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Showing posts from June, 2017

Raspberry and Brown Sugar Loaf

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I love a good picnic. However, the husband and I have very different ideas of what a picnic should be. I fancy a game of croquet and a gaffe over the strawberries a la Emma Woodhouse. The husband is satisfied with a length of salami and a hunk of cheese. So this was my compromise.

We hiked on a Saturday afternoon the northern-most tip of Point Reyes National Seashore.  A simple (but longish) drive to Pierce Point Ranch (a dairy ranch from about 1858 to the 1970s) and a few-mile hike afford gorgeous views of the Pacific Ocean and Tomales Bay (assuming the fog hasn't rolled in). If you're lucky, and we were, the elk will be on full display, and there are plenty of rock outcroppings and a one Monterey cyprus tree patch, all just aching for a picnic blanket (and no croquet). 

Yes, I brought some salami, and we stopped in Point Reyes Station at the Cowgirl Creamery for some Red Hawk. However, I also made this Raspberry and Brown Sugar Loaf--an adaptation of Diana Henry's Blackber…

Grilled Bread, Broccoli Rabe, and Summer Squash Salad

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Can I confess: I don't particularly care for salad. I find lettuces, for the most part, boring. I get tired of carrots and radishes and cucumbers. I just don't think I would do well on a raw diet. So I was delighted when I received this latest cookbook from Food 52 because I am always looking for ways to up my salad game.

And so I begin my foray into Mighty Salads with a fantastic grilled bread salad chock-full of grilled veggies and spectacular dressing made from the mayonnaise marinade. Yes, you heard me right. Mayonnaise marinade. Okay, maybe this salad is not the healthy-eating alternative I was longing for, as we kick off summer. But I still consumed about 729% more vegetables in this salad alone than I did the entire month of May. It's summer, and lordy, people, I have got to get this diet back to salads and soups and smoothies and healthy eating. Because lately it's been cheetos and chocolate. And this is just the cookbook to do it.

Before we get into the nitty gr…

Banana-Pecan Bread in Round House // Cook Your Books

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In this Cook Your Books series, I have chosen 15 books to read in 2017 based on somewhat arbitrarily chosen categories. My theory (bogus it might turn out to be) is that all 15 of these books will somehow connect to food. And I plan to write about that food.  And it turns out that these entries are a sort of long-form blog-post. So settle in. This fifth installment isNational Book Award winner.

In a world going increasingly mad, reading seems to be an increasingly political act to me. And so it is with the inimitable Louise Erdrich, who has always been a political writer. Such is no more evident than in her National Book Award winning novel Round House.

The book opens with 13-year-old Joe Coutts digging out tiny trees whose roots have attacked his parents' house at the foundation--a laborious activity he engages in with his father. In perhaps a beleaguered metaphor, within pages we learn that Joe wants to root out the mystery of who has damaged the very foundation of his family--s…