December, 2008 Archive

Sunday, December 21, 2008

potato pancakes, even better

potato pancake, flipped

It wouldn’t be Hanukah if I didn’t refresh my favorite, dead-simple potato pancake recipe. But it wouldn’t make for a very interesting story if I told the same one every year; in fact, I think they get better with each try because I continue to tweak them ever so much.

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Friday, December 19, 2008

grasshopper brownies

grasshopper squares

My grandmother was a pretty fly lady, though I am not sure anyone called her “fly” in her lifetime. She loved anything glamorous and I’m pretty sure she saw the point of doing a whole lot in moderation. She’d send my sister and I (beware, frightening New Jersey-in-the-80s references ahead) glittery and puff-painted jaw clips and manes from the flea markets in Florida, she never discouraged the splattered and acid-washed jeans and neon slouch socks I wish someone would have formed an intervention over (shudder) and I specifically remember her finding me a pair of silver moccasins that in my mind couldn’t have been any cooler.

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Wednesday, December 17, 2008

seven-layer cookies

seven layer cookies

Most of my cookie loves are almost predictable: browned butter, twice-baked shortbread, ground nuts, sables, dense chocolates and an occasional stacked or filled something or other–always compact and tiny. And they’re all simple. I mean, it takes less than 10 seconds to eat one, so you might as well zoom in on flavor, not exacting processes.

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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

menu for hope

menu for hope 2008

The last time I gave away sets of my favorite reusable grocery bags, you — and your two thousand, five hundred and thirty-six comments — broke my server. Once my hosting company fixed the server, they evicted me and insisted that I move to a shinier, better server and began charging me eight times as much. Not that I am bitter or complaining or anything! You are worth every penny.

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Monday, December 15, 2008

sausage-stuffed potatoes + a green salad

sausage-stuffed potatoes

I don’t think I need to tell you that sometimes the tastiest food is not the prettiest. Take a real close look at meat sauce, or shiny, oily cheese draped over tuna or a ground up olive paste and you’ll know why it may be tasty, but it’s not pretty. Meanwhile, I am wary of too-pretty food; perfectly smoothed fondant lids on cakes, making them look like rubber, overly glazed tartlets that look like they’re cellophaned.

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