Cool Stuff – Appetizers
“Tuna Preserved in Oil”

In some parts of the country, the summer albacore run is in its prime. But even where tuna isn’t plentiful, this preserving technique is a must have. It falls somewhere between fresh and canned tuna, the Italians called it “conservata,” the old tradition of preserving protein in olive oil. It is usually imported from Spain or Italy and sells for as much as $50 a pound, which is especially unnecessary […]

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“Liver Mousse”

If I was sent to that proverbial island and there was one food I could take, it would be liver mousse. I can hear your collective gasp. Most people are reviled by the stuff, but I call it God’s pudding. It’s slightly sweet and very rich and I could eat it endlessly. It serves as the basis for all kinds of internationally popular and unpopular foods – depending on who […]

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“Hot Smoked Trout & Pickled Onions”

When I was a child growing up in the Hudson Valley, I used to sit on a rock by the side of our creek, push a fat worm onto a hook, and catch my trout. Then I would fry it in a skillet and eat it for breakfast. It was a normal pattern in my eight year life that seemed as natural as breathing, or throwing skipping rocks. Then, as […]

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“Pickled Red Beet Eggs”

I like all things pickled. Pickled peppers, pickled ramps, pickled… things. Sorry. I’m not feeling very eloquent today. I just read a lot of legal jargon and it fried my brain and my eyes are blurry. I can barely see this screen. I’m waiting for things to return to normal… which isn’t necessarily eloquent either, but at least there’s a sliver of a chance. I had fried pickles the other […]

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“Seven Herb Frittata”

I’m 34,000 feet in the sky again. I seem to be up here a lot. I’m hoping to have a lull again this summer before I embark on a whole new book that I’m about to write, which will require travel which means many more posts from up here. Did I tell you about the new book yet? I will, I have to push the first one out of the […]

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“Lemon Curd”

I have a custard addiction. And I recently discovered that custard is socially acceptable to eat at breakfast. I don’t know why it took so long to find this out. I haven’t had enough exposure to doughnuts I think. So I immediately made lemon curd. And after I spooned it into the jar, I licked every last vistage from the bowl. Because I really, really don’t like to be wasteful. […]

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“Duck Prosciutto”

As you can tell, I’m on a bit of curing kick these days. I’m conjuring my Italian roots. It’s just that I had these duck breasts that were just begging to be turned into prosciutto. And I couldn’t help myself. Duck prosciutto is simple to make at home, and is a perfect way to store the meat when you don’t have time to cook it, and you just can’t fit […]

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“Hell’s Chicken Wings”

These are hell’s chicken wings. My darling skillet produced the hottest bits of food I’ve eaten in quite some time. My mouth still hurts. Surgeon Generals Warning: They will make you have psychedelic dreams. For example, after I ate these chicken wings I dreamt three different short stories that went like this: 1. My brother committed a murder in my childhood home and I had to cover it up with […]

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“How to Cure Salmon and Other Fatty Fish”

This is the time of year when a lot of your proteins are in the freezer, since in many places, it is the “in between” season. One of my favorite things to do in these months is cure meat and fish. If I can manage to do it before it hits the freezer even better, but you do what you can. Salt curing inhibits the growth of microorganisms by drawing […]

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“Root Soup & Polenta”

Because she loves you, Grandma Pellegrini made you a Valentines soup. She even put hearts in it. It’s a work of art. And because he loves you, Gordon snapped some photos of it. And because I love you, well… I’m just writing to tell you about it. I can’t take any credit. I can just share. This is a root soup, colored with red beets. It is delicious, I have […]

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