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Pasadena, CA, US

I'm a lawyer--very interested in cooking. My principal cooking interests are vegetable cookery and bread baking. I am married to an Italian who was born and raised in Milan and has family roots in Sardinia. Have traveled extensively in Italy. My cooking interests extend to anything Italian.

Recent Reviews

Re:Margarita-Marinated Grilled Skirt Steak with Tomatillo Salsa

The tomatillo salsa in this recipe is definitely the best salsa I've ever made at home--very refreshing. By contrast, the elaborate marinade didn't add much flavor to the skirt steak. In the future, I'll be making a double batch of the salsa and just giving the meat a simple salt cure before grilling. I'll also be using sirloin instead of skirt steak.

Posted: 12:52 am on August 15th 2010

Re:Classic Tomato Soup Recipe

Wonderful! For many years I made Craig Claiborne's "savory tomato soup" from the NY Times Cookbook. After trying this recipe, I couldn't go back to my old favorite. This has such bright flavor and is so easy to make.

Posted: 05:26 pm on July 21st 2010

Re:Grilled Chicken Tacos Alambres

One of the very best recipes ever published in FC.

Posted: 01:00 am on February 17th 2010

Re:Carrot & Coriander Soup

This soup has a haunting flavor of fresh cilantro, which I loved. The fresh cilantro definitely overshadows the dried coriander. I found that it also overshadowed the single jalapeno. The jalapeno I used must have been a mild one because my soup was not even mildly hot. My problem with this soup was that it had a slightly mealy, baby food-like texture. I would recommend adding a little extra liquid and, if necessary, straining the soup to make it thinner and smoother. This soup would make a nice beginning to a Mexican or Indian meal.

Posted: 06:54 pm on February 9th 2010

Re:Spanish Potato Tortilla (Tortilla Española) Recipe

Fantastic. An old favorite I've returned to. I like to add parsley to the onion mix toward the end of the cooking. It gives the tortill a little more freshness and some color. Leftovers make a great--and authentically Spanish--sandwich filling.

Posted: 03:22 pm on February 3rd 2010

Re:Creamy Potato Soup with Pancetta Croutons

Very tasty soup, but needs an herb to save it from being too bland. We've enjoyed it with rosemary. Dill or thyme would also be good. The croutons are a must.

Posted: 08:14 pm on January 3rd 2010

Re:Arugula with Hearts of Palm, Grapefruit, and Oil-Cured Olives

Delicious and refreshing--great in winter as a prelude to a heavier main course. This recipe also lends itself to lots of variations. I omitted the olives, added avocado and red onion slivers, and substituted a simpler dressing--still really good.

Posted: 11:28 pm on December 27th 2009

Re:Cranberry-Honey-Glazed Chicken

I was hoping the glaze would provide some noticeable cranberry flavor to the chicken, but it didn't. The chicken, without the cranberry relish, just had a pleasant but generic sweet-and-sour flavor, so I felt the time and trouble spent flavoring the cranberries with rice vinegar and thyme, cooking the glaze, and forcing it through a sieve was not worth it. Next time (if there is a next time), I think I'd just add a little rice vinegar and thyme to a commercial cranberry sauce and concentrate on making the relish.

Posted: 02:46 pm on January 19th 2009

Re:Cranberry Streusel Shortbread Bars

The recipe has potential but needs work. I liked the buttery shortbread crust and topping, and I especially liked the fact that it pulls away very cleanly and easily from the tin foil lining--no sticking to the pan if you've followed the instructions and used a foil liner. BUT the cranberry filling is bland and too sweet. I plan to experiment with the filling by cutting back on the sugar, adding a spice, and perhaps adding some other fruit.

Posted: 02:39 pm on January 19th 2009

Re:Lemon Bars

As far as the filling goes, this is the only lemon bar recipe you'll ever need. It's beyond delicious and much better than all the other lemon bar recipes I've ever tried, such as, for example, the one in the 1980's Joy of Cooking. This one is creamy and tart while the Joy of Cooking filling is gritty and cloyingly sweet. The filling is also marvelous for lemon tarts, big and small, and for lemon layer cakes. I don't use the crust included in this recipe because I dislike rolling dough. Instead, I opt for a pat-in short crust that contains a bit of whole wheat flour.

Posted: 09:03 pm on June 14th 2008