Let's Eat

Seasonal Recipes

 

Fishy Red Lentil Dhal for Lent

As I came to the end of the Confluence Climate Collaborative Challenge of 40 Days of Loving What I Have, my cupboards were starting to become a little bare. Now, really there was plenty of food, but just exactly what to make out of all that stuff was the question.

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Guest Chef Sally Burgess Gives Us Protein Recovery Balls

My friend Sally Burgess is a fellow environmental activist—a member of my new group of comrades, the Confluence Climate Collaborative, and a student working quickly toward her PhD. But today, she’s somebody else: Today, Sally is the Green Gal guest chef for March and has developed a delicious Protein Recovery Ball, using the featured New Hope Influencer Product Natural Factors CurcuminRich Muscle Recovery & Growth Optimizer.

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Home Cooking at La Vista: A Recipe for Courage

Home is my best way to describe the cooking class out at beautiful La Vista Ecological Learning Center a couple of Saturdays ago. We were nearly a room full of strangers when we started. There were some familiar faces, but many people I’d never met. I just knew right away that I belonged.

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Tuna Pot Pie with Homemade Béchamel and Wild Planet Tuna

It started with two requests: I was asked by a Sierra Club member to bring my Grandma’s Pumpkin Pie to the next meeting, which happened earlier this month. Having one beautiful blue pumpkin left in my basement, I thought it was a great idea. Then, my sweetie asked for tuna casserole, not his typical ask. I guess he was in the mood for comfort food, and anytime he asks for a fish dish, I try to oblige. And then, of course, I realized that I had stumbled upon the perfect opportunity for a pot pie. What else was I going to do with that second pie crust and the last little bag of market peas waiting in the freezer?

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Bacon-Cheddar Shortbreads with Jalapeño Jelly

Chocolate is so overdone when it comes to romance, don’t you think? Well, okay, maybe not. But this Valentine’s Day I was looking for something just a little “out there.” A surprise for my sweetie with all his favorites—cheddar cheese, bacon and sugar.

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Cassava Flour Pita Chips: Junk Food that Could Romance Even Michael Pollen

Remember Michael Pollen from last month, my real-food guru? Well here is why I just love this man—one of his food rules is: Eat all the junk food you want, as long as you cook it yourself. Once you start to think about this deceptive little rule, you realize it is about eliminating way more than that bag of chips you’re reaching for.

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Classic French Onion Soup

Well, I was putting my monthly recipe of bone broth into the slow cooker near the first of the month when I noticed a sort of tired look on my husband’s face. “What now?” I asked. “I thought bone broth was one of your favorites.”

“It’s okay,” he said, semi-whiney. “It’s just getting boring.” So, I thought, buying the best, cleanest, meatiest bones, slow cooking them for two days, painstakingly straining and storing the stock is now boring. Romance in my kitchen was nowhere to be found at that moment, just days before February 14.

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Bread: An Historical Romance

Bread is all about history and romance. James Beard winner Greg Patent’s wonderful historically inspired cookbook Cooking in America, features Thirded Bread the recipe that started me baking my own loaves of bread long ago.

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From-Scratch, Real-Food Power Bars: Love at First Bite

How homemade can you go? If we are really committed to eating a diet of REAL food and promise to know exactly what is in our food and how it got there, we have a lot of work to do before breakfast, don’t ya think? Is there a simple approach to health and wellness that includes sustainable decisions and foods we actually like?

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Mother Love and Kitchen Wisdom

My friend Teresa Kennedy makes the best fish soup I have ever tasted, hands down. It is the dish always requested when our group of friends (That would be the Mermaids, BTW.) gets together for food, fun and frolic. Her fish soup is rich, balanced and comforting, not to mention highly nutritious. Now Teresa is a terrific cook, so it is possible that this soup is everyone’s favorite because of her mastery of culinary techniques and her inspired intuition, but when you get to the bottom of the pot, there’s quite a bit more magic in this recipe than meets the mouth. It begins and ends with love—and Betty Crocker!

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Love Real Food

Well, OK. Don’t we all love real food, especially when our favorite dishes are on the table? Mmmmm….what are those dishes? Did you prepare them or did you open a box of stuff prepared by someone unknown…in a laboratory…for a major corporation?

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For the Love of Birthday Cake

Can there be any greater joy or expression of love than baking a birthday cake for your friend or loved one? For me, baking a birthday cake for someone ranks pretty high on the LOVE-O-Meter. A birthday cake allows the baker to create a one-of-a-kind gift (Even if it is someone else’s recipe, it’s still your special touch!) that is generally shared in celebration with friends and family. It’s both privilege and responsibility, rolled into a sponge and frosting delight. 

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New Year—New You? Guidance from My Friend Jane and the Always-Helpful New Hope Network Blogger Box

Well here we are once again—saying goodbye to the old year and ushering in a new one, promising to never to “that” again and vowing to change all our evil ways overnight. Good luck.

Or better than luck, why not go with “healthy curiosity and personal-best strategies”? Make your new start into 2019 an exploration rather than an ultimatum. Start with a few small changes and keep building. I know, you are rolling your eyes and thinking: “There she goes again with her anti-New Year’s resolution stuff.” Well, ok, I hear ya. So I thought this year, I’d let someone else share her success and hopefully inspire you to find yours—meet my friend Jane, an accomplished educator, master baker, beautiful woman (inside and out) and recent convert to a Ketogenic way of life.

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Lardy, Let’s Bake a Christmas Pie!

No…not a misspelling, so I guess you know where we are headed, right? It was after my post on the Pumpkin Cheesecake last month and my reminiscence about sharing a piece of pumpkin pie with my grandma, that I realized, while I have preached pumpkin and shared a million pumpkin recipes during the past three years, I’ve never offered to share my grandma’s pumpkin pie. Amazing.

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Fairy Tale Pumpkin Cheesecake

So just guess… how many dishes do you think I got out of this one 20-pound fairy tale pumpkin? If my calculations are correct, from this one stunning squash I made one batch of Pumpkin and Black Bean Soup, one pot of Pumpkin Curry, a plate full of Pistachio-Encrusted Pumpkin Wedges for four, two loaves of sweet bread and two cheesecakes. Pumpkins store well in a dry cool spot; the flesh can be frozen and even canned. And while it made a huge Halloween statement just sitting pretty on the front porch, this pumpkin was the superstar of my kitchen the entire month of November. Its versatility and economy cannot be overstated. Don’t waste it!

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Stuffed Acorn Squash

Ok, so really, aren’t these just the prettiest little things? And every diner gets his or her own. How cute is that? Well it’s way more than cute: it’s delicious, healthy, inclusive (can be vegan, gluten free, vegetarian or down right meaty) and pretty darn easy to prepare. I love acorn squash because it is so easy to work with—no large carving issues—and serves as a rich, sweet bowl for an endless variety of stuffings. Jackie Mills of The Family Garden grew these, known as Sweet Dumplings—and they are!

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Curry on up to the Table!

Last January, I was all about lemongrass, specifically a lemongrass stock recipe from favorite chef Annie Somerville of the famous Greens Restaurant in San Francisco. I was offering a recipe for winter salad that made use of the few greens we have in the Midwest during winter. But the showstopper ingredient was lemongrass stock from Somerville’s bestseller Fields of Greens. This freezable stock has been a staple in my kitchen ever since. So when Frank Biver out at Biver Farms said he had a BIG plant, I was at the ready with my shears.

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