Food Stuff 

Food stuff

No sugar tonight — A uniquely American holiday, Halloween courts our collective sweet tooth. But south of the border, our Mexican neighbors observe the Day of the Dead, an occasion to feast on more nourishing fare. Those suffering from sugar hangovers may find relief in southwest Detroit's Day of the Dead celebration. The Consulate of Mexico is sponsoring a traditional Oaxacan dinner with chef Soledad Espinoza, who will offer traditional dishes from the southern Mexican state, complemented by appropriate mescals. At 6 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 1, at Taquería Mi Pueblo Mexican Restaurant, 7278 Dix Rd., Detroit; 313-841-3315; $25. For more information, call the Consulate of Mexico at 313-964-4515, ext. 19622.

Wrap session — If you love Mexican food but also have a taste for the absurd, you may want to take up Chipotle Mexican Grill on an unusual offer: Come in on Halloween dressed as Mexican food and get a free burrito. The chain's "Boo-rito" promotion runs 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 31. Go to any Chipotle Mexican Grill location dressed as a burrito and they'll serve you one free of charge. What a great chance to prove that you are what you eat.

Chew and view — The exhibit curators at Cass Cafe have put together a show of work by Detroit artists Graem Whyte and Faina Lerman. Not only is the café a reliable dining destination, but the exhibit's name sounds of particular interest to foodies: Off the Stove, Out of the Freezer. Runs until Jan. 20, 2007.

Know of any new restaurants, special dinners or food-related events? Let us know. Send materials two weeks in advance to Food Stuff, Metro Times, 733 St. Antoine, Detroit, MI 48226 or e-mail

Do you ever wonder how difficult it could be to put up pickles, jams and jellies, sauces and the like? Wonder no more. The Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving: 400 Delicious and Creative Recipes for Today, edited by Judi Kingry and Lauren Devine ($29.95, Robert Rose), will answer all of your questions and many you don't yet know to ask. With 400 recipes, you will find several ways to fill your pantry with mouthwatering jars full of salsas, chutneys and fruit spreads to enjoy for months and to use as gifts for your friends. Homemade is just plain better.

Autumn finds many of us at a local cider mill quenching our thirst for a cup of cold, sweet, refreshing and healthy cider. What could be better? Well, the answer might be calvados, an apple brandy or "applejack" if you will. The distilled apple-based beverage is frequently imbibed as an aperitif; it is sometimes taken between courses of a long meal to help reawaken the appetite. Reminiscent of apples and pears, its flavor is mellow, the more aged the better. Because of its fruitiness, it is often used in recipes for desserts and in poultry preparations.

When you have to put food on the table in about a third of the time that you actually have at your disposal, consider a pressure cooker. Not your grandma's pressure cooker, but a newer, more efficient and safer version. They are easy to use, versatile — some even let you brown the meat first — and very efficient for cooking soups, stews and legumes such as Indian dals. They are USDA recommended as the only safe way to can low-acid foods. The model that's pictured here will hold seven 1-quart Mason jars.

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