On a roll

A few weekends back I was rummaging through a book bin at the SPARC Second Chance store when a cookbook (of course) caught my eye. Best 25 cents I’ve ever spent. Titled “Lost Recipes” and put out in 2007, this effort by the Americas Test Kitchen is fun to peruse. One recipe caught my eye….

I’ve outdone myself

Many years ago, when my nephew first came to California, he lived with us. Unfortunately he’d brought a repulsive, smarmy friend with him, who resides in infamy as the only person we’ve ever thrown out of our home. One day after a really nice dinner I had prepared, Repulsive Boy walked up to me and…

Thursday evening in Carpinteria

Checking out the Thursday afternoon farmers market in Carpinteria. Such a great way to get fresh, local produce. And for all of the vacationers, this is a fun way to enjoy our little corner of the world. Make a nice easy seasonal salad after your day at the beach. It will go well with all…

The ultimate hack: Cutting cherry tomatoes

Cutting cherry tomatoes in half can be one of life’s great chores!!!! It takes forever to cut them one by one!!!!! What a hassle!!!! But with this hack it doesn’t have to be!!!!!!!! Sorry to be channeling As Seen on TV ads, but this really is an awesome trick. You can cut your cherry (or…

Pickles & popsicles

Summer is canning/freezing season, when the bounty of the season is stored away for the long, winter months. Or at least that’s how it was in the old days. Nowadays, it’s a great way to make special treats that last a while in the refrigerator–maybe not as long as a whole winter, but at least…

Riffs on Strawberry shortcake 

I’ve been on a strawberry shortcake kick lately. Something about seeing all of those luscious berries calling my name. (Yes. I know strawberries aren’t technically “berries” according to botanists. But that’s just stupid. I don’t care where the seeds are. Berry is in the danged name. So it’s a berry in my book.) I thought…

Speaking of blackberries

With the abundance of blackberries I’m lucky enough to have in my backyard, I have been trying out all kinds of ways to use them. They’re fabulous on grilled meats, btw. So buckle up and get ready for a surfeit of blackberry recipes as I process this year’s crop. My brother- and sister-in-law invited us…

The best plans…

I’ve been working on becoming a contributor to VCBuzz, a local publication that features the amazing local abundance in arts, music, food, farming, surfing, sailing, hiking and on and on. I needed photos and thought it would be a fun idea to bring the grandkids along, which would be much more entertaining than just photos…

Blackberry turnover deliciousness

  When we first moved into our house, my husband’s friend Greg gave me a blackberry cutting. I said, “don’t blackberries run?” He said, “These aren’t the running kind.” Ha! These babies have gone throughout the yard, all over the place. We pull them and try to control them, but keep one patch where we…