A colorful Christmas

A colorful Christmas

December 12, 2016; Savannah, Georgia: I’ve neither a religious nor a nostalgic bone in my body, and I’m neither a shopper (except for food and books) nor a parent (except of grown children I claim as my own), so Christmas doesn’t see me, as Joni Mitchell sang, “cutting down trees, …putting up reindeer [and] singing songs of joy and peace.” But I do cook and try to see as many as my loved ones as I can, taking...

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Once a year…

Once a year…

December 1, 2016; Savannah, GA: Yesterday was 80 degrees here in Savannah and I carved out some time to go walk on the beach; tonight it’s going down into the low 40s. One of my favorite cold-weather dishes is oxtail stew, so when I saw them reasonably priced in my local market, I bought a couple of pounds and made this old favorite of mine. I published the recipe in my first book, but I’m surprised I’ve never run a recipe here...

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Two Desserts, because company’s coming

Two Desserts, because company’s coming

November 14, 2016; Savannah GA: I pretty much stopped buying cookbooks years ago. At one point, I had about 10,000 titles. I have whittled it down to less than 500. When we moved overseas in 2011, I took a mere handful with me – and I wrote about those books then on the blog.  The book I use more than any is still my dear friend Elizabeth Schneider’s encyclopedic and poetic Vegetables from Amaranth to Zucchini. Being back in the Lowcountry,...

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Cooking in the fall in the coastal South

Cooking in the fall in the coastal South

November 10, 2016; Savannah, Georgia: Sometimes I wonder how on earth I managed to do everything I did before I “retired.” I put that in quotation marks because I still run my business and go to culinary events and speak at museums and conferences — as well as keeping house and gardening. But when I think back to when I ran my store, tested recipes, shopped and cooked for at least two meals each day, and wrote a half dozen...

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Hawai’i

Savannah, Georgia; October 4, 2016: Hawai’i was never on my bucket list, really, but I’m so glad I went. I’d go back. My husband had been asked to speak at a conference in Honolulu so I flew out to join him. We were in the city for several days, then rented a cottage on the West Side of Kauai, way out in the last village on the island, where it was sunny, flat, and dry — the polar opposite of my preconceived notions of...

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Arugula/Rocket/Roquette/Rucola

Arugula/Rocket/Roquette/Rucola

Savannah, Ga; September 2, 2016. The wind and rain are raging outside, mostly in gusts, as Tropical Storm Hermine passes through the area. I’m staying at home, wishing I had picked up some salad greens yesterday on my way home from Charleston. The salad rocket (Eruca sativa) has long since burned up in the garden, but the wild arugula, a species of the Diplotaxis genus, has naturalized and continues to produce, even though I have not let...

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