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Sicily on My Table

Nova_6388October 25, 2015Sicily on My Table

A few days after returning from Sicily, my suitcase had yet to be taken back to storage and my clothes while laundered were hidden away and awaiting their date with the ironing board. My priorities? Working on my trip photos and preparing a meal inspired by my culinary experiences. First things first. Continue Reading

Cocktail and Canape Challenge: A Vodka-Sambuca Margarita and Smoked Salmon Taco Bite


This was not an easy challenge for me.

I’m a ‘give me wine‘ or ‘give me water‘ kind of drinker. I long ago gave up cocktails to avoid the sugar content and, in no small measure, the morning after headaches. Continue Reading

Warm, Spicy and Savory Apple Pot Pie with Cool Apple Cream and Sweet Apple Slaw | A Creative Cooking Crew Challenge

This month’s challenge allowed us to pick our own ingredient to star in a dish. Easy, right? Well, no … we had to showcase it both hot and cold!

I used the double definitions of ‘hot’ (temperature and spicy) and ‘cold’ (temperature and cooling-off spice effect) in 3 separate apple applications in this dish. Continue Reading

An Asian-Inspired Dinner Party or Anyone Can Cook Anything!

Yeah, that’s my take on cooking food outside your ethnicity. All it takes is knowing what you like, a few good seasoning agents*, a dash of confidence and access to google for recipes or to answer any last-minute questions. It may not be “authentic”, but it could (should) be tasty.

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The Best Rice Salad Ever!

Just look at that mise en place — and it only partially reflects all the ingredients. The finished dish had 3 different rice varieties, pork loin, cranberries, dates, walnuts, a variety of lentils, herbs, raw vegetables — and a chocolate and orange dressing!! Yes, you read that correctly: chocolate and orange!!

Great for a party or a one-dish meal for the family. Continue Reading

I’m Going on a Picnic and I’m Bringing … Foie Gras!

There’s a word game played during long car trips called “I’m Going on a Picnic …”. It’s also a drinking game played at parties. I’ve played both, though not recently. Perhaps you have too?

And, it’s this month’s Creative Cooking Crew challenge … a virtual picnic. Continue Reading

A Really Good Dressing for Slaws and Sandwiches

Short Post: It started as a dressing for slaw and then I realized it made a really good sandwich spread too. Continue Reading

UMAMI: What is it? And how to get it.

Umami is a loanword from Japan that has become a global buzzword in recent years. The accepted definition is ‘a pleasant savory taste’, said to be one of the 5 basic tastes; the others being sweet, sour, bitter and salty. The ingredients in this tube, which I bought in Williams Sonoma ($10), are: tomato paste, garlic, salted anchovy, sunflower seed oil, black olives, balsamic vinegar, Porcini mushrooms, Parmesan cheese, citric acid, olive oil, wine vinegar, sugar, salt.

I think I’ve been creating umami food since long before I ever heard the word. The ingredients are familiar, individually and in combination, to the FOODalogue kitchen so I doubt I’d buy a second tube (though it’s good). Like many other things (flavored salts, sugars, vinegars, oils, etc.), once you know the ingredients, it’s easy to make your own. However, it is convenient to have it all in one tube and I wanted to share the product and also take the mystery out of umami.

More information about this product here.

Really ‘Cool': Watermelon Soup with Cilantro Drizzle

Fruit soup is a delicate balancing act — you want the sweetness of the fruit but you also want to balance that sweetness with a little acid and piquant heat. I think I accomplished just that for this month’s 5 Star Makeover Challenge: chilled soup. Continue Reading

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