The Call

Nature is a Haunted House – but Art – a House that tries to be haunted. ~ Emily Dickinson From my vantage point on the third floor of the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, I spy on the ant-like pedestrians scampering below, frantically dodging raindrops and rude taxis. Tiny moving sculptures, … More The Call

Critics

“Don’t bow down to critics who have not themselves written great masterpieces.” ― Lawrence Ferlinghetti, City Lights Pocket Poets Anthology I’ve been assailed by several critics this last week. Never mind why and for what. Not that I’ve written anything resembling “great masterpieces,” but I find it amusing how quickly people come running when a troll on … More Critics

Food, Photography of

Photography is pretty simple stuff. You just react to what you see, and take many, many pictures. ~Elliott Erwitt Truth be told, I love photography for many reasons, one being the sense of peace that comes with observing the world around me. Photography forces a photographer to be centered. To photograph means slowing down and … More Food, Photography of

Pears – an Exploration of Ancient Food Preservation

The soft, beguiling fragrance permeates the air, rising above the aroma of the Jonagolds and the Galas, even over the sweet perfume of the Golden Delicious apples piled in baskets, resembling yellow baseballs. The knobby Bartlett pears (Pyrus communis), also known as the Williams pear, still slightly green but with a small and promising pink … More Pears – an Exploration of Ancient Food Preservation

A New “Baby” in the House! Mushroom: A Global History, That Is

I just wanted to share with all of you an exciting moment: I just laid eyes on my new book – Mushroom: A Global History – and promptly burst into tears. I just couldn’t keep a stiff upper lip when I saw the result of years of work on my part and on the part … More A New “Baby” in the House! Mushroom: A Global History, That Is

The Curse of Corn: Poverty and Politics and Pellagra

Dr. Joseph Goldberger stands watching the children eating. He’s about to prove his hunch that pellagra occurred in the face of nutritional deprivation. He devoted years to discovering what caused the curse of corn, pellagra. Although the fat cats in the South of the time, and we’re talking early 20th-century here, didn’t want to spend … More The Curse of Corn: Poverty and Politics and Pellagra

The Expert (French) Cook in Enlightenment France: A Review

If you scrutinize sixteenth-century Dutch artist Pieter Aertsen’s painting, “The Cook in Front of the Stove,” you will see a rather stereotypical image of servant cooks, one that persisted in popular memory in Europe until well into the nineteenth century. Sean Takats, assistant professor of history at George Mason University and codirector of Zotero, attempts … More The Expert (French) Cook in Enlightenment France: A Review

A Few Marrons Glacés for the Season … A Gift for You

Photo credit: Robyn Lee A while ago, I promised you a short list of facsimile/translated French cookbooks. The following list represents a number of old French-language cookbooks translated into English that you’ll find freely available on the Internet, something quite helpful when you’ve dropped your last holiday dollar on the fixings for Beef Wellington and … More A Few Marrons Glacés for the Season … A Gift for You