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This time of year.

August 26, 2008
August in a salad.

August in a salad.

This early morning something strange happened. Half asleep and on my way to the bathroom, I opened the door of our bedroom (the only room in the house with an air conditioner), stepped out into the living room, and found that it was COOLER out there. Somehow, in the night, our stuffy little apartment had found itself a cross-breeze. And I realized… late summer is here.

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The moon was full, and so was I.

August 22, 2008
Homemade sparklers await....

Homemade sparklers await....

Sparkling Lavender Cooler? Raw Milk Olive Oil Ice Cream? Cornmeal only cornbread topped with shining dollops of honey butter??? Yes to all of it, yes please. And please do add in a comfortable setting, warm company, and a feeling that each thing I was putting in my mouth came from a perfect place.

I had it all this past Saturday when chance allowed me to be in the bay area of California for an event I’ve been longing to attend, a Full Moon Feast hosted by Jessica Prentice at Three Stone Hearth.

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Polska Duma: Polish pride as expressed through chili at the Brooklyn Chili Takedown

August 13, 2008
Red Ribbon Chili

Red Ribbon Chili

Though I don’t often admit it, I’m a pretty competitive person. It’s honestly not so much that I like to win (though you know I do) but I really like a good spirited battle… especially when it focuses on something I’m good at.

So when I heard about the Chili Takedowns hosted by the recently famous and very funny Matt Timms, you know I was one of the first people to sign up… because it Just So Happens that I make a kick ass chili (again thanks to culinary wisdom passed down from that ole trouble maker- my father). AND, it JUST so happens that this ah-mazing chili is actually pointastic.

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The heat, and the Sorbet.

August 6, 2008

The weapon of choice.

Last week there were record high temperatures in Texas and other states in the southern-middle-part of the country. On Monday I actually heard a reporter say, “Things should be cooler tomorrow… about 105.”

Cooler?

105?

So, while I make no claim to that kind of suffering, I do want to acknowledge that New York has been no easy beast this summer.

The thing about New York is one is always outside. There’s none of the “air-conditioned-house to air-conditioned-car to air-conditioned-office” pattern that I grew up accustomed to in the just barely southern state of Maryland. Instead, we are walking… and then we are waiting for the subway in tunnels that are so hot and stuffy it’s like being in a steamer… and then we walk some more… and then we get to our office which (if we’re lucky) has central air and (if we’re me) just has a little window unit that makes a lot of noise. But please, I’m used to the lack of central air at this point because the turn of the century buildings that New Yorker’s so commonly live in have no central air. Even when it’s not that hot, like this week, it’s just unpleasant to be at home. I personally have virtually no cross breeze in my narrow apartment, so it’ll probably take until late September before my sweet home becomes bearable again.

Luckily, there is something that can be done:

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Just One Egg’ll do ya

July 31, 2008
just one little egg!

just one little egg!

There are many omelets in my life. My dear friend Kylie makes an overstuffed 4-egg omelet that has to be split by two people. The omelet I usually make is more of a scramble, inspired by the “Omeletta Herba” (what language is that?) made for me by my darling sweetheart’s Grandma Carol. Grandma Carol is a 90 year old yoga teacher and an excellent cook, she ALWAYS mixes her Omeletta Herba in a copper bowl. Oh, and never salt the eggs before you cook them.

The last omelet that makes frequent appearances in my life is the one produced by my good ole dad. His omelet often includes a variety of fillings, but it’s defining factor is that it is made with one egg. And no milk. Wow, right?

After watching my dad produce these egg-cellent (had to do it) creations for the literally hundreds (maybe thousands?) of breakfast guests that find their way into my folks open home, I have learned to do it myself.

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It doesn’t matter what you call it.

July 26, 2008

A few cookbooks of my own

This week, while I was finding new food blogs to be addicted to, I came across a really great one by a blogger with and addiction of her own: cookbooks. The Cookbook Addict is by a New York Lawyer with a cookbook purchasing problem and some really great photography skills (read: food porn central). About every week (though it seems to have slowed down a bit… something about being a lawyer) she cooks a selection of dishes from a cookbook on her shelf and then reviews the book on her blog. Her reviews are honest and fun to read… she has a critical eye, but she’s not a snob.

Reading the blog, I realize quickly that the Cookbook Addict and I have a lot in common. We both love Alice Medrich, learned to look from Mollie Katzen, and have the same fear… the “light” cookbook.

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Red Curry Poached Tilapia…with mmmmango.

July 22, 2008
Red Curry Poache Tilapia

Red Curry Poached Tilapia

Food from the sea has always been an easy sell with me. There is not much I like better than a bowl of mussels, or a breakfast of trout and eggs. Growing up in Maryland, I ate fried claims like they were chicken nuggets, and picked apart succulent blue crabs until my hands burned from the Old Bay seasoning. And though it took me a little while for my palate to tolerate fish that didn’t come in a shell, once I discovered the joys of salmon I never looked back.

It wasn’t until I started Weight Watchers that I realized that fish was not only tasty, but also a very low fat and low calorie source of protein. As long as I avoid covering them in mayo (more to come about the “Amtrak Cafe Car Tuna Salad Sandwich Debacle” at a later date) my favorite little fishes are a sure bet for an honest low points meal.

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