Christmas in the White House: President Benjamin Harrison’s Carlsbad Wafers and His 1890 Christmas Dinner

President Benjamin Harrison, being a card-carrying participant of the Gilded Age, and his wife Caroline Scott Harrison served an unusual dinner on Christmas day, 1890. (The menu follows below.) Unusual in one way. Carlsbad Wafers. Huh? The mention of Carlsbad Wafers stopped me in my tracks for a minute. Like a curious cat, whiskers trembling, … More Christmas in the White House: President Benjamin Harrison’s Carlsbad Wafers and His 1890 Christmas Dinner

The Violence of Cooking: A Photographic Interpretation à la Caravaggio (Part I)

Only the knife knows what goes on in the heart of a pumpkin. ~ Simone Schwarz-Bart, The Bridge of Beyond, Éditions du Seuil (1972) Cutting soft bones or soft flesh – be it animal of vegetable or fruit, the cleaver’s sharp edge become a merciless tool even in the hands of the most tender cook. … More The Violence of Cooking: A Photographic Interpretation à la Caravaggio (Part I)

Let Me Count the Ways: St. Valentine’s Day 101 (Yes, There’s a French Connection)

Remember the old shoeboxes for valentines in your grade school classroom? How you’d decorate your box with all sorts of frou-frous and hope the cute little boy (or the cute little girl) with the dimples would give you a valentine card, one of those mass-produced things? In school, at least, probaly no teacher ever told … More Let Me Count the Ways: St. Valentine’s Day 101 (Yes, There’s a French Connection)