Monday, December 04

Maple-Glazed Goat’s Cheese, Caramelized Squash, Toasted Pepitas

Maple-Glazed Goat’s Cheese, Caramelized Squash, Toasted Pepitas

If you’re looking for an unexpected holiday appetizer, consider this Maple-Glazed Goat’s Cheese, Caramelized Squash, Toasted Pepitas. The slightly warmed cheese with its light gloss of maple syrup pairs well with the sweet flavors in the squash. See the recipe here or continue reading. In November, Jason Sobocinski introduced a group of us to some newer ways to entertain with French goat’s cheese. Jason, the owner of Caseus in New Haven, created a lovely spread


Tuesday, April 18

Spring Awakening

Spring Sunset

We are calling this Spring Awakening, my students and I. Gone are the gray days of winter says Carolyn. As I travelled here today, says Annette, each side of the street in Cheshire was covered with snow-covered trees, the blossoms fooled me.  And the traffic picked up says Jose, a sign spring break is over. The security guards at Gateway Community College sport short sleeved shirts for the first time observes Joe.  The colors invigorate our


Thursday, January 05

2017 Food Writing Class Starting at New Haven’s Gateway Community College

Pike Mousse Quenelles de Brochet

Nothing beats food as a catalyst to ignite a writer’s urge to tell a story.  Remind me of my last holiday meal and I’m off thinking of what we ate, how we cooked it, who shared the meal and who did the cleanup.  This Christmas the power went out for four hours as it did the Thanksgiving before.  In each instance, we came up with a way to salvage the meal and now I have solid tips on


Thursday, December 29

Where food is heading in 2017

Kogi Short Rib Tacos + Kimchee Quesadilla, Intelegensia Coffee

  Time to polish my crystal ball and think about where food is heading in 2017.  Professional trendologists- yes it’s a career path– started months back, looking for threads in breakout snack foods and hot new restaurant concepts to identify what we’ll be craving in the New Year.  Flavor and the Menu Magazine, a foodservice trade publication I’ve written for, started looking at eating patterns back in the fall in preparation for the top 10


Saturday, July 09

Paris by Fiche – Low Tech Way to Plan a Trip

Roses at the Musee Rodin

The other day, I shared a list of favorite bakeries, café and boutiques with Rachel, my web guru. She and her family are going to Paris at the end of the month. And I told her about one of my favorite travel tools, the index card, Paris by fiche, a low tech way to plan a trip to Paris or anywhere. My obsession with index cards dates to high school when I learned how to


Saturday, November 28

Food Writing 2016 in New Haven at Gateway Community College

1970s Wedding Shower Cake from Seventeen Magazine

What is “food writing” but writing with food as the protagonist? Or perhaps food is the pretext for writing about family, adventure travel, science or social history? That’s what we’ll be exploring at Gateway Community College in New Haven where I have been invited back to teach Food Writing starting in January 2016. The 15 week course, which will meet on Tuesday evenings starting January 26, covers the personal food essay, restaurant reviewing, recipe writing,


Friday, August 21

Postcard from Shanghai – Longtong and Streetfood

Vintage Shanghai Postcard

  See those low red tiled roofs through the smog? They are longtong, the alley ways where you’ll find Shanghai’s famous street food.                   No menu needed. Unless you know Mandarin, order with your eyes. On an unanticipated business trip to Shanghai, I got to sample its street food.  Without any guidebook nor advance planning, I found “breakfast street”, one of dozens traversing busy Nanjing Road. (Click on any photo to get a closer view.)  


Monday, April 20

My Almond Lexicon – Green Almonds

Almond botanical illustration from Germany circa 1903

“Green almonds” mean a number of things. Newborn Almonds – Almond buds start to appear on the tree right after the bloom, which appears in early winter. (It’s February to March in California and a week or two earlier in the Mediterranean.) As soon as the bloom drops, a tiny budlet appears on the tree. That’s our newborn green almond. You can easily pop the whole thing in your mouth. It is tender and crunchy.


Monday, April 06

Green Almonds, a Celebration of Spring

Green Almond Nutlet on the Half Shell

These fuzzy green pods are green almonds, baby nutlets, which appear on the trees after the blooms fall. Cousin to the peach, plum, and apricot, Prunus amygdalus, the almond is the first fruit tree to bloom in spring. Once the fragrant almond blossoms fall, clusters of pale green pods remain on its branches. Called ‘green almonds’, these embryonic almonds will grow into the nut we all know. In the early stages, dainty almond pods resemble


Wednesday, April 01

80 Cakes for Jacques Pépin

Last Friday, members of the International Association of Culinary Professionals honored Jacques Pépin at a gala birthday party in Washington, DC. Under the direction of Bill Yossis, former White House pastry chef, more than 80 people donated cakes made in honor of Jacques’ 80th birthday. I was among them, a nervous wreck. “Of course,” I said when asked. And of course I knew I had to make the cake myself, although Bill had arranged for


"Let no man fancy he knows how to dine
Till he has learnt how taste and taste combine."

-Horace, Satires, 2.4

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