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Home Plate

Try a taste of this Scandinavian Lenten treat

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

My father’s side of the family emigrated to the United States from the Swedish-speaking part of Finland. And though I have never been to the land of my ancestors, I was raised to love cardamom, which is to Swedes and Finns what cinnamon is to Americans. The weeks leading up to Easter are, in most of Scandinavia, the season of …

Using the bounty from your winter CSA

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

I belong to a winter CSA, which means every week I pick up more root vegetables and winter squash than I know what to do with. In past years, I’m ashamed to say, I sometimes forgot I had all those carrots and parsnips at the back of the produce drawer until they turned …

Home Plate: Easy appetizers

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

As I write this column, my holiday plans are up in the air. We were supposed to host extended family, as we traditionally do, for a Christmas Eve overnight and a rambunctious Christmas morning. But our oldest daughter arrived home last night to collapse on the couch with a high temperature, headache, sore …

Choosing the best wines to go with your Thanksgiving dinner

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

There are people who know exactly what wine to buy for Thanksgiving dinner, but these tend to be the kind of unpleasant control freaks nobody really wants to dine with. You know the type – the “stay out …

Homeplate: A quick primer on FODMAP foods

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Warning: This is not one of my usual food columns filled with delicious recipes and lovely photographs. In fact, this column is going to get downright unappetizing. But before you stop reading, consider these questions: Do you have …

Home Plate: Fall produce is perfect for homemade crostata

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

It’s the time of year when gardens are bursting with so much produce, we can’t keep up with it. This year was a bad one for pears and peaches at my house, but a great one for grapes …

Homeplate: Bean hole beans – if you enjoy a challenge

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

I had to drive to the Seacoast along Route 4 recently, and all the way over I kept seeing signs advertising a bean hole bean fundraiser. Bean hole beans? It had to have something to do with baked …

Home Plate: Now’s the time to enjoy local lettuce

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

June is peak lettuce season in New Hampshire, still cool enough that greens haven’t gone bitter, but well enough along in the growing cycle that heads have taken on some size. If you don’t have your own garden, …

Home Plate: Sauteing the first foods of spring

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

May is the season when all that planning ahead gardeners have done in seasons past pays off. Our tulips and daffodils, flowering quince, cherries, peaches, apples, pears, crab apples and lilacs are in glorious, fragrant bloom. In the …

Home Plate: The perfect dish for spring – ricotta gnudi

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

There’s something about spring that makes me crave ricotta cheese. Perhaps it’s because as the days grow longer and warmer, cows are turned back onto newly greened pastures and produce particularly delicious milk, which in turn makes particularly …

Home Plate: Making your own kombucha

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Last fall, I gave a talk on feeding the good bacteria in your gut by eating probiotic foods, like yogurt. Afterward, a woman in the audience introduced herself to me and asked if I would like to learn …

Home Plate: The benefits of cooking with buttermilk

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Buttermilk is a useful ingredient to have on hand. Refrigerated, it keeps a long time, usually way past its sell-by date. Also, buttermilk is one dairy product that a lot of people who are lactose intolerant can actually …

Home Plate: Making and using fermented beets

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

I heard on the radio yesterday that 70,000 gallons of borscht will be served at the Sochi Olympics, which by my reckoning will require something like 700,000 beets. Should there be a spike in the price of borscht …

Home Plate: Chocolate caramels are the perfect holiday gift

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

By 1949, when my copy of Mrs. Simon Kander’s The Settlement Cookbook rolled off the press, it was already in its 29th printing. My career-minded mother, when she received it as a wedding gift, must have taken one …

Home Plate: Tips for some classic ‘Thanksgivukkah’ desserts

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

This year, Thanksgiving and the second night of Hanukkah fall on the same date, a festive coincidence that won’t happen again for another 70,000 years. All over America, cooks will be riffing on what has been dubbed Thansgivukkah, …