a productive sunday

Today: lots of planning for next weekend, and a little bit of eating.


{favorite cookbook}

{chocolate peppermint bark}


{linguine with anchovies, pine nuts, currants}



the week in food

J does a big cook every Sunday to feed us for the week.  Usually, the conversation goes something like this:
J: What should I make for the week?
A: Roast a chicken!
J: But I just did that last week.
A: It’s delicious, and it lasts several nights.  And I can eat it forever and never get sick of it.
Unlike me, however, he does not enjoy eating (or cooking) the same thing again and again.  Recently, however, he found a recipe in Bon Appetit for a roasted tandoori chicken. The perfect solution.

{roasted chicken}

{tandoori chicken and broccoli}

Food shopping up here has been a bit of a struggle.  Part of the reason, I think, is that we haven’t had the time to really research.  Back in Brooklyn, Jordan belonged to a food coop and this is what he still mourns.  Local produce, cheap.  Up here we have large chain supermarkets and the selection is not impressive.  Ironic, since we are surrounded by the very farms which stocked the food coop in Brooklyn!  But the local farm markets that we have been to up here are often small and not great.  I researched farm shares, but the pick-up times did not work with our commuting schedule.  Finally, FINALLY, we found a local farm that sells meat and produce 7 days a week.  Excellent.  And with sausage from said farm, J whipped up a stew (recipe from http://www.food52.com).


{sausage and lentil stew}

Christmas is around the corner, which means some long weekends and lots of cooking.  Woo hoo!


There are many days on which I catch a glimpse of amazing morning sky while eating my breakfast and feel compelled to run outside and take photos.  Sadly, every minute of my morning is usually reserved for getting ready.  I almost always feel rushed.  This has become especially true with below freezing morning temperatures (defrosting the car and pouring warm water on the windshield to de-ice it have been added to my list of to-do’s).  Today, however, I was running early.

{water clouds}

thanksgiving, and since

So, my intention to photograph tons of home cooked food during Thanksgiving week was an epic fail.  On the Wednesday night before the holiday, J cooked (almost single-handedly, and after battling a 2 day stint of food poisoning while vacationing in wine country) an Italian dinner for 30 people.  This included a red sauce, sausage and peppers dish from Frankie’s, a pesto and orecchiette dish, and the best tasting tiramisu (also from Frankie’s) ever.  I’m not really sure how I managed to get virtually none of this on camera.  I think that once the guests arrived and wine was in my hand I just totally got distracted.  Also, there were some very cute kids present, and the rest of the night as well as the next day was focused on them.  The result: no food pictures, only cute kid pictures.  However, Lenny made Italian rainbow cookies – my favorite – from scratch earlier that day.  The recipe was from Bon Appetit.  They came out beautifully, and this is the only picture I took of that entire meal.

{rainbow cookies}

And now, back in NY and back in the swing of things.  Last night J made a (very!) spicy flank steak with scallions and rice.  It is one of his favorite standbys, which he adapted from Mark Bittman’s fried rice recipe (which J makes regularly too).   There is almost nothing better than this, a glass of red wine, and watching Hulu on a sleepy Saturday night.

{spicey koren flank steak over rice}

We had a friend over for brunch on Sunday, and Thomas Keller’s recipe for a soft boiled egg, beet and potato salad was on the menu.  J roasted the beets and boiled the potatoes the night before.  The next morning he soft boiled some eggs and topped it with a mustard vinaigrette.  Oh, the colors!

{roasting beets and potatoes}

{beet hands}

{soft boiled egg, beet and potato salad}

{up close}

I wish I didn’t know how many sticks of butter were used in this coffee cake.  Yet I ate it anyway.

{coffee cake}


Some of the most fun I’ve had with my new camera was yesterday, driving through Bear Mountain State Park to meet friends for a hike with the camera out the window on a really quick shutter speed.  Lots of photos were blurry, of course, but I love these.

{driving through bear mountain state park}

I’m glad we got out yesterday, because today I only left the house to take a 5 minute walk down to the dock.  Is that bad?  In my defense, one of my reasons for living up here is to do more nothing.

saturday brunch

Last weekend the house was chock-full of visitors.  J’s dad came to town, and lots of eating ensued.  Much of this took place at restaurants but J hosted a brunch on Saturday for all of us, including my sister, brother-in-law and nephew.  The meal had to be gluten-free since Dave has celiac disease, and Lenny has a phobia of carbs.  J went with a pumpkin polenta (gluten, but not carb, free), sausage hash and eggs.

{gluten-free brunch}

He forgot to include these sauteed tomatoes, which he had prepared the night before, so we ate them with leftovers on Sunday night instead.  I think they look extra pretty simmering in our caribbean blue pan.

One of my favorite things about living upstate has been hosting.  For one thing, it’s just so nice to finally have the SPACE to do so.  Secondly, although our activities don’t differ much when we’re alone (eating, hiking, fire building, repeat), there’s something special about showing someone around, and we always end up doing more of the things we love rather than allowing laziness to creep in.    In addition to taking Lenny to some of our regular spots, we discovered two new hiking trails and went to an amazing restaurant that we had been hearing about but hadn’t yet visited.  By Sunday night, instead of having the blues, we felt like we had really made the most of our time off.  It didn’t hurt that the weather was picture perfect all weekend.

{tea town reservation}

{like father, like son}

I expect that our upcoming trip to Los Angeles/Paso Robles will provide opportunities for lots of scenic and food-related (Thanksgiving!) photos, especially since J just got me a DSLR camera as an early birthday present!  He really outdid himself this time, and even though I yelled at him for spending the money, I cannot wait to learn how to use it.  In the meantime, I’ve taken a few shots of our dinner tonight despite my lack of real photographic skill:

{pork leftovers}



weekend in the kitchen

Now that we live upstate, Jordan usually tackles a few big recipes on the weekend and makes food to last us through the week.   This makes prep time very minimal when we walk through the door starving at 7:30 pm.  In our old apartment, we’d get home much earlier and I’d pace around the house like a crazy person begging for a bite of something (salami?? olives??) while J spent what felt like hours in the kitchen preparing a nice dinner for us (in reality it was probably closer to 30 minutes, but I become slightly irrational when hungry).  Now, he can actually take on some really time-consuming recipes and even spend much of the day in the kitchen without harassment while I do something sensible like laundry.

Here are the highlights from last weekend:

{sweet potato fries}

recipe from www.food52.com

{poached eggs, sausage, tomato}

recipe from www.food52.com

{butternut squash and apple risotto with toasted walnuts}

recipe from book “Hudson Valley Mediterranean”

{bacon wrapped pork loin stuffed with fruit compote}

recipe from Bon Appetit magazine

Despite this fall-inspired menu, it looks like the season is wrapping up around here (at least the foliage part).  Although the weather has been picture perfect since that crazy snow storm, the bright yellow trees I have grown used to gazing at from our dining room window are now sparse and will soon be no more.  We took a hike yesterday to get our last dose of color.

{hudson highlands state park}

{naked trees}

I should add that we cut our hike short due to hunger, and stopped by our favorite bbq joint for pulled chicken, brisket and beans.

fridays off

Fridays off are the best.


{cooking with ipad}

{neighborhood stroll}

{last few days of foliage}

{late day Manhattan}