Dinner Music 1

I cook to the sound of Lester Holt announcing the national news on NBC. I keep one eye on the little TV on my kitchen counter and one eye on whatever I’m chopping. After, there is always music to dine by. Good music and good food naturally go together. It’s always the best part of…

Snapshot: Multi-tasking

Distracted dining while sorting several months’-worth of magazines for tomorrow’s recycling pick-up. The cooking mags stay. Dinner tonight was tasty leftovers from my first try at Instant Pot cooking. “We can’t keep these in stock,” the clerk at Williams-Sonoma told me last weekend as she rang up my new pressure cooker/slow cooker/steamer. “It’s like a…

Tomato & Ricotta Bruschetta

Tomato bruschetta is summer on a plate. If you grow your own tomatoes or buy them fresh off the vine at a farmers market, you won’t need to do much more than chop, salt, and spoon them over toasted slices of ciabatta, flavored with a little garlic and olive oil. A chiffonade of basil over…

Strawberry Pie

This recipe is for me, or rather, for my future self in April or May of every next year until I am planted. Mid-spring is when strawberries in Arkansas fulfill their finest destiny as luscious, flavorful fruit, scarlet to the core. I see no reason to eat strawberries any other time of year, or procure…

Coconut Cream Pie

Hello, it’s me. I was wondering if after all these months you’d like… …a recipe?* Spring evening with my husband and dear friends. Narcissus blooming tall in the big clay pots. A space station sighting.** Coconut Cream Pie. Pretty perfect. Coconut Cream Pie (This recipe is a mash-up of the best ideas from several sources,…

Snapshot: Creamy Tomato Soup

  Today was cold and sunny. Lunch was hot, homemade tomato soup with a grilled cheese sandwich on the side. Such goodness took the sting out of spending the rest of the afternoon balancing the checkbook and chasing a phantom $153 charge. I put a big pinch of dried saffron in the pot as the…

Meyer Lemon Curd

The petite woman knocking gently on the door of ER bay 17 last Wednesday opened it slightly and poked her head through. “May I come in?” she said softly. Everyone else had rapped loudly and bustled in and out. I nodded and moved to make room for her near the gurney where my father lay….

Chicken Cutlets with Mustard-Cream Sauce

Wednesday afternoon. Last to-do: pick up some Chardonnay to serve with chicken cutlets, steamed rice, and broccoli. Kai the husky was riding shotgun, his preference any time a car door is open. Sometimes he even settles behind the steering wheel, and I have to flat out tell him he can’t drive. We had just left the…

Six-Minute Egg

Most of the year, clients pay my lawyer husband in the official currency of the United States and its overseas territories, i.e., the American dollar. That makes it convenient for paying our mortgage and associated household  expenses. But periodically, most often in December, different currencies appear. Expressions of friendship and gratitude, they take the form of…

The Dogs of Cookbook Wall

Dogs dictate much of what I accomplish in a day. I can run errands for exactly as long as it takes the smallest canine bladder in my house to reach capacity. I can cook efficiently only if the shepherd/collie mix doesn’t nap in front of a kitchen cabinet or the oven. I can chop onions…

Christmas Lights

  “What are you makin,’” the Home Depot employee said, “‘cuz I know you ain’t plumbin’.” Busted on Christmas Eve. Are there no middle-aged female plumbers in this land? Or were my mom jeans a dead give-away? I was standing in front of racks of copper pipes, juggling a five-foot length of 3/4-inch pipe between my hands,…

They Have, They Will, They Did

  The bride was beautiful in the lace gown she bought in Chicago, her veil so sheer that its ivory color was apparent only where it fell in folds. The groom was handsome in his military dress uniform, pants pressed with knife-edged creases, shoes glossy and spotless. The ceremony was a full Catholic Mass, held…