the salad of summer

Last summer I went to a concert at an outdoor winery/music venue. The evening was warm (it was outside the SF fog zone, mind you!), the music was amazing and the company of three girlfriends made for a beautiful evening. However, being the food obsessed person that I am, rather than relish in the musical experience, I couldn’t stop thinking about the peach tomato salad my friend Audrey made for our pre concert picnic. It’s a salad she had tried at Emmy’s Spaghetti Shack and decided to recreate for our concert picnic. It had just the right combination of sweetness and acidity, with a hint of salty cheese. A tasty salute to summer.  Continue reading

origami animals and onion dip?

I’m sorry to admit that I’ve been busy enjoying summer and haven’t been as dedicated to writing and sharing recipes as I had originally hoped. It’s been a whirlwind 10 days of obsessing over the plethora of hummingbirds in my yard as well as cooking, picnicking at an oyster farm, hiking and playing the role of tourist in Vancouver BC.  Continue reading

guest blogger – a trick of a dessert

As long as I’ve known my dear friend Erin, she has struggled with, what she calls, an addiction to sugar. Mind you, she’s the size of a pin, so it’s not weight that is her challenge, but rather the dependence on cookies, ice cream and candy. I remember a perhaps not fully sober night, when a group of us walked to the local Plaid Pantry (for those of you from Oregon, you know all about “The Plaid”). Erin made a beeline for a large package of Bit ‘O Honey candy and proceeded to go on and on about how it was the best-tasting candy she had ever had and how she loved it so much. Yes, Erin loves sugar.  Continue reading

learning chinese cooking from the best: ti pong

I first experienced Ti Pong made by my mother-in-law’s sister, aka Aunt Kathy. The dish is one of her Chinese specialties, but because she lives in Nashville, it’s not something I have the opportunity to eat on a regular basis. I have delicious memories of eating  Aunt Kathy’s Ti Pong during our last two visits to Nashville.  In non-Chinese terms, Ti Pong is meaty, fatty, delectably braised pork shank.  It melts in your mouth and is a truly meaty treat.  Continue reading

the great fry-off

Sometimes we believe our kitchen creations or family recipes are the best, and sometimes we need a contest to add validation to that belief. My friend Mel has always maintained that her grandma’s fried chicken recipe is the best. The double frying coupled with the secret ingredient of club soda is what sets Mel’s grandma’s fried chicken above all others. My husband thinks his fried chicken is the best. Brined overnight and the secret of air chilling is why his version is the best.  Continue reading

exploration in the kitchen, and restaurants near and far.


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