"The only real stumbling block is the fear of failure. In cooking, you have got to have a what-the-hell attitude." ~ Julia Child

I’m sure Gwyneth is a nice gal. But I’ve always had a big problem with famous celebrities touting the good life from on top of their fortress of privilege.  Of course “It’s All Good,” when you’re a tall, blonde movie star in the One Percent.

So it wasn’t like I was ever going to buy her new cookbook. I need that $18 more than she does, thanks.

But then I run into my friend Liz at Trader Joe’s. And she looks good. And so I ask. And she tells me she’s on a gluten-free, sugar-free, yadda-yadda-yadda free diet and she’s feeling great and losing weight and her cholesterol levels have all normalized…all due to diet.

Well so what exactly do you eat, I ask.  Newspaper? Leaves?  She gives me an example; a roasted cauliflower and chickpea salad with creamy dijon dressing that sounds incredible.  But “…and I REALLY hate to admit this,” she says, “it’s from Gwyneth Paltrow’s new cookbook.”

“No!”

“Yes!”

But she’s insufferable, I yell. She’s like Marie Antoinette! I don’t want to patronize her!

“I know! I know!” Liz says. “But just try it. It’s amazing.”

So I go home and I Google the recipe. The internets want information to run free!

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my immersion blender

Chop chop!

Behold! My new immersion blender!

Years ago I got one from my mother in law. I didn’t know what to do with it, since I didn’t cook that much at the time. When we moved, I gifted it to a gal who did. And I regretted it for years afterward.

So I asked for one for Yuletide and lo, it did appear under the Hanukkah bush.

I used it to make this chestnut and chickpea soup I saw on Food52, Amanda Hesser’s fancy food blog, for my annual soup swap gathering.

The results? A winner. Accolades. And all that.

Blend more…

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Valentine’s Day Effort: Chocolate Beet Cake

February 13, 2014

It’s a total pain in the ass to make this chocolate beet cake. Let me just say that first. But if it’s Valentine’s Day and you happen to be in love with a chef, then maybe you’ll want to make the effort. I did. I could always bake better than I could cook, although that’s […]

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Old-School Steel-Cut Oats

January 27, 2014

More than 20 years ago, late in the 20th century, my friend Stacy and I would meet on Sundays at a little diner just off Grammercy Park in NYC. Oftentimes there’d be a wait. Sometimes a really long wait. But that was expected. They served a porridge that was entirely worth it. More than just […]

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