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Showing posts from October, 2011

Chicken Lasagna with Greens

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This late summer, I unexpectedly received in the mail two cookbooks on the same day--one from my darling roommate from Steinbeck camp and one from a longtime friend from high school.  I was so filled with gratitude on that day because both of the women (who actually remind me of one another) are strong, wicked smart, and uproariously funny.  They are both the kinds of women I would hope to be.
Let me focus on the giver of this cookbook*--my friend from high school (the other cookbook shall be a focus for a later date).  Where I went to high school is not like your normal high school.  My high school was a 3-year, residential high school for students in the state of Illinois who were talented in math and science (ironically, almost all of my friends went into humanities or business, but that's for another day).  We came together, wide-eyed and nerdy as sophomores and left, perhaps, just as nerdy but surrounded by those who became, in some sense, the most dear to us in our lives.  N…

Running Play List

On a side note that is not at all related to cooking, I am getting ready for my first half marathon next week.  I am making my play list.  I know, I know.  I should not be listening to music while I run a race; I should be enjoying being a part of the race.  The yogic side of me totally agrees with you.  However, my quadriceps disagree with you.  My quads do much better when they have something to motivate them.  This time, my quads win.
Anyway, this is what I am thinking about.  Clearly (hopefully!) too many songs.  Lots of Green Day and Avett Brothers.  Don't judge me too much for the Justin Timberlake.  We all have our secrets.  Besides, it makes me want to run. 
So, what do you listen to when you run?  Seriously.  I am always looking for new music.

A-Punk Vampire Weekend
Jejune Stars Bright Eyes Ambling Alp Yeasayer
Kick Drum Heart The Avett Brothers American Idiot Green Day
Kingdom of Rust Doves At the Beach

Family Feast October 2011

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October 22, 2011 Occupy Bancroft
Berkeley
Margarittas
Tortilla Chips with Homemade Salsa
Almonds with Adobo Sauce
Red and Green Enchiladas
Melon Salad with Crema and Fresh Mint
Slow-Cooked Green Beans in Lard

Corn Cake with Blueberries and Creme Fraiche
Black Sea Salt and Caramel Chocolate
Chocolate with Toffee with Walnuts and Pecans











Cucumber Mousse

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Oh, Nero.

Here we are again, enjoying another Nero Wolfe-inspired recipe from the delightful little cookbook based on the Nero Wolfe mystery series.  If you are not familiar with our stout genius, have a gander here.  Otherwise, read on.

This cucumber mousse shows up in one of my favorite Nero Wolfe mysteries, Death of a Doxy.  Always the consumer of fine foods, Nero sets himself down for a light-for-Nero lunch that includes a summertime mousse. Set in 1958*, the novel centers on the death of a showgirl but the Rosenberg trial looms large around the dinner table:

"Business is taboo at the dinner table, but crime and criminals aren't, and the Rosenberg case hogged the conversation through the anchovy fritters, partridge in casserole with no olives in the sauce, cucumber mousse, and Creole curds and cream."--Death of a Doxy
Perhaps distracted by the Rosenbergs, Nero and Archie aren't fully prepared for Julie Jaquette (played by the always delightful Keri Matchett in …

Roast Pork with Onion-and-Apple Marmalade

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I promise.  This will come back to the pork.

The husband and I have been married for five years now.  In order to celebrate, we went to Point Reyes.  North Beach was foggy and all but empty, the point with the lighthouse was socked in, and the waves were tumbling loudly.  First we sat against the driftwood and listened, until the husband took a walk and I lay back in the sand to close my eyes and listen a little more carefully.  The sun came out for about two minutes and then the fog closed back in.  When the husband returned from his walk, I did handstands, my hands less stable on the shifting sand, and he had to hold me up.  When I was rightside up again, I felt giddy.  Ready to play.  And so we drove out to the lighthouse point where we clattered down to the lighthouse itself.  The fog horn sounded rhythmically.  And then we hiked the 300+ stairs back up to the road.






This felt perfect.  Like the ideal way to spend an anniversary.  Listening.  Carving a little space of our own.  H…