French apple cake

I have a bit of a habit of getting a new favourite song and listening to it so often that I wear it out. But in this case, this is a favourite song revisited. Since I heard it at dinner at a friend’s house last week, I can’t stop listening to Joan Baez’s song, Diamonds and Rust. It’s such a classic and so powerful and incredibly, hauntingly beautiful.  Continue reading “French apple cake”

Mrs. Beeton’s champagne cup

This recipe for Champagne Cup was immensely fashionable in the Victorian era. It was originally published in Mrs. Beeton’s Book of Household Management, 1861. Continue reading “Mrs. Beeton’s champagne cup”

Thai green curry

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the beauty of imperfection. I’ve written about this before – specifically about the Japanese practice of wabi-sabi – that is, of finding and embracing beauty in flaws and imperfection. And then recently, a friend told me that Mennonite women deliberately stitch errors into their quilting because they say, only God is perfect.

That perfection is neither possible nor even desirable, is such a beautiful and consoling concept. It’s worth repeating and embracing. Continue reading “Thai green curry”

Lemon gelato with vodka

To compensate for last week’s excessively long post – I’m doing an excessively short one here. With an equally short recipe. Hardly a recipe at all. Just two ingredients. And I didn’t even think of them myself. The ‘recipe’ for lemon gelato with vodka comes from Elizabeth Bard’s charming book, Lunch in Paris. It’s probably the best dessert I’ve had all summer. So good I’m having it again tonight. Continue reading “Lemon gelato with vodka”

roasted grape and brie flatbread

When I was a teenager, I spent a lot of time in the attic room over the garage at my best friend’s house. Her parents both worked so we went to her place where we were free to do whatever we wanted without any actual parental intervention. The attic was set up with an old TV and a couple of couches. And a record player. We didn’t have cell phones, Netflix, or computers. We didn’t even think about drugs or alcohol. There was no social media as a constant distraction. Time stretched out in front of us in the most luxurious way – a way that doesn’t seem to exist anymore. Continue reading “roasted grape and brie flatbread”

chickpea and gin-soaked raisin salad

It’s said that necessity is the mother of invention. In this case at least, necessity was the mother of these gin-soaked raisins. The original recipe was a pasta recipe that called for various things including farfalle, Swiss chard, and raisins soaked in vermouth. Somehow, the vermouth had disappeared, but the beautiful blue bottle of Bombay Sapphire was beckoning…. Continue reading “chickpea and gin-soaked raisin salad”

rhubarb sorbet

rhubarb sorbet 3

The other evening when I was out with my dog just after sunset, in that time after dusk but before the full, velveteen darkness of night has descended – I watched a field of fireflies lighting up like fairy lights twinkling across the land.  Continue reading “rhubarb sorbet”

“the stark disappointment of words” and an easy flourless chocolate truffle cake

I’m a fan of writer Ann Patchett, whose book, Truth and Beauty, is one of my favourites. This week, thanks to the website, Brain Pickings, I came across a fantastic Patchett quotation that hit very close to  home, especially the last line:

Continue reading ““the stark disappointment of words” and an easy flourless chocolate truffle cake”

new favourite thing – sweet potato, spinach, and mushroom ‘lasagna’

If you use any kind of social media – you’ll have seen the headlines proclaiming you’ve been doing everything wrong – and not just wrong but “all wrong.” You’ve been boiling eggs all wrong. You’ve been brushing your teeth all wrong. You’ve been making your bed all wrong. You’ve been driving all wrong. Shopping all wrong. Reading all wrong. Chances are you’ve been living your entire life all wrong… Continue reading “new favourite thing – sweet potato, spinach, and mushroom ‘lasagna’”

I haven’t answered your email because… / and a dairy-free chocolate mousse

According to Forbes magazine, most of us are spending more than one-quarter of our working week just answering or dealing with email. And that’s just email. Then there are the text messages, the telephone calls, and the time spent on social media sites like Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, YouTube, and LinkedIn…

Continue reading “I haven’t answered your email because… / and a dairy-free chocolate mousse”