better at.
What else can you expect?
Come for the food. Stay for the existential crisis. I, like many insufferable millennials, suffer from a plague of first-world problems. I’m not talking about cracking my smartphone screen or waiting in line for Instagrammable artisanal coffee. I’m talking about my life of abundance-induced crises where I sit on my butt all day moving 0s and 1s around because I don’t have to make things with my hands anymore to survive.
Because of this existential crisis, my solution is to write comedic stories about my life as an indulgent millennial cooking and learning Buddhist temple food.
- Because I grew up with temple food.
- Because I like the philosophy behind Shojin Ryori
- Because Buddhists are totally badass rebels, and I want to be more of that.
Unfortunately, I’m an epic fail due to my succumbing to my carnivorous impulses like a twisted Sisyphus rolling a turducken instead of a boulder. Minus the turducken because it sounds disgusting. How about a rack of baby back ribs with BBQ sauce? I like wine. And I like to use machines, like electric egg beaters and stand mixers. I know, my Karma is screwed.
If you’re still reading the ramblings of this windbag, the other two things you can expect to find are:
- articles recording cooking meetup I run where I meet up with strangers from the Internet to cook together, and
- my food illustrations because they cheer me up after a long day working in front of the computers.
Good luck. If you have any questions, you can reach me at email@example.com. And if you are pissed off at what I write or draw, be sure to read my answer under the heading “Why read this food blog?” Don’t say I didn’t warn you.