Author Archive

Eggplant Fritters with Honey

September 19th, 2017 3 Comments

.   My boat!  We found this cutie resting near the shores of Lake Superior in Bayfield, Wisconsin.   There is not much downtime in the summer for Scott and me but we did manage a quick trip to hang out on Lake Superior, our midwestern ocean.  We stayed at a sweet little 50’s era place in Ashland called the Bayview Motel, right on the shores of big lake.  No online reservations—you’ll have to call or email to contact them,

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Tamarind Fig Butter

September 12th, 2017 No Comments

  Oh, just a few more flowers.   And butterflies.   It’s the time of year when summer has peaked and you can feel the pendulum heading the other direction, when sunlight and flowers feel finite.  At least that is what we’re feeling here in the north lands…away from the turmoil of the epic storms all across the south.  So here are a few moments of calm with flowers and sunlight, a breath before diving back into the realities and residuum of

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Favorites August 2017

August 29th, 2017 No Comments

  More fun with Annuals. These are Pinwheel Zinnias–small and ranking high on the adorable scale.  Zinnias are part of the daisy/aster family and are native to Mexico and Central America.  They withstand heat, drought, and can be directly seeded so are considered an awesome low-maintenance flower for any kind of gardener.   I used to think Zinnias were boring, a little too loud and indelicate, like wearing excessive makeup to a picnic.  They were one of the few flowers my mother grew in the farm

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Gluten Free Carrot Cake and Muffins

August 23rd, 2017 No Comments

  Here was another moment where we leaped into producing a large amount (330 servings) of an untested recipe that had been Frankenstein-ed together from multiple other recipes.  Sometimes there just isn’t time and you have to rely on the lessons learned from all the other mistakes you’ve done in the past and go with what seems right. Fortunately for the diners, all went well!   We initially made this as a cake, then a few weeks later I needed muffins so I reduced

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New Mexico Chile Lime Slaw

August 15th, 2017 No Comments

  When creating a catering menu that highlights locally grown ingredients there is a certain amount of ambiguity that is necessary, especially if the menu must be decided upon months in advance.  No one can possibly know what will be available at an exact date so I cannot promise any particular vegetable in a dish.  Even with protective measures like hoop houses there are countless factors affecting crops–things like temperature, rain, no rain, early spring, late freeze, hail, floods, bugs, slugs, deer, raccoons—the list of variables

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Shichimi Popcorn

August 7th, 2017 1 Comment

  I did say I would try this, did I not? Spice combinations on popcorn—there is a world of tasty additive ideas out there.  From Za’atar to Parmesan-Rosemary, Caraway-Mustard to Lemon-Curry, or Chipotle-Bacon-Drippings to Dill-Cumin, there are endless flavor variations to amend your puffed maize.  Not that there is anything needed!  Corn is lovely with just salt and an oil.   Shichimi is a Japanese blend of spices including chiles, citrus peel, sesame seeds, and nori, and often poppyseeds, Szechuan peppercorns, ginger and garlic are

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Tamari Eggplant

August 1st, 2017 2 Comments

  Need a bacon substitute for a BLT?    Oh my, the bacon lover in me says there is no substitute for the Fruit of the Pig…but these tamari drenched roasted eggplant pack a load of flavor that gives satisfaction to the Umami Itch.  I made this little sandwich with parmesan but I’m positive a fresh ripe tomato would be a perfect match on top. I often use a marinade with equal parts tamari and cider vinegar—Roasted Tofu Skewers is another example

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Summer Salads

July 26th, 2017 No Comments

  More Willow!   Here are a few photos from two other sessions of the Willow Gathering that I catered, a “bird’s nest” technique giving some sculptural freedoms, and a traditional Danish rectangular basket technique.             I’m spending the week at Scattergood Friends School, my alma mater alternative high school and where I am spending more time these days.  This is the place where I fell in love with stainless steel and learned to cook on a large scale— each

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Cashew Horchata

July 18th, 2017 2 Comments

  Horchata The horchata we had in Mexico was made from rice, sugar, and cinnamon, and maybe rice milk added in.  Many a Mexican restaurant will have the churning white liquid in a countertop fountain dispenser, mesmerizing to watch as you wait for your tacos de asada.  Originating in Spain using tiger nuts, horchata can also be made with almonds, barley, sesame seeds, morro seeds, or peanuts depending where in the world you might be. I found an interesting recipe at oneingredientchef.com that includes

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Black Bean Burgers

July 11th, 2017 2 Comments

  The Weavers were back! June is a full and demanding month for me but I get to end it by providing meals for a lovely group of basket weavers from around the world at the Willow Gathering.  This session I peeked in on traditional basket styles from the Catalan region of Spain, and I’ll post the photos from two other sessions later…         The fresh willow is soaked in water so it bends easily, then kept wrapped in plastic

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