Tag Archives: spotlight

A Fishy Confession–Double Standards

I eat seafood only when I’m on a seacoast.  Never in Vermont. Or at least not by choice. I know that this rather severe, absolute rule flows from having grown up six miles from the ocean, and from spending childhood summers in a cottage overlooking the salty water–water that was once filled with lobsters and […]

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Speaking the Language of Food

During my first few weeks in Mestre, I was lucky enough to discover the Women’s Multicultural Center, financed by the Municipality of Venice. The Center offers information, advice and support and organizes cultural events for immigrant women, including Italian and English lessons and — to my delight — cooking classes. I immediately signed up for […]

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In Spite of the Weather: Bringing Late Fall into the Kitchen

Apart from the five inches of snow that fell the day before Thanksgiving and the very few nights of 20ºF frostiness we’ve had this fall, the weather has been, well, ridiculous. Yes, ridiculous. Okay, there’s some good in this consistent warmth: I am still picking greens and herbs–the ones the deer do not like, that […]

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The Search for Other Young Foodies

I was in shock. I stepped in off the cold, misty street and was greeted by the aroma of onions caramelizing, squash sautéing and crust browning in the oven. It was the first dinner hosted by Emilio’s university friends that I had attended since moving to Venice. I had expected the usual — a few […]

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Harvesting Saffron, Growing Pine Nuts: Taking the Long View

I’ve stopped buying pine nuts–except when I find fresh Spanish ones at Sahadi’s when I visit my daughter in Brooklyn.  The only sort available around here are flown in from China–too far for something that needs refrigeration and careful handling–and the $30/pound price is beyond affordable.  Perfect pine-nutty pestos and some Italian cakes and cookies […]

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Is Food Love?

This past weekend cooking for my best friend Julia, who was visiting for a few days from England, I was reminded of how much I enjoy cooking for the people I love. I find pleasure in every aspect — the planning, shopping, preparing and eating of a meal I know will bring joy to the […]

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The Real Thing, The Rare Thing: Cookbook as Inspired Teacher

I know I know… I own too many cookbooks.  Even I have to admit it now that I can no longer fit my collection into the kitchen bookcase and the shelves in the pantry cleared for the overflow. And yet I just bought another cookbook, a big heavy one.  Do I have a cookbook-buying disorder?  […]

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The Organic Dilemma

Growing up in a family concerned not only about our own health but also the health of the planet and the surrounding wildlife, buying and growing organic food was naturally an important part of our lives. During my last two years of college, as I studied food from cultural, historical, human rights and environmental perspectives, […]

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Neither Here Nor There: Mid-Autumn Gardening Notes

I’ve just returned from a work trip to southwestern Montana where it seems that most people don’t plant gardens. In towns, out on the ranches, I saw little sign of tomatoes or lettuces, even kale or broccoli tended in neat rows or clustered in raised beds. And vegetables that do grow?  They fold up early. […]

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A Weekend of “Learning and Tasting” in Mestre

The timing couldn’t have been more perfect. My boyfriend and I had just enough time to settle into our new home in Mestre, Venice before discovering the food festival hosted in the main piazza just a few days after our arrival. Il gusto della cultura: una giornata di saperi e sapori or “The Flavor of […]

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