Saturday, April 21, 2012

Percy Jackson likes blue food


Blue beans from my garden

Just in case you don't know, this is Percy Jackson. I love reading kids' books and Max, Arantxa and I are all waiting impatiently for the release of the next Percy Jackson book (Autumn 2012, unfortunately it must be the Northern hemisphere's Autumn, not the down-under one! ;-( !!).

Percy Jackson is a demigod so he eats nectar and ambrosia among other things, but the most fun fact for a food writer is that he likes blue food (being the son of Poseidon and all that sea connection...). So his Mum gives him blue coloured treats, like blue cake and drinks and stuff and (what a coincidence) Percy is ADHD.

Well, in the story being ADHD is due to the fact that he is a demigod (dyslexia is another sign of 'demigodness'), not because he had eaten food heavily colored with tar. And yes, studies connecting artificial colours in food with children's behavior are still ongoing, but some countries have banned some types of blue food colouring, and I like to be very careful about them too.

Only very occasionally I used blue food coloring, and always in tiny quantities, mostly for a pale china blue icing. Generally I prefer to use natural dye, like juice from berries, or spirulina and green tea, or spices... but blue, so hard to come by! And like Percy Jackson I too like blue food, I was so happy when the last beans we harvest in our garden were blue!


My favourite bowl (Japanese)


I also read somewhere that if you serve food in a blue plate it is less appetizing.... funny enough my favorite bowl is blue (a bit old now, but I love it!) and I have a collection of blue tablecloths. And to complete the disgrace, my kitchen is blue, a shocking colour according to some experts: blue and food are just a no-no!

BTW, blue is not my favorite colour, I prefer yellow and green, so I don't know why I particularly like blue when connected to food. When I can find natural blue food, like blueberries and borage flowers... well, I am in heaven. Grapes, blackberries, eggplants, violets, nori seaweed that almost looks blue... every time I can I try to add blue to my colour palette, I even have a green and blue board on Pinterest. 

Let me know if you also like blue in food, and maybe give me some suggestions on how to get more natural blue on my plate :-). Also let me know if you like Percy Jackson ;-)!



Egg tarts decorated with blueberries and borage flowers

Photos and Recipes by Alessandra Zecchini ©

21 comments:

  1. I have never heard of Percy Jackson so thank you for the tip on that, and the books.

    What variety are your blue beans from your garden?

    Blue does go beautifully with green and yellow, so am not surprised all three colors are favoured by you.

    Lovely post! Thank you.

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    1. Hi Bren, the bean is Wonder of Venice runner http://www.kingsseeds.co.nz/shop/Vegetables/Alpha+Search+for+Vegetables/Veges+A+to+B/Bean+Wonder+of+Venice+Runner-7058.html
      I eat the whole beans (in their pods) when they are young and yellow, but I left a few get too big and this was the result. The sellers says that they should be black, but these were definitely blue :-).

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    2. Grazie Alessandra. I will follow the link. They are definitely blue..absolutely. Maybe, you have a special hybrid...save the seeds okay. I am surprised no one is asking for a few ;-)))

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  2. I am not sure that I have eaten any blue food thinking about it! Blue beans are new to me, what variety are they? Interesting post. Diane

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    1. Hi Diane, I replied to Bren too above, the variety is this one http://www.kingsseeds.co.nz/shop/Vegetables/Alpha+Search+for+Vegetables/Veges+A+to+B/Bean+Wonder+of+Venice+Runner-7058.html (but my beans were blue not black :-).

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  3. Oh yes, my daughter loved Percy Jackson - she's outgrown him now but for a while there we were big fans.

    Maybe the blue thing is a New Zealand thing. When we lived there someone told us that you should never paint a house blue, blue houses are difficult to sell. That doesn't seem to apply over here in the US though - looking out my window I can see 3 blue houses and we have a blue front door.

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    Replies
    1. hehehehe, I haven't outgrown it yet myself :-). I love the books but the movie was terrible!
      Interesting what you said about blue houses... yes you don't see much blue here... I also have a blue bathroom and lots of blue in the stain glasses. Not overpowering, but little touches here and there...

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  4. Ignorantissima io.....non conosco PJ e non ho mai visto fagioli blu, e non ho mai cucinato nulla di blu!!
    Il bello degli scambi tra blogger è che si impara sempre qualcosa, quei fagioli sono uno spettacolo :)

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    Replies
    1. I fagioli sono questi http://www.kingsseeds.co.nz/shop/Vegetables/Alpha+Search+for+Vegetables/Veges+A+to+B/Bean+Wonder+of+Venice+Runner-7058.html, di solito mangio le 'teghe' gialle, ma quelle che erano troppo vecchie le ho aperte, e che bei fagiolini!!!

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  5. non conoscevo questo personaggio, ma penso che piacerebbe alla mia piccola peste
    bello che il protagonista di una serie per ragazzi abbia delle problematiche, molto "educativo"

    e deliziose le tartellette blu

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    Replies
    1. Verissimo, anche i bimbi con problemi hanno bisogno di eroi. E poi le storie sono anche divertenti! Cerca i libri per tua figlia, ma sta lontana dal film, e' terribile e diversissimo dai libri!

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  6. alessandra what beauyiful post I love blue and uour blue beans!!

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  7. my favorite blue food is blueberries!

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  8. Mmmh, the tartlets look good, and the beans are really cute! I didn't know Percy Jackson, guess that I don't have kids...

    XX
    Jo

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  9. I do love blue in my food, too! I'll have to look up Percy Jackson. Your tartlets look delicious as do your tantalizing photographs. Thanks for commenting on my blog, Cafe Lynnylu.

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  10. I'm not keen on blue in food but those beans look like edible jewels, I would love some of them served in your favourite bowl. Perhaps the Japanese don't mind blue to serve food on as we have several Japanese blue bowls and plates

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  11. I agree Alison, I think that for my experience living in Japan blue was a common colour for china, and also tablecloths (I have a few) and even some pickles and seaweeds are blue... maybe this is why for me blue in the kitchen is so normal??

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  12. I miei bambini adorano Persy a loro il film è piaciuto a me non altrettanto.
    Leggeremo presto i libri (come suggerisci tu) per scoprire la differenza.
    Sai che mio nonno coltivava dei fagiolini blu scuro che una volta cotti ridiventavano verdi - gli avevo comprato io i semi in Germania - !

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  13. Credo che i libri piaceranno anche a te! Pensa che questi fagioli qui si chiamano 'veneziani'!!

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  14. Finally got through all my bracelet challenge blogs and had a chance to get over and see your blue post! I love it!! Really love your last set of photos ... and also your bowl is so pretty! I'm going to look for you on Pinterest.
    ~Michele

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  15. Hi Michele, lovely to have you back :-)

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