Bouillabaisse 13

I learned the word “aesthete” from Rent. I learned the word “crepuscular” from E.B. White’s The Trumpet of the Swan (which, by the way, is a much weirder book than I remember it being). And I learned the word “bouillabaisse” from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, at the very same time as Ron Weasley: Continue reading


Guac 6

Can we talk about my favorite holiday — a foodie celebration that comes but once a year, a national occasion that makes my heart swell with unmistakably American pride?

Obviously, I don’t mean Thanksgiving. I’m talking about National Half-Price Avocado Day, a.k.a. the Monday after the Super Bowl. It’s not recognized on a nation-wide scale yet — the name, I admit, could use work — but there’s real potential there. Continue reading

Eggplant Parmesan

Eggplant Parm 15

So as I’ve written before, the first thing I ever really cooked for myself — beyond scrambled eggs — was Nonnie’s ratatouille.

But the first fancy thing I ever cooked — something that required preparing separate ingredients in different ways, making a sauce, carefully assembling a final dish that was not only tasty but also pretty — was  Gourmet magazine’s intricate inside-out eggplant parmigiana, an artistically deconstructed take on the fat kid classic. (You know, the kind of thing a Top Chef contestant would call “my play on eggplant parmesan.”) Continue reading