This post is in partnership with Avocados From Mexico.Life’s felt a little easier lately. The cloudless blue skies and warm breeze are part of it, but there’s also a new ease in just living, as though all the intangibles have fallen into place. With a mostly clean house and with mostly calm children, there’s a sense we can exhale. Relax, even. [Read more…]
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Today’s the day. I’m planting the herb, tomato, and vegetable starters I ran out of time to grow from seed. While I’m late to the game, other gardeners and farmers are harvesting the first strawberries and vegetables of the season.
I’m looking forward to those tomatoes, though folk wisdom holds that they won’t arrive until the Fourth of July. In the meantime, bright red, drippingly sweet strawberries are a perfect consolation. [Read more…]
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Spring eating begins slowly in Virginia – a stray radish, a small bunch of greens – and then the ramps arrive. But even in season, ramps can be tough to come by. They’re wild, harvested by hand, and their season is incredibly short. Just getting your hands on a few feels like a victory. Ramps have an enchanting je ne sais quoi that sets them apart from other alliums (and makes people freak out a little). Like wild chives, there’s an earthiness to their pungency. They’re flavorful and mellow and really, really taste like spring. [Read more…]
This post is sponsored by Reynolds Kitchens.
With grill season upon us (and the warm breezes blowing and bright green leaves unfurling all around mean it is definitely upon us), it’s time to start tinkering with my cookout staples. The past few years, that’s meant upping my potato salad game, perfecting the layers of lemon and onion and mayo. But this time around, I’m taking a good hard look at slaw instead. Since I started fermenting at home, I’ve been intrigued by the depth of flavor cabbage can accommodate and have realized slaw can (and should) be much bolder than it’s normally allowed to be. [Read more…]
For me, the first step to making a perfect aioli is making an imperfect one. On the first go-round, my patience doesn’t hold and after an errant splash of oil, I find the emulsion broken. So, I crack a second egg, extract a second yolk, and begin again. This time around, I wondered if I should just start with two yolks, but feared that would just turn my two egg aioli into a three egg affair. My technique may be faulty, but in the end it works well enough. Which is good, because the ability to whip up an aioli or a creamy, yolky dressing, is an important kitchen skill to have. [Read more…]
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Until now, I’ve tried to make paella exactly once. Everything went wrong – I definitely stirred the rice (huge mistake), overcooked the fish, and was heavy handed with the paprika. So when the folks at Culinary Collective reached out to see if I wanted to share their paella kit with my readers, I felt a pang of self-doubt. But I love a challenge and was eager to master the Spanish classic that had bedeviled me in the past, so I decided to put my previous effort behind me and take another crack at paella. [Read more…]
The challenge of getting a good dinner to the table leads to a lot of round-ups of dinner hacks or 3-ingredient this and 15-minute that. But that kind of food writing leaves me cold. Racing the clock to heat up the smallest amount of food that can be called a meal with a singular focus on efficiency is no way to close out a day.
For me, good dinners are about bringing together ingredients I love in a way that feels nourishing and tastes delicious. [Read more…]
Around here, winter is a novel thing. We’re still shaking off an extended fall, and the recent foot and a half of snow that fell in Charlottesville is equal parts wondrous and exhausting. Wondrous for all the reasons you can imagine – the world suddenly transformed into a snow globe, the intense coziness of a multi day snowfall, sledding followed by popcorn and lots of hot cocoa. But it’s exhausting because experiencing and shoveling and just walking through that much snow is really hard work. [Read more…]
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A minute ago, I nearly convinced myself that winter was my favorite food season.
That’s definitely not true, but I do love the way winter eating forces me to think on my feet. I relish the unlikeliness of it all, the way forgettable roots can be coaxed into vibrancy with the help of pantry staples and an oven. [Read more…]
Right now, a band of fluffy clouds is moving across the sky at a rapid clip; beyond is a clear blue winter sky. As stiff winds push the clouds east, an overcast morning gives way to a bright, frigid afternoon. The turkey vultures that hang out down by the river soar high; looking almost playful as they ride the winds in unending circles. [Read more…]