Good Stuff to Know

tomatoes in bags

Host Your Own Tomato Crush

It’s Tomato Time! Like many others, I put up tomatoes in late September. I’m republishing an article originally from 2014 on how to host your own tomato crush. Why not share the work and turn a chore into a social occasion? This year, I’m working with a friend, and we’ll […]

Changed Look 1200

Changed Look

I’m hoping that everybody noticed: the blog has a changed look! Yes, there’s been a blog redesign, and while the largest parts of it are complete, I’ll still have to make tweaks here and there. I thought I’d take this opportunity to point out some nice new features. I’m referring […]

Chicken Noodle Soup

Cooking for the Sick

Let me say this straight out: I’m spoiled. I am accustomed to good health, abundant food, and reasonable comfort. Unfortunately that hasn’t been the case this past month: I’ve been a coughing, hacking, miserable wreck. Cooking has been the last thing I could imagine doing. Some days, it was a struggle […]

fried chicken

Chicken: Fried or Roasted?

Being an inquisitive person, and adventurous in the kitchen, I wanted to settle the issue for myself: do I prefer frying chicken, or roasting chicken? Is my “House Chicken” roasted or fried? Here’s a comparison (note: these are standard recipes; you probably have several in your collection. I’m just going to talk about […]

freezer shelves

Recovery from Power Failure

It could have been worse. Maybe I’m looking for a silver lining, but on balance, I’d say it wasn’t a disaster. We were without power for 42 hours, and while the cleanup wasn’t exactly fun, it wasn’t too bad. Here’s what the freezer compartment of my side-by-side looks like now. I […]

black during power outage

Power Outage, oh no!

Yep, that’s my house, right there: the power’s out, leaving me with a full fridge and freezer of questionable contents. I’m writing this from a local tea and coffee shop, where they kindly permit me to re-charge my electronic gizmos. I figure this is a great time to talk about power failures […]

many jars of jam

How to Make Jam (Jam 101)

I am often asked how to make jam, and is making jam hard? People tend to assume it takes a lot of time; that every batch is unmanageably huge; that it’s scary and uses weird equipment. All this is so, so wrong. You can make jam in a skillet or saucepan […]

A holiday feast for two

There would be only the two of us this year, but we were determined to hold the festival, and celebrate the holidays in style. We set up a tiny festive tree and enjoyed the quiet beauty of lights inside contrasted against the snow outside. We hosted a family brunch upon […]

Holiday Cookie Party!

We kick off our holiday season with a Cookie Party, and I can tell you it’s a ton of fun, not too much work, and a great way to connect with friends. We schedule our cookie Sunday, and plan for a full day. Our mission is to bake as many […]

Emergency English Muffins

Subtitle: what to do with your rising bread dough when the power goes out.  I mentioned today to someone in exactly that position that you can rescue bread dough by cooking it on a stovetop. When we lived in the woods in New England, our power lines were, shall we […]

Wrinkle Test for Jam

This is the test I most often use to determine if my jam is ready. When you start to cook the jam, put a saucer or small plate in the freezer to chill. When you think the jam may be ready, put a little dab of the hot stuff on the […]

Learn to make Strawberry Jam

This year, I’m offering a small class on old-fashioned no-pectin-added Strawberry Jam. I make jam the traditional way, in small batches, and put it up in glass jars sealed in a waterbath. If you are interested in a such a class in Oakland County Michigan, do send a reply ASAP, […]