Mushroom Powder

And its multifarious uses! I adore mushrooms.  I love shiitakes stir-fried with strips of flank steak, I love the earthy funk of fresh morels in cream sauce, I love porcini-and-pea risotto – I even love the unjustly-maligned white button mushroom (which is, you may not be aware, the exact same thing as a brown criminiContinue reading “Mushroom Powder”

Improv Dinner I

It didn’t start out this way. Adam and Zev wanted to have a cooking double-date with me and Carolyn.  I would, based on their prompting, come up with a couple of recipes based on their suggestions, and then we’d all hang out in the kitchen and cook together.  We’d judge whether or not I’d doneContinue reading “Improv Dinner I”

Justifiable Applecide

Depending on what part of the country you’re from, there are probably apples yet on the trees, hangin’ like a promise and achin’ to be picked. More than likely, though, there’s a bounty of apples on the ground, too.  These are called windfalls.  Some of ‘em are ugly.  Some of ‘em are bruised.  But areContinue reading “Justifiable Applecide”

The Further I Slide

or, Moribund the Hamburgermeister One of the many marvelous things I acquired on the single greatest day of garage sale-hunting in American history was a meat grinder.  Not a hand-cranked jobbie, no: I’ve got one of those – an ancient piece of work from the 1930s.  I’m sure it works, but it’s more decorative thanContinue reading “The Further I Slide”

A Paean to Pea.

It was at Volo in Roscoe Village where Carolyn and I beheld an exceedingly awkward first date: he was a public servant, she was a Tea Party equity manager. He smiled at her blandly, steering the conversation away from politics in an attempt to be civil. She, upon learning that he worked for the government,Continue reading “A Paean to Pea.”

Pizza Day, Part Three: Getting Saucy, and other pursuits

First, a musing on the balance of flavors: Pizzas are, generally, pretty robust affairs; it’s a rare one that I’ve made that trades on subtleties.  I wouldn’t call myself a subtle cook – if cooking were painting, I’d cook in big, wet, Post-Impressionist brushstrokes.  A recipe calls for two garlic cloves?  I’ll use four.  HalfContinue reading “Pizza Day, Part Three: Getting Saucy, and other pursuits”

Thai Red Curry Macaroni and Cheese

Or, Necessity is the mother of culinary insanity.   So I moved.  I live in the city of Chicago, now, in a lovely apartment, with a kitchen that pleases me, in a neighborhood I am swiftly coming to adore.  And last night, I did something I rarely do, which was to improvise a completely newContinue reading “Thai Red Curry Macaroni and Cheese”

Applied Quesadilla Theory

I have definitely laid this down in print somewhere else. David’s Kitchen Axiom No. 5: With a little imagination, anything can be a quesadilla. And I mean it. Given tortillas, grease, and heat, anything in your kitchen can be made into a delightful quesadilla! But wait, you say. David, doesn’t quesadilla just mean ‘little cheesyContinue reading “Applied Quesadilla Theory”