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Solano County legalized home food popups. But 6 months later, chefs still can’t sell

When Solano County approved a new California law that would legalize home-based kitchen operations in April, it seemed like Cheska Kistner’s plans to open a restaurant in her Benicia home would finally come to fruition. The measure, California’s AB 626, allows for what are known as microenterprise food businesses, which Alameda County also made inroads toward legalizing yesterday. But no Bay Area county has yet fully implemented the 2018 law, leaving entrepreneurs like Kistner in limbo.

Under AB 626, cooks can legally sell up to 30 meals a day or 60 per week from their homes when their counties opt in and they have received a permit; their annual gross sales are capped at $50,000. The law has only been implemented in one county so far, Riverside. In Alameda County, many home kitchen operations have proliferated during the pandemic without the option to get proper permitting, leading to the health

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Quincy food store closed due to COVID-19 cases; health officials want to know if you were there between Oct. 2 and Oct. 11

A second employee at the Fruit Basket Marketplace in Quincy has tested positive for COVID-19 and the city continues to ask anyone who was in the popular store between Oct. 2 and Oct. 11 to contact them, especially if they are experiencing any symptoms.

The city first alerted the public on Monday to a single identified case of COVID at the Granite Street store on the city’s official Facebook account. City Health Commissioner Ruth Jones said in a telephone interview Tuesday that a second of the store’s four employees has now tested positive. Both employees worked between Oct. 2 and Oct. 11.

Jones said customers who were in the store for brief periods of time – less than 15 minutes – are likely not to have health concerns related to exposure to the employees. (If they feel symptomatic they should be tested, she stressed.)

Of greater concern, Jones said, are

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Brookside’s new Macho Taco: Mexican food to-go or delivery

Brookside’s Michael Forbes Bar and Grille has launched a “ghost kitchen.”

Macho Taco operates out of the Michael Forbes kitchen but is only available for carryout or delivery through DoorDash.

Macho Taco offers a combination of traditional Mexican dishes with its own house specialties. That includes queso dip, nachos with a choice of steak, chicken or taco meat, chicken wings with house-made sauce, tacos, enchiladas, burritos, fried chicken tenders salad and taco salad, and the “Best Smoked Salsa on the Planet.”

“We make it from scratch — fresh tomatoes smoked in our smoker. Fresh onions and fresh poblano peppers charred over a live grill. Then blended together with cilantro and served with fresh tortilla chips,” said Forbes Cross, owner.

Cross was a founder and partner in Michael Forbes Grill, which operated in Waldo from 1985 to 1999. He opened Michael Forbes in early 2012 at 128 W. 63rd St.


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Vegan Kitchen: Support Black-owned food businesses

Shanna-Kay Wright uses simple ingredients to make the vegan dishes at Yardie Ting in Portland. The owner of the Jamaican restaurant in the Public Market House, Wright says the menu’s many vegan choices reflect the influence of Ital food on the island.

Ital food, eaten by members of the Rastafari religion and movement, is usually vegetarian and always minimally processed. However, Wright points out that Yardie Ting’s vegan dishes don’t qualify as Ital, since to suit local tastes she uses non-Ital ingredients such as salt and garlic powder.

“All my years growing up in Jamaica, you would not use any all-purpose seasoning,” explained Wright, who has run a catering business in Portland since 2013. “Ital means food that is from the earth. No powder seasonings. No salt. All organic. All natural.”

The jerk tofu at Yardie Ting in the Portland Public Market House comes with black beans and a kick

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Nordic author Patrice Johnson’s new cookbook celebrates Minnesota’s rich food traditions

“I am a Minnesotan, born with appetite for food and life.”

With those words, Patrice Johnson opens her “Land of 10,000 Plates: Stories and Recipes From Minnesota” (Minnesota Historical Society Press, $24.95), a just-released collection of essays and recipes that focus on the multicultural food rituals celebrated across the state as well as in Johnson’s own kitchen.

In a recent phone conversation, Johnson, the author of “Jul: Swedish American Holiday Traditions,” discussed Tater Tot hot dish, wild rice, climate change and her passion for church cookbooks.

Q: This book is a big change from your Nordic foodways work. Why the switch?

A: Minnesota is my first love. When I’ve done the Nordic stuff, that’s all about my cultural history and how I connect with my family. But Minnesota, it’s more than culture, it’s my people. Minnesota means so much to me. Living here is such a blessing.


Q: Isn’t every

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Recipe of the Week: How to make paella on the grill (with or without meat, seafood) – Food and Dining – Austin American-Statesman

Paella is a stunning dish, and it’s more versatile than you might think.

In Spain, home cooks make family-size paellas outside over a live fire and fill them with whatever regional ingredients are easily accessible. (They also make them in dinner plate-size paella pans in their small apartment kitchens, too.)

When living there for a year in college, I had all kinds of paellas in all kinds of settings: With chicken and red peppers around my host mom’s cramped kitchen table. With fideo and clams at a seaside restaurant. I even had one with rabbit with butter beans cooked over a smoky fire.

Every home cook had his or her own tricks for getting the rice to cook through while also forming that crispy crust on the bottom without burning. I’m still honing my own paella skills, and I love an excuse to work on them.

Earlier this month, I

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Sandra Lee’s Country Kitchen food truck opens in Charlotte


Willie Walters is the friendly face behind Sandra Lee’s Country Kitchen food truck.

If COVID-19 left you seeking an endless supply of comfort food, chef Willie Walters is serving exactly what you need.

Walters, a father of four who’s worked in the restaurant industry his whole life, finally branched off to start his own business: Sandra Lee’s Country Kitchen, a food truck slinging delicious Southern cooking. It’s the latest business to open amid the pandemic.

“At the beginning of this thing, nobody knew anything about what we were going to do and where we were going to go with it,” Walters said. “But I sat back and looked at it: Even though we’re going through a pandemic, people still have to eat. Food trucks are booming, especially with the restaurants being down.”

While the restaurant industry as a whole has taken a hit, food trucks have pivoted to

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