Food and Drink

01
May 2018
Rooting for Steelhead Migration

There's no better way to get a message across than to make it personal. Which is exactly what the folks from Long Live the Kings are doing with their second annual Survive the Sound campaign, engaging the public to follow the spring migration of 48 steelhead heading up the Puget Sound toward the ocean. Long Live the Kings has, for over 30 years, been devoted to the task of restoring wild salmon and steelhead ...

02
Apr 2018
Glorious Tarte Tatin

My first stab at making tarte tatin came back in high school and was a terrible flop. I'd never had tarte tatin before, and even without an existing point of reference I knew something wasn't right. Having just pulled that recipe out of my decades-old collection of recipe cards, clippings and other early recipe notes (a collection more nostalgic than anything), I now see it was doomed on so many points. A ...

30
Jan 2018
A Most Elegant Rice Pudding

I've had this rice pudding recipe on my brain since a September trip to France, during which dinner one night in Paris included a dessert of riz au lait with a salted caramel sauce. Egad, it was amazingly delicious and reminded me of a recipe from many cookbooks ago: Jim Drohman's Gâteau de Riz from his beloved French bistro Le Pichet, which was included in the Best Places Seattle Cookbook I worked on. Seriously, every few days I was ...

03
Jan 2018
In Praise of Dinner Parties

I looked down at the memo app on my phone, where I was jotting notes while reading Brunch is Hell on a flight recently. Right along side it was another note titled 'brunch,' essentially menu planning for the one day a year on which I fully embrace that mash-up meal: Christmas Day. The two camps, summed up: Brunch, woo-hoo!! and Brunch, go away!! While I wouldn't go so far as to refer to brunch as 'hell,' the rest of the ...

11
Oct 2017
Oysters in Paris for Jon Rowley

It was 6 or 7 days into my trip to France last month when I first saw the link to a GoFundMe campaign on behalf of Jon Rowley, telling his huge circle of friends and colleagues that he was facing a serious illness. Sitting there in Dijon, immediately my mind went to Paris. And oysters. I was disappointed to be so far away and unable to hop over to Vashon Island to pay Jon a visit. On the plus side, ...

02
Sep 2017
Lemon Verbena Inspirations

My lemon verbena is blooming like mad right now, so I clipped some yesterday to bring inside to accentuate the kitchen. As usual, I stripped spare leaves from lower part of the stems before popping them into the vase. So I stared at that pile of gorgeously aromatic herb leaves...hard to just toss in the compost when it offers so many possibilities. A syrup to use in cocktail? (One of ...

26
Aug 2017
Farms and Mines and Salmon

It's been a big week for salmon, at least here in the Seattle area, with two sizeable stories in play. One new, one older but with a new timeliness. The new news was the terrible failure of farmed salmon pens near the San Juan Islands. I'll admit to not having been aware of how many salmon farms operate in the Puget Sound area, so along with the massive dump of Atlantic salmon into the native habitat of wild salmon comes the ...

03
Aug 2017
Ad-Lib Salad for the Heat

Like my  close-up shot here giving you detail of this salad down to every grain of farro? It's not me trying to be arty or stylish. It was the simple matter of the fact that I'd gotten down to the last few bites left in the bowl before I realized I might want to capture it before all was gone. After my first bite a bit earlier I'd thought to myself, hmmmm, this is pretty good. (Particularly since it was leftovers ...

18
May 2017
A Most Elegant Burger

A couple weeks ago I had one of those better-than-average work days, which had me hanging out with other food writers at Tom Douglas' cool cooking school Hot Stove Society. Our host was the Washington Beef Commission, and our task to get some hands-on time with various preparation techniques for beef: trussing larger roasts, trimming tenderloin, marinating and grinding. My time at that latter station brought to mind the last time ...

20
Apr 2017
Specialty Food Awards

When I saw the information yesterday about this year's awards from the Specialty Food Association, my eyes glanced quickly passed the baking mixes and chocolates, proceeding down the page to my pet subjects (I was going to say "pet foods" but that sounded just not quite right...): salty-crunchy things and other savory treats. Which echoes pretty much exactly how I chart my visits to the organization's two annual trade shows, the huge January version in San Francisco, and the ...