Last updateFri, 21 Oct 2016 5pm

Add Middle Eastern zing to Thanksgiving with za'atar

Blanche ShaHeen/SPecial to the Town Crier
Za’atar, a Middle Eastern spice mix, adds zest to Thanksgiving dressing, and makes a tasty rub for chicken or turkey.

My late Aunt Bahia, who lived to be 95 years old, used to say, “Remember, Blanche, a spoon of za’atar a day will keep the doctor away.”

Raw, bitter, slow – delight? A counter-intuitive food week

FOOD MandarinaBavaria fmt

The Town Crier's food writers explore food origins, cooking techniques and trends in local beer this week. Did you know that some Los Altos milk-lovers get their dairy straight (yes, raw!) from the cow?

Fasoolya: A weeknight meal fit for fall

Courtesy of Blanche Shaheen
Fasoolya can be tailored to a family’s taste, using chicken or lamb to top any variety of grains or greens. Prepared the night before, it can stew all day while the family’s away.

Autumn is a frenetic time of year for me. With days spent working, writing, bill paying, preparing school lunches, cleaning, grocery shopping, doing laundry, volunteering at school and carpooling to soccer practice, ballet rehearsals, swimming and piano lessons, cooking takes a backseat. My pots and pans seem to give me attitude, like they’re saying, “Wanna piece of me?”

How do I squeeze in easy, healthful dinners without relying on processed food or takeout? The slow cooker, one of the best inventions ever (sorry, pots and pans).

Local service celebrates the raw and fermented

Eliza Ridgeway/Town Crier
Raw milk’s rareness has made it a coveted commodity in much of the U.S. – in California, licensing has allowed production to increase.

Raw milk has become a precious – and sometimes illicit – commodity among American eaters drawn to less processed, more primal foods. It’s banned in some states or permitted only to those who own their own cows. Even in California, a bastion of alternative eating, only four dairies have received licenses to sell raw milk.

But local residents have unusual access these days, due to a service that picks up milk at two raw dairies each week and delivers to Los Altos and Mountain View, in addition to other Bay Area locations.

Terroir: Finding where you are in a glass of wine

Courtesy of Christine Moore
Many wine drinkers believe that grapes echo their land.

I’ll never forget my first glass of good red wine. It happened while I was in college, full of heady independence and curiosity. It helped that I had this glass with a dear girlfriend named Dawn. Dawn knew the chef of a small, hole-in-the-wall, jewel of a restaurant tucked away in the parking lot of a boat-launch site. He pointed us in the direction of the right wine for our dinner. I am forever grateful for that first, extraordinary introduction.

The wine was a Wild Horse Pinot Noir, and two things happened when I drank it. First, my eyes sprung wide open to the way wine amplifies the pleasure of a meal. Second, the wine was produced near where I lived at the time, and I was blown away by its ability to encapsulate that place.

Submit a Letter to the Editor

The Town Crier welcomes letters to the editor on current events pertinent to Los Altos, Los Altos Hills and Mountain View. Write to us at 138 Main St., Los Altos 94022, Attn: Editor, or email editor Bruce Barton at bruceb@latc.com. Because editorial space is limited, please confine letters to no more than 200 words. Include a phone number for verification purposes. Anonymous letters will not be printed.

You can also have your say right here at losaltosonline.com – scroll to the bottom of any story to add a comment. 

Schools »

Read More

Sports »

Read More

People »

Read More

Special Sections »

Special Sections
Read More

Photos of Los Altos

Browse and buy photos