Anthony Bourdain, Return of the McRib, and Steve Jobs’s Diet: Eating & Reading

Every week, we'll let you know what the Washingtonian food staff is reading in the blogosphere and off the bookshelves.

Anthony Bourdain doesn’t hate everything on the Food Network.

Todd Kliman, food and wine editor:

• A vitally important national security issue if ever there was one.: Leahy, Collins, Sanders, Snowe, and Others Propose MAPLE Act.

• The makers of Necco wafers, that staple of my childhood, have abandoned course, ditching their natural-flavored candies in the wake of plummeting sales. The Atlantic‘s Corby Kummer says they’ve returned to their “bad old ways.” Corby, babe: It’s CANDY, for chrissakes, not factory-farm chicken.: New Natural Neccos Now Old News.

Ann Limpert, food and wine editor:

• A two-part expose in the Boston Globe found that in Massachusetts, a state that’s pretty much synonymous with seafood, fish mislabeling is rampant. Escolar—which has earned the lovely nickname ‘ex-lax’ for the digestive problems it causes—is frequently passed off as white tuna. The ubiquitous tilapia is often sold as the more expensive red snapper. In all, 48 percent of the fish the Globe sent for DNA-testing came back as different species.: Fishy Business.

• Another thing Anthony Bourdain and I have in common: a love for Barefoot Contessa. I think it’s meant to be.: Anthony Bourdain Tells Grub Street About the Food Shows He Actually Likes.

• The only good thing about the re-release (yet again) of the McRib—Ruth Bourdain’s reaction: “I keep reading tweets that say ‘The McRib is back.’ I knew it: McRIbs are made from human backs.”

• STOP LOOKING AT ME.: Cheese Most Stolen Food in the World.

Jessica Voelker, online dining editor:

• EW.Com’s Shelf Life had an interesting item this week detailing the oddly ascetic eating habits of Steve Jobs. Walter Isaacson’s new bio of the recently departed Apple founder reveals he once spit out soup after learning it contained butter. Jobs was also a zealous faster, surviving for weeks at a time on one or two types of food. Yes, those foods included apples.: Steve Jobs’ Food Weirdnesses

• In the October issue of Esquire, the ever-knowledgable David Wondrich tackled the difficult subject of sake. The piece includes step-by-step instructions to making your own sake. (Step three: “Realize that you have better things to do than make your own sake.”): How to Drink Sake.

• The magazine’s Best Restaurants issue also included a handy list of 2011’s top cookbooks. Most coveted by me? The “elaborate and magnificent” Eleven Madison Park book.: Best New Cookbooks 2011.

Sophie Gilbert, associate arts editor:

• First chain restaurants, now industrial food. Josh Ozersky doth protest too much (he sounds more and more like someone who’s never actually picked up a spatula.: In Defense of Industrial Food.

• NPR goes to Mount Vernon to drink whiskey like George Washington: Drinking Whiskey in the Spirit of George Washington.

• Love me some paillards, so this, by Mark Bittman, is delightful. The first one I ever had was at Balthazar, and although I have tried endlessly to replicate its thin-ness, I always fail.: Taking a Pounding.

• And finally, there’s no “beef” between Paula Deen and Michelle Obama, y’all. Take that, National Enquirer.: Deen Fries Rumor.

Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Petworth.