Sunday, 21 August 2011 | 9 comments

Collards on toast at tend

My friend Meghan tells me I’m unfit for survival, because I love all things bitter and astringent (her rationale being that through history, a bitter taste has signalled poison, and that we have evolved to dislike that taste accordingly as a survival mechanism). Black coffee, tannic wine, vinegars, and chocolate with a high cacao to sugar ratio—these are among my pantry staples.Bitter greens are no exception. Luckily for me, kale, chard, lettuces, and other bitter greens are something I can grow myself in my small city backyard. My garden is putting out some wonderful ruffly-edged collards right now (yes, they survived the slug-pocalypse). The fantastically talented artist/blogger/letterpress-er/gardener Heather Smith Jones, one of the ladies behind the collaborative blog tend, recently asked me to contribute a guest post. With these collards coming in, I thought I’d chat a bit about the realities and rewards of growing things in a tiny city garden. You’ll find the recipe, along with more photos and thoughts, over there. (And so much thanks to Heather and all the ladies of tend–I’m honored they thought to include me in their week of guest posters.)

Friday, 13 May 2011 | 2 comments

Tender greens soufflé

Is it already boring and passé to be cooking and eating asparagus, rhubarb, ramps, and green garlic? Is everyone already tired of spring? I’m only asking because I’m troubled by the sheer quantity of recipes I’ve seen lately focusing on tomatoes, a decidedly non-spring ingredient.

There are a lot of folks in the wonderfully overlapping fields of food, garden, cooking, writing, wine, and beer (and even some other areas, but I won’t get too philosophical) whose recipes and narratives I respect so much more than my own. These humbling individuals range from little sister Louise, who knows more about growing her own food than I probably ever will; to icons like Julia Child.
green garlic
Somewhere in between the familiar and the legendary fall my favorite food bloggers, who manage to present graceful, accessible interpretations of the life lived around food. These people get it. They’re on my wavelength. They’re able to put shared sentiments and passions down in words and recipes much more creatively/wittily/compassionately/intelligently than dilettante-me. That’s why every once in awhile, when I read an article or recipe that seems not to jive with that shared sentiment, it’s jarring.

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Saturday, 12 March 2011 | No comments

Not-quite-spring-yet stirfry with bok choy & oyster mushrooms

We had a lot of houseguests in the Yellow House last weekend. It was a whirlwind of laughter, late nights, and big dinners and breakfasts with everyone gathered around the table. I love having all our friends here, but at the end of the weekend, when you’re left with a pile of dirty plates (or empty champagne bottles, as it may be…) and are faced with the prospect of work the next morning, well…you realize you’re a more than a little tired.

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