An open-ended love letter, culinarily inspired.


a cook and her book


I am writing a book.


That, my friends, is the short of it. Continue reading


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the sugar knock

“Can I trouble you for a cup of sugar?” Neighbor A asks politely, knowing full well that Neighbor B will oblige with a smile on his or her face and a sweetness rivaled only by the sugar itself.

“Of course! Here, take two.” 

I call it “the sugar knock.” The simple act of crossing property lines and asking one’s neighbors for something, be it sugar or not, is an iconic display of neighborly kindness that I’d like to believe is still very much alive and well. The term is just a catch-all, though, as it can really be applied to any neighborly request: a loaf of bread, a flashlight, a hedge trimmer. I’ve done it plenty of times myself, and have even borrowed things I didn’t really need just as an excuse to meet my neighbors without seeming strange. When I moved into my grad school apartment in New York City, I knocked on my neighbor’s door asking to borrow something in the hopes that maybe I could make the big ole city start to seem a little smaller, as silly as that may sound. I don’t even remember what I asked her for, the lady in Apartment 301 C, because that really wasn’t the point. Continue reading