Get the Party Started

Photo by Lorelle Del Matto

Oysters = Celebration   Baked Oysters – Italian Style   There’s no better way to launch the holidays than with a platter of succulent oysters. The season starts early at my house with my husband’s birthday in early November. A couple dozen Italian-style roasted oysters is always on the menu. Fresh oysters are always within […]

Peak-Season Pears

Photo by Lorelle Del Matto

Northwest Pear Pistachio Salad Dressing & Spicy Roasted Pears   The season for garden-fresh tomatoes is behind us, opening a door for other ways to make salads shine. Inspiration came with autumn’s offering of Northwest pears and a recipe for Pear Vinaigrette from my friend Braiden Rex-Johnson’s book Inside the Pike Place Market, Sasquatch Books, […]

End of Summer Gazpacho

Photo by Lorelle Del Matto

It is Gazpacho season in many parts of the world and last week it came to Seattle. In nearly 20 years of Northwest living I’ve served cold soup twice – once last Saturday. The thermometer was crawling into the 80s, toasty for my soon-to-arrive  guests. I seized the opportunity to capture the essence of end-of-summer […]

Blueberries Will Travel

Photo by Lorelle Del Matto

Finally, blueberries are ready for the road.   A sample of Naturipe® blueberry packets arrived on my doorstep just in time. We’re entering the fall frenzy when over-tasked schedules challenge healthy eating efforts.   Ideal for back-to-school lunches and snacks, I tried an “extended usage” of these ready-to-eat blueberries. Into my blender went an entire […]

Preserved Lemons for a Burst of Flavor

Photo by Lorelle Del Matto

 Preserved Lemon Tapenade   I first tasted preserved lemons as a teenager, cooking my way through the world of Moroccan foods and flavors with Couscous and Other Good Food From Morocco by Paula Wolfert, © 1973.  At the time, harissa paste, bisteeya, tajines, couscous and the pungent condiment “preserved lemons” were very exotic.   Today […]

Brownie Taste Test: Mix, Scratch or Light?

Photo By Lorelle Del Matto

Is it worth the trouble to make brownies from scratch? If so, should you bother with a “lighter” brownie? I decided to find out.   Brownies are an all-American favorite, perfect for the 4th of July party I was headed to the day of my tests. I set aside the morning of the party to test […]

Summer=Salmon

Photo by Lorelle Del Matto

White or Red? I simply can’t get enough of wild Alaskan salmon.  On a recent shopping excursion I faced two choices, typical rose-colored filets and ghost-white filets called “Ivory” salmon. I lunged for the Ivory, a rare find with unique buttery flavor.  When another shopper asked about my choice, I assured her it was succulent […]

Sweet Signs of Spring

Photo by Lorelle Del Matto

Roasted Spiced Rhubarb with Fresh Strawberries A display of rhubarb at the farmer’s market in Carnation, Washington triggered fond memories of my Nana’s stewed rhubarb; she canned every spring and served as a breakfast treat.  Nana grew up on a farm in Minnesota where a hearty breakfast, including a fruit dessert, was the norm.  Far […]

Chew On This!

Photo by Lorelle Del Matto

Spring Herb Risotto with Toasted Grains What I love about the gluten-free trend is it has brought more grains and flours to our fingertips.  I’ve got red, black, brown jasmine and brown basmati rice in my pantry along with amaranth, millet, bulgur, farro, freekeh and a rainbow of quinoa. Grain choices don’t stop there  I […]

Foods for Recovery

Green Smoothie

Recovery eating is a hot topic with athletes looking for an edge and recreational athletes who want to feel and perform their best.   Note: Recovery nutrition is most important for work-outs that are of high intensity, frequency and long duration.   It benefits competitive athletes, endurance cyclists, runners and those doing heavy weight lifting. Recreational […]