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Anatomy of a Weeknight Dinner

5:00 Shut down computer. Start making meatballs. 5:15 Get sidetracked by mind-numbing carpool text thread. 5:30 Finish browning meatballs. 5:45 Pick up Kid One at friend’s house. 6:00 Start soup; add meatballs to soup. 6:30 Kid One sits down, by herself, to Italian Wedding Soup, a recipe that is debuting at the family table! 6:31 Kid One complains about stringy cheese…. Read more »

A Genius Dinner

“We’re looking at a pretty dire situation here,” I texted Andy. It was about 5:30 on a Thursday and one of his coworkers was coming for dinner an hour and a half later. The situation in question was the dinner itself. Ever since reading about Diana Kennedy’s famous Carnitas in Genius Recipes, I’d been meaning to try out the recipe,… 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 »

Friday Round-up

What we’re reading and eating this week: I made Diane Kochilas’ pasta with yogurt and caramelized onions (above) the other night and was reminded why it’s held up as a go-to winner for almost fifteen years now. Elegant enough for company, easy enough for a weeknight, and so F%@#ING MINDBLOWINGLY DELICIOUS! I’ve only ever cooked the version with sheep’s milk… Read more »

Pasta Con Ceci

Sometimes I’m excited to post here because I have a great recipe to write about. Sometimes I’m excited because I have a great character to introduce you to. On the best days, like today, I have both. Technically, my friend Victoria Granof is a food stylist — someone who makes the meatballs or the soup look appetizing for the camera — but… Read more »

Pizza of the Week

This would be the best dinner if only: a) My kids ate it b) My husband ate it The photo you’re looking at up there is from last fall, snapped just before it was greeted at the table by: a) “So where’s the rest of dinner?” b) general guttural groaning I’ve held on to the photo and recipe all year,… Read more »

Tips for Happier Weeknight Dinners

I am so pleased to hand over the mic to Katie Workman today. You might say the two of us are sisters in dinner — we met in 2013 at The Family Dinner Conference (yes, it exists), she’s blogged for years, and has two books out on the subject, the latest of which might be my favorite. It’s called Dinner:… 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 »

Anatomy of a Lazybones Summer Dinner

Who: The Usual Suspects, Andy, Jenny, Phoebe, Abby What: Family Dinner When: A Saturday night in early summer Where: DALS headquarters, Suburban New York Temp: High 80s, high humidity Obstacles/Activities/Extracurriculars: N/A, see: SUMMER 10:00 AM Walk to Farmer’s Market, procure Tuscan kale, baby cabbage, and a pound of Mahi Mahi from the fish guy. (And a dozen cider doughnuts, half of… Read more »

The Snack to End All Snacks

Let me apologize right off the bat for this post reading like an ad or sponsored content, or a 19th century Keatsian love letter, because there is no way I’m going to get through the next two hundred words without going seriously heavy on the superlatives. OMG! I THINK I FOUND THE SNACK TO END ALL SNACKS. It all started near… Read more »

Vegetarian Boot Camp

Over pork shoulder tacos one night, we told our daughters that we had an announcement to make. “Jeez, that sounds scary,” said Phoebe, as she held a massively overstuffed tortilla in front of her face. Little did she know. “Next week, we are going vegetarian,” we informed them. “Now: you guys are either with us or against us, and since… 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 »

Sadness and Good Food are Incompatible

“Sadness and good food are incompatible. The old sages knew that wine lets the tongue loose, but one can grow melancholy with even the best bottle, especially as one grows older. The appearance of food, however, brings instant happiness. A paella, a choucroute garnie, a pot of tripes a la mode de Caen, and so many other dishes of peasant… Read more »

Same Fridge, Different Day

I had nothing but time last Thursday night to dream up something for dinner. Andy was traveling, the girls were out at their various sporting pursuits until after 7:30, and both were getting rides home from friends, so it was me, an end-of-the-week fridge, and a luxurious sixty minutes to work with. I opened the refrigerator door. Cobwebs. How, I… Read more »

I’ve Got a Secret

There are secrets in every marriage, and ours is no different. Jenny has a leather-bound, blue diary she keeps by the bed, and its contents, after almost 20 years of knowing her, remain a total mystery to me. The other day, when I logged into my iTunes account, I discovered that someone — i.e. my wife — had purchased six… 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 »

Righting the Ship: Chopped Salad

This past weekend, with a certain amount of glee, I told the girls that the kitchen was closed for business. I had just come off a week or two of recipe testing and large-scale cooking, Andy was traveling, and with a packed weekend, it was as good a time as any to grab food on the go.  So we ordered… Read more »

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