This week’s foodie overview
I spend a lot of time reading, researching and tweeting about food and restaurants these days, so I thought I’d jot down my tweets from the last few days. These are from both The Rambling Epicure and Swiss Foodies and should give you an overview of what’s going on in the foodie world this week, in Switzerland and around the world.
Sometimes I couldn’t resist writing about the snow and skiing conditions, because that determines how a lot of us in Switzerland plan our weekends, and therefore what restaurants we go to or what recipes we cook up. And of course occasionally, watches and wine . . . and this week, the Vancouver Winter Olympics and those cute wooly pigs you see in the photo.
Genevan Jean-François Schlemmer turns run-down, forgotten sites into chic, trendy places.
After the success of the Palais Mascotte, a tired Geneva institution and cabaret started in 1833 that he brought back to life, he has now converted an old warehouse next to MAMCO, the modern art museum, into an exciting café and restaurant, Curiositas. Curiositas is almost a museum in and of itself, with its display cases full of “curious” collections of seashells, butterflies and surprising knick-knacks.
The menu is more classic than one might expect, but also offers some original variations on classics, such as the duck parmentier with turnips and red currants, or foie gras with oxtail. French chef Sergio Schoener delights in turning out color combinations not common in the world of food. Pastry chef Lionel Gérard comes to Curiositas with the label Ducasse on his CV.
A 3-course daily lunch menu goes for CHF 48 and a daily special for CHF 23. Breakfast is served, as well as light afternoon food.
Schlemmer has resuscitated several dying venues into “must” night life stopoffs, including the Petit Casino, the Restaurant l’Horizon and Psycho. As he says in Le Temps of 14 January 2010, outsiders just think that Geneva is a sleepy town. If they only knew all the fun that goes on behind those Calvinist façades!
Curiositas, rue des Vieux Genadiers 8-10, 1205 Geneva, +41 022 321 30 37, next to MAMCO modern art museum. Map. Open from 08:30 to 22:00.
Links: Le Temps
Invention through sloth: a recipe for lazy people who really would like to eat a healthy breakfast but can’t manage it
We don’t stop hearing about oats — they’re full of fiber so they’re good for your digestion and your bowels, they contain beta-glucans that help cut cholesterol and spread the rise in blood sugar over a long period of time, they make you feel full for longer so they encourage weight loss, they are anticarcinogenic thanks to their phytochemicals — and the list goes on.
Confession to my mother and request for forgiveness
I try and eat my oats every day, really I do. It has always been one of my mother’s Golden Rules of Healthy Eating. But Mom, I have to tell you: sometimes I just don’t, because I’m absolutely, unequivocally not a morning person and I just can’t get it together to cook the oats the good old-fashioned Scottish way we might all prefer.
So Mom, to relieve this deep guilt I have lived with my entire adult life, I found the solution, though I admit more by sloth than by wit. It was one of those days when no one was to speak to me before noon. I decided to pour some dry steel-cut oats into a bowl and eat them dry, in order to avoid the risk of pouring milk all over the stovetop instead of into the pan it was meant for, and then adding oats and other necessary ingredients into the milk that was already running down the front of the kitchen cabinets (I have already experienced this and it is not a good way to start the day). I was absolutely incapable of giving them the loving care they so deserve.
Barbie’s secret to weight loss was “don’t eat”: Is that your teen’s philosophy?
The 1965 Slumber Party Barbie came with her very own “How to Lose Weight” book. The main message was “don’t eat.” Along with this book came a bathroom scale always set at 110 pounds/49.9 kilograms, says Teen Beauty Tips. According to Malisa Morsman, “Barbie is the plastic equivalent of a 5-foot, 9-inch (1.75 m) woman with a 36-inch (91.5 cm) bust, 33-inch (83.8 cm) hips, and an impossibly small 18-inch waist (45.7 cm).”
Ken, on the other hand, came with his own milk and cookies, and no scales.
Unhealthy message to teenage girls that has persisted
Unfortunately, women of all ages gradually started to perceive Barbie’s body as ideal, and teenagers often follow, even now, Barbie’s 1965 instructions on how to lose weight. Some purport that Barbie is even responsible for the increase in eating disorders.
In Europe, a correlation has also been made between women of all ages who smoke and have eating disorders. Smoking cuts the appetite, and is used as a way to keep from eating.
Ironically, the problem often becomes not only of a problem of getting your teenage girl to eat properly, but also a problem of eating at all.
As for the boys, is the message still that he can eat milk and cookies to his heart’s delight?