A group of busy women were looking for efficient ways to raise money for our favorite charity: the Constance Morris House, a Chicago area shelter for victims of domestic violence. We had tired of exhausting raffles and holiday events. But what else could we do?? “Perhaps a second-hand clothing shop?,” someone suggested — “something sustainable rather than multiple whirlwind events?” We thought it was a fabulous idea! Continue reading
If the word “ramble” brings to mind someone droning on without focus, you are probably not English. In England and elsewhere in the United Kingdom, a “ramble” is a walk. One “rambles” the public rights of way that lace through the UK countryside – paths established before the days of Downton Abbey. And, like many things English, time has done little to change them. Continue reading
Wandering the streets of Lille, you begin to wonder how this small French city sustains a patisserie on virtually every corner. Are the locals required to eat in a patisserie as least once daily? Or is it because the window displays look so good that it is impossible to resist the treats within?? Or is it that Lille is the home of Paul, the famous French pastry shop? Or is it the colorful and ubiquitous macaron that weakens ones resolve?? Continue reading
Perhaps because it is so difficult for Americans to go there, I am fascinated by Cuba –with its rich history and culture. To gain access, Americans must get a license from the U.S. Treasury Department, and that license requires a specific purpose (e.g., journalism, charitable work, government business, etc). I haven’t applied for a license since I don’t think writing a food blog would qualify 🙂 Continue reading
Cooking lessons are so much fun. I still dust off some of my old lessons when asked or, occasionally, as donations to charity. So, when a friend asked to sell one of my lessons at a live charity auction, I was delighted. The lesson, “Stocks and the Five Mother Sauces”, was from my repertoire of tried and true lessons. I could teach it in my sleep. Piece of cake. Sure, I would be happy to donate the lesson.
Then came the surprise from the buyer: Continue reading
It is almost Thanksgiving and the start of holiday season here in the U.S. This is when I wish the moratorium on human cloning had expired, and I could be in multiple places at once. Continue reading
Inspired by one of my fellow bloggers, Cookinginsens, who shared the delicious results of her recent freezer purge, I decided it was time to clear out the basement freezer. I was making very good progress in this endeavor. My final task was to utilize the last of the 2011 Michigan blueberry crop. After all, the 2012 blueberry season had arrived. Why would anyone hoard frozen blueberries from last year when there was a new crop to be had? Time to make some blueberry muffins — best with fresh blueberries, but quite serviceable with last year’s crop — and an excellent way to use frozen blueberries. Continue reading
There are certain flavor combinations that I find magical.
Sometimes these are flavors that take each other up a notch when combined in sequence – like Roquefort with a good Cabernet Sauvignon. Both the cheese and the wine are excellent alone; yet, when you pair them in the right proportions by eating them sequentially, each one enhances the other. Continue reading
Regular readers may be wondering why, until now, I didn’t have ANY desserts posted.
No, I don’t hate sweets. I love a good creamy bowl of ice cream, a fluffy cake, a nice soufflé or a crisp cookie. But I do have one hang-up with making desserts. I can’t resist turning them into extended science projects. Continue reading
These appetizer tarts meet my criteria for an ideal dinner-party appetizer:
- a bite of complex but strong flavors that will stand up to cocktails
- easy to make
- edible without plates and utensils; just pop in your mouth
- can be made ahead and reheated before serving (can also be served at room temperature)
- are easy to transport if making for a friend
So, last night, when invited to a friend’s house for dinner, I chose this tart recipe. Continue reading