Easing into a peach pie

One of the many things I miss about my mom is her knack for picking good recipes. She didn’t enter into this lightly. Not one to squander either her Ingredients or her time, she would consider new recipe possibilities at length and intently and would usually back a winner.

Sometimes, surprisingly, her intended . . . → Read More: Easing into a peach pie

Produce-ing out of the box

Even reclusive people — homebound due to a pandemic — can go stir-crazy.

I’ll admit, as a recluse, I was likely not as opposed (though still as discombobulated, mentally) by the imposed exile to which we had surrendered in March. I’m fortunate I can work from home (and am rarely bored here), and . . . → Read More: Produce-ing out of the box

Springing to life with homemade citrus salad dressing

Spring fever hit me hard this year. It began way back in January, with the greening from the rains here in California, and it has not let up. It has had me pondering the moon, cricking my ear for every croak and chirp, sniffing every blossom. It had me sitting in the backyard . . . → Read More: Springing to life with homemade citrus salad dressing

Pleasing the plum palate

Is it possible I’ve been hypnotized by a fruit? If so, it is the plum that has seduced me, once again. Fortunately — or not, really — the season is woefully short, but during it, I find myself drawn, again and again, to the stunning array of plums, pluots and plum/cherry hybrids, gleaming like jewels . . . → Read More: Pleasing the plum palate

Guest Kitchen: Presenting Pavlova to a ballerina

When I first began conversing with Al Dente Floyd at work, he gave me his mother’s phone number, saying, “Since you do the food thing, you might want to talk to her — she has a lot of recipes.”

But, he admonished, “Whatever you do, DON’T talk to her about the ballet.”

What?!?!

Al Dente . . . → Read More: Guest Kitchen: Presenting Pavlova to a ballerina

Bread of the Month: Planning tea -- and scones -- for two

Sometimes I get weird ideas. Actually, I get weird ideas most of the time, but I only act on a portion of them. When I decide to act on one of my curious notions, it’s as if I’ve signed a contract…it’s odd. I am as unyielding on myself as if the world expected me to . . . → Read More: Bread of the Month: Planning tea — and scones — for two

Searching for the morel to the story

If there is some truth to the notion that we pick our parents before we are born, then I must have selected mine because I knew they would lead me to morel mushrooms. By lead, I mean literally. During my childhood in Kansas, I was taken on jaunts into timber so thick it seemed unnavigable . . . → Read More: Searching for the morel to the story

Bread of the Month: Shaping Pan de Muerto

I’ve long been intrigued by Dia de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead). Halloween is my favorite holiday and in its truest respect, it honors the night that is not only the fine dividing line between seasons, but the barrier — at its thinnest — between the living and the spirit world.

Day of . . . → Read More: Bread of the Month: Shaping Pan de Muerto

Winning a challenge to oneself

I don’t like competition, but like many other beings at times compromised by human nature, I often fall under the spell to compete and compare with others. It’s a losing battle, really. As a very wise friend once told me, comparing yourself to others is “dangerous.” No matter what, if you don’t have the proper . . . → Read More: Winning a challenge to oneself

Bread of the Month: Handing down a roll recipe

I cannot begin to write about my mother’s bread making without mentioning her kneading. And I would have to begin any discussion of her kneading by describing her hands. My mother is not, nor has she ever been, a delicate doily of a damsel, and neither are her hands. Big, rough and muscular are not . . . → Read More: Bread of the Month: Handing down a roll recipe