Category Archives: Appetizers

Tuscan Kale Chips

kale chips

For the past few weeks, I’ve been inching slowly (and sometimes, painfully) back into the robust workout routine that I observed before I got myself involved with all this culinary school business. These new miles of pounded pavement have been making me feel ravenous between meals, and I’ve been on the lookout for snacks that can satisfy, while being tasty, nutritious, and low in calories and fat.

kale chips

Ironically, when I first encountered this healthy, nutritious snack, I was sitting down to a celebratory dinner of epic and caloric proportions at Blue Hill at Stone Barns, a restaurant/working farm/theme park for food dorks like me who are into sustainable, farm-to-table cuisine. Tuscan kale chips, artfully suspended above antique wooden blocks by a thin piece of wire, were the first of the parade of amuse bouche that we enjoyed that night. Everyone in our party was delighted by their simple beauty and surprised by how delicious they were. They were the perfect introduction to the flavor and feel of the restaurant.

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Latkes and Indian Spiced Potato Pancakes

potato pancakes and Indian-Spiced Potato Pancakes

When I was a kid, I was envious of those who were Jewish. It has nothing to do with my interest in the faith, the appeal of its strong community, or the preservation of very old traditions. Rather, it came down to simple mathematics; with eight being decidedly greater than one, I was convinced that Christmas-celebrators were being shortchanged days of celebration.

frying

Now I’m grown up and about to marry a Jewish man, and through our courtship I’ve discovered something entirely different to envy about the chosen people – their delicious and comforting foods. It’s a stretch for me to choose, but if I had to pick my favorite from the mass of sumptuous kugels, brisket, noodle pudding, lox, and knish I’ve enjoyed, I’d still have to say that latkes (potato pancakes) are the dish that I look forward to more than any other.

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Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Sage Brown Butter

sweet potato gnocchi

While I do my best to keep this space relatively free of my personal angst, today was really crappy, and I need to tell someone about it. It was the kind of day where I talk to my mother on the phone three times in the span of a few hours: one call to deal with some straightforward, wedding-related business, the second where she calls me back after we get cut off (bad cell reception up north) and I regress to levels of 11th grade petulance and take all of my frustrations out on her but don’t actually tell her why I’m acting out, and a third when I call back later to apologize. In short, it’s the kind of day for which comfort foods, such as gnocchi, were invented.

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Roasted Tomatillo Salsa and Roasted Sweet Corn Salsa

CRW_8309

Shorter days and chilly nights be damned, this year I’m just not feeling ready to say goodbye to summer yet. I’m still buying the last ears of corn from the market, no matter how anemic. And I’ll continue buying tomatoes too, even the ugliest, most bruised ones, if it means that I can eat fresh tomatoes for one more meal as we ease into a winter filled with those lackluster replacements we call “hot house” or “canned tomatoes”.

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Sonoma Wine Country In Pictures – Part II

Besides downloading pictures, I spent a lot of our first week back in the city running around town checking out event spaces where Brian and I might end our engagement with celebration. We’ve enjoyed a blissful summer procrastinating on the wedding nonsense, but my self-imposed deadline for finding a place to seal the deal is fast approaching (next weekend!), so I buckled down and pounded a lot of pavement.

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Grilled Peach Bruschetta Recipe



As you can probably imagine, we’ve been swimming in bread for a month or so now. For the first few days we embraced the romance and luxury of having freshly baked baguettes in the house with crust that is only rivaled by the product of Parisian corner bakeries. We made more than a few dinners of nothing but cheese, red wine, and this bread. We ate these dinners on our porch, as if we were on vacation.

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Spring Garlic and Tomato Bruschetta Recipe

 

I can stop my whining about the lackluster fare at the markets – spring has finally arrived, and at long last, the farmers are toting something fresh and new in the backs of those huge trucks. There’s lettuce and baby greens, ramps, asparagus, the first teeny-tiny strawberries, and so much more! And the best part: once the floodgates open, the produce just keeps getting better and better each week as the balmy weeks of summer unfold.

 

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How to Cook Artichokes

 

Summertime cooking can be so beautifully simple.

 

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Goat Cheese Croquette Recipe: For the Tapas Party Files

 

I can only spare a minute today, so I’ll stick to the facts:

Fact #1: The only thing better than fried anything else is fried goat cheese.

Fact #2: The only thing better than fried goat cheese is fried goat cheese with caramelized shallots and a drizzle of honey.

Fact #3: Crispy outside, creamy, oozing center

Fact #4: Sweet, savory

Fact #6: Dinner party guests think you are a god(dess)

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Edamame Hummus Recipe

 

How appropo, a green hummus posted, today of all days. And while I had not planned on posting something so strikingly green for St. Patty’s Day, the act of posting something green was calculated and completely deliberate. After madeleines and cake, let’s pause to cleanse our paletes, shall we?

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