Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Tasty Treat: Best Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

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Einstein's theory of relativity changed the course of science; so too will my Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies change the course of, well, my baking at least. It's been years and years of off again on again experimentation and finally, finally, finally I've discovered the most amazing chocolate chip cookies. Crispy, chewy edges with soft chewy innards, my dream cookie, are now a reality.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Boston Baked Beans (my way)

My grandmother, while not from Boston, makes incredible baked beans. Every Christmas Eve, she hosts a buffet dinner and alongside the honey ham, parker house rolls, petit fours, Jelly Cake, potato salad and deviled eggs are her baked beans set on an old cast iron trivet in the antique clay pot she's been making them in since the 40's. Her beans are soft, a little sweet with an almost syrupy sauce. They go down easy.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Classic Meals: Esther's Fried Chicken

I've been sitting here trying to put words together for two hours and thinking how I use to complain about writer's block all the time. It was my ultimate excuse. Writer's block meant I didn't have to query work on my assignments or my fiction. I could go out for a walk or get a pedicure or clean the bathtub. Nowadays, ever since baby girl was born to be exact, I just don't have time for writer's block and I've found the a** in chair approach really is best (except for when the Internet and email beckons.) But really, now that I have a babysitter to come while I'm working, I feel like she's babysitting me too and ensures I work!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Easy Dinner: Sausages with Polenta and Swiss Chard

I'm spending the week in Virginia with my mother and grandmother and brothers and cousins and aunts and uncles. Everyone but me lives in Old Town, Alexandria and I do adore being overwhelmed with family. It's how I grew up: my grandmother up the street and my aunt and cousins round the corner and various and sundry other relatives sprinkled throughout the area. While Alexandria is a huge city outside an even huger city - Washington DC - for me and my family there's something very small-town about it. We've been here since the 1800's, since Robert E Lee lived here and since Northern Virginia was considered the South. Heck, to me and mine, we are Southern and we have a sad Confederate statue to prove it.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Tasty Treat: Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

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You know you're in Bourjaily-land when you peer into a tin of brownies and see all of the edges have been removed. We are an outside-in kind of family. My mother, father and older brother each got an entire long, narrow edge of brownie to munch on. While my younger brother and I had to be satisfied with the warm gooey innards. Tough life, I know. It wasn't until I started baking brownies that I finally even got to see what the big edge deal was and boy was it fabulous. Chewy and soft and chocolatey and sweet. I really shouldn't write a post like this unless I'm armed with a fresh pan of brownies... or chocolate chip cookie bars.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Easy Dinner: Red Wine Spaghetti

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"Where have you been!" wrote several of you last week when it became apparent I wasn't posting. Well, my other life as a freelance writer became stressful what with deadlines and contract negotiations. I apologize. Next time I have a deadline looming, I'll be sure to have something ready to go!


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