Coffee time

My sister et al. gave me a new Cuisinart coffee machine for Christmas. Since the previous machine died early in the summer, I’ve been using a free-standing burr grinder and a french press. All in all (including parts washing) they take about the same amount of time from start to first cup – but the cuisinart does make more! Yay for that!

My father would never have let me get away with that . . .

I threw away TWO (2) containers of honey mustard dipping sauce from a take out meal today. He would have been appalled. My mother said “oh, fine.”* But here’s the real question — is frugality like that really why there’s so much money in TIAA CREF?

*However, she is resisting letting me give an unopened case of pre-packaged mandarin orange slices (I’ve never seen her open a container!) to the poor. I may have to sneak. I’m gradually emptying the shelves of the upstairs bathroom (stuff which they abandoned in 2006).

Carciofi all romana

My cooked contribution to Easter Dinner at my colleague’s apartment. I bought pre-cleaned artichokes at the market (still had to dig the chokes out myself). They’re stuffed with a mint/parsley/garlic mix and cooked (white wine and lemon in the water. Yum! I’ll be making these for the parents this summer, even if I have to clean the artichokes myself!

Here’s the recipe I used.


The best sfogliatella ever?

Me and Sfogliatelle


I’d go that far.

In service for the Food and Culture in Italy course (being taught by our GustoLab partner, Sonia Massari) we visited Eccelenze Campane, which is kind of hard to describe. The name means Campanian Specialities or Excellences. It’s a foodie paradise for organic, fresh, and local stuff in Campania – a combination of grocery store, restaurant, and production center. We watched people making mozzarella and ricotta di bufala – and then got to eat it. Wow. We watched people making pasta – and some of us ate that for lunch (I had alici fritti, myself – yum, yum). We watched and helped people making pastries – and you see me eating a sfogliatelle with a filling made with fresh ricotta di bufala. It was over the top good, and I finally understand how they get all the flaky layers!