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An Immortalized Lovey for Valentine’s Day

Meet Pablo. He’s lived in our house for so long that I forget most of you probably know him already as the beloved bow-tied ringleader of The Backyardigans. When Phoebe was little, she and her sister were obsessed with the show, about five friends seeking out imaginary adventures in their backyard, breaking into song and dance routines as they do… Read more »

Welcome to the Neighborhood

When we first moved into our house twelve years ago, we were shocked by how friendly and welcoming our new neighbors were. We figured it would be like Brooklyn — we’d meet our fellow apartment dwellers eventually, after running into them enough times in the lobby’s mail station, or taking a minute to ask what kind of breed their dog… Read more »

Resolved: Be Good…Most of the Time

Am I the only one who finds it really irritating that New Year’s and all its attendant cayenne-spiked-lemon-water dieting resolutions happen to fall right in the dead of winter…precisely when the weather is demanding you soothe yourself every night with stewy braised meats over creamy polentas or potatoes? Polished off with the brownies that your kids made earlier that afternoon… Read more »

A Gift for You

Boy it’s beginning to feel a lot like Christmas — if not outside (um, hello sixty-degree December day in New York?!) then at least here on Dinner: A Love Story. Because today, I’m so happy to present to you this nice big gift to unwrap: A Christmas Brunch Kit from my longtime partner Applegate. If you head over to their… Read more »

Cooking When You Don’t Feel Like Cooking

Last Tuesday night, the week of Thanksgiving, we ate French Bread pizzas for dinner. I had a baguette that was about to go stale, a half jar of Rao’s marinara in the fridge, a ball of mozzarella, and very little desire to spend more than two minutes on dinner. I didn’t even feel like expending energy on a vegetable, instead… Read more »

10 Things to Do Now to Get a Grip on Thanksgiving

When I say 10 things, what I really mean to say is, Choose two or three things from this list of ten so you can trick yourself into feeling a little bit more in control of things. I woke up this morning in a panic. For the first time ever, I ordered a pasture-raised turkey from a local farm, but… Read more »

5 Food Lessons Learned from Kids’ Books

When you finished Catcher in the Rye as a teenager, did you feel like someone finally understood your misunderstood self…OR were you captivated by Holden Caulfield’s go-to restaurant order: “a Swiss cheese sandwich and a malted milk?” When you read (or saw) Silence of the Lambs, were you amused by Hannibal Lecter’s famous line — “I ate his liver with some… Read more »

Slow-Cooker Apple Butter

Since we became parents, we’ve kept a running list unofficially titled: Things That Sound Like Fun with Kids, But Are Actually Not at All.* Parades fall into this category. Street fairs. Any event with the words “Harvest Fest” in its name. Beach day-trips made a brief appearance on the list, when Phoebe was four months old and we decided it… Read more »

A Week of Lunches

This week I did an “instagram takeover” for @LalaLunchbox — a really cool meal-planning app for kids and parents that I highly advise checking out — and had a few revelations about the process, none of which, amazingly, involve the state of my mental health. 1) Phoebe, my 13-year-old, is content to have a turkey and cheddar sandwich with mustard… Read more »

Quick Vacay Dinner: Shrimp & Haricots Verts

Scrolling through our vacation photos was like the visual equivalent of watching Bubba’s famous Forrest Gump monologue: Barbecue Shrimp. Creole Shrimp. Popcorn Shrimp. Pineapple Shrimp. Coconut Shrimp. Lemon Shrimp. Pepper Shrimp. Wow, we ate a lot of shrimp! This, of course, made perfect sense in South Carolina — where we spent the last leg of our trip, and where we usually feel like… Read more »

Vacation Highlight Reel: Amsterdam

Back in my magazine editor days I worked on a travel essay about Amsterdam. My girls were young at that point — probably four and five — and I remember the writer talking about what an impression the city made on her when she was a kid. That it was magical, that it was like living inside a dollhouse, and… Read more »

Friday Round-up

Have you guys watched the documentary series A Chef’s Table? It’s a series of profiles about the world’s greatest chefs, from the director of Jiro Dreams of Sushi. (Which is all I need to hear to put it on the binge-watch list, but check out the trailer above if you need more convincing.) This will make a working mom feel pretty… Read more »

Thank You, Teachers

As our kids head into their last week of school, teacher thank-you notes in tow, it got us thinking: What about our teachers in the kitchen? What about all the little voices that instruct us as we whip our cream, brown our chops… and overcook our dry-aged ribeyes? I’m not only talking about the Marcellas and the Julias and the Bittmans,… Read more »

Happy Memorial Day!

Happy Official First Weekend of Grilling! I’m not sure what will be in the center of the plate yet, but whatever it is, it’ll be surrounded by as many fresh green salads as I can fit. Herewith, a few protein options: Spicy Pork Tacos This one calls for peach salsa, but you can just as easily do pineapple. Brush the pineapple… Read more »

5 Fave Food Podcasts

I’ve always been into podcasts — or maybe the better way to say it is that I’ve always been into the archived radio shows on NPR, which keep me company in all manner of situations, particularly in the most suburban of situations known as Waiting for Practice to End. But lately I’ve been way more into podcasts than ever before. Why?… Read more »

Friday Round-up

Is one of these too much to ask for when I wake up on Sunday? What to eat when you’re pregnant. If I am to believe everything I read, the Spiralizer might just be the way to world peace? (Certainly zucchini pasta with fava bean pesto and grilled shrimp is reason enough to purchase.) Those long stretches I sit in the car… Read more »

A Nice Surprise

Since I write about food, it should probably come as no surprise to you that publishers send me cookbooks from time to time (ok, all the time) in case I find them interesting enough to write about. In addition to receiving emails with subjects like “Celebrate National Beef Jerky Day!,” I find this to be one of the more glamorous… Read more »

Being 12

Anyone who has ever volunteered at school will appreciate the scene in my kitchen all day yesterday: Dozens of 28-ounce cans of diced tomatoes and cannellini beans, enough chopped onions to kill a small animal, large, misshapen bags of frozen homemade chicken stock thawing in the sink, two 6-quart Dutch Ovens on the stovetop, and one lobster pot on the… Read more »

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