The Fourth of July is, to me, the biggest grilling day of the year. At no other time, I imagine, do more people gather around the barbecue to enjoy their favorite open-air foods, whether burgers or hot dogs, chicken or steaks, slow-smoked ribs or other barbecued meats, lean seafood, or beautifully charred vegetables.
And with the...Read more
When it comes to Fourth of July cookouts, I've always found that dessert is the course offering the best opportunity to prepare something patriotic.
Yes, hot dogs and hamburgers are as all-American as you can get when it comes to main dishes. So are ribs, pulled pork and chicken slathered in barbecue sauce. Of course, so many ...Read more
Few things in this world today are predictable. It's still likely, though, that this coming Sunday, being Father's Day as well as the first day of summer, will find many dads manning (that's an appropriate choice of words!) the backyard grill, or being hosted at the homes of grown children who have fired up the barbecue. And ...Read more
I cannot tell a lie: I love cherry season! And even though the old story about young George Washington chopping down a tree may be more myth than fact, there is no way I personally could deny that - if a ladder weren't available - I might be tempted to use a hatchet to get to the sweetest, sun-ripened fruit.
Cherries are among of my favorite ...Read more
It seems to me like we've all been programmed to believe that, at this time of year, "the livin' is easy," in the words of the great Gershwin song "Summertime." Unfortunately, for busy families that can prove far from true.
Sure, two-career couples may take some time for summer vacation; but that doesn't make the pace of work any more leisurely...Read more
One of the most popular kitchen countertop appliances in recent years has been the electric hinged grill, also known as a contact grill. (Many people still fondly refer to it using the name of a widely known boxing champion who helped make these devices famous.) I have my own special version of the appliance, which always excites viewers ...Read more
The long, cold winter so many people experienced is beginning to recede into memory. And it's likely to be almost forgotten when the Memorial Day weekend marks the unofficial beginning of grilling season and the start of summer vacation -- even though actual summer is still almost a month away.
One of the things many enthusiastic...Read more
In many parts of the country, we're just a few weeks away from school letting out for summer. The season itself less than six weeks away, and we're only a week and a half from Memorial Day weekend, which many people consider the unofficial start of summer. So it's not surprising that many parents (as well as people who may have no...Read more
The HangmanDee Rose
When he is murdered, he is given demonic powers and escapes purgatory to go back to earth and avenge his death as The Hangman. However, unbeknown to him, a war has broken out between good and evil. He must choose a side. To either join the demon who gave him his powers and the legions of ...
My mother and grandmother were two of the most important influences in my life. Both of these strong, loving women always believed in me, and they were the first people who taught me how to cook.
Although they are gone now, I still think of them every day. Each Mother's Day, I make sure to pause and remember them. Of course, I ...Read more
I've always enjoyed how people in the United States have informally adopted Cinco de Mayo, a holiday marking an important battle during Mexico's quest for independence from France on May 5, 1862. In fact, since the very next year after that momentous victory, Californians -- who themselves were under Spanish and then Mexican rule ...Read more
So much of my cooking revolves around the seasons and the fresh vegetables and fruits my team and I find at farmers' markets. We frequent so many of them, from those practically in my backyard, like the renowned Santa Monica Farmers' Market, to the stand on the northern San Diego County family farm run by three generations of the Chinos, who ...Read more
You hear a lot of talk from chefs, restaurant chains, food writers and food stores these days about the importance of cooking and serving fresh, seasonal ingredients. But walk through most supermarkets and you might think that there's only one perpetual season. Thanks to modern shipping and advanced agricultural techniques, you can find almost ...Read more
I'm interested to see how the number of lunchtime salads that guests in my restaurants order always increases as the weather warms up in spring. The reason partly comes from the fact that fresh salad leaves and other vegetables increase in abundance at farmers' markets. Also, our appetites start to lean toward lighter, fresher-tasting dishes ...Read more
Easter Sunday is one of the most popular times of year for entertaining with a lavish Sunday brunch. It offers an opportunity to fill the table with all kinds of festive dishes, from savory egg recipes to a jumbo glazed ham to any number of rich, sweet baked goods and desserts.
I can just imagine how delighted people are when faced with that ...Read more
The first time I ever attended an American Passover Seder almost four decades ago, I experienced a wonderful sense of deja vu when dinner was served after the ritual retelling of the Exodus from Egypt.
Yes, the matzo balls, also known by the Yiddish term kneidlach, served surrounded by rich chicken soup, reminded me of the hearty...Read more
When I think about the garden my mother and grandmother tended surrounding my childhood home in Austria, it always seems to be springtime. They grew so many fresh vegetables, a harvest that always formed the foundation of our family meals. Even in winter, the garden always fed us, thanks to the root cellar where we stored potatoes, carrots, ...Read more
Growing up in southern Austria, I never had much of a chance to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. But I certainly made up for lost time once I moved to the United States in 1973.
With its own rich Irish immigrant heritage, America is home to some of the world's most exuberant St. Patrick's Day celebrations. I've long ...Read more