Thai Cuisine in Boise certainly doesn’t mince words about what is about. They serve Thai food and only Thai food; and they do it extremely well. Walking in, the décor is basic, with plenty of Thai touches to set the mood. The menu is extensive, with plenty of dishes for everyone. They also have a Lunch Specials menu available and currently have a ‘Holiday Specials’ menu that include a Duck Soup, Chicken Soup and also a Duck Curry.
One of the most popular items at thai restaurants is the Galganal and Coconut Chicken Soup. In many Thai places this is called Tom Kha Gai or Tom Kha Kai Soup, but it is basically a somewhat spicy coconut soup with Galangal (a root somewhat like ginger), chicken, mushrooms and assorted vegetables. The luscious rich coconut milk forms the broth, while lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves add to the flavor. Continue reading
Thanksgiving is here to be celebrated with people I like and love. Traditions, especially this holiday, are so important to me. This is an American holiday accompanied by a story of overcoming and survival, of one society coming to the aid of another – a beginning compelled by the desire for self-determination of faith.
Pilgrims came in search of the American Dream, in the words of scholar and author, Dinesh D’Souza, to be the “Architect of one’s life”. We are free to create better solutions, new traditions, to evolve.
Versions of delicious foods that have traditionally blessed my family’s table for generations simmer and scent the air. Soon I will set the holiday table with beeswax candles shining their warm light and music will accompany children’s laughter. Hot spiced apple cider will be ready to serve.
My family is from the mid-west so we will have cornbread dressing with the turkey. The Thanksgiving traditions have evolved, but the best parts remain. Continue reading
A chance stop led me to Zimm’s Burger Stache in Boise for a late lunch. While my dining companion ordered the Lou Brown Burger, a nice burger topped with jalapeños, bacon and pepper jack cheese, my eyes immediately caught the sign for “hand-battered finger steaks”. Having developed a taste for the little bits of beefy goodness, I immediately ordered a combo. The combo offered a choice of fries or “tater gems”, a cup of cole slaw and a drink. We sat down and waited for the food to be delivered.
Shortly thereafter, the food came to the table. The Lou Brown Burger, ordered with a substitution side of onion rings, was nice-looking and of a good size. The jalapeños and pepper jack cheese added a nice zing, while of course anything is better with bacon.The onion rings were crisp and tasted good. Zimm’s Burger Stache in Boise has built a reputation on their handcrafted burgers and the Lou Brown was certainly a tasty choice. The jalapeño ranch sauce it came with added a nice touch of cooling and heat at the same time, Continue reading
“Death Rides a Horse” (1967, Kino) Gritty Italian western employs two of the genre’s most enduring tropes – “revenge for a murdered family” and “the student becomes the master” – and taps Lee Van Cleef, star of some of the most popular examples of each (“For a Few Dollars More” and “Day of Anger“) for its lead. Here, Van Cleef is a gunfighter, newly freed from prison, who teams with John Philip Law to track down the bandits who sent him to prison and slaughtered Law’s family. If the story travels a familiar track, the execution benefits from a wealth of positives in front of and behind the camera, including the steely presence of Van Cleef, scripting by Luciano Vincenzoni (“The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”) that showcases his talent for brawny dialogue and setpieces, an unnerving score by Ennio Morricone (which is quoted in “Kill Bill”) and the capable hand of director Giulio Petroni, who makes excellent use of the Techniscope process in wide vistas and tight, tense closeups. A solid entry in the sprawling Western alla’Italiana universe; Kino’s Blu-ray includes insightful commentary from director Alex Cox (“Repo Man”), and trailers for several of Kino’s Eurowestern titles, including “Return of Sabata,” also with Van Cleef.
While considering Memorial Day and Veteran’s Day, the first thing that always comes to mind is a poem my mother had hanging inside of a cupboard door when I was growing up. “In Flander’s Fields,” by physician Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae, is the most famous poem to emerge from World War I. Macrae was moved to write the poem after presiding over the burial of his good friend Alexis Helmer during the second battle of Ypres. As a result of the popular poem, remembrance poppies have become an international symbol for memorializing soldiers who have died in battle.
Between October 1914 and the August 1917, British and Commonwealth soldiers marched east out of the Belgian town of Ypres onto the battlefield of Ypres Salient. Over 90,000 of the soldiers that fell in these fields were buried anonymously in makeshift graves, and have never been found or identified. Four memorials have been erected to honor these soldiers, one of the better known being The Menin Gate Memorial.
On a cold, drizzly day, nothing sounded better for lunch than a nice hot bowl of pozole from Taqueria la Flama in Boise, the new Mexican restaurant that is the real thing. As I walked inside, the first thing I noticed was the woman up front making fresh handmade tortillas. Well, this was a very good sign—nothing tastes better than a fresh tortilla hot off la plancha. I saw immediately what I wanted, a bowl of pozole. Pozole is a dish that is perfect for a cold, rainy day. It is part soup and part stew, somewhat spicy, filled with pork and hominy and can be tailored to your individual taste through the toppings that come with it. I placed my order at the counter, sat down and waited for my pozole to be delivered to the table. Continue reading
“I don’t think there’s any better feeling than making someone genuinely feel something with your art.” Corey James 2017
Mountain Home, Idaho has produced some really fine down-home authentic Country music. One source of that music is Corey James. I was privileged to find Corey through the Idaho Songwriters Association. He is a Front Man. That is the leader, the singer and the producer of the music that sets the band apart. Fronting for Fall Creek String Band is perfect for Corey James’ traditional Americana sound.
Throughout history, from the beginning of Song, music has carried the stories of the people who lived simply. From songs, we learn about the everyday activities that occupy a life. In this country, the original folk songs are about blue tail flies, mama’s corn bread, drinking, hunting and dogs. There are many songs about fighting and dying in wars, of mining, trains, cars and natural disasters. To learn about the people, just listen to the words: the lyrics.
Corey James Grubb has many tales to tell in song. Learning Corey’s personal story adds depth of understanding. Continue reading
As the sound of salsa music wafted through the the speakers in El Cafetal Colombian Restaurant in Nampa, I sat down for another visit to them. Maybe I like El Cafetal because they remind me of my visits to Cartegena, Colombia, or maybe because the food is just plain good. Either way, it is a good place to get some unique, different food in the Treasure Valley.
Two famous staples in Colombia are arepas and empanadas. Arepas are corn cakes, sort of like a corn tortilla on steroids. They are a base or a side for many Colombian dishes. Empanadas are a turnover, filled with all sorts of good things and very popular in many Latin American countries. At El Cafetal Colombian Restaurant, the empanadas are available as either an appetizer or a combo meal. They are stuffed with either shredded beef or chicken and mashed potato. Almost every table usually has an order of them to start the meal, along with their delicious green salsa to spice things up. Another popular appetizer seems to be the papa rellena (stuffed potato), which many tables also ordered. Continue reading
“A Fish Called Wanda” (1988, Arrow) A mismatched trio of thieves (Kevin Kline, Jamie Lee Curtis and Michael Palin) attempt to retrieve a stolen cache of diamonds, but a lovelorn barrister (John Cleese, who also co-wrote the script) and their own oversized personalities turn the crime in a different direction. Three decades haven’t dimmed the acidic comedy and cracked charm of this much-loved comedy, which earned an Oscar for Kline and nominations for Cleese and Ealing Studios vet Charles Crichton. The film boasts a number of indelible moments and lines of dialogue, including animal lover Palin’s horror at attempting to kill a key witness, but succeeding only at dispatching her dogs, Kline’s inability to apologize and Cleese’s melancholy explanation of why the British fear being wrong (“[It’s] saying to someone, ‘Do you have children?’ and being told they all burned to death on Wednesday.”), which have done much to preserve the film’s high placement in the comedy ranks. The remastered Blu-ray includes commentary by Cleese, who’s also featured in vintage interviews with cast and crew, as well as deleted and alternate scenes and a visit to the locations.
After meeting Brook Faulk and hearing her beautiful voice and exquisite original song, I was delighted to learn she plays the washboard.
I went on an internet search and found that the washboard is considered one of the only truly American instruments.
I love Americans. The fact that we took something designed to wash clothes and figured out how to use it to play music is so – us. It is part of what is now called “Mountain Music” from an era when music was a social activity shared by a community.
I asked Brook if she had any recordings of her playing the washboard and she told me about Emily Tipton. They perform as a duo called: SWILLBILLY. Continue reading