This Greek Lasagna recipe is sponsored by Prego Farmers’ Market. All opinions are my own (duh). Thank you for supporting the brands that make this site (and my global casserole cravings) possible!
I did a lot of special things on my trip to Greece two summers ago. I frolicked on the pebbly beaches of Hydra, ate my weight in crisp lemon-scented potatoes, and stalked wealthy shipping magnets from their yachts to see where they were going for dinner. What I did not do was eat Greek Lasagna.
This isn’t just thanks to my on-going gluten-free buzzkill. At the time, I didn’t even know what I was missing.
Before I left for my trip, my food fantasies were almost completely dedicated to seafood and spuds, and the dozen glorious condiments I could dip them in. To this end, I successfully emptied my Mediterranean culinary bucket list, via an IV drip that pumped salty taramasalta directly into my veins. But what I hadn’t considered were the casseroles. Continue reading
If you’ve been following my instagram feed for the last few years, you may have noticed an extreme uptick in oyster consumption. This phenomenon is partially due to my frequent trips to Inverness, California.
By way of having a lot of friends who live in San Francisco, endless wedding season inevitably brings me to Napa at least once a year. There are so many healthy hedonist delights in this part of the country, beginning with the breathtaking scenery and ending with the bottle enjoyed while taking it in.
Needless to say, I’m very grateful for an excuse to visit so often. But by the end of these wedding weekends, thanks to the heavy wine pours, late night choruses of Shout, and over-feasting on wedding cake fondant (not to mention the 3,000 miles of travel to get there from NYC), I end up feeling strung out and exhausted.
Literal champagne problems. Continue reading
Happy Oktoberfest, friends! Since ’tis the season for both Sunday football and Bavarian day drinking, I wanted to take a little time away from wings and cheese bread to talk about the second most important part of your fall recreational meals: beer. Specifically, for us special diet folks, gluten-free beer and cider brands that will help you blend in with the crowd, regardless of whether said crowd is wearing jerseys or lederhosen.
I’ve recently hit my 5 year gluten-free anniversary. Which is crazy, because it feels like a lifetime ago that I could go to a sports bar and actually eat something besides peanuts. The things I miss most are still bread baskets, fried clams on the side of the road, and homemade pastas at hole-in-the-wall red sauce joints. But each summer, beer moves to the top of the list.
Sure, when it’s warm outside and you’re feeling like a little mid-afternoon siesta, without loosing your mental cool, there’s nothing better than a cold frosty beer. But for me it’s really the social aspect – porpoising by the pool, relaxing next to a red cooler at the beach. A vodka soda just doesn’t cut it under those conditions, unless you plan on your mid-afternoon siesta turning into a 12 hour nap.
At least during summertime, there’s rose to the rescue. But for fall tailgating and Munich-style merrymaking, you’re better off finding an adequate replacement for the contents of that boot-shaped stein. Continue reading
The irony of being a private chef is that the cooking I do for others is often the biggest thing that gets in the way of the cooking I do for myself.
It’s a well-known pitfall in the restaurant business: chefs are great at taking care of others and terrible at taking care of themselves. This is in part due to the grueling physical nature of the work, the hours spent in a kitchen, and (sometimes) the Bourdain-level use of certain substances to get through a night of service.
As someone who works primarily in other peoples’ homes, I only experience a small degree of that end of day raggedness. But still, the work does take its toll. And during the height of when I used chef-ing as a bridge job, when I came home after a day of lugging twenty pounds of groceries across twenty city blocks, my biceps could barely muster picking up the phone to order takeout, let alone lifting a skillet to prepare dinner. Continue reading
This easy baked chicken wings recipe is sponsored by Altos Tequila. As always, all opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that make this site (and my personal fiestas) possible!
I’m a firm believer that wing night is not something that needs to be confined to watching the big game with friends. In fact, I’ve found through recent personal experience that consuming a plate of these Honey-Lime Baked Chicken Wings all by yourself while watching a Rom Com marathon is an ideal Friday night. With those high high’s and low low’s, on and off screen, what could be better than eating your feelings and letting that pile of napkins serve double duty for your fingers and tear ducts?
I’ve been known to be what many call an “ugly crier.” And since it takes far less than a Ryan Gosling rain-soaked canoe ride to get the emotional roller coaster a-coasting (like, say, a really good retirement commercial), I like to save the heavy stuff for nights when I’m alone. Continue reading
Last week ushered in the beginning of a new season. For many, it was lunchbox season. For others not living in the continued summer swamp of NYC, it might have been PSL season. Football fans welcomed dip season. And the especially food obsessed, welcomed the greatest season of all: fall cookbook season!!
When I got home last Monday, after a week on Martha’s Vineyard, my doorstep was stacked with Amazon boxes. Charlie appeared horrified (the endless parade of random boxes addressed to Phoebe Lapine is on my list of “cohabitation quirks”). I, meanwhile, tried to suppress the same nerdy excitement that used to crop up every time I entered the school store to pick up my fall text books.
This Middle Eastern Seven Layer Salad in a Jar came from one of the first new spines I cracked open: Kristin Donnelly’s Modern Potluck. Continue reading
When you begin cohabitating, it doesn’t take long for your little quirks to come to light. Which, is a polite way of saying: the things that annoy the shit out of your roommate.
Mine involve never refilling our Soma water pitcher and saving lightly used tissues on various surfaces for “later.” Charlie’s include leaving his sock drawer perpetually ajar, and buying a new sack of granola, jar of special sauce, or bag of tortilla chips every time he goes shopping, even though there are several half-eaten versions of each already at home.
Unlike my “half-used” tissues, however, which seem to only benefit my allergies and, potentially, the environment, Charlie’s quirky hoarding tendencies do occasionally benefit the greater apartment good. And this week they did so in the form of a sheet pan of Mexican gluten-free eggplant parmesan.
If the tissues are any indication, I can sometimes be an unreasonable stickler for waste. In the kitchen, this leads to other hoarding tendencies. Just this morning I opened my freezer to find months’ worth of veggie scraps and chicken bones that have been patiently collecting icicles and waiting to be turned into stock. The more Charlie buys at the market, the bigger my task of trying to make sure that it all gets used. Continue reading
A few weeks ago, I got an email from an aspiring food writer who was struggling to get her website off the ground. She asked me, flat out, is it even possible to make a full-time living as a food blogger? My response to that million dollar (er, thousand dollar?) question was yes and no.
For blockbuster bloggers, the answer is of course. A dip in search engine traffic isn’t going to break the bank when you’re Deb Perlman and getting millions of pageviews a month. For the rest of us a few tiers below though, the answer depends on your general financial situation: how expensive your city is, the number of private school educations you are currently (or plan on) paying for, how many weddings you’re attending every year, the scale of your kombucha addiction etc. etc. And, of course, who else is splitting your grocery bills…
For many of my peers, full-time blogging may be the dream. But given the direction ad revenue is moving in, and some of the crazy algorithmic ups and downs of 2016, it may not necessarily be a realistic one.
There is another approach, however. One that involves just a slight tweaking of that dream, and can potentially be just as fulfilling: odd food jobs.
The path of my relationship could potentially be traced in discarded oyster shells. In the case of our recent trip to Seattle, Oregon and California—and the grilled oysters from Hog Island that inspired today’s recipe—those bivalves were coupled with lots of happy food memories. But on a few occasions towards the beginning of our courtship (nearly three years ago!), oysters were the centerpiece of awkwardness–the kind that often plagues first encounters with someone you have a big, radiating crush on.
For our second dinner date, Charlie took me to one of his favorite restaurants in Brooklyn. Unsurprisingly, for I already knew he was a class A hedonist, his ideal meal from the menu consisted of a dozen oysters and a fois gras terrine to start, followed by the venison. He also told me that when he lived in the area, he often sat at the bar on weeknights and ordered the 5-course tasting menu by himself. It was, apparently, a great deal.
As I pictured us growing old together—me in the kitchen with a linen smock dress and Diane Keaten-esque shaggy lob, Charlie in the study, his smoking jacket covering a belly that had submitted to the duress of years of goose liver and camembert—the first oyster reached my lips, and this fantasy was replaced by a more pressing fear of food poisoning.
What was usually a refreshing gulp of cooling sea water and brine, had the funk of a seafood counter cutting board that hadn’t been cleaned in a week. Our faces soured in unison, and I could see Charlie’s inner dialogue fill with panic. Continue reading