Meatless Monday

a cool salad for a fast pace

It’s been a crazy time but this salad has gotten me through. It’s everything. Sweet, salty, sassy with chile pepper heat. In the last month, in the craziest 9 days, we staged our house (POD in, POD out) and put it on the market. It sold 5 days later. We rejoiced, cried, panicked, and ran away. After two days by the waterside, things look more manageable and I am working on reestablishing a regular routine for the next little while. This is where we’re moving. Our condo is on the other side of the building. We don’t move until October, but on the other hand Holy Crap. WE MOVE IN OCTOBER. For those days when the house was on the market, I barely cooked, but I did manage to […]

asparagus gribiche, or mimosa, style

There have been many delicious moments in the last few weeks, but the new crop of grassy spears demands that I share this recipe for asparagus gribiche, also known as asparagus mimosa. I love both names for this combination of asparagus and eggs because they make the dish seem so divinely continental, while in reality it is so simply executed. After a riotious and hilarious knitting retreat (okay, admit it, you never thought those words would go together), I ferried to Marthas Vineyard. T.S. Eliot wrote that April is the cruellest month, and it was certainly challenging for my beloved friends, siblings Katrin and Dave. There is no more family after the two of them are gone, we’re not (any of us) getting any younger, and keeping up after a home built in 1680 was demanding. […]

marmalade truths

Marmalade did not win. (shakes fist at the sky) When I was working on my book, my editor asked (more than once) why there wasn’t a marmalade recipe. It was hard to admit to her even though, a few years back, I revealed my deepest preserving secret here. Not only did I not like marmalade, I had never made it successfully. But I felt defeated. Unworthy. As a preserver, I couldn’t live with this failure. So, in January, while traveling through Texas teaching classes for the wonderful Central Market stores. (Three cheers for the fantastic people of Central Market and the welcoming Food52’ers of Austin, Texas!) I taught classes on making the most of the extraordinary fruits available during Central Market’s CITRUS FESTIVAL. Yes, a whole festival of citrus. Four pages of citrus […]

kasha stuffed portabella mushrooms (thank you, maria speck)

Hello my friends. I just returned from my last business trip of the year. Ahhh. (If you want to read more about my year of book promotion, Dianne Jacobs invited me to write a post for Will Write For Food.) I closed my office door for the week and I’m taking a little time off. It’s one of my favorite weeks, just getting ready for Thanksgiving, nesting and digging into books I’ve been wanting to cook. And that’s why I’m thrilled to get this portobello mushroom recipe out to you. I was smitten at first bite and you will be, too. It’s from Maria Speck’s sensational second book, Simply Ancient Grains, another terrific collection of recipes using interesting, healthy, delicious often ancient grains. (Her first wonderful book, Ancient Grains for Modern […]

merguez, shakshushka, and more. my fall kitchen projects.

Even if I didn’t have a calendar, I would know it was fall from the autumnal projects in the kitchen. In the market, there are pole beans and some shelling beans, a few chiles and peppers, potatoes, onions, leeks and fennel. Squashes and cauliflower. Kale and chard and spinach. The pantry is packed with jars of tomatoes and grape juice, dozens of different jams and jellies, pickles and pie fillings. For me, these weeks before Thanksgiving are full of activity. This year, instead of pushing through the last round of edits, or just back after from 22 grueling book tour days. I will be home for the holidays. I’m going to bring back some old traditions and create some new ones and I’m using the next four weeks to […]

corn shiitake fritters and the traveling circus

We were lakeside for awhile. We took a two week vacation in Western Massachusetts. Back in January I reserved a great big rental house, invited some of our best best friends, and made plans to read, nap, and dangle our feet in the water. Time to do nothing at all but have good friend talks, slightly rowdy dinner parties, and gulp in the last minutes of summer. At the end of a crazy private road with precipitous drops on a twisty dirt one way up hill climb, was the house. It was quite a climb down to the dock from the house. We needed provisions. I packed them. Granola and tamari almonds, booze and wines, 2 dozen jars from the pantry, a cooler full of beautiful meats and ready-to-heat homemade casseroles (!!), jigsaw puzzles, water […]