Somehow, thanks to the power of Ed Levine's website Serious Eats, I have gotten a reputation as something of a cupcake hater. I don't like to think of myself as a hater of anything, least of all inanimate object as insipid and inconsequential as a cupcake. So just to clear things up here, let me say that what irks me is not the sad, cloying little cake itself, but the sad, cloying need of the American People who seem to love cupcakes more than is really, err...  healthy. And I'm not talking cholesterol healthy. I'm talking: dig deep into your childhood and let's think about what you're really looking for in that cupcake, Cupcake. But really. I didn't mean to go off on cupcakes today. They can't possibly be worth that much energy. I wrote here today in response to a tiny parenthetical on the Foodinista blog, apologizing to me—to me—for her endorsement of a certain thumbnail-size red velvet calling itself a cupcake at the Los Angeles ice cream parlor (I'd like to bring back the word "pa ...

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Ack! This just in via twitter... @carolynncarreno nice article, but in '06 McDonald's owned 51% of Chipotle, it's not an urban myth. McNews link. After a stormy night of cooking and wine, I can't think on this except to say: Something is off. Will someone at Chipotle please tell us: What is up? ...

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I stopped by Chino Farm yesterday, thinking they were open on Mondays during the summer but it just goes to prove I haven't been anywhere near these parts in the summertime in awhile. The farm was closed, which turned out to be even better, because it gave me the opportunity to visit with the family and ask "How's biz?" Tom Chino, one of many siblings who run the farm, told me they'd been a bit slow this summer, but that in the last couple of weeks, they've been really busy. The Chinos have a lot of restaurant accounts, and in San Diego, the type of restaurants that buy Chino produce are viewed as special occasion restaurants—or the kind of restaurants that are hit hard by the recession. "We've been really busy," Tom said, in an uncharacteristic moment of... what's the word for the opposite of complete humility, utter self-deprecation?... "So what accounts for the busy-ness," I asked? Could it be that the affects of Food Inc. are trickling down to the consumer and the farm? Could it b ...

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I went to a screening of the movie Food, Inc. last night hosted by Chipotle—the Mexican fast-food chain that I was always under the impression was owned by McDonald's but that from what I gleaned through various unreliable sources on the world-wide-web turns out to be urban myth. The movie was exactly what I expected it to be--a really horrifying glimpse into how our food is produced. (I say "our," just to be a team player, but to be clear, it is not how my food is produced because, I am proud to admit, I am a total pain in the ass about what I will and will not eat--and it is not INC. food.) Chipotle, which uses the tag-line "food with integrity," and claims to use all organic rice, beans, and veggies in their whopper-sized burritos and tacos (which are wrapped, oddly enough, in flour tortillas--but that's another story), is hosting these free screenings all over the country in an apparent effort to scare people away from McDonald's drive-though window and up to their cool, industria ...

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