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recipes

I had a high school English teacher who compared the subconscious mind to an attic. Or maybe it was a basement. I suppose it could even be a storage locker if you're not picky.

Is anyone else tired of being dessert-bombed?

You enjoy a pleasant meal, and then out comes a triple chocolate explosion or a maple-bacon extravaganza (just the word "extravaganza" makes me a little tired). You want dessert, but by the time the sugar-fest is over, your tastebuds are exhausted and you have the irrepressible urge to brush your teeth. Twice.

The past week has been a bit...distracting. I imagine developing an app is a bit like any big project in that, when you're finally done, you sit back, expecting to feel a warm and satisfied feeling of accomplishment. Maybe you envision a bottle of champagne or a nice dinner, or maybe your needs are much simpler and high-fives all around would be enough.

Life has been very full of late. The image that comes first to mind is that of an apple tree loaded with fruit, branches hanging, deeply bowed. At some point it ceases to matter what kind of apple--McIntosh, Pippin, Empire, Arkansas Black--but rather the sheer quantity of them. It is an image of bounty, to be sure, but it is also precarious. Disastrous, even.

Sometimes it’s easy to get lost in the archive of cookbooks we have amassed over eight decades. Before our move from Tennessee, the family treasure trove of culinary literature took up the better part of a thirty-by-twenty-foot room… on tall shelves and in stacked boxes!

What to do with leftover ham roast from Easter? Almost a moot point: practically anything you want! Diced in omelets, fried and chopped on a bed of sautéed asparagus, in stratas and frittatas, Benedicts, stuffed in chiles with cheese and herbs… the options are endless. This recipe, however, is born of fond memories and an unexpected treat at the farmer’s market.

Spring is an exciting time for a lover of green things. I can't decry winter's panoply of strange roots and fanciful squashes--by the time the weather gets cold, I'm ready for hearty preparations and "hibernation" food.

I remember when my biggest financial worry was having to put gas in my car. My parents bought me a 2001 Ford Focus for my 16th birthday. I'm pretty sure a Ford Focus isn't even remotely a cool car, but I loved it beyond reckoning. Of course, as an oddball 16-year old growing up in suburbia, I would have been happy with any car. It was the embodiment of freedom.

For the past couple years, I've been making laminated pastry doughs almost once a week. A "laminated dough" is anything that gets butter folded and rolled into it--think puff pastry, croissant dough, and Danish dough. I distinctly remember the first time I made croissants. It was a decidedly amateur attempt, and one that briefly set the oven on fire on Christmas morning.

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