Bread of the Month: Mastering great garlic bread

I’ve eaten a lot of good garlic bread, even making some myself (often an herb-infused-in-olive oil version), but I had not eaten GREAT garlic bread until I sat down at the table of Liboria Salerno (for more about her, please see blog entry, “Presenting Pavlova to a ballerina” of 6/16). The bread was toasted to . . . → Read More: Bread of the Month: Mastering great garlic bread

Bread of the Month; Shifting on shortcake

The strawberry shortcake I grew up with and loved was always more cake than short. That is, a golden vanilla layer cake like those found frosted for birthdays, but without the icing, soft and fluffy, easily absorbent of all the succulent red strawberry juices circulating over and under it.

I think this is the . . . → Read More: Bread of the Month; Shifting on shortcake

Popcorn and a movie: Lauding little big corn

I have complete respect for the days set aside to honor, including Jan. 19, which is also National Popcorn Day. That being said, it occurs to me there is no day set aside to honor the First Americans.

Some of us choose not to forget. In so doing, I honor not only a day . . . → Read More: Popcorn and a movie: Lauding little big corn

Popcorn and a Movie: Finding hope in horror

One dark night, a long time ago, I sat down on the couch by myself after a very rough day, probably one of the worst in my life. I’d been handed down some news so devastating that it seemed insurmountable. My life was different from that point on. I no longer knew myself. Whatever rug . . . → Read More: Popcorn and a Movie: Finding hope in horror

Baking cookies, short and sweet

One of my earliest kitchen memories is of lying on the linoleum floor, being fanned. Not fanned exactly, but taking full advantage of the warm, sweet wind made by my mother waving a cookie sheet back and forth to cool it before she loaded it with a new batch of dough. The aroma of butter . . . → Read More: Baking cookies, short and sweet

Stirring an elegant sauce two ways

A few weeks ago, I sat down to begin writing of a delicious hollandaise sauce I had made in the blender, when I read the words of Julia Child in Vol. 1 of “Mastering the Art of French Cooking”: “It is extremely easy and almost foolproof to make in the electric blender, and we . . . → Read More: Stirring an elegant sauce two ways

Bread of the Month: Capturing the croissant

“A good fight should be like a small play, but played seriously. A good martial artist does not become tense, but ready. Not thinking, yet not dreaming. Ready for whatever may come.” — Bruce Lee, “Enter the Dragon”

AWS appreciates challenges and does rise to them. Given the time and inclination, she will attack . . . → Read More: Bread of the Month: Capturing the croissant

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

Lifting the spirits with soufflé

Should the first soufflé you’ve ever eaten be the one you made yourself? Should the first soufflé you’ve ever made be served to anyone other than you and perhaps one other trusted friend? I’ll have to say “yes” to both questions, as my experience with soufflé — long on my list of culinary to-dos — . . . → Read More: Lifting the spirits with soufflé

Bread of the month: Basking in buttery brioche

My friend, Elaine – whose own oven yields magic at such a staggering and humiliating output, her kitchen could make Willie Wonka’s factory look as though it has gone dormant – not long ago gave me one of the nicest gifts I have ever received.

She came to work and placed in my hands – . . . → Read More: Bread of the month: Basking in buttery brioche