Gourmet Game Night

Jan 2012

When I was working on Gourmet Game Night and talking with folks about it upon its release, I was a little surprised sometimes at the interpretation of the "game" element. In my head, of course, it was firmly framed around a gathering of friends playing dominoes or poker and wanting to eat well, but eat without the mess of sloppy finger food (slices of greasy pizza and orange-dusted Cheetos) and distraction of traditional dinnertime fare (big plates with knives and ...

Jan 2012
Game Smarts

One fun thing about social media is that you truly just never know what interesting new thing you're going to learn as you scope out your Twitter feed or check new Facebook posts. Here's a little bit of game trivia that I picked up via Twitter this morning: the celebrated American writer Mark Twain once created a board game. The inspiration was a "game" of sorts that he'd created to help his young daughters learn the names and reigns of British monarchs ...

Dec 2010

Games for Food-Lovers

Games for Food-Lovers

When I began dreaming up the idea of Gourmet Game Night, I really wasn't sure exactly how many folks there were out there like me. How many inhabit that cross-section where people who love good food co-mingle with people who love to play board games/cards/dominoes/etc? I had to hope that the potential audience wasn't a tiny one. Response to the book's been ...

Oct 2010

Most of Gourmet Game Night is all about the food and recipes, serving ideas and planning tips. The "gourmet" part. I am a professional food writer, after all, and that arena is the core of my expertise. But it wouldn't be Gourmet Game Night without the games, right? We've all got a deck of cards (or 12) around the house, cribbage and Scrabble, probably an old Monopoly board and maybe some dice. But just as it's always a treat to ...

Jun 2010

When Zilch is Good

When Zilch is Good

Zilch,  the fun-to-say synonym for "nothing," is usually something we look to avoid. "How many fish did you catch today, Phil?" "Zilch." Or..... "How many offers on your EBay post for that 1972 Carpenter's album?" "Well, zilch." Unless your MO is deep serenity and oneness with the world, when the only subject you want to occupy your thoughts with is that of nothing, zilch is not the most popular of concepts. But I feel a little differently about zilch. Because my early years ...

May 2010
Fun and Games at Palace Kitchen

A couple of weeks ago I was in Portland for the International Association of Culinary Professionals conference, an event that's a highlight of my year and has been for nearly two decades. I joined nearly 60 of my author-colleages at a public book signing event on the Friday afternoon of the conference, we each had our 4 or 5 feet of table space to do with what we wanted to showcase the book we were signing. Many brought food samples, ...

Mar 2010

That last post I made hinted at the old yarn that laughter is the best medicine, evidenced by boisterous laughing that resulted from a couple games of Apples to Apples we played on Saturday night. Just a few days later came this article in the Wall Street Journal focused on ways to "outsmart Alzheimer's," one tactic of which includes playing games. Games to the rescue yet again! And further proof that good fun is good for you. One of ...

Mar 2010

At one point during the evening Saturday I got up to close the sliding glass door alongside the dining room table. Not necessarily because it was getting too cool (a glorious warm spring evening it was, matter of fact). But out of worry that our raucous laughter might be disturbing the neighbors. One unexpected side effect of finally breaking into that Apples to Apples game  I bought a ...

Mar 2010

It's funny that it took this long. But for a variety of reasons, it wasn't until a couple of weeks ago that my husband and I played in our first poker tournament. We go to Vegas pretty frequently and have been invited to join in poker tournaments down there now and then, but have always found the prospect just too intimidating. After all, we never even play casually at home (for whatever reason our game-playing crowd doesn't include many poker players....). Sitting ...

Feb 2010

Mmmmmmm……. Bacon!

I shouldn't be at all surprised. In fact, I expected to be proven wrong. And, honestly, I'm kind of happy about it. One of the recipes in my book is no great revelation, aside from perhaps the new game-friendly presentation. Those small loaves of cocktail bread--long and slender, producing slices about 2-inches square--are one of the boons for game-night eats. There's little limit to what you can serve on them. The example I chose to showcase the options ...