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Last Night’s Dinner

October 20th, 2014 · 23 Comments

{And by Last Night, I, of course mean Last Thursday.} 6:30 Walk in the door to an empty house. Andy is traveling. Girls have gotten rides to practice. Scan fridge. Some leftover bagged greens, a head of cauliflower, a vinaigrette I made on the weekend. The only meat we have is frozen. Not enough time to thaw. Scan the pantry. Jackpot: Two cans of chickpeas. Center-of-the-plate problem: Solved. 7:20 Pick
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Tags: Dinner · Last Night's Dinner · Vegetarian

Today’s Lunch, Tomorrow’s Dinner

October 14th, 2014 · 24 Comments

“Wait you just made that now?” That’s what Abby said about this soup when she came in from the backyard, and it was exactly what I was thinking as I ladled the noodley broth into a bowl for her lunch. Wow, that was fast. This was yesterday — a holiday — and we had been on the road at various soccer tournaments throughout the DC area for three straight days.
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Tags: Chicken and Turkey · Dinner · Quick · Sides, Salads, Soup · Uncategorized

Friday Round-up

October 10th, 2014 · 132 Comments

What I’m reading this week: What if You Just Hate to Cook Dinner?  Virginia Heffernan, mother of two, poses the question “Why is food such a big part of raising children?” then proceeds to discuss the condescending language in family cookbooks, including mine. I have a fair amount I’d like to say about this essay, but for now, I’m going to do my mom proud and save it for the burn
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Tags: Uncategorized

Boo Cake

October 8th, 2014 · 9 Comments

Do you guys remember when Martha Stewart published the spin-off, Kids? It launched just as I became a mother, and was the magazine I would pick up during breastfeeding, and think “Some day Phoebe and I will fashion water bottles into adorable little piggy banks!” and “Someday I will have a ‘Backwards Party’ for Abby and serve a ‘Spaghetti and Meatballs’ Cake with ice cream that had been shredded through a
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Tags: Birthdays, Holidays, Celebrations

“Chicken-Again?” Wraps

October 6th, 2014 · 12 Comments

Growing up, true to the cliche, you’d find my sister, my twin brother, and me whining “chicken again?” as soon as my mom walked in the door after work and unpacked her two pounds of shrink-wrapped breasts from the Grand Union bag. Dinner: A Love Story readers know all about Grandma Jody’s classic breaded cutlets, but my mother’s poultry repertoire ran deeper than that. There were her roasted game hens;
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Tags: Chicken and Turkey

Dinner: The Playbook

October 3rd, 2014 · No Comments

Dinner:The Playbook 2014 Available at: Amazon: Barnes and Noble: Indiebound When my kids were little, my dinner rotation looked like this: Pasta, Pizza, Pasta, Burgers, Pasta, Pasta. It made me crazy—not only because of the relentless repetition, but because I loved to cook and missed my old, pre-kid dinners, the ones that didn’t come with a side of ketchup. So instead of waiting out the toddler years, I decided to
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Easy Vanilla Pudding

October 2nd, 2014 · 16 Comments

A guest post by 10-year-old Abby: Unlike most people, lunch and breakfast is not when I really feel a need to eat desperately. The part of the day when I am ready to feast is after school. I know that sounds weird, but it is 100% true. (You can ask my mom). After school is when I like to have a big bowl of pasta, leftover chicken pot pie, or
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Tags: Uncategorized

Top 10 Fall Favorites

September 23rd, 2014 · 12 Comments

All right, guys, the open-toed shoes are getting packed away, the leaves are going all gold on us, and soccer season is starting to actually feel like soccer season. In other words, fall is here, which means we can justify a dive back into the archive to find some of my heartier favorites. 1. Pomegranate-Braised Pork Loin with Cabbage (pictured) Good for: Entertaining (as long as it’s not Rosh Hashana
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Tags: Chicken and Turkey · Dinner · Pasta · Pork and Beef · Seafood · Vegetarian

Soy and Mirin Glazed Roast Chicken

September 18th, 2014 · 23 Comments

It took me a little while to find my go-to roast chicken, but once I did, there was no going back. Those of you who have happened upon the recipe (page 287, Dinner: A Love Story) know why: It’s low on ingredients, forgiving if you miss a few of those ingredients, and doesn’t require changing oven temps or flipping the bird over and back again. It’s about as straightforward as
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Tags: Chicken and Turkey · Dinner · Dinner: The Playbook

The Best Way to Study (It’s Not What You Think)

September 15th, 2014 · 7 Comments

A few months ago, at dinner, I told the kids about a book I was working on by Benedict Carey, a science reporter at The New York Times. The book is called How We Learn, and it’s about all the sneaky, counterintuitive ways we learn — in other words, the ways we learn outside of the school environment. I told Phoebe about one section of the book that takes on
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Tags: Uncategorized

The Accidental Broccoli

September 10th, 2014 · 43 Comments

We have no one to blame but ourselves, but Tuesday nights are hell. I’ll spare you the numbing logistical details, but all that’s relevant here is that a few times a month, by the time I pull into the driveway with the girls in the backseat, it’s almost 8:30 at night. We stagger through the door, shedding soccer bags, shin guards and rancid socks, the girls head upstairs to shower…
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Tags: Posts by Andy · Uncategorized

The Lunchbox Note, on Steroids

September 8th, 2014 · 35 Comments

Ever since my friend Liz Egan told me about this lunchbox ritual a few months ago, I’ve been dying to have her write about it for you. Please welcome longtime magazine editor (currently on the books beat at Glamour), newly minted novelist (look for her first book, A Window Opens, spring 2016) and one of the more lovable ”insane moms” I know. Thanks Liz! – Jenny I’ll begin with the obvious: packing school lunches
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Tags: Cameos · Rituals

Spicy Pork Tacos with Peach Salsa

September 3rd, 2014 · 20 Comments

When you picture dinner in my house, do you imagine two starving little middle schoolers, banging utensils on the table with both hands, and rolling their eyes at their mother as she snaps photos and re-positions garnishes just so? Or me shouting “one more second” from the next room waiting for the sun to sink to just the right place, creating optimal lighting conditions? Well, you wouldn’t be entirely wrong.
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Tags: Grilling · Pork and Beef

Cabinet Worthy Dinners

September 2nd, 2014 · 21 Comments

Does this look familiar? It’s my friend Annie’s answer to the Tabula Rasa Dinner Dilemma, also known as The Moment You Walk in From Work, Look in Your Completely Full Fridge, but Still Draw a Total Blank on Dinner Ideas Even Though You’ve Made Dinner Roughly Thousands of Times Before This Night. (It’s an affliction most acute during the first week of school.) Annie looks at this evolving cheat sheet
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Tags: Uncategorized

30days

August 27th, 2014 · No Comments

When my kids were little, my dinner rotation looked like this: Pasta, Pizza, Pasta, Burgers, Pasta, Pasta. It made me crazy—not only because of the relentless repetition, but because I loved to cook and missed my old, pre-kid dinners, the ones that didn’t come with a side of ketchup. So instead of waiting out the toddler years, I decided to take control of the situation. I told my family they were embarking on
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Chaos Theory

August 25th, 2014 · 12 Comments

So back-to-school. The week that rivals New Years for clean-slating more than any other. You’re making plans, you’re making resolutions, you’re waking up at 3:00 in the morning saying “I am not going to allow math homework be my undoing this year. I’m not I’m not.” Perhaps you’re also resolving that it’s finally time to get on track with family dinner, to impose some structure into your mealtime, but then
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Tags: Dinner · Dinner: The Playbook · Rituals · Seafood

Dinner: A Love Story

August 19th, 2014 · No Comments

Dinner:A Love Story 2013 Available at: Amazon: Barnes and Noble: Indiebound Dinner: A Love Story is a cookbook/memoir that covers all the things that can happen at the family dinner table during all stages of a family’s life. That means it covers the Just-Moved-in-Together Stage, the Just-Married Stage, the New Parent Stage, the Bonafide All-Parties-Present-and-Eating Stage. It contains nearly 120 recipes (favorites from this blog as well as brand new
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No-Stress Vacation Dinner

August 18th, 2014 · 12 Comments

On Saturday we found ourselves in an unusual predicament: It was 4:00 and we hadn’t decided what was for dinner yet. Oddly, if it were a normal weekday at home, this wouldn’t be an issue. But we were on vacation, and as anyone who has read my first book (or read the post “My Drill Sergeant of Leisure“) might recall, on vacation, we like to lock down the dinner plan over
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Tags: Dinner · Grilling · Pork and Beef · Travel · Uncategorized