rocky mountain oysters

If you’ve ever eaten a Scotch egg, you’ll know that I do it no justice in this picture. A proper Scotch egg should have a soft runny center, and a perfectly browned, crisp sausage coating. Lighting for the image should be soft, not harsh with dark shadows.

But as usual, there’s a back-story. If you’ve been reading this blog for some time, you’ll know that there are situations that demand that I post pictures of unattractive food (i.e. the oyster post). This is one of those instances.

I have an obsession with Scotch eggs, and will order them whenever I see them on a menu. If you haven’t tried them before, April Bloomfield makes an incredible version at The Breslin in New York. And if you’re not anywhere near The Breslin, you can always check out the recipe in her book “A Girl and her Pig”.

I love eggs of any shape or kind: turkey eggs, quail eggs, farmers’ market eggs with their deep yellow yolks. So you can imagine my joy when I walked into the butcher one morning and saw that he was carrying farm-fresh goose eggs the size of tennis balls.

I knew that I had to use them in a way that would show off their size. No omelets or quiches here – it was time to go big or go home. Which in my mind called for one of two recipes – Scotch eggs or deviled eggs.

Giant deviled eggs seemed to be a little too Dr. Seussish (Seussian?) for my taste. Not that giant eggs in sausage casing aren’t weird. But at least the Scotch eggs would look like two round meatloaves.

I bought my supplies, and off I went, thrilled for my kitchen adventure.

When I got home, I got to work prepping my ingredients. I boiled the eggs, cooled them, and encased them in 2 lbs. of freshly ground pork sausage. I then put them back in the fridge, each egg now the size of a softball.

Rodney called me later that day to let me know when he’d be home. And he asked his usual question: “what’s for dinner?”

This is one lucky guy by the way. In 2000 he started dating someone who kept her Cornflakes and Clorox in the same cupboard. Now almost 15 years later, “what’s for dinner?” is often answered with “grilled salmon and asparagus” or “smoked pork chops and black beans”. But sometimes he hears the following, not one of his favorites:

“It’s a surprise.”

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chicken_nuggets 003

I recently started to use Siri on my iPhone.  I’m not sure why it took me so long to start using it. I’m not opposed to the technology like some, secretly believing that machines are taking over the world.   In my favorite picture of Rodney, he’s disguised as a cyborg, so I’m actually very machine-human friendly.

The actual reason is that I finally got myself an iPhone 5. And all the rumors are true.  Siri really is life-changing.  I can now command orders like “Siri, send my husband an email!” or “Set reminder: need to buy vinegar!” Siri makes the mundane so thrilling, like I’m living in my own Bourne Identity movie. A shaky camera follows me as I brush my teeth and get dressed for the day.  “Siri, call Rodney!”

But one of Siri’s most useful applications is that she helps decode my nearly 2-year old’s language.

For any of you with young children, I’m sure you know the drill.  When Emma and I “talk” it generally involves me scrunching my face, looking at her puzzled, laughing in recognition at what she just said, and then turning to Rodney and whispering “I have no idea what she just said.”

To an innocuous question such as “Emma, where are your shoes?” the response is generally “Mini-man”.

“What would you like for dinner?”


“What color is the block?”


“Where is Emma?”


Although she’s starting to speak in clear sentences, she still favors a few words that are indecipherable.

I decided to reach out to Siri as a last attempt to break down the language barrier.

Fortunately, Siri with her no-nonsense attitude and quick detective skills, was able to provide a window into my little one’s mind.   

“Siri, what is “a-bud-ta-day?” 


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bacon_cashew_caramel_cornDon’t worry, I haven’t let you down.  I’m bringing snacks to The Bachelorette finale viewing party: sticky bacon caramel corn. As Chris Harrison promises at the end of every season, this will certainly be the most dramatic finale in Bachelorette history.  So it probably goes without saying that I needed the most dramatic snack I could get my hands on.

I’ve watched the show religiously for as long as it’s been around.  Yes, I even watched the first season with that dirtbag Alex Michel. The only season I’ve missed is Deanna’s season. She has the energy of an aging Coonhound. I know, not so nice, but I think it’s fair game when you sign up to have helicopters, designer clothes, and reasonably good-looking, if not somewhat creepy dudes thrown at you for six weeks straight. And yes, shockingly, that’s how long filming lasts, from the courtyard meet and greet, to getting down on bended knee. Six weeks!  It would take me that long just to learn how to make a proper espresso, let alone meet, date, and become engaged to my life partner.

These days I don’t have much time for TV, so I’ve had to narrow it down to one show.  And I just can’t part with The Bachelor.  Lucky for me, Rodney has the same addiction.  He’s the only guy I know who’ll actually cop to watching the show.  Ever see the episodes with a live studio audience?  There’s a reason why all of the guys are wearing baseball hats and fake mustaches.  Guys do not like to be associated with this show, unless they’re an actual cast member of course. At which point they’re desperate to be associated with it.


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bruschetta-4I love working from home.

Because now I can sit in bed and Google terms like “S&M” on my laptop and not worry that I’ll be under investigation by my company’s HR manager.  Booted from corporate America for searching pornography with office-provided equipment, a large black “X” next to my name for all eternity.

It’s not that I regularly search terms like “S&M”, but I was a little curious about whether food-related S&M is an actual thing.

There is a back story here. 

As many of you probably know by now, we live in Chelsea in Manhattan.  Which is the epicenter of all things male. I’ll never forget the time I saw a young couple on the street with their two pre-school aged kids.  The kids suddenly took off down the sidewalk, yelling back to their parents “Mom, Dad, can we go to The Nasty Pig?” And the parents yelled back “OK! We’ll meet you there!”

Apparently The Nasty Pig, which still exists on 19th St., had a cute little dog that would come visit the kids at the door.  I’m not sure if the parents ever let them inside.  Hopefully they didn’t.

I’ve actually never been inside The Nasty Pig.  Kind of like my interest in visiting a Talbots – just not high on my priority list. But even if one day I summoned the courage to waltz inside, something about owner’s hulking demeanor and studded high tops suggests that women – particularly casually-dressed Type-A-looking women – would not be welcome.

Based on window dressing alone, I can make some assumptions about the merchandise inside.  A pretty good set of outfits and objects related to horseback riding- chaps, crops, reins, bits, things of that nature.  Not intended for horses, of course.

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oystersWe’re officially out of oyster season.  Actually, we’ve been out for a while, but it’s taken me quite some time to make this dish as it calls for a last-minute trip to the fish market to pick up oysters.  Which is completely out of the way, making this a less-than practical dish. 

To make matters worse, it was expensive and not that delicious.  So really, I don’t know why I’m posting this recipe other than the fact that it’s a window into my efforts as opposed to something that I’d really like you to cook for your family. 

But I’ve been craving oysters lately.  Hopefully because they’re contraband right now and not because I’m pregnant.

You know that handy little mnemonic about only eating oysters in the months that have an “R”?  Well it’s true. Do not eat oysters outside of those months.  Unless they’ve been cooked to a sad, rubberized version of themselves, which is exactly the task I took upon myself this week. 

A little backstory: last July, I went out to dinner with Rodney and friends and got horribly sick from eating a half dozen Long Island oysters.  At the time of our dinner, I was blissfully unaware of a developing outbreak of something called Vibrio Parahaemolyticus. 

Vibrio what?

I’ll get to that in a minute. 

But an actual outbreak.  A little bit like this, but without the biohazard suits.  So technically, just a few people from the Health Department standing around, not all that worried, but investigating what might have caused the high number (9) of oyster-related bacterial infections that came through the Tri-state hospitals that week.


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