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Ruth Reichl
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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 13 hours ago at Ruth Reichl
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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 yesterday 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 3 days ago 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 6 days ago on Clementine Paddleford at Ruth Reichl
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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 5 days ago at Ruth Reichl
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
Been reading Elizabeth David's wonderful An Omelette and a Glass of Wine, as I prepare for a workshop at the Iceland Writer's Retreat next week. So much great stuff here. This particular sentence stopped me cold: “I can only say that there are times when one positively craves for something totally unsensational; the meals in which every dish is an... Continue reading
Posted Apr 3, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
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Millet's Moment Texture matters to me. I'm intrigued when foods are so soft and smooth they seem to melt in your mouth. I'm enchanted with foods that vaporize when you take a bite. And I love it when a crunch resonates inside your head. Seeds are especially appealing to me. I like the snap of pepitas in salad and the... Continue reading
Posted Apr 2, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
Those old copies of Gourmet are becoming increasingly appealing now that Conde Nast seems to have taken gourmet.com - and all the old articles it contained - down. Reading through those back issues is kind of like going back in time; an edible history of America.
Toggle Commented Apr 1, 2015 on Another Intriguing Recipe at Ruth Reichl
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A Taste of the Past Been perusing old cookbooks this morning, just for the sheer pleasure of it. I came upon this recipe, that I have to try soon, before the snow melts and it's too warm for filling food. But to me Onion Custard looks like a wonderful substitute for Creamed Onions, which always drive me crazy; peeling onions... Continue reading
Posted Mar 31, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
Alexis I was SO sorry not to be there. Snowstorm, if you can believe it, up here. But I am going to do my best to get there next year. I will never forget some of those sessions. Suzanne Goin and Gabrielle Hamilton talking about motherhood and running restaurants was so honest, and so inspiring.
Toggle Commented Mar 30, 2015 on The Cherry Bombe Jubilee at Ruth Reichl
Nancy Silverton's Pan Cotto This is another crazy recipe Nancy asked me to test for her. It's a vegetable dish she discovered in a restaurant in Italy, and she plans to include it in her forthcoming cookbook. Knowing Nancy, who never stops tweaking recipes, it will be considerably changed by then. But this version, which I made for friends last... Continue reading
Posted Mar 28, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
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People have been fermenting fruit into alcohol since the beginning of civilization. It follows, then, that old alcohol - vinegar - has been a staple of our diet for at least as long. The Mesopotamians made vinegar from dates, the Romans made vinegar from grapes, and from China to Greece, nearly every other kind of fruit has been discovered in... Continue reading
Posted Mar 27, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
Last year's Jubilee was completely fascinating - one of the best conferences of its type I've ever attended. This year's sounds equally interesting. It takes place this Sunday. The Day’s Schedule 9:30 – 10:30 am: Breakfast and Registration 10:30 am – 12:30 pm: Session 1 Welcome by Kerry Diamond and Claudia Wu Truly Share a Meal with Lauren Bush Lauren... Continue reading
Posted Mar 26, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
Thanks Alley. Actually, I've known the Cowgirl women forever - met Peggy when she was working at Chez Panisse. And in that vein, one of the early Cowgirl people was Kate Arding, who's just opened a terrific cheese, takeout, food shop in Hudson NY with her partner Mona Talbott. Mona cooked at Chez Panisse, and then set up the fantastic kitchen at the American Academy in Rome. They're both wonderful, as is their shop, Talbott and Arding. (I'm not associated with them either; just grateful that they've moved into my neighborhood.)
Toggle Commented Mar 26, 2015 on Say Cheese! at Ruth Reichl
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Took a fascinating cheese class last night with Matt Rubiner, of Rubiner's Cheese in Great Barrington. I don't think I've ever eaten so much cheese. And I learned a lot. This class was a romp up Route 7 from Monterey, Massachussetts (Rawson Brook Farm), to Highgate, Vermont (Boucher Farm). Matt says this is now the densest cheese route in America,... Continue reading
Posted Mar 25, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
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I was reading through Laurie Colwin's More Home Cooking yesterday, when I came upon this cake. I've been looking for an alternative to Angel Food Cake - which has virtually no fat - and this one seemed possible. It has no butter and no eggs, and requires only a half cup of oil and a cup of buttermilk. Then I... Continue reading
Posted Mar 24, 2015 at Ruth Reichl
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This is Kyle Knall, the chef at Maysville in New York. Last night he and BBQ Pitmaster John Markus cooked dinner for a small group at John's upstate house. It was a wonderful meal in every way, but the biggest surprise was that these meatcentric men, who spent all day grilling and smoking in a wicked wind, included so many... Continue reading
Posted Mar 23, 2015 at Ruth Reichl