An encouragement: Tomato sauce

Tomato sauce! We go through so much of it I’ve always thought it might be one those things that’s worthwhile to make in bulk, but so many recipes involved peeling endless tiny tomatoes and/or removing seeds, neither of which sounds the slightest bit appealing. This method involves slow-roasting, which makes the skins more or less […]

Better safe than sorry

Walking up the street today on the way home, M and I were passed by the ice-cream truck, which then stopped a hundred metres up the street by the park. M: The ice-cream truck comes every day in summer! Me: Yep. M: But not in winter. Me: No. M: (thoughtfully) When do you suppose is […]


Thank you, sir, for worrying about the right things: John Williams has been making wine in California’s Napa Valley for nearly 30 years, and he farms so ecologically that his peers call him Mr. Green. But if you ask him how climate change will affect Napa’s world-famous wines, he gets irritated, almost insulted. “You know, […]

Sensible words from Michael Pollan

Well, you know, it’s very interesting. Since this book came out, where I argue don’t buy high-fructose corn syrup and don’t buy products with more than five ingredients, suddenly the industry is—you know, they’re so clever. I have to hand it to them. But now they’re arguing that their products are simpler, and there’s new […]

Estonian apple cake, an ongoing saga

Once upon a time I tried to make apple cake from my grandmother’s verbal recipe: “It’s a sweet dough, with yeast and cardamom. Then apples and some sugar and flour on top.” Yeah. My sister had the rather more practical idea of going over to Vanaema’s place and watching her make it. That sensible approach […]

It’s a good thing there aren’t many in a package

For some years now various people who’ve spent time in Australia have been telling me about Tim Tams, which are a sort of chocolate-covered cream-filled cookie. It’s not their cookie-ness (although they are fine cookies) that makes people pursue them across oceans, though, it’s what you can do with them. The thing to do is […]


Tomorrow when we wake up, the sun will rise a bit earlier and set a bit later. Hurray! Light! Happy solstice. To celebrate I made cookies with a very large quantity of instant espresso,* figuring a bit of extra perkiness was seasonally appropriate, however substance-induced it may be. — * which is not ever to […]