Chocolate Chip Cookies … Chef-Style

Leave it to The New Yorker to produce a charming article on the history of the famous Chocolate Chip Cookies known as Toll House.The recipe is an historic, uniquely American keeper. And yet we've all been to that bake sale with a plate of chocolate chip cookies that didn't quite work out - pancake-like, melted ...

Farm-to-Table Tableaux in the Berkshires

I've been photographing what is beautiful to me in The Berkshires for a long time, including plenty of farms and tables. My town in this western region of Massachusetts began as Shawenon, named for a Mohican chief who had an eye for gentle majesty. Egremont view of Mount Everett, known as "The Dome" The 1780's-ish dairy ...

Fika & Wild Swans in Stockholm

Ah, midsummer.  The harsh ways of the world won't find you if you are near Nordic water, swans, and fika as the solstice dawns.  That's where I was last year - travelin' solo in the Swedish archipelago - and I thought I was turning 56 on my mid-summer birthday.  My family later corrected me - ...

To London, With Love

Borough Market in London was an early stop when I started this blog in 2015.  Today, in the aftermath of a deadly terrorist attack, my heart goes out to all the people of London and their beautiful city. Here are photos from Borough Market and its environs on happier days. ...

Fried Chicken & Food Market Gypsy TV Cooking Class

This is not just fried chicken, but very crispy, buttermilk-soaked, fried chicken adapted from Thomas Keller's Ad Hoc recipe.  We made it LIVE on Facebook and you can see the video here or on YouTube.  We were live but the chicken, alas, was not. 1 whole chicken, cut up into frying parts 3 cups buttermilk 6 cups canola oil 2 ...

Hitting Home: The Kentucky Bourbon Trail

  Daffodils & bourbon barrels in March Sometimes you can't tell how far you've traveled until you rumble all the way back and hit home. When I left Kentucky in 1975, bourbon was a blase part of blue grass culture like coal, horses, and Ohio River catfish that few of us dared to eat.       Family julep ...

Reubens & the Women’s March in Cincinnati

Cincy was my sports town in the days of Pete Rose and Johnny Bench.  We rolled in from the nearby hills of northern Kentucky where my family ran a local newspaper.  Folks, this was going to the city.  I still associate Cincinnati with ball park peanuts, fountains, and German-influenced culinary fare. It was easy to ...

Gingersnaps & Christmas Markets in Copenhagen

Gingersnap cookies, heart-shaped Christmas lights, and Glogg (hot mulled wine with Aquavit, raisins & almonds) fill the stalls along the Copenhagen's Nyhavn Canal. Pine trees, trinkets, bratwurst, fried potatoes, chocolate, hot candied almonds and dazzling Christmas ornaments will pull you in - powerful winter magnets.Tourists, couples and local families with bundled children mill around Nyhavn (New ...

Artful Cookies in Italy

Cannoli, the popular cookies of Sicily, began as Carnival pastries (circa 1500's) shaped as cylinders around wooden canes, dipped in hot oil, allowed to cool then filled with smooth, sweetened ricotta cheese. They have changed very little except now they are often made with stainless steel cylinders instead of canes and their decorations include roasted ...

Cocoa Cookies in Pasadena

At the 10th Los Angeles Chocolate Salon, many chocolate configurations were on display: bon bons, chocolate vinegar, chocolate sauces, chocolate wine, chocolate: pure, bitter, sweet.  My own little table in this chocolate universe included books & this blog, a plate of Cocoa Cookies with Chocolate Buttercream as samplers, and Scandinavian Salt & Pepper Cookies to ...

Cacao in Hawaii

You don't get to see cacao pods in the USA unless you go to Hawaii, and even there they a rare sight. Cacao trees (from whence, of course, chocolate) Chocolates by Susie Norris - Photo by Jennifer Martine are cultivated only sporadically around the Hawaiian Islands. But Tony Lydgate of Steel Grass Farm on Hawaii's garden ...

Southern Green Beans in Appalacia

Late-summer cicadas craft the music of Kentucky with long rattling notes. My borrowed tee shirt has familiar Ashland Tomcats on the front. I don't remember ever having such a shirt yet it feels like mine. How did I conjure teenage dreams that led me up and out of this mountain town? How did I crawl ...