Michael Pollan uncovered a gem of a url on twitter, a nice article on the chain Trader Joe’s.

Kindle notes:

From the 21st Century Principal, 7 suggested Kindle apps.

Don’t know what a Blackberry microUSB charger would do plugged into a Kindle? This article by Voltaic Solutions will give you a really good guess. Voltaic is focused on solar solutions, but since one of the solar solutions is only supplying 600mA (BB chargers tend to give 700-750mA), you can now estimate. It’s the best article on Kindle charging I’ve found so far.

If you’re like me, you’ll find that you pick up free cookbooks of various kinds. I have a Mexican cookbook, a Belgian cookbook, and an Scottish-Irish cookbook, all acquired at no cost. I also received Mark Miller’s “Tacos” for Christmas, “The Japanese Grill” by Tadashi Ono and Harris Salat, and a Mark Bittman book, “Kitchen Express”.

Quick notes about the books: Mark Miller does very detailed work when he writes, and the book’s lovely photos are better seen in print. I’d honestly prefer his book on chili peppers in a Kindle version, but that hasn’t been converted yet. “Tacos” has, along with the taco recipes, about a dozen salsas, so it’s a nice complement to his salsa book.  One of  these days I have to try his lamb tacos, whose photo is true food porn.

I like the Japanese grill book so far, though it has a prose style stolen from late night Ron Popeil ads. It reads way too much like ad copy, which is a shame, because the information in the book so far has been interesting. Mark Bittman’s book focuses on simple fast recipes, and is a working collection of formulas, more or less, as opposed to recipes you must follow to the letter. He’s encouraging improvisation here.

The "kill a tree" versions of Mark Miller's books are also highly recommended.

Also to note,  I have Malika Harrichan’s “Food Lovers’ Guide to Atlanta” in a Kindle edition. It’s well suited to the Kindle, a fast easy read. I went end to end with it in about 3-4 hours. You also don’t have to worry about your copy disappearing when you’re actually on the road.

A Kindle “must” for the food blogger has to be Jennifer 8 Lee’s Fortune Cookie Chronicles. Because the “kill a tree” version is easily lent, keeping a virtual copy around means you don’t have to grub for it when looking up  references for blog  articles.

The original impetus for my Kindle purchase was the absence of lockable space at a new work location, but since, it has acquired more than just work related texts.  NeoCal Light, a free calculator, can do volume and weight unit conversions (i.e. tablespoons to cups). Mapquest can locate your position to within a block using the local wifi hotspots as landmarks.

Free wifi is almost everywhere. Most yogurt shops have it, IHOP has it usually, AT&T stores have free wifi, and McDonalds uses the same format as the AT&T hot spots (i.e. log into one, and you’ll log into all of them). Roughly half the eateries I’ve been to have free wifi (some that don’t  — their staff can’t figure out how to get it to work properly). Even the Kroger at Five Forks and Oak Road has free wifi.  Chains tend to have it more often than do “one off” eateries.

Chinese in out of the way places.

Every small town this holiday season we passed through had a buffet, even in rot gut East Texas towns whose residents couldn’t pronounce Szechuan if they were paid to do so. I suspect the buffet style is now being taught in New York City to Chinese immigrants — that is, if the whole format hasn’t migrated back to Fujian province, the land where  your Chinese waiter likely came from.

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