From the Midwest

From The Midwest

From The Midwest
North Carolina,
September 29
Never Give Up! Never Doubt Goodness and that Includes YOU!
Former English teacher-artist from the Midwest and just another statistic of "The Great Recession." Life goes on . . .


A British classic. Now I know why!



What we call "pot pies" here in America were called savory pies in Ireland, England and Scotland. The chicken-leek pie is classic British fare. And leeks do make the dish. I also added mushrooms and, since I now live in the… Read full post »

 There is nothing "normal" about the photographs below.

Just take a quick glance.  

These are not made from people "leaving on a jet plane" with passengers snuggly belted into their seats eagerly awaiting and anticipating loved ones and important destinations. Those planes leave behind plum… Read full post »

Unctuous! Great for bread dipping! Keep the pot partially covered

to avoid "stove splatters." Notice the splatters along the edge of the pot. 



This recipe, from Marcella Hazan, the Italian cookery writer, is all over the Internet. Most people "swoon" over its ungarnished si

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JANUARY 3, 2012 2:39PM

Scrambled Eggs--Foodie Tuesday



Eggs are amazing; their versatility, endless; their culinary requirement, a necessity. They take up little storage room and their shell is their own packaging! They are a powerhouse of protein, vitamins and amino acids. A large egg is only about 70 calories. They are, in fact, o

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A de-boned chicken leg is stuffed with sausage

and served with a cheesy Bechamel sauce and onions.

(Not the best picture--should have used a dark plate

as background.) 





De-boning a chicken leg is really quite simple. Having a sharp knife is

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DECEMBER 21, 2011 9:00AM

Mushroom Lasagna



Earthy mushrooms sauteed in brandy and then layered between ribbons of pasta, a garlicky bechamel sauce, and three cheeses. Oh, my! 


I scaled this recipe to fit  a 10 x 7 dish, so it's perfect for a few people. As a first course to,

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DECEMBER 14, 2011 5:43PM

Potato Pancakes (Latkes)

Simple. Basic. Classic.



Whenever my grandmother babysat, we were guaranteed two foods: potato pancakes (latkes) and dumplings (Kreplach). To this day, nothing instills greater excitement in my family than the promise of those two foods. Our tongues literally quiver in anticipati/

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DECEMBER 5, 2011 9:35AM

Chicken with Sausages, Apples & Onions

A great autumn blend of flavors!



When I tell people I'm making apples with onions, they turn up their nose, "Ewwww!" I tell them they don't know what they're missing. In fact, it has been one of the consistent top, all-time recipes for food blog,… Read full post »



Whenever a sheet of tin foil zips across the metal teeth of a roll, I think of my Grandma Mary who called it "one of the greatest inventions." She, of course, lived through The Great Depression and WWII when anything "metal" was considered dear, indeed. And worth

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Ready for the oven with slivers of unsalted butter to give a crisp top.


The five ingredients for Thanksgiving? Turkey. Cranberry sauce. Sweet potatoes. Pumpkin pie. Stuffing. Some might add green-bean casserole and, if you are one of those unfortunate souls, I shall pray for/

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Potatoes are unassuming in their appearance but gracious and generous in their bounty and versatility. Nothing could be truer than the sweet potato.





I never had sweet potato pie until I moved to North Carolina. It's not quite as sweet as pumpkin pie and I

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NOVEMBER 4, 2011 8:52AM

Roast Pork with Herbed Salt Rub

A wonderfully-seasoned pork roast cooked to perfection with just a blush of pink.


Need a Sunday supper? Growing up, roasts were a Sunday affair. My mom would put one in the oven just as we left for church (but I never recommend leaving an oven unattended). Sometimes she forgot… Read full post »




This recipe is from one of my favorite cookbooks, "Bistro Cooking at Home" by Gordon Hammersley. The recipes are unique. The illustrations beautiful. And the binding of the spine is actually sewn, not glued.


The first time I served these, I spied a guest

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OCTOBER 26, 2011 9:11AM

Chicken Provencal


(My Internet service was down yesterday, so I missed Foodie Tuesday. The good news is that I cleaned my kitchen from top to bottom!) 


Here's an amazingly simple recipe with a rustic, bistro-like flare and presentation. I've used fennel for pork, but never chicken. I

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Who wouldn't want to work in this space?



I've always had my eye on working in the produce department. So when the produce manager went on vacation and the store manager asked if I'd help out while he was gone, I was more than eager to… Read full post »


First, the announcement. As those who follow my posts and "Tales from the Grocery Store" may know, I do actually work part-time in a grocery store. I love the job. I work with great people and, even though it's a lot of physical work, it's exercise I need at my… Read full post »

OCTOBER 14, 2011 8:12AM

EASY Ham & Bean Soup

Loaded with savory, smoky broth and filled with beans, ham and veggies.




Bean soup (like most homemade soups) is a labor of love. And time. First, there is the all-important ham bone which is one reason people don't make bean soup more often and usually

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Initially, I had planned a blog about how simple it is to make a quick scalloped potato dish. Somehow, I got waylaid and this is the third in a series. But I'm not complaining. I enjoyed every one of them! LOL.

At the grocery store I was asked to fill in… Read full post »

The classic union of potato with leek and mushroom. Add a bit of cream and cheese for culinary Nirvana.



Yes, I'm on a scalloped-potato frenzy. I was all set to post a recipe for scalloped potatoes with three cheeses, but then I came up with this recipe. It

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I just kind of assume it's the French who had the culinary genius to bake ultra-thin layers of potato in cream. I mean, just look at that photo. Magnifique, n'est pas? It's a work of art!


Three kitchen utensils make this recipe a

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SEPTEMBER 26, 2011 6:42PM

OS Isn't Losing. It's GONE. (Open Call)

I just finally logged on to OS. When I looked at the activity feed, it was pretty dismal--lots of "dghssssglll" and other nonsense. Usually I expect that on the weekends, but now it's part-and-parcel of weekday feeds.

 The front page is dismal as well. 

It's obvious  not that no one is… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 20, 2011 8:55AM

Baked Chicken Leg Quarters--Foodie Tuesday

Note how the meat of the lower leg has pulled away from the bone.

That means it's done.


I snagged a five-pound bag of chicken leg quarters at my grocery store for only 2.99! That's a whole lot of eating for little money. And it's a brand

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It's really a shame that generations of children have grown up thinking of mac-n-cheese as someting "poured" from a blue box. Where's the "craft" in Kraft? 


The basis of this old-fashioned macaroni and cheese is a simple custard of egg and milk. It's inspirati… Read full post »

OMG! Yet ANOTHER  post about sunflowers

 made EP and cover! Why? The latest was kind of creepy. The center of the sunflowers were artifically clad in a black, Batman-latex-kind-of-suit-of-armor. Obviously digitally altered. I won't ev… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 7, 2011 10:50AM

My Patio Garden, 2011

 "Peepers" love my patio garden. This little guy festoons the Pixie's hat like a jeweled broach.



Have you ever noticed that people who like to grow things also like to cook? When I moved into this ground-floor apartment, I knew I'd have to have something growing outside

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