Local Chocolate In My Own Backyard

Chocholistic dark chocolate and goji berries

Chocholistic dark chocolate and goji berries

contributed by Katy Morris

We are always on the look out for local culinary talent to share with our readers, and with this one, we struck gold….er, uh, chocolate. We’ve found four unique women who have taken Fairfield County, CT by storm with their diverse and delectable chocolate.

Organic, kosher, fair-trade, vegan, raw, GMO and soy free? We’ve got you covered.  And they all sell online so if you don’t live in CT, you can be just as chocolate satisfied as we are. Here’s to local talent! Continue reading

Table Verte,Vegetarian French Bistro, NYC

Chef Ken Larsen, Table Verte

Chef Ken Larsen, Table Verte

If you’re staying local this summer but dreaming of Paris, head to Table Verte on 7th Street in the East Village, NYC, for a taste of traditional bistro fare. Well, maybe not so traditional since Table Verte is vegetarian. And as far as I can see, it is the only French vegetarian restaurant in NYC.

That alone, bumped this spot to the top of my “must check it out” list. Continue reading

MagNoodles: Organic Pasta for your Summer Pleasure

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Recently, a friend of E’s, a budding Broadway star at the ripe old age of 23, asked me if I would boil up some of his college pal’s Mom’s “cool” pasta and consider sharing my thoughts with my readers.

 Sure! But I have lists growing outa of the ears of my lists about places to eat, people to call, products to check out. So it’s been a little while since I first read the label on MagNoodles Smart Pasta and marveled.  Continue reading

Naturally Delicious at the Lime

Malibu Salad with Grilled Salmon

By Camillo Ferrari

The vibe at the Lime restaurant in Norwalk, CT is a throwback to the late 70′s. Square sheets of glass protect faded, striped umber and orange tablecloths and customers’ business cards are wedged between cloth and glass. A smattering of haphazardly framed photos of early 1980′s T.V. icons hang next to kitchen tools and framed notices of events from another era.

Continue reading

Candle 79 Lights the Way

 

photo: Mimi Giboin

I’ll admit to feeling a quick flutter of excitement when friends suggest eating together and the expectation is that I chose the “perfect” spot.

I rapidly flip through my mental rolodex, wondering if they want the meal to comfort them or blow them away with offbeat creations? Do they want a hip, cacophonous environment or a conversation friendly dining room?

When I ask these questions, I often get the hand-wave and hopeful “YOU chose”. Continue reading

Ready, Stuff, Roll for Chanukah

Giveaway is now CLOSED. BUT please keep on reading and find the scrumptious recipe at the end of this post.

Sometimes the mere suggestion of a twist on tradition is enough to get me going in the kitchen.  And I wasn’t even thinking about Chanukah yet.

On the last day of the  outdoor Westport Farmers’ Market in November, organic farmer, Patti Popp of Sport Hill Farm, beckoned me to come check out her pile of brussel sprouts still firmly attached to their stalks.

My focus shifted as I noticed the generous, fan shaped LEAVES fanning out at the tip of these nobby supportive stalks.

THE LEAVES?  I had never given them a moment’s notice, and likely had never even seen them before.  They were both  dusty and vibrant and Patti encouraged me to experiment with these lovelies as wrappers for whatever filling I saw fit. Continue reading

Labor Day Reflections

Labor Day’s signal is loud and clear.

Like Pavlov’s dogs, we respond to the first Monday in September with a wave of sadness as the date proclaims that summer is over. Not so fast!

I’ll take this Labor Day to give thanks to those who advocate for fair wages, better working conditions, and fair trade. Now is a good time to re-state our commitment to honoring those who grow our food with concern for our environment and better nutrition for our families.

I’ve come closer to my food sources this year, through an all organic, GMO free, guaranteed local farmers’ market  in my hometown, in  Westport, CT.  As a result of the  persistent efforts and support of town leaders, a visionary and super smart (and strict) market manager and tireless volunteers, I can now turn to my local (within 120 miles) market for farm fresh deliciousness each and every week. Continue reading

Dean’s Beans Organic Coffee Company

contributed by Melissa Roberts

Do you ever really think about your coffee? I never did.

Though my morning cup is a daily ritual, I neither cared nor thought about where the coffee came from as long as the brew was hot and strong. But coffee is big business and a controversial topic environmentally and politically–points that came to my attention recently with the discovery of Dean’s Beans.

Dean’s serves up coffee with a conscience. Continue reading

Radical Roots and Chef Cassandra Purdy

Some days I’m pressed for time and speed shop through my farmers’ market, stopping only long enough to grab the goods and move on.  On more leisurely days, I meander from farmer to chef, getting the juice on what’s growing and cooking. Continue reading