Monday, July 30, 2012

SUMMER PASTA SALAD WITH CREAMY PARMESAN DRESSING

AN APARTMENT AND FOOD FOR SUMMER


Summertime finally flashed by, the sun burning down, the air blowing hot and slow. We strip down to the bare minimum and languish on the sofa, windows flung open as we wait for the soft caress of a breeze to cool us down. Step outside and the heat grabs us, wraps itself around us and squeezes tight and we think of nothing but to search for shade. We droop and sag and move in slow motion, hand brushed across the forehead, squinting into the white light bouncing off of the walls of this City of White.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

SUMMER VEGETABLE RATATOUILLE

AND THE LIVING (AND EATING) IS EASY


The very first ratatouille I remember making, although heaven knows that there must have been others before, was for our wedding lunch. Eggplant and zucchini, tomatoes and garlic long simmered until tender, the flavors mellowing like old gentlemen growing tender and drowsy in the mid-summer heat, yet concentrating into something intensely sweet with a hint of the smoky, was nestled inside delicately bland choux pastries. A rustic buffet reminiscent of a pastoral picnic spread out before the dozen guests, hunks of artisan cheese and loaves of baguettes, terrines and pâté surrounded by crispy cornichons, summer salads seasonal and fresh, tangy Lemon Chicken washed down so elegantly with an abundance of Champagne. And my own ratatouille snuggled inside choux. A wedding meal prepared by the bride and groom, a wedding feast fit for a king.

Monday, July 23, 2012

PEACH PROSECCO BELLINI SORBET

AN ANNIVERSARY


She slid up to the counter in the dark office and pushed the necessary documents across the chocolate brown wood towards the woman standing stern and tall behind. “I’d like to choose a date to be married!” she exclaimed, giddy with pride and excitement. Despite her still-broken French, she answered all the questions and signed all of the papers. She was ever-so careful selecting the date; she had heard that marrying on a Tuesday or a Thursday was good luck in the Jewish religion so she chose a Thursday to be married. The 23rd… sounded very lucky as well, and she marked it down and confirmed with one sharp nod. And ran home to tell her man.

Friday, July 20, 2012

MILAN-STYLE ASPARAGUS AND EGGS WITH PARMESAN

PATIENCE AND DISTRACTION

Patience is power. 
Patience is not an absence of action; 
rather it is "timing" 
it waits on the right time to act, 
for the right principles 
and in the right way. 
- Fulton J. Sheen 


It’s inexplicable. I lost my brother three years ago and Marty’s illness should be so insignificant in the scheme of things. Yet here I am weeping my eyes out. How can something so small be so important? How can something that takes up no room at all take up so much space? The silence is deafening, the apartment empty of his presence and we rattle around in like lost souls. We try to gather our senses and put it all into perspective but, as any animal lover knows, he is and has always been, a huge part of our family. In between visits to the clinic, we bide our time, force ourselves to be patient, and carry on with all of the rest. Time seems to move in slow motion, we feel as if we are slogging through mud; patience is all that we have. Patience and distraction.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

BETTER-THAN-BROWNIES CHOCOLATE FROSTED CAKE BARS

A BUMP OR TWO IN THE ROAD

All of life is a foreign country. 
– Jack Kerouac 


A turbulent, highly emotional week. We all have them, don’t we? Where the stars simply refuse to align, when it feels as if someone is skulking in the shadows and tossing sticks and rocks in the road, along your path, to trip you up. Things are going absolutely swimmingly, everything is falling into place just beautifully, people who count are offering you lovely words and promises on silver platters, roses for the plucking. Things just can’t get any better, can they? You have been waiting years and years for things to happen in just this way and then…. Oooh you have one of those weeks. Inexplicable, unfathomable, bewildering.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

ROAD TRIP TO NORMANDY

The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; 
it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land. 
G. K. Chesterton 


Road trip! Freedom, the wind in our hair, sun streaming in the open windows to warm our bodies as adventure heats our souls. Road trip! How long has it been? How long have we yearned for the freedom, the reckless irresponsibility of our days and hours, the excitement and romance of finding ourselves alone, totally alone to do as we please and with only ourselves to please? He yanks off his tie, throws his jacket carelessly across the back seat and yells “Road trip!” joyously, loudly, for all on that Parisian street to hear. I laugh along with him as I slide into the passenger seat, kick off my boots, shrug off my coat and prepare myself for whatever excitement lies ahead.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Dear Barbara...

Thank you for your lovely comment. Yesterday I was told I need to start a new course of chemo. I'm still getting my head around it so haven't shared it on Twitter or my blog yet. I don't want to come over all 'poor me' and there are people who would be upset if I didn't say anything to let them know. Trying to find the words to say something. I begin treatment on 16th November. 

hugs back at you dear. 
B 


I’ve been blogging now for four years. I feel like I have been blogging forever. So much has changed, time and trends have flown by faster than the wind, the who’s and the how’s and the why’s make my head spin and I often find myself feeling lost and alone, as if the ship is off course and has somehow lost its purpose, its direction. Stats and traffic, monetizing and oreos, stolen recipes and stolen images, snubbing and snobbing, branding and book deals: rumors spread like wildfire through cyberspace leaving many fellow bloggers disgruntled. Frustration and jealousy, petty grumblings and disheartening gossip bring out the worst in us. I often wonder if we haven’t all been tainted just a little bit, our heads turned with fleeting aspirations of fame and fortune. I think that there are days, or so I hear, when many of us just want to throw in the hat, call it quits and simply shut down our food blogs. We look at ourselves in the mirror and try and remember why we began blogging in the first place and we look around the world of food blogging and wonder how it all got so out of hand.

Monday, July 2, 2012

CHERRY PROSECCO GRANITÀ

SO HOT, SO COOL

So we grew together, 
Like to a double cherry, seeming parted, 
But yet an union in partition. 
- William Shakespeare 


Summers in Florida, Israel, Italy, Nigeria, summers so hot breathing is labored, summers so stifling one gasps for breath and searches out even the smallest iota of relief. A smattering of cold showers sporadically throughout the day, ice cream sucked down with no consideration of calories, sweet drinks with plenty of ice, the chilly glass first rubbed across cheeks, pressed against the forehead and held against the chest. A bric-à-brac of fans made from old magazines and newspapers, handkerchiefs or most anything will do to stave off the hotness. Summer days so scorching it is difficult to concentrate, nights sweltering, anything but sultry, no hint of romance in the rumpled, damp sheets strewn haphazardly across the bed. Lights dimmed, the noise of too many television sets droning in the distance, in the silence of the evening, windows thrown open to catch even the merest whisper of a breeze, letting out lives and family secrets to mingle over the rooftops.

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