Recipe: Cousin Alfred’s Meat Sauce

vatican.city.food.recipe.img_2636

When I ask my mother how I'm related to Cousin Alfred, the answer usually goes: "Well..." and then there's a  contemplative silence. I can see her running through all our different relations, high up on the family tree, doing mental gymnastics to connect one branch to another. Eventually, she comes out with "I think he's my mothers, mother's cousin's"... and then, either she trails off, or my attention span wanes because, really, all that matters is that he is family, one way or … [Read more...]

Recipe: The Pope’s Fettuccine | Fettuccine alla papalina

vatican.city.food.recipe.img_2551

Before I knew about Papalina-style noodles, I thought Carbonara was the bees knees. But it turns out that Papalina is the richer version of carbonara. It uses cream, Parmesan, and prosciutto instead of the pancetta or guanciale (pig jowl) from in carbonara. One peppery bite in, and mac and cheese is a bland, happily forgotten memory. Let me be clear. My translation of the Italian is not entirely accurate. Papalina means skullcap, not pope. But I dubbed this recipe the Pope's … [Read more...]

Recipe: Ukranian Pasta Bake | Baked Lokshyna

ukraine.food.recipe.img_1092

Wouldn't it be amazing if bacon could cure every ailment. In the Ukraine, I bet it does. Broken heart? Bacon. Spilled beet juice on your favorite sundress? Bacon. Thursday afternoon existential crisis? Bacon. I'm thinking it's worth a try. That's where this pasta bake comes in. "Lokshyna" are Ukrainian noodles, and today we've dressed them up with plenty of sizzling bacon, creamy cottage cheese, and a couple of cracked eggs to bind the casserole together. The finishing touch … [Read more...]

Recipe: Swallow’s Nests | Nidi di Rondine

nidi-di-rondine

What being a grown up has taught me: There's no way to turn couch surfing into exercise. I cannot be a mermaid for a day, no matter how hard I will myself to grow a tail. Superman isn't going to swoop down out of the sky and carry me away with him. Heck, he can't even find a phone booth these days. That being said, there are lots of good things I've learned as a grownup. Making my daughter guffaw makes my heart happy Eating around the table with loved ones is worth a pile of … [Read more...]

Recipe: Cheese & Potato Pierogi

poland.food.recipe.img_1408

At any given moment I'm an arm's reach from my cellphone. It's not just a phone, it's a laptop, a GPS, and - when my daughter tells it "I love you" - a female voice replies with almost lifelike bashfulness "You are sweet."  Frankly, I'm frightened. That's why, when I receive mail - real mail, bundled up in cardboard and clear packing tape - I get so excited. Cardboard boxes don't talk back. The postage stamp doesn't double as a GPS when I'm fifteen minutes late for a show. It simply sits … [Read more...]

Recipe: Vegetarian Momos

nepal.food.img_8721

Today let's stove top travel to Nepal, sit in the afternoon sunshine, and make our own little mountain ranges, good enough to eat. Momos are carefully folded dumplings, each crease like a ridge in the most glorious of mountains, Mount Everest. (Did you know Nepal has 8/1o of the world's tallest mountains?) This is a recipe for quiet days. Contemplative days. Days when you want to be more, learn more... and find out what you're made of. With each fold you evolve. Listening becomes easier. Being … [Read more...]

Recipe: Burmese Coconut Chicken Noodle Soup (ohn-no-khao-swe)

myanmar.food.img_7916

Oh, yes. Even on the hottest day in steamy, tropical Myanmar, you'll find gaping bowls heaped with noodles, chicken, and silky coconut curry. It doesn't matter if you're sick. It doesn't matter if your skin is tacky with salty sweat.  "Ohn no khao swe" is what's for dinner. . You can call it Coconut Chicken Noodle Soup, if you'd like. To a local, this curry topped with egg and a garden of garnishes is breakfast, lunch, or dinner. It's as easy to find in rambling shacks as it is in roadside … [Read more...]

Recipe: Chilled Buckwheat Noodle Salad with Feta & Cracked Black Pepper

montenegro.food.img_6506

It only seems natural that we eat something black during our week at the Black Mountain (a.k.a Montenegro).  But here's the thing - nothing in life is black and white. There are all sorts of shades of gray (that's where the beauty is - somewhere in the muddled middle). So, in the spirit of variety, we're adding a few shades of gray to our pasta. We've got black pepper, white feta, and charcoal grey buckwheat noodles with a bit of sparkle from pools of golden olive oil. This is simple as … [Read more...]