“Take a Goose or Duck” Now Available!

Take a Goose or a Duck is full of culinary stories about old friends like Markham and Mrs. Beeton and essays that give fresh insight. It proves that British food is intriguing and wonderful. It will be my favourite bedtime reading for the foreseeable future. ~ Regula Ysewijn, author of Pride and Pudding and The Official Downton Abbey Christmas … More “Take a Goose or Duck” Now Available!

Cabbage and Black-Eyed Peas, Oh My! A New Year’s Tradition in the South

New Year’s Day, coming up fast. Planning your menu, are you? There’s a good reason to hesitate, to take your time, because there’s really only one thing to eat that day. Black-eyed peas, a gift from a part of Africa ruled by the French for a long time. They were there as early as 1659 at St. … More Cabbage and Black-Eyed Peas, Oh My! A New Year’s Tradition in the South

Rendezvousing with a Wooden Spoon and a Cup of Cream: French Cooking

It’s parka weather in North Florida now. At the moment, saying “the sweats” refers to pants and hoodies, not the moist high-summer insecty trickle, when walking to the mailbox seems like an audition for a wet T-shirt contest. Colder days and nights invite a certain degree of nostalgia for winter and cold-weather, stick-to-the-ribs types of … More Rendezvousing with a Wooden Spoon and a Cup of Cream: French Cooking

Cordon Bleu, Paris

The lobster just wouldn’t die. Neat black-and-white drawings in Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking fail to tell the whole story. Nothing there about squirming bodies, queasy stomachs, and misplaced stabs to crustacean heads. “While professionals simply cut up the lobsters with never a qualm nor a preliminary, you may find this difficult.” … More Cordon Bleu, Paris

Saints, Souls, and Haints: More Soul Cakes

Trick-or-treating may well have originated in the old custom of “souling,” as people went from house to house, begging (“mumming”) for “soul cakes,” actually prayers — in sweet form.  Sir James George Frazer wrote about this practice in The Golden Bough: a Study in Magic and Religion, a classic in anthropology, first published in 1890: … More Saints, Souls, and Haints: More Soul Cakes