When we remodeled our house four years ago, I dedicated a large kitchen cabinet for cookbooks. At the time, my collection all but filled the space. Over the last few years, my obsession with buying cookbooks and food magazines has the cabinet bulging at the seams. Many of the books get a quick look and become lost in the collection. Others keep my attention and end up with dog-eared pages and grease spots.
We were in New York for a wedding last year around Christmas. We made a stop in Eataly, the Italian food superstore, where my inner child’s eyes widened like the proverbial kid in a toy store. Jim quickly spotted the twinkle in my eye and put the kibosh on my spending impulses. [Read More…]
Years ago, I spent a month in Nepal trekking around Mt. Everest, so for obvious reasons, I was excited to see Everest, the movie. Right off the bat, let me say that I can be a little bit of a ditz. About three weeks ago, I saw a blurb about the movie and thought I read that it opened that day. I promptly signed on to Fandango and bought tickets for Friday night.
Jim and I made it to the theatre promptly at 7:30 for the 8:00 movie. When the ticket taker scanned our tickets, they were rejected, but seeing that we had what appeared to be legitimate tickets, she let us in any way. As we walked past the 24 theatres, Everest was nowhere to be found. After a quick review of our tickets, I realized opening night was two weeks later. Oops!! [Read More…]
Yesterday was one of those cool, gray, drizzly days that make you want to stay in and cook a big pot of soup, so I seized the opportunity and did just that. Being married to an Italian, I have to cater regularly to his taste buds, so what better type of soup to prepare than a Mediterranean one?
Santa Claus brought me an electric pressure cooker a couple of years ago, and since then I’ve become a big proponent of cooking under pressure. Almost every week, I cook dried beans of some kind. For most beans, I don’t soak them prior to cooking, and 30 to 40 minutes is all that’s required to have perfectly done beans. This week I cooked garbanzo beans. Most times we eat them in salads, but this weekend, they seemed like the perfect ingredient for soup. [Read More…]
More Recent Posts
I usually associate salads with summer and warm weather. After all, a salad can be very cooling on a hot, sweltering Atlanta day, and there have been plenty of those days this year. We're finally getting a break from 90+ degree days with mornings in the high 50s and highs of low 80s. Those crystal clear days with low humidity always signal the start of fall. I eat salads all year round, and as fall approaches, I like to trade summer salad ingredients with fall flavors. I was in the mood for … Read More
Have you ever read the labels on popular store-bought salad dressings? I always look at ingredients in the products that I buy, and I find it a little scary to read the long list of unnatural ingredients I see on salad dressing labels. I always go for brands that only include all natural ingredients, but those dressings are usually pretty pricey. Today, I'm making the case for preparing your own salad dressing. With a base of good quality olive oil and your favorite vinegar, the flavor … Read More
I may be jumping the gun a bit with this post. I know fall hasn't officially arrived yet, but I'm ready for some fall flavors. It's always interesting to observe how my cravings follow the change of seasons. During warm weather seasons, I'm drawn to lighter fare, like salads, veggies, chicken, and fish. Cooler weather finds me craving soups, stews, and casseroles. … Read More
As a child, I always got excited about burgers. Whenever it was burger night during the summer, my parents ceded grill duty to me. Being the budding epicure that I was at the time, I'd practice meticulous grilling techniques, making sure the charcoals burned just the right amount of time to avoid flare-ups. I'd flip the burgers with perfect timing, so they had prominent grill marks, but were never overdone. When everything was off the grill and on the table, I'd quickly inhale two burgers … Read More
The end of summer is closing in, and I'm desperately trying to ingest as many local, organic tomatoes as I possibly can. I eat tomatoes all year round, but supermarket tomatoes pale in comparison to the ones I get at my neighborhood farmer's market. One of the farmers grows at least seven or eight varieties, and he can tell you details about the flavor profile of each one and offer the perfect use for them. These tomatoes are so beautiful that I can't resist getting some of each type. One of … Read More
We've traveled to many places around the globe, and Provincetown, Massachusetts on the tip of Cape Cod is still our favorite of all vacation spots. In fact, we'd like to live there part-time at some point in our lives. We've spent many summer vacations in P'town, but this fall, we're taking a two-week road trip there, three dogs in tow, for a couple of weeks. While we're there, we're going to work, shop for groceries, cook, and see what it's like to actually live there. We've only been to … Read More
My family called me a bean pole when I was growing up. When I was in high school, I was 6'1" tall, and I weighed in at a whopping 130 pounds. I got all the jokes, including "when you turn sideways you disappear" and "you have to run around in the shower to get wet"! Obviously, I was blessed with an over-the-top metabolism because I had a ravenous appetite. From the time I came home from school until dinner time, I was munching on something. It wasn't unusual for me to devour a whole bag of … Read More
Fig season is here, and when I saw big, plump, black mission figs on the market shelves last weekend I had to buy some. I've said before that figs are not my most favorite fruit. I've never really enjoyed them raw, but last year I made grilled lamb chops with roasted figs and my opinion of them shifted. Something about the roasted figs in a savory dish changed my mind. Sweet and savory dishes always get my attention. … Read More
When I was a kid, I loved watching plants grow. I always enjoyed going to my grandparents' garden and seeing all the vegetables maturing. I was fascinated by a germinating seed that ultimately produced food I would eat. One summer I wanted to take ownership of a plant that I could nurse to maturity, so my grandmother helped me plant a corn kernel in her back yard. Over the next several weeks, I couldn't wait to drop by her house to see how my corn stalk was progressing. … Read More
I lived in Jacksonville, Florida for a couple of years early in my career. One of the things I remember most about those days was the access to fresh-out-of-the-water seafood. I frequented a small market where everything in the store was right off the boat, and there wasn't a trace of fish smell. The owner always had fresh jumbo shrimp, scallops, grouper, and snapper displayed beautifully on ice. … Read More