Category: Cooking

Man's most delicious gift to the world: Parmigiano-Reggiano

Leave it to those Italians to be the pure food purveyors of the perfect food to gorge on. Italian food, by nature, is simple, no fuss fresh bites of pure bliss. Parmigiano-Reggiano isn’t called the “King of Cheese” for being confused with Velveeta. I could eat a wheel. History can trace its origins to the 1200-1300’s.... Read more »

Every neighborhood or town needs a welcoming place to gather. In Cary, J. C.'s Café is where you will find me.

You know, just like in “Cheers,” where everyone knows your name and you feel so comfortable you make yourself right at home. I’ve been known to move furniture, clear dishes, make myself useful and consider the owner, Juan Carlos, the younger brother I never had. Patronizing small businesses is the only way to keep them in business. Our retail... Read more »

You know things are heating up when the highlight of your summer is making scrambled eggs

You miss simple pleasures like that when you don’t have a kitchen. We were limited to a coffee pot, toaster and the barbeque grill. I suppose I could have cooked scrambled eggs on the grill, but locating the boxes where the skillets and spatulas were packed would take hours. Days maybe. That’s way too much work, let’s just go to Around... Read more »

A bittersweet farewell to our kitchen, circa 1960

  We finally took the plunge and made the decision to renovate our tired, dated kitchen. We’ve tackled bathrooms, flooring and a multitude of home improvements, but the kitchen was off limits. I fought this for years, not wanting the task of packing up everything from nutmeg to champagne glasses. Plus the dust, mess, noise and daily disruptions... Read more »

The best place to eat in Chicago? Up three flights of stairs on Diversey Parkway, of course.

    Do you crave the most delicious dining experience you’ve ever had the pleasure of indulging in? Snag an invitation for a meal at Lena and Brian’s home. They are so gracious, generous and offer the warmest of hospitality. I’m sure they wouldn’t mind if you showed up and rang their doorbell. Lena will gladly set another place at the dinner table. She’s thoughtful like... Read more »

Bocce, Frogmore Stew and Jello: Three ingredients for an unparalleled party

          God Bless America. Indeed. Every summer, around the 4th of July, our dear friends plan a Lobster Boil, which I have christened the “Party of the Summer.” Bill and Elizabeth have hosted our family for this delectable soiree for so many years, we can no longer remember. Nor do we have any reason to... Read more »

The best Sangria recipe to sip all summer long

              You will love this recipe for Sangria, even if you don’t drink red wine. Various forms of Sangria have been around for over 2,000 years, so if you’ve never tried to make it yourself, take the plunge and dive right in. It’s summer after all, time to shake things... Read more »

If This Dinner Table Could Talk Oh, the Stories She Would Tell

                Our extremely talented neighbor, Dave, designed and built this black walnut dining room table. At his studio, we picked out the wood, but gave him carte blanche to create whatever he fancied. Our only restrictions were dimensions. Curvy, organic, showcasing the beauty of the wood grain and weighing in... Read more »

The Joy of Cooking from a Community Cookbook

My favorite hobby is eating. Growing up, our family talked about what we were having for lunch at breakfast, and dinner’s menu, during lunch. On a recent gloomy February morning, the kind of day where the lights need to be on from the moment you get out of bed, I grabbed a handful of cookbooks... Read more »