Quote of the Week

“When we are no longer able to change a situation ... we are challenged to change ourselves.”        
Viktor Frankl (1905–1997)

 

An Estonian Dinner

September 20th, 2016 6 Comments

  Every time my friend Dennis Larson hosts his Symra evening and dinner he chooses a different Scandinavian country or culture.  Other years have highlighted Denmark, Norway, Iceland, Sweden, Finland, the Sámi, the Vikings, the Faroe Islands and many more.  This year spilled into the northern Baltic country of Estonia with its strong Finnish, Swedish and Russian influences, and the fun began as we researched numerous foods and recipes.  He’s good at stretching my culinary boundaries.   The dinner was also on a full moon lunar eclipse

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Creamy Jalapeño Sauce

September 13th, 2016 No Comments

  Green and creamy-frothy on the tables of our favorite little Mexican restaurants, we have spent many a delicious moment speculating about the ingredients of this green condiment.  Emulsified oil, figured that out.  Some kind of chile, yep.  And beyond that we weren’t sure if there was lime, vinegar, mayonnaise or avocado…but just kept on eating regardless of the speculations. This is different than a tomatillo salsa verde which is also incredibly yummy but not as creamy.  Sometimes this sauce

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Cauliflower Tabouli

September 6th, 2016 No Comments

  We recently spent a number of days at the Solarium Hostel in Ft. Collins, Colorado.  A tropical indoor commons, large shared kitchen, yoga in the basement, a stream and bike path in their back yard…this was a great place to hang out and meet people from around the world while making your breakfast before touring the breweries, eating at the pay-what-you-can FoCo Cafe, or heading to the mountains.  They even have adorable bikes you can rent for touring this

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Favorites August 2016

August 30th, 2016 4 Comments

    A few of my father’s photos from when he was learning the craft in the 1980’s.   The second picture is one of my favorites.  He was practicing moving the camera to match the subject so the background would be blurred…and it’s one great shot.  Yarrow and my sister are the two willing models. Part of our old farmhouse basement was modified into a darkroom for his long-lived hobby, it was a cool space for him to hide

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Orange Ginger Slaw

August 24th, 2016 2 Comments

  A colorful and tasty salad for your dinner, yes, but first I need to show you a large grey cat.               I’m thinking of making a t-shirt or a poster of these paws, they’re perfect.   Scott and I were devoted dog lovers and this big dork of a cat showed us there could be another way, transformed our hearts.  Scott’s collies rescued a starving wisp of a kitten fourteen years ago and

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Tulsi (Holy Basil)

August 16th, 2016 No Comments

  Tulsi, India’s Queen of Herbs, revered for centuries as a sacred plant and used both medicinally and in worship, is thriving right here in my garden.  Native to India it is traditionally grown in pots in every Indian home and I am just beginning to understand the devotion.  Tulsi is not known as the ‘elixir of life’ for naught.   Western medicine is finally studying this amazing herb for its health-promoting properties.  It contains eugenol (also in cloves), a compound

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Quick-Pickled Vegetable Salad and Brining Vegetables

August 9th, 2016 No Comments

  These little veggies were served at the Seed Savers Conference dinner and have now been in my refrigerator for over two weeks….and they still look and taste fantastic!  Once again I set myself up for the situation where I didn’t know exactly what I would be making (I kept the menu rather vague listing a ‘Carrot Vegetable Salad with Toasted Cumin”) but I knew it would involve lots of local vegetables and a light vinegar dressing, so I started

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In the Other Kind of Time

August 3rd, 2016 6 Comments

  Friends!   It’s August and many people in our neck of the woods are on their vacation trips before school begins.  Instead of recipes this week I say we take this time to enjoy some pictures and a poem recently shared with me by a friend.   Have fresh sweet corn and sliced tomatoes for supper, and take it easy.       These are photos of wood-fired pottery made by my cousin-by-marriage Jordan Taylor and taken when we visited family in northeastern Pennsylvania

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Kale Salad with Honeyed Shallots and Plums

July 26th, 2016 No Comments

  Another salad from Pascale Beale who I had the pleasure of meeting and experiencing her cooking class last fall.  This seemed like a good salad for the season as plums are beginning to roll in and at least some greens are holding their own.  Plums are one of my favorite fruits—their balance of toothsome tartness make them perfect for both sweet and savory moments.     From her beautiful book…   I used organic black plums in this version

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Carolina Gold Rice Grits Cakes

July 19th, 2016 No Comments

  All rice is not equal.   I have had creamy rice before, but this was another branch in the tree of amazing grains. People from Anson Mills in South Carolina were at the Seed Savers Exchange Annual Conference last weekend, and beforehand they offered to mail me their Carolina Gold Rice Grits if I would use it in the conference’s Saturday evening meal.  They sent ‘middlins’, or rice grits, which cook up in a similar manner to a creamy arborio rice.

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