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CHANNELING GRANDMA

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“You talked about your Grandma’s red sauce yesterday, too.” “I did?  Oh…” Apparently I am using my Italian Grandma’s delicious Sunday red sauce as a too-frequent metaphor in my work at The College of Saint Rose. You see, Grandma was a genius in the kitchen.  As my mom often said, she could make dirt taste good.  Grandma could take anything ... Read More »

A FEW OF MY FAVORITE THINGS

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This is not the all-inclusive list of my favorite things (which would include reading in bed with a cup of coffee, reading in a hammock with a glass of wine, reading, coffee and wine). Rather, it’s a list of my favorite kitchen things. Sharp knives are a must, obviously. But I don’t have any pots with fitted lids (I use a sautée ... Read More »

MAPLE SYRUP & COCKTAILS

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I have written about Bixby’s Best maple syrup before – in Sauced in New York’s earlier incarnation on the Times Union website – but with sugaring season upon us once again, it seems a fit topic to return to as material for this blog. After all, what says spring in the Adirondacks better than maple syrup? Well, other than a ... Read More »

JUST DESSERTS

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If you had ever told me that I would wake up at 8:30 in the morning with thoughts of trying a new recipe pushing me out of bed and into the kitchen, I would’ve laughed in your face. And probably gone back to bed. I don’t know if was some kind of subconscious backlash against the idea of a woman ... Read More »

WASTE NOT, WANT NOT

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When my Grandma Ruth passed away last May, one of the more interesting things I inherited was her collection of parchment paper, aluminum foil and plastic wrap. She bought in bulk, a coupon clipper and a savvy shopper, so they were either generic brands or marked with “sale” stickers. My grandmother was a good cook and a good baker – although ... Read More »

FAMILY DINNER

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Is our memory of food really an accurate rendering of a meal? Or do we indulge in the dangerous side of nostalgia -photoshopping away imperfections to create false versions that never really existed? Is my idea of my grandmother’s sweet potato pie true to how it actually was on the plate and in the mouth? Or have I set myself ... Read More »

THE SWEET AND THE SPICY

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I’ve discovered in recent months that Instagram is a great way to cull interesting culinary ideas and discover new beverages to imbibe. I follow Dogfish Head beer to learn about their latest collaborations (and to covet their bocce court).  Smitten Kitchen and Ida Garten are always making me drool. But even outside professional Instagrammers, I’m finding new ideas with the ... Read More »

THE LAZY BAKER

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On occasion, I make desserts for barVino to supplement the fabulous ones we purchase from the professional bakers at Cafe Sarah’s – just up the street from bV on Main Street in North Creek, NY. Here’s the thing about baking: it’s meticulous, measured and requires prior planning and preparation. Here’s the thing about me: I’m a bit scatter-brained, not naturally ... Read More »

PAST AND PRESENT…

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We had a fantastic Sunday night.  Dennis wanted to make dinner.  When he wants to cook, I have to force myself out of head chef mode, and accept instead the title of sous chef.  Or just cheerleader sometimes.  (Cue glass of wine.) Dennis was working on some appetizer recipes for Thanksgiving on Sunday.  We tasted a Buffalo Chicken Dip, sinfully, ... Read More »

WILD IRELAND

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Most guidebooks will give you a few sentences about County Mayo in northwestern Ireland.  They call it inaccessible, and recommend skipping  it,  preferring other, more touristed areas.  Thankfully, our Granny O’Toole lobbied furiously the entire time we knew her.  County Mayo is one step from heaven.  Granny was right. Granny was born and raised in Ballindine, Co. Mayo.  It was ... Read More »

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