Noah's pudding: Sweet dish shows a shared story

Photos special to the Town Crier, above, and by Eliza Ridgeway, below.
Los Altos cooks spent 6 hours chopping, simmering and arranging traditional ingredients for a personalized pudding.

Turkish residents of Los Altos gathered for a cook-off Saturday, celebrating a dessert that manages to capture both the childhood flavors of Turkey and a gustatory vision of inter-community diversity.

Hives to wines: Bees benefit local vineyards

Christine Moore/Special To The Town Crier
Honeybee-friendly vineyards benefit from pest control and a mineral-rich aromatic boost.

You’d have to be wearing some pretty serious sound-canceling headphones to miss the increasing buzz about how farmers, biologists, beekeepers, entomologists and environmental groups the globe over are encouraging bee population growth.

Promoting bee health is critical to ensuring human food supplies. Bees can take credit for pollinating approximately one-third of everything we eat and play a big role in what we drink, too, both directly and indirectly.

CA brewers bring fruit and flowers to classic IPAs


Classic West Coast India pale ales feature significant bitterness, as well as hop aromas and flavors of citrus and pine, often supported by a simple malt bill – the grain ingredients that contribute just a touch of malt sweetness to balance the bitterness.

Newer hop varietals contribute other flavor and aroma components, such as tropical fruits, floral character or even blueberry, pear or stonefruit.

Purim revels: Tyrant's cookies find new purpose with LAH tradition

Courtesy of Deborah Radin 
Tri-cornered hamantaschen mark Queen Esther’s triumph over a dictator. Bakers at Congregation Beth Am in Los Altos Hills makes the sweet treats for family and friends each year.

Tri-cornered cookies are on the menu this week for local families celebrating Purim, the Jewish holiday marked by carnival costumes, noise-makers and one very distinctive sweet.

The hamantaschen – named, according to legend, for the villain Haman’s hat – stands out as Purim’s one iconic dish.

Meet the Brewers shines light on new local beers

Courtesy of Derek Wolfgram
Elkhorn Slough Brewing owners Michael Enos and Julie Rienhardt pour their beers at the Meet the Brewers festival.

One of my favorite annual beer events is the Meet the Brewers festival at Hermitage Brewing Co. in San Jose.

With the brewers from each participating brewery present, the festival provides a unique opportunity to learn about some of the newest and most innovative breweries in the region. Held last month, the eighth annual festival featured a couple dozen craft beer and cider makers from around the Bay Area, including several relatively new breweries.

United we dine: Familiar ingredients bridge geographic and cultural divides at community meals

Christine Moore/Special To The Town Crier
A rosemary-lemon salt rub adds a West Coast taste to Christine Moore’s family version of the universal comfort food, roast chicken.

In my family, food is central to just about every celebration. It’s a big part of comforting and consoling one another, too.

But I know that we’re not unique in our food traditions. Down the street, around the corner and throughout the world, families make merry, mourn and meet around the table.

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