Foodoscopes — July 2016

All illustrations by Erin Filson.

JULY 2016




CANCER June 21 – July 22 —First things first: Happy Birthday, you maverick renegade. With a new moon in Cancer and a rousing, patriotic holiday around the bend, you simply couldn’t be more in your element. Celebrate this astrological comfort while exercising your creativity in all things cooking! Whip up something they’ve never seen before for this year’s Fourth festivities, like fresh fig, berry, and mint fruit salad that will wow visually, or a French mustard-based pasta salad with—wait for it—hand-rolled pasta made from scratch. Just make sure to spend ample time relaxing, dear Cancer. We wouldn’t want you to burn out (or burn any food) this early in the Summer.

Pleasant Ridge Reserve, from Uplands Cheese in Wisconsin. Made with cow’s milk in the style of traditional Alpine cheeses, it may be hard to find this time of year owing to the inherited standard of using only the sweet, summer milk harvested from May to October and then an aging process of roughly nine months to a year. Like Cancer, this cheese is rare, comforting, much acclaimed, and a true patriot.



LEO July 23 – Aug 22 —Belly’s up, Leos, and bask in the sun like the internal kitty cat that you are. This month is all about those roaring emotions, love, and relationships, and we’re gonna need some yummy, yummy love in that tummy to power through. The new moon on Independence Day is timely and symbolic, giving you the power of self to resolve the issue that’s been troubling you lately, and it’s the perfect time to resolve any issues with your diet. Breakfast is especially important when spending days outdoors in the sun, and July is ripe with morning starters that satisfy your cat-like curiosity while still maintaining balance. Berries, local honey and yogurt; melon and prosciutto with fresh herbs; it’s all good in the…food?

Colston Bassett Stilton from Nottinghamshire, England. Rich, decadent, full of flavor, and with Leo-like idiosyncrasies, it’s the world’s fanciest AND laziest appetizer, whether you stuff it into dried dates or smear it on a square of dark chocolate. Bring on the praise, not the precision.


VIRGO Aug 23 – Sept 22 —Hellooo confidence and empowerment, Virgo – and we’re not Ju-lying when we say it’s a month of accomplishment on the horizon. A new moon on July fourth means time to resolve a conflict centering on your deepest fears and worries. Once that mess is out of the way, though, you’re on point to celebrate all kinds of Independence and maybe make a mess of your grill instead. Become a local meat maven, sourcing from nearby farms and inventing new rubs and marinades with that classic Virgo resourcefulness. Grill it, sauce it, celebrate it, and don’t stop eating!

Appenzeller from Switzerland. Raw cow’s milk and years of traditional Cheesemaking methods makes this meaty, smooth, and powerful cheese perfect for snacking or the ideal addition to any sandwich you can get your hands on. Virgo, meat July.


LIBRA Sept 23 – Oct 22 — Easy like a Sunday morning in July, Libra friends. Still feeling slightly anti-social but making progress on projects of all shapes and sizes is an acceptable way to start the month, but the new moon on the fourth will signify the end of the self-inflicted solitude, as well as the completion of some important tasks. Speaking of Sunday mornings, let’s talk about completing a successful brunch with summertime faves like fruit and egg salad, grilled ham steaks, and campfire biscuits made over an open flame. Also, celebrate Libra AND American independence by nailing the old “cooking for one” spectrum – even if you’ve got a partner in crime, work on portion control to keep those guns out when the sun’s out!
Isle of Mull Cheddar, from the Isle of Mull in Scotland. Unique while still made with ancient (delicious) tradition, this is a ridiculous mix of fruity flavor with a licorice kick, thanks to the help of some scotch whisky mash fed to the cows.


SCORPIO Oct 23 – Nov 21 —Keep it simple, Scorpio, and eat outside as much as possible. This month is prime for your energy to push you through a series of events leading to a fruitful end and a happy beginning for August. Keep your protein in prime condition, too, perhaps with some…prime rib? Salt crust it and wrap it in foil for a grill-tactic protein voyage for the whole block. Go nuts, too – campfire roasted peanuts, slivered almonds on top of spinach and strawberries, or walnuts and cranberries in smoked chicken salad. Trust us, the kick of healthy energy will keep you from actually going nuts during this busy month.
Shellbark Sharp II Chevre, from Shellbark Hollow Farm in PA. Low in fat, high in flavor, and with ultimate versatility, use it to spread on burgers, crackers, bread, and anything that will sit still long enough. Scorpio, get excited for some exciting chevre shenanigans.


SAGITTARIUS Nov 22 – Dec 21 —Pull back that bow and let ‘er rip into July – it’s fire power that will propel Sagittarius through, like usual. Aim for mid-month, where a loving, sociable meeting of Mercury and Venus means relaxation and happiness, and dare we say, a visit to the beach? Quench your fire with lots of hydration and some cool snacks, like cucumber, raspberry, and mint flavored water with a side of honeydew, goat cheese and smoked speck. If you must, and you really must, pack a beach lunch for friends and family with cold fried chicken and potato salad, but don’t forget tons of cheese and sangria. Your good mood just might match the power of the sun!
1605 Manchego, from the 1605 Queseria in La Mancha, Spain. Buttery without too much fat, and with a range of flavors from key lime pie to rosemary-scented pasta, this huge kick of calcium, protein, and good ol’ crazy yummy will shoot you swiftly through July.


CAPRICORN Dec 22 – Jan 19 — Calmly we go into the heat of battle – or summer, as it were! Jumping off of an unsociable era leftover from June, it won’t last much longer and the time to recharge will be well-spent toward a month of accomplishment in both personal and professional arenas. The new moon on the fourth means overcoming an anxious obstacle of yours, but once you’re past it, the momentum just won’t stop. Since the leftover vibes are propelling your power, make leftovers a goal for July, re-purposing like the crafty Capricorn you are. Turn day-old pork chops into a smoky pork and mushroom stroganoff, or leftover mac & cheese into a grilled cheese sandwich you won’t soon forget. Isn’t it just like you to turn the past into an even-brighter future?

YOUR JULY SPIRIT CHEESE: Ardrahan, a washed-rind stinker from Ireland. Made of cow’s milk and washed with a powerful brine to bring on the funk, you’re in for a delightful treat once you get past a frightful smell. With a touch of chutney and a slice of delicious ham, you’ll celebrate the independence you so crave with fireworks of fabulous flavors.


AQUARIUS Jan 20 – Feb 18 —Let’s talk about love, baby; let’s talk about you and…meat? It’s time for social butterfly Aquarius, which isn’t the norm, but man are you good at it. Use that innovative spirit to throw the social backyard bash of the season, and go for the unusual to wow your guests. Grilled sea bass, dandelion jam, lamb chops, and marinated broccolini just might become new favorites. A new moon on the fourth means the conclusion of some things that have been bothering you, so get out and celebrate the freedom from all restraint. Don’t go too crazy, now, and make sure your breakfast habits are on point to take you through each day with a solid start!
Halloumi, the grill-able cheese from the island of Cyprus! With it’s high melting point, you can throw it into a variety of creative marinades and then grill it up – you know you’re always looking for another way to wow. Try a halloumi grilled cheese (get this!) where the cheese is the “bread”, and some tasty veggies are the “cheese”! You wild thang, you.


PISCES Feb 19 – March 20 —Is it cannibalism if a Pisces eats fish? Heck no! And let’s swim through July like it’s a kiddie pool in the backyard. Your carefree nature takes center stage, especially after the new moon in Cancer on the fourth. Overcoming insecurities and obstacles is a walk in the park this month, so take a few extra walks in the park to celebrate! Pack a picnic, full of smoked salmon and whitefish salad with a creamy Brie, some capers, and a bit of Dijon mustard for Pisces perfection. A full moon on the 19th will open up some unorthodox problem solving methods, but as long as you’re running on a full stomach, you’ll have no problems.
Brabander goat’s milk Gouda from the Netherlands. One of the cheeses that pairs well with seafood, but also one that’s just darn delicious, Brabander’s crisp, white appearance hides magical notes of vanilla bean and toasted marshmallow, and just might be the perfect cheese to add to campfire s’mores…


ARIES Mar 21 – Apr 19 —Sending some positive ju-July vibes your way, Aries friend. A fresh new moon on the fourth is cause for celebration, but watch for some crossed wires centering around personal relationships. A good defense is the best offense, and that Aries assertiveness is best-used to get things back on track (rather than derailing things further). Keep focused on the positives with some creative meal planning, and remember to keep cool by cooking cool. Frozen berries with Greek yogurt and local honey for dessert, pasta and chicken salad from scratch – you’ll keep the makings of picnics and barbecues well-stocked even for last-minute occasions. Always prepared Aries, eh?
Classic Parmigiano Reggiano from Emilia-Romagna, Italy. Grate-able, shreddable, snackable, meltable… It’s almost as versatile as you are. Toss over grilled asparagus, or bake in rounds on a cookie sheet for a quick and addictive salad-topper.


TAURUS Apr 20 – May 20 —Grab July by the horns, and for heaven’s sake, don’t take any bull. This is a busy month for you, with rocky moments and spots of sun alike. Stock up on both good vibes and lots of energy, in the form of amazing food with metabolism-boosting frequency. Create healthy snacking opportunities for yourself by thinking ahead – carry a lunchbox of fresh veggies and hummus, protein packs of cashews, goat cheese, and pepperoni, and occasional bursts of sweetness with dark chocolate and pomegranate seeds. Use the Fourth as a cheat day, but the new moon on the holiday will also put you in the path of closer relationships and tight family emotions, so keep friends nearby. And food! Did we say food?
Buttercup Brie, a cow’s milk lovely from New Jersey. Sweet, lactic, and oh-so-friendly with playmates like fresh berries, figs, jam, and honey, this is a Brie you can Brie-lieve in. Bring it with you, keep it at home – just don’t leave it waiting in the bullpen.


GEMINI May 21 – June 20 —You believe in anything, and we want you to believe in July! That Gemini try-anything attitude is gonna be necessary, too – with the new moon as your belated birthday gift comes some new anxieties and fears about your personal relationships. Cook your way through with summertime classics like barbecued ribs with homemade BBQ sauce, coleslaw made with a touch of tarragon mustard, and Mexican-style corn on the cob, with paprika, cilantro, and sour cream. Mid-month, you’ll get a serene stream of relaxation and calm, which you can put to use by hosting some casual get-togethers. Thanks, Mercury and Venus, for the July R&R!
Fresh burrata from Di Bruno Bros.! Sliced open with Jersey tomatoes and a drizzle of EVOO makes for the world’s easiest (and most impressive) summer appetizer. Don’t forget a dash of sea salt, though, because a good Gemini knows that a little spice makes everything nice.