Category Archives: Spices

Red, White and Grape: From Jumping Genes to Wrapping Leaves for Dolma

Red or White? Even King Tutankhamun (1332-1322 B.C.) prudently stashed away amphorae of both red and white wines to enjoy in the afterlife. Biochemically, a single class of pigments found in grape skin, the anthocyanins, separates the red from white. White … Continue reading

Posted in FOOD, Garden, Middle Eastern, science, Spices, Vegetarian | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Springing into Green: Collards and Chard

There is a brief window in spring when my Maryland garden is lushly verdant. When the so-called lawn springs joyously forth, requiring Benny and his boys to mow maniacally over it every five days. When the bunnies boldly brave the … Continue reading

Posted in FOOD, Garden, Indian food, Spices, Vegetarian | Tagged , , , , , | 10 Comments

Test Driving a Tagine

Tagine. The very word conjured up a magical mirage of Marrakesh and Casablanca, dashing Berbers and belly dancers, hookahs and saffron-laced spicy stews.  I gazed at the overpriced albeit charming hand painted glazed clay artifact in the Williams Sonoma store, … Continue reading

Posted in FOOD, Garden, Moroccan cooking, Spices, Vegetarian | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Strawberry Scones and Civili-Tea: A Pragmatist’s Valentine

Ours is a pragmatic partnership. A marriage made by matchmakers. Social, economic and educational equity? Check. Common Genetic Pool? Yes, his grandmother and mine are cousins once removed. Horoscopes matched? Expeditiously ignored, unless the meeting does not go well in … Continue reading

Posted in Baking, Family Life, FOOD, Humor, Spices, Vegetarian | Tagged , , , | 17 Comments

From Protein Folding to Punjabi Pea Paneer

Making fresh Indian cheese, or paneer, used to be a bit of a production in my home. My mother would start with not-so-fresh milk (why “waste” good milk, was her reasoning), bring it to a boil and then add lemon … Continue reading

Posted in FOOD, Humor, Indian food, Matar Paneer, science, Spices | Tagged , , , , | 11 Comments

A Double Dose of Dosas: Two Southern Indian Crepes

The gum-chewing, bored looking US customs officer gave me an expert once-over as I dragged my world weary rag tag family towards the airport exit. “Any mangoes, miss?” I have a theory that men in uniform have been trained to … Continue reading

Posted in FOOD, Humor, Indian food, Spices | Tagged , , , , , | 12 Comments

Practically Perfect Pilaf

When my children were little, of an age that believed that mothers had eyes in the back of their heads, I was (like Mary Poppins) “practically perfect in every way”. While those days have passed forever, there are still some … Continue reading

Posted in Family Life, FOOD, Humor, Indian food, Spices | Tagged , , , | 17 Comments