Tag: entree

Let’s be honest: it’s hard to make pea soup look pretty; fortunately, its flavor makes up for any aesthetic shortcomings. Sweet peas, tender carrots–and if you wish to include smoky, salty ham–make for a hearty meal: just in time for sweater weather. Paired with a fresh biscuit or cornbread, you might just feel as though you have been transported to a ski lodge cafe, as you warm your belly and watch the snow fall.

Campbell’s Chunky Split Pea with Ham soup takes me back to my childhood; after all, Chunky is “soup that eats like a meal”, right? Soup was often a meal for my family; we enjoyed cozying up to a big bowl when winter began to creep in–perfect for a snowy day. Although I have to enjoy my soup sans snow these days, I still love the visions that come flooding back. Food memories are powerful things: they can range from spectacularly good to fantastically awful: you may wax poetically about a particular food for decades or be tainted forever by a bad experience. Food shapes who we become, as do the memories that accompany them.

Inspiration

kugel-bake

Like many holidays, Easter is celebrated with a feast: a feast full of spring vegetables; a hearty meat as the star of the meal; and a nice, light dessert to finish. While I miss my Grandmother’s ham and raisin sauce as well as the rack of lamb I used to make, I have found a new main course that not only pleases the vegetarian in me, but also is a reminder of family.

My Great Uncle Ray was the only family member we had in Florida when we moved here in 1985. I viewed him as a surrogate Grandfather after my own Grandfather, his brother, passed away. He attended all family gatherings and he loved to eat. I never remember a time hearing him say that there was anything he didn’t like. He always filled his plate with everything offered and always came back for seconds. He finished off every meal with dessert and black coffee. He derived such pleasure from family and food and life. He loved to cook for his friends and family and was always experimenting with new recipes. Looking back, I think that he was the first foodie I ever met. I’m not sure if he was even familiar with that term, but he definitely embodied the definition: he was a great lover of all things food.

Inspiration

 

image
The Castillo de San Marcos fort in St. Augustine–construction was completed in 1695!

Traveling is my second favorite thing to do–eating is my first. My husband, son and I travel quite a bit and one of our favorite places to visit is Saint Augustine, Florida. Saint Augustine is one of those cities that not only is rich in American and European history, but also full of history for my husband and I as a couple.  It was one of our first trips together when we were dating, it was the place that he proposed, it was the city where we spent our first anniversary, and now it is one of my son’s favorite places to visit. As you walk down the streets of this “ancient” town–ancient by American standards–you can palpate the history. Despite the seemingly endless list of things to see, we have found ourselves on multiple visits without agenda and meandering through the brick streets while taking it all in. Even if you had an agenda, it’s hard to do it all: the Castillo de San Marcos Fort, the art museums, the history museums, the lighthouse and beach, the shops, and wait…did I mention the food?

Travel

 

lemon-spaghetti-ingred

Many months ago, when I was first hatching the idea of starting a food blog, I sat with my friend in her kitchen. While our boys played together, we chatted and baked chocolate chip cookies for the kids. When I told her about my plan, we started talking at length about food. Typically, I could talk about food all day, but then she asked me a question that made me pause: “What is your go-to meal?”

Inspiration