Showing posts from December, 2012

A zest for good food and quality journalism

With my latest article, about the Turkish dessert aşure , I joined the contributors' team at Zester Daily , an award-winning online destination for food, wine, and travel journalism. I'll be writing for them at least once a month about culinary culture in Istanbul, Turkey, and wherever else I roam. Founded three years ago by former L.A. Times writer Corie Brown , Zester seeks to "promote spirited, intelligent dialogue about what we eat and drink." Corie's commitment to an international focus, to professional writing, and to creating new models for funding journalism at a time when all three often seem to be in short supply have me excited to be on board.

Tales of a TreeHugger

For the past four years, I've been writing for as the popular green website's Istanbul correspondent, blogging about environmental issues primarily in Turkey and the region, but also elsewhere in the world, following my interests in art, food, travel, urban planning, and other topics. Blogging for TreeHugger provided an excuse to contact and meet all sorts of fascinating people; the opportunity to cover events such as the 5th World Water Forum and the London School of Economics' Urban Age conference; and the chance to raise the profile of places I care about -- Istanbul, of course, but also Beirut , which I fell in love with on a 2010 visit, and Lake Urmia in Iran, where my grandfather originated and where I hope to travel someday. (It also let me occasionally indulge my nostalgia for San Francisco and baseball .) One of my posts got picked up by the popular tech site Boing Boing , while another led to an assignment for BBC Wildlife magazine. Now

Istanbul's sweet spots

From warm, gooey künefe to chocolate-slathered profiteroles to candied walnuts topped with cream, Istanbul's eateries offer plenty of ways to satisfy the biggest sweet tooth. For the latest issue of SHOP Istanbul 's Style Edition, I profiled a top-notch selection of the city's sweet shops, both storied patisseries and gourmet up-and-comers introducing new flavors to the Turkish palate. Read " Sweet Thing " online or download a pdf version of the article as it appeared in  SHOP Istanbul 's Autumn/Winter 2012 issue .