Spaghetti squash gremolata.

bowl 1

I think it’s safe to say that anyone reading this blog knows that I am not, and will never be (barring some sort of life-or-death illness) the kind of person who gives up her carbs. I love my sandwiches, and pasta, and dear god, do I love my potatoes. (You’re probably sick of reading about it.) I’m not giving them up for anything. You’d have to pry them from my cold, dead hands. That being said, I’m also not averse to trying low-carb/carb-free substitutes to carbtastic, starchy goodness, because I like having my cholesterol in check, and because I’m open to trying just about any food that isn’t an insect. (Or durian.) A few weeks ago, I tried making a cauliflower pizza crust – and no, I’m not going to tell you that it tasted JUST LIKE PIZZA CRUST OMG 4 REAL because I am not a big fat liar. It tasted…quiche-y? Maybe? It was good, but it was in no way similar to actual pizza crust.

On Friday, I tried my hand this recipe, because my mom, my sister, and apparently everyone on Pinterest, ever, has gone spaghetti squash crazy.

whole squash

“It tastes like and has the texture of spaghetti!!!”, the Internet says. (To her credit, this blogger never claimed spaghetti squash tastes like spaghetti. So thank you, A Family Feast.) “I call shenanigans, Internet,” I replied. (Yes, I talk to inanimate objects. You do, too, so stop raising those eyebrows.)

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Pretzel rolls with beer cheese dipping sauce

plate with chees 2

Now look, I know the Superbowl (more like Stuporbowl, am I right? Too soon?) was yesterday, and I know that last week was the prime time for posting all the greatest game day recipes. Who’s really going to be posting a delicious recipe for football food the day after the Superbowl?

beer shredded cheese  cheese sauce 2

flour bagunbaked salted

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Spaghetti bolognese


So in case you needed any further proof that I’m slightly off my rocker, I’m here to let you know that, on a work night – a Tuesday night, to be exact – I decided to make a bolognese sauce. Why? Why would I make a sauce that requires three to four hours of cooking time if I wasn’t going to start cooking until 7:30 p.m.?

Well, for one thing, I was cranky. And cooking usually helps me deal with my crankiness. Also, what else was I going to do? Take a ride to the laundromat? Clean the apartment? Go to the gym? Psh. We all know that, if I hadn’t spent the evening cooking, I probably would have binge-watched Netflix and played Candy Crush until I passed out at, like, 10. At least making bolognese sauce was productive.

I actually called my mother on my way home from work and asked her if she thought I was crazy.

Me: “Would it be insane if I went home and made bolognese sauce?”
Mom: “Why would it be insane?”
Me: “Because it takes, like, three hours.”
Mom: “Oh. Well, do you have three hours?”
Me: “I guess?”
Mom: “Well then. It’s not crazy.”

That was really all the assurance I needed.

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Veal chops with caramelized shallots.

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When it comes to weeknight cooking, it can be easy to get stuck in a rut. Especially when you haven’t gone grocery shopping for awhile and most of your favorite stuff has already been eaten, or you realize that even though you have four boxes of pasta, you don’t have any tomato sauce or parmesan cheese, and the thought of eating pasta without either of those things just makes you want to die. Or you look in your freezer and realize pretty much everything you have would require ample defrosting time, and even more ample cooking time. It’s like, sorry, self; I’m not going to start making short ribs at 7:30 in the evening.

And sometimes, I’ll admit, I get very ‘first-world-problems-y,’ when I look in my well-stocked pantry/fridge/freezer and think, “I don’t feel like making any of this.” I try to buy a variety of foods, try new things, eat leftovers, etc. etc. etc., but sometimes I just turn into a total brat and simply don’t want to eat chicken again because I just ate it for dinner last night and lunch today, or don’t waaaannaaaaaa make turkey burgers if I don’t have rolls or burger buns, even when there’s a perfectly good loaf of bread in the fridge. (It’s not weird that I keep my bread in the fridge, right?)

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(Red) wedding fare.


Alright. I know it’s June, and June is hardly the time of year for comfort foods here in Jersey, but I (and about seven million other people, I reckon), are in need of some comfort after last night’s long-anticipated (by book readers, anyway) episode of Game of Thrones. Obvious disclaimer: There are spoilers here.

I devoured the entire series in the summer of 2011, shortly after the first season of the show wrapped up, so I knew what was coming in episode 309, aptly (and chillingly) titled “The Rains of Castamere.”

cutting board

Since first finishing the series, I’ve become somewhat obsessed, and have read the books at least two times each. I’ve read the passage in which Game of Thrones’ penultimate scene transpires several times. I braced myself. I was smug. I listened to this on repeat. I was anticipating the Internet-wide meltdown that would inevitably take place around 10 P.M. I knew what was coming, and after the obligatory book-chucking that comes with reading that particular chapter, and working my way through the Kubler-Ross Model (and laughing when my dad sent me an email after reading the chapter with the subject line “HE’S KILLING EVERYONE!”), I was prepared.

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For those about to grill…

Originally posted March 2012.


…I sa-lute you. Seriously. Not only have we been fortunate enough to have a mild winter here in Jersey, spring is HERE. While part of me wants to call Al Gore and make sure that this is not actually a sign of our imminent demise by greenhouse gases, part of me is just really happy that sludgy-grey snow hasn’t been lingering on the fringes of the highways for eight weeks.

So, I mean, if someone wanted to break out their grill today, I’d understand. Or at least, think they aren’t crazy. I’d classify my vow that when I get my own place with an actual yard and ample milling about space, I want to host a huge potluck Thanksgiving dinner where I will deep-fry a turkey. Y’know, outdoors.

But back to grilling. I don’t have a grill. Yet. Nor do I have adequate grilling space, though I assure you, I have every intent of getting my hands on a little charcoal-burnin’ baby and making do with what space I’ve got. But for now, an oven has to suffice, so I can make these tried-and-true ribs.

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An impromptu dinner party.

Originally posted February 2012.


I hadn’t planned on feeding six people on a Thursday night, though I did invite pretty much everyone who could see my Facebook page over for penne with vodka sauce and garlic bread. Not only because I happen to like my friends. And cooking. And feeding people. But I was supposed to make dinner for my sister, who is in Jersey with her two awesome dogs until May, while her husband finishes up his combat training in Texas. But she had to cancel, so I had lots of pasta and bread and a hunk of pancetta roughly the size of my head, and there was no way I was letting any of that go to waste, or even go uneaten. I had gotten myself psyched up. I was going to make this dinner, even if I had no one to share it with but my cat.

But, I invited over my former roommate, and Colin came home with three of our friends in tow, so pasta for two or three quickly became pasta for six. (I was so glad I’d grabbed extra cans of tomato sauce on my last trip to the grocery store.)

And while normally, sitcoms and movies would have you believe that last-minute dinner parties are enough to turn you into this — or this — I was totally in my element, and happy to spend the night with a group of awesome people.

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