Trust Your Taste 033

Queso Fresco + Devised Theatre Pt. 2

Happy Sunday! Here’s something tasty, something true, and some musings on food in storytelling to ponder over your favorite Sunday Treat.

Something Tasty: A cheese pairing to try

Queso Fresco

Sometimes there’s a cheese that I just can’t stop eating, even if I’m not hungry.

Queso Fresco is one of those cheeses. Where there are dairy animals, there are fresh cheeses, and Queso Fresco (literally translating to “fresh cheese”) is a very popular Mexican fresh cheese you may have had before.

What separates Queso Fresco from another well-known Mexican fresh cheese Queso Blanco, is the use of rennet and cultures (Queso Fresco) vs. just using milk and acid such as lemon juice or vinegar (Queso Blanco).

Quesos Navarro was at the American Cheese Society Annual Conference last year, and taught us all a lot about the diversity of Mexican cheeses beyond the fresh cheeses we’re used to in the United States. There’s so many!

This weekend I ate about half a pound of Batista Family Farms Queso Fresco. It’s mild and salted perfectly, and that ideal crumbly- but creamy- but light- semi-spongy texture I often crave. Check them out at the LA County Fair in May if you’re in the area!

Something True: A truth about myself

Devised Theatre Pt. 2

Here’s the truth.

Last week I started a story about devising theatre with 45 people (woof).

Here’s what ended up happening:

This group of 45 people was a mix of actors, directors, stage managers, technicians, musicians, singers, and dancers. We were all given a gorgeous opportunity to expand those defined roles, and joyfully experiment with other mediums. A dream!

But we had a week to get this done. So as it often goes in stressful situations with tight deadlines…everyone ended up reverting back to their old roles and patterns.

People that were excited about a song they were writing had to stop because they had stage management experience, and we needed a stage manager.

People that were excited to act had to stop because they had directing experience, and we needed a director.

People that were working on new movement and dance pieces had to stop because they knew how to play the piano, and we needed an accompanist.

We were all grateful that we had people who were good at what they did to lean on for certain positions…but that’s not really the point.

Were there great moments? Absolutely. Special creations? Totally. Was it a good show?……honestly, I don’t think so. Because the joy was forced out of the project for practicalities.

We had to halt magic-making in it’s tracks. All of those beautiful new ideas and forms of expression stopped because the group needed structure and leadership.

It made it pretty clear that creativity thrives in a delicately balanced environment of freedom and structure. And it’s really hard to create or grow if people are looking to and old version of you for assistance.

Are there old labels or thoughts about yourself that have kept you from trying something new? Why?

Farm to Fable: How food shows up in storytelling 

Tortilla Soup

Tortilla Soup, 2001

One of my favorite food movies.

Héctor Elizondo plays a semi-retired Mexican-American chef in LA who lost his sense of smell after his wife died, but continues to cook elaborate meals for his family (do not watch this movie hungry).

He lives with his three adult daughters who you might say…have certain things keeping them from their new, creative, and most authentic selves.

See, it did all come together, somehow 😁 

Seen it? Let me know what you think!

Until next time,


P.S. - Sunday Scaries

A terrifying AI image to help us all rest knowing AI bots could never replace a real human artist:

This week the prompt was “The debut of a musical called Tortilla Soup”.

But I am writing this on a plane so it’s not working. I owe you two next week 😅