Best Recipes for Fall Seasonal Cooking

Last week, Seattle sweated through an 80 degree day--not something we have to do often. Three days later, we looked out on grey horizons, at that point where the slate sky meets the silver waters, through a screen of incessant raindrops.  The rain was typical Seattle--not hard enough to get your shirt wet, but leaving puddles and clumps of fragrant leaves strewn about. It smelled like fall. The season was here and it had a woodsy aroma--smokey, yet fresh. Cuddled into a cowl neck sweater, my mind wandered to the wonders of fall foods. Like a kid picking pumpkins from a patch, I selected a few … [Read more...]

Feasting like a Princess in Queens

"But where in New York can one find a woman with grace, elegance, taste and culture? A woman suitable for a king?" "Queens!" If anyone else grew up in a household with two brothers and only basic cable, you too have probably seen Coming to America over a thousand times and when the New York City borough of Queens is mentioned, this line is all that you can think of. No? Just me? Again? Alright, this is enough already. Seriously though, we did a food excavation of Queens on our most recent trip to New York. We had overlooked the boroughs on our last … [Read more...]

10 Minutes to Lobster Mushroom Bisque

Tonight's dinner, a beautiful Lobster Mushroom Bisque, I made, start to finish in about ten minutes. I'm betting myself I can do the blogpost in an equally small amount of time. Especially easy since in my hurry to scarf the soup, I had no intention of stopping to take a picture. This dish makes a perfect entrance as the foggy days of fall roll in. Warm, hearty and a soup that's really a meal. I stole the idea from Carmelita, which did a Lobster Mushroom Bisque in a Tomatillo, hallowed out, for this year's Sunset Supper event. Theirs actually tasted like lobster bisque. I was aiming for a … [Read more...]

Double the Fun: Corn Soup, Corn Fritters

Corn fritters may not sound like the most exciting thing on earth, but they were delicious and they were twice as exciting because they were made from what otherwise would have been thrown in the trash. Backing up, I had five beautiful ears of corn. Gorgeous specimens, the epitome of late summer embodied in tiny, yellow toothed fabulosity. Yet, somehow, in the week I had had them, I had yet to use them in anything! It was a crime against fresh produce, an evil act upon the tasty treats. Teetering on the edge of no longer being good, I lunged to save them from the oncoming grasp of the twin … [Read more...]

A Summer Soup for a Winter’s Day

What to do with one of those rare winter weekends in which I'm not on the ski hill? I had a birthday brunch for a best friend that just happened to be in perfect position for me to stop at the Ballard Farmer's Market on the way. As a close friend of mine, she's spent over ten years of birthdays with me having to bail early or miss out because I'm never around on weekends, so I was a little thankful for the day off from coaching. After hitting up the farmer's market, I was very thankful. Maybe it was just being away from the markets for so long, maybe it was that there really were a million … [Read more...]

Sunchoke and Saffron: The Sunniest Soup

After over a week of snow and now rain, it has not been so pleasant outside here. I am a lover of the snow and rain, but it was time to see the sun. Since it clearly wasn't appearing outside, I decided to make the sunniest soup I could: Sunchoke and Saffron. While yellow is not always the most appealing color for food, this soup, with its symbolic suggestion of solar warmth, was the exception to the rule. Despite my effort to represent the summer season in this dish, I still wanted a soup I would want to eat now, in the depths of winter, so I kept the dish heavy--though at the last minute … [Read more...]

Snow Day Soup: Indian Spiced Roasted Carrot

I bet it sure seems like I'm making a lot of 'snow day' posts, huh? Well, could be that Seattle has been absolutely paralyzed by snow for the last week or so. It got kind of ridiculous last night when none of our local hot pot restaurant were open and I realized I was going to have to make do with what was in the house. Luckily I usually keep enough food in the house to keep a family of five alive for 30 years after the nuclear holocaust, so coming up with a soup was more a matter of creativity than making do with what we had. After I peeled seven large carrots I rolled them in a mixture of … [Read more...]

Snow Day Japanese Hot Pot

As six inches of snow piled up on the ground outside my house, I begged B to go for a walk to frolic in the fluffy white stuff with me. We wandered among city blocks, children and adults alike sledding in the streets while cars sat long abandoned. After getting involved in a snowball fight with some neighborhood children and making snow angels in the park with a few friendly puppies, we started to head home, stopping to buy hot chocolate at our local QFC.  And then there he was, a beautiful Lodge enamel coated Dutch oven, on sale for $30. I had been planning on getting one, though the … [Read more...]

Creamy Habanero Soup: Not as Spicy as you Think

We have peppers coming out our ears here. Seriously, I got home from Southeast Asia (yes, I still owe you some posts on that. They are in the works) and went on a pepper buying spree. Including four beautiful mushroom habanero peppers from the farmer's market. So what could I do with 4 habanero peppers that wouldn't spice us out of house and home. Then my inner-scientist got to work. She's not around often, but she was doing well yesterday. Capsicum, what makes peppers spicy, is soluble in milk, so if I made a soup with the peppers, I could get all habanero flavor and not too much … [Read more...]

French-ish Onion Soup

  It was a rough day. Aside from being sort of sick, I had brought a bunch of homemade ravioli filled with wild mushrooms I had picked myself to work and put them into the wrong refrigerator, so they got thrown away. Oops. Guess I'm not going to that potluck. My boss, who is wonderful, felt terrible that it had happened and apologized with some nice South African wine and three-peppercorn marinated goat cheese and crispy cheese straws for me to take home for dinner. It was very sweet. Being as I was, sort of sickly, I wanted soup desperately badly. Upon consulting with my refrigerator … [Read more...]