Washington DC Weekend: Peach Blossoms, Hibiscus Punch, Fried Chicken (plus recipe), and more

Masala Fried Chicken

Spring weekend in Washington DC: the SFA Potlikker film event included lots of whiskey cocktails, good friends, and great short docs on Sweet Potato Pie, Edwin Marty and the Jones Valley Urban Farm, Taylor Grocery, and Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack in Nashville… Some of my favorite lines from the films: Pearl Mallory: “If I had 2 ...

(Includes a recipe for Suvir Saran's Fried Chicken Masala)

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spring fling: baby leeks, heartbreak carnitas, and starship eggs

roasted baby leeks with tomatoes, olive oil, fleur de sel...just add toasted walnuts

Sunday spring fling with friends. Kate, gardener extraordinaire brought baby leeks and violas and chives from the garden. She also used to live in L.A. and learned to make carnitas that “will break an old man’s heart.” (Kate’s Recipe below.) She broke a lot of hearts yesterday with her tortillas, crema, carnitas, and hot hot ...

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Emeril, Jonathan Adler, India Hicks, Donna Hay, Writing Workshops and more at Studio b, Alys Beach, FL

studiob at the beach, Alys Beach, FL

Photographer Colleen Duffley has a plan b. After lots of hard work and many 2-a.m. emails, she has created Studio b, a playground for the imagination. Studio b is now and up and running. Seminars, classes and workshops with artists and designers and chefs, including India Hicks, Donna Hay, Jonathan Adler, Emeril Lagasse, Tyson Cole, ...

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Catie’s King Cake Royale


It’s a little late for King Cake, but since I no longer live in New Orleans, my friend Catie, baker and scientist extraordinaire, made me a birthday King Cake. The dough is soft and tender and we added cream cheese and almond paste and orange zest to the filling. For a moment, we thought about ...

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Iron Chef America: Judging with Jeffrey Steingarten and Andrew Knowlton

Iron Chef with Jeffrey Steingarten and Andrew Knowlton Battle Basil

Tonight I make my first appearance as a judge on Iron Chef America, along with Jeffrey Steingarten of Vogue and Andrew Knowlton of Bon Appetit. This Food Network show has been a favorite of mine for a long time. I started watching the Japanese version when I moved back to the States. Check local listings for ...

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The Flavors of Florence for ENTREE Magazine

florence for entree magazine

This just came out in ENTREE, the beautiful, glossy magazine for Neiman Marcus INCIRCLE members. Thanks to Alice Doyle and Karen Carroll for this great assignment. In the article, I write about some of my favorite foods in Florence including lusty crostini di fegatini at CAMMILLO, almond granita at CARABE, and pork arista sandwiches at ...

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A new kind of beef: Recipe development for Cooking Light

Beef Tenderloin with Maple Roasted Pears and Shallots

When I eat beef, which isn’t often, I like my cuts with substantial marbling, a nice crust, and more rare than not. I love New York Strip, but I also dream of La Boca’s Entrana Fina, the “outside skirt” grilled lovingly by Chef Jared Ralls. Jared cooks the steak skin on, so the result is ...

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Cookthink Interview


Thanks to Kristin Hohenadel and Chip Brantley of cookthink.com for including me in the cookthinktank as the featured author this week. This coincides with the paperback edition of TRAIL OF CRUMBS, available today in bookstores. Check out the new beautiful cover. Thanks again to everyone at Grand Central Publishing, my wonderful editor, Amy Einhorn, and ...

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Recipe: Tangerine Granita and Vanilla Mascarpone

Recipe for Fresh Tangerine Granita with Vanilla Bean Mascarpone

I’ve been craving citrus and tasting these combinations in my mind’s palate all day: Meyer Lemon Limoncello. Red Grapefruit Butter on Scallops. Buddha’s Hand Citrus Eggs. Kaffir Lime Leaf soda…So this afternoon I made fresh tangerine juice granita.

(Includes a recipe for Fresh Tangerine Juice Granita)

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I “heart” Boulevard Burgers: more San Francisco treats

Boulevard, San Francisco

Everyone has a favorite burger joint–In-and-Out, Pink’s, The Burger Joint, Daniel Boulud’s DB Burger (sirloin, braised short rib, foie gras and black truffle), Shake Shack, New Orleans’ late-night haunt, Port of Call…but when I went to visit my friend, Brian Garrido, in San Francisco he insisted I not leave until I tasted the burger at ...

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I “Heart” Donuts: More San Francisco Treats

Dynamo Donuts

I mentioned San Francisco’s Dynamo Donuts–the apple-maple glazed sprinkled with bacon, in particular, in an earlier blog post. Here are some more photos from that day and one of me feeding Donut-crazed author, John T. Edge. PHOTOS by Thayer Gowdy

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More San Francisco Treats: images by Thayer Gowdy

El Tonayense Taco Truck, San Francisco

I’ve been lucky enough to work with photographer Thayer Gowdy for several years now. Together we have crushed berries in Oregon, tasted wines in Paso Robles, as well as Buddha’s Hand citrus eggs, marionberry pie, roast duck, field greens, more wine, ricotta, chevre, pecorino, chocolate, donuts, tacos…Here are some images from a recent trip to ...

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Tortilla Espagnole/Spanish-Style Omelette

tortilla espagnole

I’ve been craving this Spanish-style potato omelette for weeks now. You’ll find smaller versions sitting out in Tapas bars all over Spain. I visited a friend in San Sebastian once whose mother always had one of these ready and waiting in her oven to offer up to unexpected guests. The trick is to not overcook the ...

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Last bites from le Comptoir du Relais, Paris

Choux Farci (Stuffed Cabbage), Le Comptoir du Relais, Paris

This was part of our last lunch at Le Comptoir du Relais before having to leave for Roissy. Stuffed Cabbage, Camborde-style, and sweetbreads with braised chestnuts and raisins. Roberto had the Poularde facon poule au pot (see post below) and Jennifer went back to her first love, deep and dark fork-tender beef cheeks with elbow ...

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A few more bites from Le Comptoir du Relais, Paris

toast de pain de mie, foie gras, le comptoir du relais, paris

I’m addicted to Le Comptoir. I need my comptoir lunch fix at least 3 or 4 times during a week’s stay in the city. I really do try to go elsewhere but I just can’t stay away from Yves Camborde’s cooking. A problem when I dine at restaurants is this: I have to order last ...

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At Market, Paris, marché maubert-mutualité

mesclun and haricots verts, marché maubert, paris

Winter lettuces are abundant and ready for the eating, raw and crisp with a simple vinaigrette (extra virgin olive oil, fresh lemon juice, fleur de sel and a crack of pepper) or topped with a poached egg and a few sauteed lardons.

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Foodbuzz 24, 24, 24: Pilgrimage to Paris, a French bistro Thanksgiving

Allard Bistro, Paris: sweetbreads with morels and cream

I am thankful for airplanes and pilots and hot fried chicken for open kitchens and French raw milk cheese. For running water and electricity for literacy and words and the dictionary. For my notebook and my pen and the Mac genius bar even though I would be more thankful if they served cocktails like Lillet blanc or mad Champagne. I am thankful ...

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French Cheese: le vacherin Mont d’Or, je t’aime

Clementine and Garlic

I love being in France this time of year when my favorite winter cheese is in season. (The Mont d’Or is best at room temperature served up with a spoon.) It’s also the time to celebrate Belon oysters and Tarte Tatin, clementines and chestnuts, marrons glacés and nougat glacé and salted caramel apples. Champagne, meslcun, ...

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Tuna Chic in Paris

Tuna Chic at La Grande Epicerie du Bon Marché

Even tuna, it seems, can be chic in Paris, especially if you are tuna turned into a Terrine with herbs and displayed at the equally chic La Grande Epicerie du Bon Marché. More tuna with tapenade and sauteed zucchini and green beans at Le Comptoir.

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First Bite from Paris…Le Comptoir du Relais

Toast de pain de mie grillé, foie gras: Le Comptoir, Paris

My favorite remedy for jet lag in Paris is to head straight to 9, carrefour de l’Odéon to LE COMPTOIR, a no reservations lunch spot. You can find past posts here It’s always good to hear that deep weathered voice of France as she smiles, kisses me hello with promises of a table toute de ...

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