Friday, November 05, 2010

I Will Make You Crack Pie For A Mere $50


Momofuku Milk Bar's Christina Tosi, a brilliant baker by all accounts, is now shipping her famous Crack Pie to Angelenos for $103 with shipping. I guess people in L.A. are paying for it, but seeing as how the L.A. Times published the recipe not too long ago, I'm gonna make you an offer you can't refuse: I'll bake you a Crack Pie for a mere $50 and deliver it to your home the day it's made.

I may not be Christina Tosi, but the price can't be beat. $50 for a pie? Come on, I'm giving it away.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

The Stealth Herb Garden


Once I had a beautiful, abundant vegetable and herb garden that brought me great pleasure and joy. Sadly, it was one of the things I loved that got swept under and destroyed in the tsunami that raged through my life in the last year+.
But like any relentless survivor, after pulling myself from the wreckage, I began to build again. The place I live now did not come with a garden, but that did not deter me. Around the pool I noticed a lush array of drought-tolerant greenery (LA is a desert- having a grass lawn here is not good use of resources!). I thought to myself, Huh, you know oregano would blend right in over there...
And the Stealth Herb Garden was born. Today I cultivate basil, oregano, parsley, mint and German thyme around the pool. The other day I was putting in a new mint plant and an old Armenian lady stopped to watch.
"What are you doing?" she asked.
I got nervous- would she bust me?- but what's the point of lying. "Planting mint. You can have some if you want." I pointed out the other herbs too.
She smacked her forehead, "Twenty-five years I lived here, and I never thought of that!" And we grinned at each other.
It felt good to have something to share.

Monday, November 01, 2010

Always organic? Not in this economy...

So I try to buy organic as much as I can- it tastes much better, helps preserve the environment and often supports mid-sized and small farms- but (as I'm sure many of you understand) in the last few years it's become too expensive to buy everything organic.
So then how do I decide, standing there in the produce aisle biting my lip, which kinds of apples to buy? For a while I was choosing based on price: potatoes, onions and carrots are cheap anyway, so going organic there wasn't much of a price jump. Raspberries? Forget about it.
But I recently came across this handy pocket guide and thought it might help my readers too. Below is a little card you can print out and put in your wallet that shows which produce gets coated in pesticides (so buy organic!), and which ones are less heavily sprayed (so save your pennies!).
Plus, it's cute.

Friday, March 05, 2010

You're a Wonder...

I've loved Wonder Woman since I was 6-years-old and watched her inspiring tv show. Though today I reluctantly admit she isn't technically real, I still admire what she stands for and her constructive problem solving skills (if only I could find my own golden Lasso of Truth...).

The last year has involved a lot of upheaval and sadness, and I freely admit one of my biggest comforts has come from this:

The script says, "As lovely as Aphrodite, as wise as Athena," an excellent message to see over and over throughout the day. It's ceramic and feels solid in my hand, and it makes others smile.

A few weeks ago I left it on top of my car, drove off, and it shattered when I turned the corner and my cheery yellow mug smashed into the ground. Losing Wonder Woman pushed my last button; I pulled over and had a complete little kid meltdown. I thought, Really, God? You had to take my Wonder Woman mug too? (It's been a tough year.)

Earlier this week I was driving past Warner Bros. studios in Burbank. I thought, Hey, don't they sell Wonder Woman stuff there? I pulled over, parked, walked through the metal detectors and Holy Diana! There it was! $18.61 later, balance is restored and I am on my way once again.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Latté Love

My friend Eve made me this delectable item today:

Her employer, Square One, uses Intelligentsia coffee and does hardcore training for its staff. I overheard some of it; I believe there were advanced calculus problems involved and I realized~ yet again~ many things I love I actually know very little about. *sigh*

I find very very good espresso doesn't give me the jitters. I don't know why; I'm sure there's the same amount of caffeine in a great or terrible shot, but this latté went down smooth and mellowed me the heck out. Maybe it's because you just can't gulp the good stuff. Like a nibble of exquisite cheese or a chunk of serious chocolate, when there's serious umami a little goes a long way.