It Sure Ain't Pretty....

... But it tastes great! That is tiramisu in a nutshell.

In order to make tiramisu attractive, I spent years seeking out the perfect little single-serving dishes (think: oblong ramekins) to make individual portions that would look pretty when you served them. Who wants to serve a pile of slop on a plate to guests?


Showing Some Mussel

I never had mussels growing up. Perhaps my parents didn't like them – I imagine if they had, we would have been exposed to them.

But when I was just out of college and playing principal bass for the Albany Symphony Orchestra, I went to Citone's - a small 'mom & pop' Italian restaurant - and something made me order the spaghetti with mussels in a spicy marinara sauce. It was love at first bite.

Really good mussels are sweet and juicy and, unlike clams, don't have the same grit and sand issues. Generally most of the mussels we see these days are rope cultivated, which makes them a cinch to prepare (not so much debearding and scrubbing).


Le Quatorze Juillet

Here it is Bastille Day and where am I? Sadly, not in France!

But my mind, my heart and my taste buds are there...

I woke up wondering what we should do to celebrate from this distance...



Two weeks ago, just as I was about to head for the farmers market, I checked my email and there were several comments on my beet risotto post, Think Pink! Before going out, I looked them over, responded and noted that a couple were from people I don't know who write blogs that I don't know.

When I get comments from co-bloggers, I go to their sites right away and peruse their recipes. One such blog last Sunday was He Needs Food, where I found a lot of tempting recipes, many of which I want to try. John Bek (it is he who needs the food) is a self-described "camera wielding dumpling crazed ex chef also visits markets, provides recipes and travels abroad, snapping the foodie action for all to see." I highly recommend that you visit his site for some really creative recipes and truly beautiful photography.

Since I had one foot out the door to the market with no cooking plan for the day, I decided to find one of his recipes and give it a whirl. I came across his version of a Persian stuffed eggplant dish called dolmeh-ye bademjan.