Late Summer Moments

As the summer has been winding into fall, these past few weeks have been filled with many moments of the exceptional-yet-ordinary variety. These were moments of crystalline clarity, when nothing existed except for what was right there on the table: the food, people talking and listening, glass, cloth, pottery, and metal. The air sparkled faintly with a transcendent sense of space that was minute and endless at the same time, inconsequential and all-encompassing at once. And I loved it. Consumed in and by it, I loved it. Continue reading


YOUR HEALTHY PLATE: The Simplest of Salads

Here’s what I made for lunch a couple of days ago. Its success is built on simplicity. My strategy remains similar, week in and week out. Nevertheless, it is never quite the same, and always delicious. Thank you to Alice Waters for teaching me to eat simply. This salad makes one single serving, but is infinitely flexible if you’d like to invite a friend or an army to your table to share a meal. Continue reading


Let the Growing Season Begin!

The first time I joined a community-supported agriculture (CSA), almost ten years ago, its kickoff late on a Thursday afternoon sent me racing out of the office at the end of the day. The first week’s bounty included lettuce greens, herbs, onions, kohlrabi, radishes. Adults chatted and children hopped around like happy rabbits as we waited for strawberries to arrive. After a long winter, we all hungered for fresh food. Continue reading


YOUR HEALTHY PLATE: Cannellini Bean Ragout

I’m starting to think about something warm and a little sweet, with a special bit of pizzazz for the holidays coming up. If you pull out your crockpot and make this, you will be a very happy camper. Your tastebuds and belly will thank you. And me. Probably both of us. Make it soon. Then you’ll have time to make it again for Thanksgiving, or a potluck, or a holiday party. Continue reading


YOUR HEALTHY PLATE: Bean Dip with Feta and Herbs

Here’s a simple, flavorful recipe from the July 2012 edition of BBC Good Food magazine. You can eat it with slices of cucumbers or crackers, or spread it on toast, or stuff a tomato with it.  I think it would also be amazing on a slice of butternut squash, roasted under the broiler for a minute or two. Continue reading


YOUR HEALTHY PLATE: Tomato & Fennel Pasta Sauce

Two of my favorite things: tomatoes and fennel! This is totally the “sauce of the season,” with fresh herbs and a simple strategy for bringing out the natural sweetness of all the ingredients. If you are not a big fan of pasta, then try cooking some turkey meatballs in this sauce, or pour it over a little pile of tofu cubes, or poach a few eggs in it. Then again you could serve it with a pan of polenta or a bowl of quinoa, or use it to make a tray of lasagna. You choose! Continue reading