Best Kitchen Tips You Never Knew

As the leaves and the temperatures drop, I am eager again to turn on the stove, tie the food-stained apron around my waist and awake my cast-iron soup pot from hibernation. I was making squash soup other day, using my kitchen glove to roll the garlic cloves to loosen the skin and thought about how many tricks I’ve developed, modified and stolen, over the years. Here are 10 (actually 11) of the less commonly known ….

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The Five Dollar Tomato – Worth It?

{A post I wrote for Attune Foods}

I think of tomatoes as the bridge food between summer and fall.  Just when the summer fruit season in the Northeast is ending – the crowd of peaches is thinning at the farmers market and the blueberries have packed up, the most flavorful tomatoes are only just arriving and will be around for at least another month. And they only get better and better as they’ve had time to soak up the August rays.

The only issue I have with tomatoes is that like with many fruits, it can be impossible to tell what’s on the inside by looking at the outside.  So I decided to do a test and see whether paying more really gets you more….

Read the rest on the Attune Foods Blog, here.


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Are You Boring People With Your Food?

{A post I wrote for Attune Foods}

Here’s a radical idea: put some peanut butter and jam between two slices of bread and eat it. It’s delicious!

There was a time (112 years ago to be exact) when a PB&J sandwich did not exist.  It was first written about in 1901 in The Boston Cooking School Magazine of Culinary Science and Domestic Economics.  The specific recommendation was to put “peanut paste, whatever brand you prefer, and currant or crab-apple jam” between three very thin layers of bread. Salt, sugar and fat all in one bite – who could resist.

I get really tired really fast of the same old stuff and so I often wish that someone would present me with the equivalent of the 1901 peanut butter and jam sandwich.

Read how I’ve found ways to get that “sandwich” on the Attune Food blog, here. 

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Stop Faking It

There are a few food combinations that are truly repellent. Unsweetened almond milk in coffee is one of them. It not only turns the coffee a putrid orange, but it enhances the coffee’s bitterness such that if you’re ever trying to give up coffee, I highly recommend swapping cream for almond milk for a day.

I was trying to cut back on dairy so thought I’d go the almond milk route for a while. And I was nearly willing to put up with the unpleasantness in my coffee mug, until I started taking a closer look at the ingredient list.

It’s long.

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Get Your Veggies On

{A post I wrote for Attune Foods}

Even though I’m not a vegetarian, there is something about the warm weather that makes me crave vegetables in an extreme way. I go to the farmer’s market and I’m like a divining rod to water. Kale, leeks, radishes – I can’t stop myself from heaping them into my bag. I imagine the carrot soup, the tomato sauce, the red pepper chutney that I will make and write about and photograph and EAT! I visualize the savory leek tart, with fresh thyme that I will lay on the top with the sprig intact, tiny green shoots fanning out, that I will serve to friends and give to neighbors.

Much of these culinary fantasies do come to life – some don’t…

Read the rest on the Attune Foods Blog, here!

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The Facts on Flax

Flax has been the “it” girl of the nutrient world for a few years so you don’t need to hear that it’s good for you. A quick primer though in case you’ve forgotten why … Flax is a grain that is high in Omega 3 fatty acids. We don’t get enough Omega 3s. We get lots of Omega 6 from other grains like corn and from the meat of corn fed animals, and our bodies make our own Omega 9s, but the 3s (also high in salmon, sardines and walnuts) get short changed.

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Five Things To Eat To Get Ready For Summer

{A post I wrote for Attune Foods}

We (meaning those of us who live in the North East) have had a painfully cold start to spring.  The heat in my apartment still comes on with a clang every morning as my 100 year old radiator announces itself and I have still not engaged in the ritual of taking the winter boots permanently out of the closet and filling the space with flip flops. The only benefit I can see to the slow approach of warm weather, is that it’s meant that I can indulge, just a little bit longer, in the winter foods that I love – oatmeal, tomato soup with extra cheese and croutons, fried rice (the healthy version but still….)

Very soon though, the truth of what I filled my belly with over the long winter months will be revealed. And if you (like me) ate a few more dishes of pasta and a lot fewer salads, you’ll be ready to embark on a summer’s-coming eating-plan, which for me, starts with these five foods:

Read the rest on the Attune Foods Blog, here.

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Abstinence: How Sweet It Is

I’ve been off sugar for a week now – not the naturally occurring stuff found in bananas but the added stuff found in, oh say chocolate bars – chocolate bars that you’ve bought because you rationalize the fact that if they’re DARK chocolate then they’re a health food and if you only eat one piece of this health food then it barely even registers. Problem is you (ok, I) don’t only eat one piece.  I start with one piece and then when it’s gone, I have one more piece and so on and so on until what began as one not-too-bad-for-you piece of chocolate, very quickly spirals into one half a chocolate bar  – gone. Demolished. Delicious.

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What Is THIS Doing In My Food?

{A post I wrote for Attune Foods}

I finally cleaned out my hall closet and gave away/tossed away half the stuff. I have no need for running shoes that will never be anything but a size too small, and a single mitten whose mate I called off the search for years ago. Even though I open this cupboard daily, I never even noticed most of this stuff as I had gotten so used to seeing it.

I’m starting to feel similarly about a lot of ingredients/additives in my food. When we think about “additives” we usually think about things like MSG, corn syrup, artificial flavors, colors, preservatives etc, but many of the ones that I’m now more aware of are found in high quality food sold in Whole Foods, or health food stores. Even in “good for you food” there is simply a lot of “stuff” that gets shoved into the corners that we either don’t notice or if we do notice, think we need.  And sometimes we DO need them, but that’s often because the food is lacking, and these additives are there to make up for it.

Read the rest on the Attune Foods blog, here.

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You’re Already Eating GMO Food and Don’t Even Know It

There are two kinds of people: those who want to know everything that is possible to know about the food they eat (the ingredients, nutrient levels, place of origin, first and last name of the farmer that grew it), and those who, as long as the food is safe, just eat it.

Which are you?  Because whichever camp you fall into, likely dictates whether you care if GMO foods be labeled “GMO foods”. Whole Foods has just announced that by 2018 all their stores will label any foods that contain GMO ingredients and many other stores are likely to follow suite. This has the makers of GMO foods in a tizzy.

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