2021 California Food Journalism and News [SF Bay Area, Los Angeles, the rest of California and Northern Nevada]

Several dishes from Mama D’s African Cuisine, including ndolé, served with shrimp, left, and egusi stew, center.

(Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times)


Wanki most loves eru, also a stew of greens but with a different, forest-dense richness. Okazi, the leaves of a climbing vine, are cooked down with chopped pieces of beef stew meat, tripe and cow’s foot until the textures are melded and nearly indistinguishable. Palm oil adds nuttiness and carroty sweetness. You can’t see its telltale red-orange glow in the black takeout container — at least not until you dip in a mound of fufu, molded in your hand and indented with your thumb for better scooping. Then the palm oil bleeds and stains, and the mellow, meaty flavors coalesce, and you understand why it’s Wanki’s favorite.

Mama D’s African Cuisine

1240 S. Soto St., Los Angeles, (213) 610-5322, mamadsfood.com

Prices: starters $5-$15, entrees $15-$25

Details: noon-8 p.m., Tuesdays-Saturdays. Credit cards accepted. No alcohol. Lot and street parking.

Recommended dishes: puff puffs, ndolé with shrimp, eru

In the fall, La Guerrera’s Kitchen will take over the space formerly used by La Cosecha in Swan’s Market in Old Oakland.

“The Guerrero region of Mexico is home to both beaches and mountains, its cuisine a unique mix of breezy seafood dishes and hearty, comforting meat offerings. The current menu at La Guerrera’s Kitchen is a vivid representation of this richness and variety, with anything from seviches to barbacoa plates.”

" [Popular California-Salvadoran pop-up] Popoca is currently operating as a pop-up at Degrees Plato, 4251 MacArthur Blvd. (near High Street), Oakland on Sundays from 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. and Mondays from 3 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Follow Popoca on Instagram for the latest menus and any changes to hours. Popoca’s permanent location at 3525 Fruitvale Ave. (at MacArthur Boulevard) is expected to open in 2022."

Esther Mobley yesterday in the SF Chronicle -

A fire crew keeps watch at Vineyard 29 as the Glass Fire burns between St. Helena and Calistoga in September 2020.

Carlos Avila Gonzalez/The Chronicle 2020

“We are living in constant fear now,” said Martha Barra, who was quoted a $290,000 premium to insure her Ukiah winery, up from $38,000 last year. “Everything is more extreme now — more winds, unusual frost events, all these wildfires. It’s all just such an unknown.”

Jeff Edalatpour today in the East Bay Express on new Afghani in North Oakland. The Qabuli Palow, the Uzbeki Palow, and Mantu look interesting.

Twins Halal House & Bakery, 2608 Market St., Oakland. Open Tuesday to Friday, 10:30am to 8:30pm; and Saturday and Sunday, 11am to 8:30pm. 510.922.1972. twinshalalhouse.com



Qabuli Palow

Ingredients: Brown Rice, Carrot, Raisin, Lamb, and Seasoning. Served with salad, bread, sauces, daily side Veggie dish.


Uzbeki Palow (Family)

Big catering family dish made for up to 12 people, is $120 dollars. Special Afghan rice cooked with carrots, raisins, and spices. Choice of: lamb, chicken, beef, or vegetarian.




Afghan style dumplings filled with ground beef OR chicken, onions, bell pepper, cilantro, oil, and seasoning. Topped with a homemade sauce and cilantro.


Janelle Bitker yesterday in the SF Chronicle -

NBC Bay Area - Livermore Winemakers Look to New Grape to Fight Climate Change


Do you ever wonder how the Berkeley Bowl cashiers remember all those codes? I do!

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Pyro’s Pastrami
101 Broadway
Oakland, CA, CA 94607
(408) 455-7606



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The black-eyed peas pizza at Soul Slice. Credit: Brandy Collins

The most gutsy pie might be Soul Slice’s black-eyed peas pizza, which contains slightly crunchy but meaty black-eyed peas, the sweetness of sweet potato, and savory roasted garlic, green onion, alpine cheese and (for acidity) tomato sauce. Less the alpine cheese, Louis said, the BEP is a vegan pie.

“Black eyed peas on a biscuit crust actually taste like meat,” said Louis.

Soul Slice is open Wednesdays through Saturdays from 3 p.m.- 9 p.m. and Sundays 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. It is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.

Ooh, that pizza sounds really good.

*Joodooboo. Opening in October. 4201 Market St., Oakland.



An assortment of banchan with tofu could be lunch from upcoming Korean deli Joodooboo in Oakland.

Courtesy Allan Wan

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“Shani is superbly equipped for this new role,” Merida said. “She is a force for creativity with a get-things-done spirit. Her focus will be wide-ranging and may include new areas of coverage, music, poetry, comedy, books, documentaries, scripted projects, new ways for journalists to engage with subscribers, pop-up events, debates, community and prison journalism, block parties and much more.”

Elly Suraya Greenfield is the owner of Satay By The Bay SF, the only Singaporean, Malay & Halal food truck in San Francisco. Although satay is their most popular dish, as it’s marinated overnight, grilled to order on bamboo skewers, and served with homemade peanut sauce whose recipe was handed down by Elly’s grandmother, the food truck also sells other Singaporean street food classics such as Chili Crab sandwiches and fries.

They serve in Alameda.


Where they are in Alameda is outside Forbidden Island, the tiki bar on Lincoln Avenue (but not all weekends).


Soleil Ho, San Francisco Chronicle restaurant critic, talks to Alexis Madrigal of KQED Radio Forum for 19 minutes about the best spots and dishes for a Bay Area picnic.

Whether you’re just having a sunset cocktail (or mocktail) or going full-on three-course meal, we’ll talk about how to picnic in style, which foods are best to bring and where to find that perfect picnic spot. We’ll get ideas to liven up your picnic with San Francisco Chronicle’s restaurant critic Soleil Ho, and we want your tips: What’s your go-to picnic recipe? Where are your favorite Bay Area spots to bring the family or friends for an al fresco meal?

Cafe Con Pan

8 a.m-noon Saturday-Sunday. Nido’s Backyard, 104 Oak St., Oakland. cafe-con-pan.square.site

Luke in KQEDArts -


No one would fault you for assembling an entire meal of those sweet treats, but for visitors looking for something more savory, the market has also brought in a couple of (grownup-run) ringers with cult followings among East Bay food lovers: Dela Curo will be selling its popular Japanese black curry and milk bread fruit sandwiches. And barbecue specialist MexiQ will sling its signature Mexican fusion smoked chicken and ribs.

“It’s free!” Abraham says of the event. “We’re here for the community to come through.”

Storefront Market’s events are held outside Storefront Records, at 3431 San Pablo Avenue, on the last Saturday of the month from noon–5pm. This month’s kid-focused Fountain of Youth Festival edition takes place on July 31. Masks will be required for unvaccinated guests.

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The Original It's-It Ice Cream Treat'

Headquarters & Factory Shop

865 Burlway Road
Burlingame, CA 94010

Factory Shop Hours:
Monday - Friday 11:00am-4:00pm


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We’ve been to the factory store. It’s small, but you can stock up on everything, including just the cookies if you want to make your own at home.