For one week every spring the local Catholic church, an otherwise unassuming dot on the landscape of my suburb, turned their property into magical kingdom of lights, music, cotton candy and so many rides it was impossible to remember that all other weeks of the year it was just an empty field next to a parking lot.
I’m currently in a swarm of many behind-the-scenes things that I genuinely couldn’t be happier about even if it would also be okay if they didn’t all fall in the next few weeks (the deadline on the next cookbook, the launch at-last-so-overdue-hooray site redesign, a hopefully very cool new project or two, the first birthday of this fiesty love, all of the end of the year chaos that comes with a school-aged kid), that if there were a textbook definition of Bad Times To Take a Vacation, my June might be under it.
Did you know drinking buttermilk is a thing? I wasn’t aware until a few years ago when I took a baking class and remarked to the teacher that buttermilk is pretty amazing in baked goods for something that smells so rancid and he told me that his mother drinks a glass of it warm every afternoon.
Pasta salads get a bad rap but I find that the more I think of them as room temperate summer dishes and the less as mayo-slicked bowls of suspicion and dread, the more inviting they become, not only for cookouts and picnics, but (ahem) a gorgeous Tuesday night.
If you’ve been following Smitten Kitchen outside this url recently, you might have noticed that a terrible, dangerous thing has happened: I revisited the epic, consummate even, chocolate chip cookies from David Leite via The New York Times, mostly because I was tired of looking at the unpalatably blueberry-ish photo of them atop the 2008 post, and eight years later, in basically the rom-com of cookie sagas, realized the thing I wanted most in a chocolate chip cookie was was there the whole time.
Last week, because we are edgy, rebellious and pretty much the dictionary definition of renegades, we broke the law.
If you needed another reason to add to the list of why you’d probably never want to be cornered at a party with me, I should tell you I’m more than a normal level of fascinated by the intersection of tomatoes and cucumbers in salads around the world.
One of the primary pieces of advice my grandmother imparted on me — besides the fact that she thought I should be a writer, an absurd idea I promptly ignored — was that one should always leave the house looking the best they can.
Me and this salad go way back. In 2007 — you know, back in the days when I imagine that all of our conversations might have gone “What should we do today?
The rules of cookie math, whether or not you have underlings dictating them to you, are as follows: Cookies with butter > cookies without butter Cookies with vanilla bean > cookies with vanilla extract Larger cookies > smaller cookies Cookies with fewer words in the title > cookies with more (see: chocolate, butter, Oreos) Cookies with rainbow sprinkles > cookies with chocolate sprinkles and also all other things, ever A while back, I shared a picture of a sprinkle-covered leftover cookies from an Italian-American bakery — you know, the kind that seem to be permanently staged in every office kitchen, everywhere — on Instagram asking how people felt about them and received a yield of comments and fervor of opinion usually reserved for political websites.
Several years ago, a harebrained idea to make a wedding cake for friends led to me sharing a picture of the cake layers stacked up in my freezer, ready for their big debut.
I know what most people think of crêpes — they’re difficult, they require planning ahead, they’re fussy (coughFrench), they rip easily, the first one always goes in the trash — but I respectfully disagree, especially about that last bit (it goes in the nearest mouth).
It’s been two months since I told you I was California dreaming and I fear it hasn’t passed. I thought maybe I just longed for warmer weather, but spring has more or less arrived and I no less crave avocados that don’t require a week of hovering to capture their narrow window of edibility.
As a person who at least two to three nights a week doesn’t understand why we plan menus and grocery lists when we could just be eating an egg on toast, scrambled, crispy, poached or soft-cooked and smashed, I, too, would expect this site to have more frittata recipes than it does.
Does anyone really need a recipe for garlic bread? I mean, garlic + butter + bread = it’s impossible to imagine a bad outcome.
In the game of weeknight cooking — which I feel, at best, is rigged and not in our favor especially if you (or you and your partner) are out working all day — our allies are as follows: Children, should you have them, happy to eat dinner at 8/9 p.m.
Do you think carrots get nervous around me? I managed to go a full two years after launching this site to bake with them the first time (classic cupcakes, not egregiously carrot-y) and from there, I haven’t stopped harassing them.
I have been holding out way too long on giving one of the great Roman pizzas, pizza con potate e rosmarino (which, like most things, sounds much sexier in Italian than the thudful translation of “potato pizza with rosemary”) the adoration-driven revisit it deserves on this site.
Just in case there was anyone still out there mistaking me for some sort of domestic diva, or even a moderately skilled at being domestic, you should know that it has taken until the spring of the year 2016, nearly a full decade after starting a food website where I’ve had the brass to coax others along in the kitchen as if I had some sort of innate greater understanding of it, for me to learn how to use my broiler.
If taking cubes of chicken and other things chosen for their ability to hold up in a deli case and suspending them in a thick dressing of mayo and seasonings is the winter coat of chicken salad, this is the cardigan, which is to say, I hope everyone is as happy to see it as I am.