The Beauty of the Ugly Celery Root

Celery Root and Potato Gratin Recipe

It looks like something from the prop room of Star Trek. It could easily double for a whorled alien brain, a hairless Tribble, or an E.T. with one hell of an ugly mug. As if its low score in the looks department weren’t enough, it goes by several aliases: celeriac, turnip-rooted celery, knob celery. I even saw it christened celery globes at my local supermarket. To confuse matters even more, it isn’t the root of the popular stalk celery we all buy to add to a crudité platter, but rather the root of the less common variety, rapaceum. So it’s no wonder that for nearly 200 years people have been reaching past celery root to choose other vegetables for dinner. Read more »

Potato Bacon Pizza

Potato Bacon Pizza Recipe

I am not ashamed to admit it publicly: I’m a Solanum tuberosum freak. Yep. Lock me up and throw away the key to the pantry. In other words, I’m a potato fanatic. I wave my freak flag high and proud. I worship all sizes and shapes of this seductive tuber. In fact, so deep goes my freakiness for the starchy little fellows that I have, on many occasions, eaten for dinner nothing but a big-ass bowl of mashed potatoes. (And, yes, I’m well aware of all the big-ass references you’re probably thinking of that can be inserted here, but I’d happily risk your sniggers than be less than my true, unadulterated self.)

Sometimes I do make a concession to dietary diversity and add other food stuffs for a well-rounded meal, such as sour cream (dairy) and chives (vegetables) to baked potatoes or eggs (dairy and protein) to sauteed potato slices for a potato frittata. I’ve even gone all leafy-green vegetarian on myself and stirred sauteed spinach or Swiss Chard into my bowl of sexy, tuberous goodness. Read more »

When Advertising Works, It Works

Sydney International Food Festival

I’ve made no bones about why I hated advertising while I was a copywriter and, later, an associate creative director in countless agencies. Well, I didn’t hate it all 18 years that I worked in the industry, but toward the end, it was mind-bendingly painful. (Have you ever gotten to that point in your career where you fantasized about carrying around sharp objects praying someone got into an argument with you?) During meetings, all I could think about was being in my kitchen baking. What ameliorated the interminable idiocy of creative dingbats and cowardly account people was I got to bring in my perfectly baked goods for all to enjoy. At least that gave me some satisfaction. Read more »

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