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Ruth Reichl
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Brownies are the ultimate cheap trick; it takes less than five minutes to throw the classic recipe together, they bake in a flash - and everybody loves them. As far as I’m concerned, there is no such thing as a bad brownie. But having so few ingredients means that it's remarkably easy to improve the recipe. Replace ordinary ingredients with... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Ruth Reichl
When a friend showed up with some beautiful ribs from Iberian pigs that were locally raised and finished on acorns, I began considering how to cook them. Then I remembered one of my favorite Gourmet recipes. It's one that Ian Knauer created for one of our last summer issues. (Ian now has The Farm Cooking School, where he's constantly posting... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Ruth Reichl
Dinner Last Night: Farro I've been lucky enough to have lunch at The Inn at Pound Ridge by Jean-Georges for the past couple of days. The food has been - no surprise - fantastic. Jean-Georges never stints; after a whole array of appetizers (homemade ricotta with strawberries and olive oil, asparagus with morels, pizza...) we've had fabulous halibut (yesterday's with... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at Ruth Reichl
Straight from Sicily Open a jar of great jam and step into an orchard. Cue sun, wind, and rain. That's what I thought when a friend brought me this jar of blood orange jam. I took one bite and found myself in Sicily, sun beating down. The jam, made by Fabrizia Lanza (she runs her mother Anna Tasca Lanza's wonderful... Continue reading
Posted May 14, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
We still don’t know what it costs. There are only two women among the 37 chefs. Still, it’s intriguing. The Gelinaz shuffle has some of the world’s top chefs swapping not only restaurants, but also homes, lives, and pets. One night only. July 9th. You buy a ticket, blind. Only when you show up will you find out which chef... Continue reading
Posted May 12, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
Banh Xeo Southeast Asians boldly embrace the raw vegetable. A perfect salad roll, for example, is a challenge to the notion that vegetables require fat or fire to make them special. That's why this Ottolenghi spin on banh xeo - the Vietnamese crepe often filled with shrimp and pork - caught my eye. It’s essentially just a bunch of garden... Continue reading
Posted May 11, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
The most elegant Japanese lady (and I use that word advisedly) urged me to try Donguri on the upper east side. It's not a part of town I often eat in, and last night, looking for a place near hospital row I suddenly remembered how much I liked the last meal I had there.. It's an odd restaurant for New... Continue reading
Posted May 8, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
Ramps are the first green vegetable to emerge from the ground each year, nudging aside dried layers of last fall’s leaves. This past weekend, when they appeared, the first swatch of green in our relentlessly brown landscape, the mere sight of them made me happy. Yesterday, walking in the woods, I literally fell into a patch of ramps. All at... Continue reading
Posted May 6, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
New York My friend Nancy blew into town yesterday, raving about the food she ate in Israel. In her words, "every meal was jump up and down delicious." I've never heard her so excited. It seemed like the perfect time for a trip to Bar Bolonat. I was captured with the first bite: fried olives with labneh. Utterly irresistible. Crisp,... Continue reading
Posted May 1, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
Hi Tom, I was probably stoned too, so I'm not sure I'd remember it either. But let's say we did cook together. And that it was fun!
Toggle Commented Apr 30, 2015 on Hot Soup for a Cool Day at Ruth Reichl
Hey Gourmand Moe, Hope it turned out well. And here, we've finally had a warm day! Feels like a gift.
Toggle Commented Apr 30, 2015 on Hot Soup for a Cool Day at Ruth Reichl
Hot Potatoes It's so clear today that from where I'm sitting I can see both the Catskills and the Adirondacks, and if I get out the binoculars I can just make out Lake George far to the north. It feels like spring is trying to arrive, and yet there's not a single local vegetable in the market and it feels... Continue reading
Posted Apr 28, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
It snowed yesterday. And I woke this morning to these dispiriting words: "Snow will start in 55 minutes." I'd like to point out that it's the end of April! In search of spring, I picked up a pound of fava beans. I have a serious love/hate relationship with this particular vegetable. I'm always cheered by their tender green color, and... Continue reading
Posted Apr 24, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
That, in case you missed the reference, is the title of one of my favorite Laurie Colwin pieces. It is also exactly where I found myself last night. I've noticed that supermarkets are suddenly selling "baby eggplants" which fill in nicely for Asian eggplants. Bought one, and then stood in the kitchen, contemplating it. I suddenly thought about the eggplant... Continue reading
Posted Apr 23, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
I want to share one last recipe from Virginia Cookery, one that reads almost like poetry. It’s from the personal family cookbook of Robert Bland Lee - who was the first Virginian representative to the US Congress (and also the uncle of Robert E. Lee). His wife Elizabeth Collins, a Quaker born near Philadelphia, wrote these recipes in her own... Continue reading
Posted Apr 21, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
Hi Gregg, I'm pretty sure you're right; she undoubtedly was referring to crystallized ginger. But back then fresh ginger would have been almost impossible to find; try it with fresh ginger and see how that works. (And if you do, please let me know!)
Toggle Commented Apr 19, 2015 on Clementine Paddleford at Ruth Reichl
Few names are as memorable as Clementine Paddleford, and yet our collective culinary conscience doesn't seem to have filed hers in the right place. A prolific columnist for the New York Herald Tribune in the forties and fifties-- and the writer of the "Food Flashes" column in Gourmet --Paddleford spent the better part of her life traveling the country in... Continue reading
Posted Apr 19, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
I just dusted off Virginia Cookery, a plastic-spiral-bound cookbook I found at Bonnie Slotnick's antique cookbook shop right before she moved to the East Village. Like many great cookbooks of it's kind, this one is a self-published compilation of recipes from (mostly) church-going women. The recipes in these books often vary in quality, but at the very least they make... Continue reading
Posted Apr 16, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
Jo, I've thought about getting a better camera and taking more care with the photography - but I always end up rejecting the idea. I hate the thought of ruining a meal by fussing around with pictures. I'm not a photographer - it's the words that matter to me - and I only take the pictures because people seem to like having a visual record. But I see people at other tables, fluffing the food, lighting it, pushing the plates around, and it's so disruptive to the meal. Spending time taking pictures makes the entire table stop; it changes the atmosphere of eating. I'm there to enjoy the meal, not document it. Sorry.
Toggle Commented Apr 16, 2015 on My Dinner at Dill at Ruth Reichl
This was probably my favorite course at Dill. It doesn't look like much - but Icelanders are understated, so that's typical. It tastes like it looks - bland as snow - until you encounter intense little bursts of flavor that are the best version of butter you've ever eaten. And if you admire butter as much as I do, that's... Continue reading
Posted Apr 15, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
First, a confession. I agreed to teach at The Iceland Writer's Retreat for only one reason: Susan Orlean told me she had so much fun last year that I'd be a fool to turn it down. Thank you Susan. It was a memorable week; I'm sorry to say I probably learned more from the students I worked with - they... Continue reading
Posted Apr 14, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
That, my friends, is Iceland on a plate. And delicious it is, this giant codhead, cooked in chicken broth and sugar kelp, the soft, tender tongue breaded and sauteed before being replaced to do rude things on the plate. To eat a huge codhead like this is to have an extraordinary experience of texture. The bit of filet, at the... Continue reading
Posted Apr 13, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
Claudia: Definitely NOT. DNA sequencing is a tool scientists use - think of it as a kind of microscope that allows them to look into the genetic makeup of the plant. Genetic modification is a process of inserting new genes into an organism, which is entirely different.
Toggle Commented Apr 8, 2015 on Wheat of the Future at Ruth Reichl
A taste of kernza: nutty and complex. The biscotti on the bottom is 100 percent kernza, the one above is 50 percent kernza, the muffin is one quarter kernza. What if the ancient art of annual crop cultivation - perhaps the oldest art there is - has stopped serving us? The plant engineers at Salina Kansas' Land Institute think it... Continue reading
Posted Apr 7, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
Had a dozen egg whites saved - been making a lot of lemon tarts lately - so last night I decided to make an angel food cake. I'd forgotten how satisfyingly beautiful they are - all high and white - and what a pleasure the texture is. Pure sponge. When my friend Marion Cunningham was working on the Baker’s Dozen... Continue reading
Posted Apr 4, 2015 at Ruth Reichl