Posts in Books
Green Kitchen Stories

Hello Friends!

A quick life update. Bill’s broken foot it healing well enough to move into normal foot wear, and we hope to have news on our move this week. In less than two weeks we begin the moving process with a company that organizes, removes and donates. I have never used a service to help with this stage of moving but I am looking forward to the help.

I’m also eager to start traveling again. With Bill and I living between two states and a house for sale… personal travel has been paused. First up is a visit with Andrew to explore DC and northern Virginia in June. I’m starting to get the itch to plan another adventure on the trails. Please let me know if you have any recommendations for us.

Are you busy planning summer travel?

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Ruffage: A practical guide to vegetables

Hello friends,

I planted my garden weeks ago, hoping to harvest before we move this summer. The weather has been so cold and gloomy that other than the lettuce… nothing is growing much. I also transplanted from strawberries into containers so they can move with us. Now we need to finalize our housing in Virginia :)

Tomorrow night I will be make one of the recipes below, charred lettuce. I must admit I have never thought to char lettuce - it’s been a wonderful surprise of a recipe.

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Run Fast. Cook Fast. Eat Slow

Good morning friends. March was incredibly busy for us and provided little time to blog.

I know some of you thought it would never happen… our home is for sale! We also may have found a home in Virginia, but we are not quite ready to make an offer. In the meantime, I will plant a spring harvest this week, and start preparing the deck/patio for outdoor dining.

Today I’m highlighting a cookbook published late summer 2018. I cook from this one a lot. The recipes are easy to make, nutritious and are… oh so good!

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Podcasting with The Readerly Report

A few weeks ago I mentioned being a guest on a podcast called The Readerly Report. I’m happy to tell you it’s now available - click here to listen. We discussed books set internationally.

During the podcast I shared a story about traveling with my father, to Paris (click here to read the post about this trip). It’s one of my favorite memories, exploring a city for the first time with my Dad. He wasn’t walking well, having double knee replacement a few months later. It might be important to note that I am an early riser on vacation - often having explored a city for three-plus hours before my family is ready to go. On this trip, I remember exploring the city on foot and returning to the hotel with a banana crepe and coffee to start his day. We would then hire a taxi to drive us around Paris. We both remember the day I pushed him in a wheelchair to explore the many halls in the Louvre. I could write a short story about that day! I read almost a book a day on that trip, which occurred just before getting my first ipad… my suitcase weighted down with real books. ;)

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The Skillful Forager (a book review)

I have fond memories of warm summer days spent outside, as a young girl. Our neighborhood had an abundance of fruit trees, vegetable gardens, and meadows full of honeysuckle and wild berries. I remember knowing who didn’t mind us nibbling from their yards for a midday treat, and who would yell at us.

Rhubarb was always a favorite. At home, my mother would let us dip it into sugar, but while roaming the neighborhood, we encouraged each other to enjoy this sour snack. My friends and I also pulled carrots out of the ground, brushed the dirt off and ate them while hiding in corn stalks. I know the mothers must have been watching us, hopefully with a smile.

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A move... and reading update

Last week we took a road trip to the DC area, to continue the home search. With the dogs in tow, we spent 3-4 hours a day driving through neighborhoods, scouting out necessities that let us build a version of our northern NJ life in Virginia.

We drove by/walked through almost thirty homes. I can tell you not to believe a photo. Close to the district we saw houses with no yard, some twenty feet from the street, and one near a jail. Heading into northern Virginia, we saw a home with a gas station in the backyard, and a filthy total gut (which wasn’t listed ‘as is’).

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At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen

Like a favorite book, read several times, this book tends to move throughout my home. Just last week I was talking to a friend, pulled this cookbook from my shelves, and started flipping the pages while recommending it as a gift. This is the cookbook that has taught me more than any other resource in my kitchen.

This morning, Sunday, I got up, walked Phoebe, made myself a latte and opened Instagram. The first photo I saw was Amy Chaplin announcing she is pregnant. Such joy!

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A New Way to Food

If you come for an overnight stay in our home, you will find a collection of books on the bedside table. From travel to photography to short fiction. I plan to buy a second copy of the cookbook I’m sharing today, it’s a perfect addition for guest reading. I love imaging family and friends flipping through the pages of this book with a cup of tea, reading recipes and stories from the author’s health journey.

“To love yourself is to feed yourself the very best food you can at every meal. “

Maggie Battista has built a full life for herself as an entrepreneur. She’s a writer, owns a shop, and is a Creative Business Coach - so inspiring.

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Tales from a Forager's Kitchen

I received this book from a friend a few months ago. A cookbook pulled from the shelves quickly after being published, due to foraging safety concerns. Having read the book, I wonder if it would have remained on bookshelves if it was a memoir — the sharing of family stories as opposed to being sold as a cookbook. The pages are filled with stories, reminding us to press and display leaves, take walks in nature, tips to grow plants, recipes, etc..

Foraging controversy aside, this book is filled with recipes familiar to me. Hunting is a cornerstone of life in Minnesota. Since moving to the east coast, we haven’t had anyone share pheasant or venison with us, fresh maple syrup or a bushel of just picked apples. I don’t know anyone who cans food here.

The stories and recipes in this book are so familiar to me.

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What Katie Ate

I, like many… (I’m making an assumption here), have been influenced by all things “in the kitchen” over the last decade thanks to social media. Remember when Martha Stewart and Food & Wine were our everything? I used to read through magazines, ripping out pages. I have a binder with splatter marked pages - recipes collected over the years.

I’m excited to share this cookbook with you. It’s one of my favorites. The author has won - WON - a James Beard award in food photography, and has been nominated for one in general cooking.

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Oh She Glows Every Day

Happy New Year! I hope everyone is settling into January, life returning to a normal pace. For my family this means travel, registering for school, running, getting ready to move, and… continuing to build/refine my kitchen skills. My thirty-year-old self would be shocked to learn I enjoy cooking so much!

Can I tell you a secret? Just after Christmas I told my family I’m going to give Vegan a try, for the month of January. I know this doesn’t sound like a huge leap since I do not eat eggs or meat… BUT, I love cheese, and I can’t imagine starting my day without a whole milk latte!

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A book (event) brings life to a new project

In 2002, I inherited about a hundred photo albums.  A photo archive, for one side of my family, dating back to the 1800’s.  As a child, these albums were a must see during family visits.  I remember having three favorites albums as a child… I especially liked the 1950-60’s. Three years ago I decided to go through all the albums, toss the duplicates, blurry photos, and photos of complete strangers. My grandparent’s lives spread out on the floor of a guest room, building a storybook with photographs spanning more than a hundred years.

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A night with Paula McLain

Hello friends,

It's no secret that I'm an avid reader and enthusiast of the industry. Sadly, I hardly take advantage of living so close to NYC and all of the social events available to me. So....

A few months ago, while watching a movie with my iPad in my lap (catching up on all things social media), I read a post from a friend mentioning that Paula McLain was coming to NYC.  She was publishing a new novel, and I had not been in the city in a few months, so I bought a ticket that night.

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Crafting a Patterned Home: a book review

Hello Friends!

Art and design are my first true loves.  I was practically raised in museums, going to art auctions, and spending hours upon hours in a local design studio that sold fine furniture.  Gabberts was my home away from home, at age ten.  Take a walk through my home and you will find an eclectic mix of high end, local, handmade, and DIY with a sprinkle of IKEA/Target accessories.

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I read SO many wonderful books in 2017

It's a snowy day here in northern New Jersey. My calendar is full of meetings, or I would be curled up on the sofa with a book, or maybe watching a movie with a roaring fire in the fireplace.  Instead I made this Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili over lunch and will take a snowy walk before the sun sets.

I am late sharing my list of favorite books read last year, a list that is too good not share with you.   I'm thrilled to have read so many wonderful books: from historical fiction to time travel, page-turning modern fiction to books set in cemeteries.

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The Hygge Life, a book review

Hello lovely friends,

My family put away our Christmas decorations yesterday, on St Knut's Day.  A day we have been celebrating for about five years.

Our tradition was to keep the tree up until the weekend after New Years Day until a Swedish runner and her family moved in next door.  She introduced me to modern Swedish traditions celebrated in her childhood home. This aspect of our friendship has shaken up the old world traditions that my family observed.  A welcome shake.

Nordic is a region but the people believe in a blend of Viking customs and Christianity. For Swede's, Lagom the daily practice. For the Dane's, Hygge.  Hygge is having its moment!  When asked to review THE HYGGE LIFE, and flipping through the pages, I knew I wanted to read it.  My lifelong passion for design and the recent discovery of cooking made this a great choice.

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Finding inspiration in a digital world

I'm surprised to tell you that most of my magazine and book reading happens on my iPad or iPhone.  Long gone are the days when I was excited to find a copy of a favorite magazine in my mailbox.  I have fond memories of devouring every page of a new magazine while curled up on the sofa, or in my reading chair.

These days, I follow favorites publications on social media and receive updates in my inbox - this lets me slowly roll into the day, or taking a few minutes at the end of any day...  saving a recipe or finding myself inspired by a travel story. I'm always adding to my Pinterest board.

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18 day countdown: I'm looking for book recommendations

We leave in less than twenty days! I'm busy getting the house ready for guests, preparing food, gathering our trek gear, writing a list of last minute items we need to procure, and most importantly.. finding a few books to bring with me. 

Searching for a great book

I climbed Kilimanjaro with a copy of The Odyssey in my pack.  I didn't even open the book but... I did listen to Rob Lowe's autobiography and a few other books while spending hours on the dirt, back roads of Tanzania (reading wasn't an option). 

For this trek, I am planning to load my iPhone 7 with books, a mix of audio and written.  Have you read any great/must reads worth recommending? 

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