Snacks

snappy popcorn

We’re moving. Did I mention that? Our house sold in July, we closed in late August. Four days later, we closed on the condo. (Building photo above, common room below.) We rented the house back for 60 days to give us time to redecorate the condo. It’s one month and one week later. Somehow, with the help of our amazing contractors, we selected everything for the condo in record time. We picked out materials from floors to tile to cabinets to appliances. We picked paint colors and faucets and drains. It’s deconstructed now. (photo above) We’ve got furniture on order. We recovered some of our current furniture. I found lighting and closet hooks and rugs, medicine chests and a bicycle hanger. I went to seven stone yards before […]

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 […]

fruity nutty honey nougat

Google what to do with egg whites, dried fruit and nuts, and you get nougat. What they don’t tell you is what an unholy mess it makes. Still, it’s worth it. Nougat is a sweet, chewy delicacy I first encountered in Italy, but have seen in France and Spain, and I’ve received gifts of nougat from friends after visits to Northern African countries, Turkey, Iran and Israel. Every country has their own version of this honey sweetened marshmallowy treat stuffed with nuts, always, and fruit, sometimes. Since the holidays ended, I’ve been working through the half bags of this and that, the frozen bits and bobs, all the little leftover whatevers from my holiday cooking and baking. There were macademias and pistachios, dried cranberries and cherries, almonds, pecans, walnuts. […]

tiny scotch eggs

It all started with the quail eggs.  Will at Whitmore Farm is raising quail and every darn week those pretty speckled tiny eggs are there at the booth. Irresistable. I devilled a dozen a couple of weeks ago. The eggs are so tiny I snipped the top and removed the yolk with a demitasse spoon. By slicing across base, removing a small bit to make a flat surface, the egg sat upright. I filled them with a piping bag. Very pretty. Oops. No photo. I am not sure where the idea of scotch eggs came from, but I couldn’t stop thinking about making small scotch eggs. I love a good scotch egg, but have never been able to finish one. They’re just a little too big for me. But with a […]

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 […]

how to eat (a lot of) black radish

About a million years ago, long before I ever thought I would write a blog, let alone a book, I was invited to a friend’s home for Passover. Jean had a family, two kids, a dog, a house and school pickups and all those other things that I, single girl, city dweller, didn’t even have on my radar screen. The dinner was sensational. The foods, some traditional and familiar to me, others new experiences. The dinner was better than any I ever had at my grandmother’s table (sorry, Gran). (Except maybe the chopped liver because that was my grandmother’s God-given gift: the lightest chopped liver in the world. Sorry, Jean.) Jean served a black radish spread/condiment before the meal, alongside the chopped liver. I couldn’t get enough […]