Archive for the ‘Recipes’ Category

Let It Rain

Recipe: Maple Pecan Cookies

I may be the only person in Seattle looking forward to the fall.  Mention the feeling of change in the air, and people here shiver and change the subject. You can’t blame them – it’s been a pretty lame summer in the Pacific Northwest– with just a few days above 80, and many more that were cold and grey.

But since I got here three weeks ago, it’s been stunning –August and September are always Seattle at its best. And after spending all the late afternoons in June and July trapped in my air conditioned house in Boise, I’ve been living it up. Long afternoon dog walks, picnics on the beach, stunning sunsets. And I’m hoping we still go kayaking before summer’s official end.

Continue reading

Advertisements

Elegance and Champagne Goggles for Charcutepalooza

Smoked Trout and Halibut Mousseline with Champagne Vinaigrette

Presentation: a word that strikes fear into my heart – and the most important element of this month’s Charcutepalooza challenge.  I know, I know, presentation should be important to anyone who loves food – but I have to be honest, I’m really all about the taste.  If you are eating in my home, I want the food to look appetizing, enticing, sure, but as elegant as restaurant service? I’m just not that detail oriented. I’m already too much the type-A person.

Once when I managed a bakery in Boston, a wedding cake order was misdated. We thought the cake was for Sunday, but the wedding was on Saturday. In the middle of a busy afternoon, the panicked call came in from the caterer. Where was the cake? It was baked and frosted, but all the fresh flowers still had to be prepped and put on the cake. I called the wedding cake person, I called the owner. No answer. Everyone who works in retail food service knows the only way to maintain your sanity is never, ever to answer your phone on a day off – unless the call is from the cops or the fire department, because at that point, the crisis is actually over.

Continue reading

Creamy Peanut Butter Pie for Mikey

Recipe:Creamy Peanut Butter Pie Via In Jennie’s Kitchen

I just made a pie for a stranger.

Not really. I actually made the pie for myself – it’s a tribute to the life of someone I didn’t know; so really, this pie can only help me feel better.

I’m only tangentially a part of the blooming food blogger community online – primarily on twitter. I tend to lurk on twitter and am shy about injecting myself into people’s ongoing conversations. Charcutepalooza has gotten me more involved, and I follow the blogs of so many funny, talented food writers. It’s inspiring and humbling at the same time. I’ll probably never meet any of them in person, but I appreciate the warmth with which they respond to questions, queries and the occasional off-the-wall declaration.

Continue reading

Stop, Smell and Eat the Roses

Recipe: Strawberry Rose Cupcakes

I’m not a big fan of the house we’ve been renting for the past 10 months. It’s a vanilla-bland subdivision, 3-car garage, late- twentieth century sprawl-special. The dogs get a lot out of the ¼ acre yard, but being surrounded by such relentless, plastic same-ness depresses me.  I can’t wait to live in an old-fashioned neighborhood again.

But I will miss the roses. The property has six rose bushes– and four of them are prolific bloomers. I haven’t lived with roses like this in a long time. My father loved roses. The entire south side of my childhood home was covered in them. Dad kept them blooming May through November, most years.  And every few days, he cut bouquets for me –even when I was 17 and he and I could barely have a civil conversation.

Continue reading

Hot Dogs Made A Believer Out Of Me

Recipe: Red Hot Hot Dogs

Willing suspension of disbelief: It’s the concept that enables most forms of art, that makes childhood precious and allows me to love the Harry Potter books just as much as my nieces.

And it also lets us eat commercial hot dogs – even after we’ve read The Jungle, or talked to someone who’s done the job of daily dog turning in a convenience store. Hot dogs take me back to New York City, when I was a college student whose Broadway budget allowed for tickets and bus/ train fare to the city a couple times a semester, but not for a dinner more elaborate than what I could get from one of the many hot dog vendors in Manhattan.

Continue reading

Moving Plants to Center Stage

Recipe: Cold Carrot Soup with Chilies and Avocados

The first time I tried vegetarian cooking, it was a trial by fire. My mother-in-law was coming to visit from India, and at that time was a full-fledged vegetarian.  This was in 1996, in East Central Illinois; a place where a grocery clerk once asked K.M. why he was buying fresh spinach, when you could “get that in a can.”

I had no idea what I was doing. We muddled through, eating a lot of pasta.  Eating out, in that time and place was nearly impossible.  People actually would say things like, “Well, it’s nearly vegetarian. You can pick the bacon out.”

Continue reading

Take This Sausage and Stuff It

Recipe: Blazing Hot Turkey Sausage

Failure is always an option. The Mythbusters slogan, coined by Adam Savage, is meant to show the value of failure in science – as long as you get good data no experiment is a failure. In cooking though, sometimes failure is just failure. Most of the time failures get eaten anyway; but not every time.

My duck sausage for this month’s Charcutepalooza challenge was a spectacular fail. Fifty dollars’ worth of duck, three days in the making; it had the texture of overcooked cornmeal, and tasted like cardboard – with a hit of orange.

Continue reading

%d bloggers like this: