Polenta from Fresh Corn

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Sometimes a recipe has to be well timed.  I come across dozens of recipes daily.  I pin a handful of them to make later.  If something especially strikes me, I’ll pin it to the “Dinner This Week” board which I consult when writing my grocery list.  This recipe reached out through the Internet and screamed “make me right now” very conveniently on Tuesday morning.  My local farmers’ market is Tuesday afternoon, so I carefully collected corn, tomatoes and eggplant along with my usual haul of eggs, peaches, strawberries and sourdough bread.   Yotam Ottolenghi wrote Plenty, a book which I … Continue reading

Corn Salad with Red Onion, Epazote, and Cotija Cheese

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Summer meals can be delightfully lazy.  Buy pretty ingredients (not hard at all during the California summer), combine them in a bowl and crumble on some cheese or drizzle on some olive oil.  Serve at once, preferably outdoors with good friends. Unfortunately most of our summer meals here in Berkeley are still eaten inside.  Once the sun deserts us the temperature drops with shocking speed.  Where just 5 minutes ago we were blissfully warm clad in shorts and a tank top, suddenly the sun drops below the horizon and we speed into the house in search of sweatshirts and blankets.  … Continue reading

Strawberry Peach Crumble

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I adore summer fruit.  Bring on the berries, the peaches, the apricots and cherries and nectarines.  When each arrives at the market, I buy them in massive amounts.  Twenty dollars disappears into a giant paper bag of blueberries, and the blueberries themselves disappear nearly as quickly as the twenty dollars. Early in every summer, I think that summer fruit is just so delicious raw.  I can’t bring myself to make blueberry pancakes or strawberry shortcake or anything that actually requires heating something that is so sweet and perfect in its natural state.  I read a recipe a month ago that … Continue reading

Reflection: Surviving the Swim

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I’ve wanted to complete a triathlon for a long time now.  I was actually training for one back when I lived in Boston, but we moved out to Berkeley about a month before the race date.  Training fell by the wayside with adjustments to a new job, apartment, and city.  Running is just easier than biking or swimming from a logistics perspective.  Put on your shoes, and run out your front door without any real worries about routes or flat tires or finding a pool or what time lap swim happens to be. Completing a triathlon has been a goal … Continue reading

Asparagus and Mushroom Tacos with Quick Pickled Onions

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When I was young, without fail, whenever my mom would ask what we wanted for dinner, my sister and I would chorus “tacos!”  Taco night was our favorite.  There was something about the self-assembly part of taco night that made it extra special.  I usually loaded mine up with extra cheese, only adding lettuce or tomato if strongly encouraged. I still love taco night, but these days vegetables play a starring role instead of being a simple afterthought.  I have written about taco night before, as it’s a favorite in our house.  While I love these zucchini and potato tacos, … Continue reading

Blueberry and Cheddar Cereal Bowl

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Some would argue that Northern California has no seasons.  In my part of Berkeley it is 67 degrees nearly every day with just a few degrees leeway in each direction.  Somehow, my body still senses the seasons, and oatmeal and wheatberry breakfast bowls give way to green juice and smoothies.  J introduced me to this breakfast the first summer we were dating.  I, always quick to jump on any excuse to eat cheese first thing in the morning, quickly added it to my summer rotation.  It reminds him of the summers he spent in Rhode Island with his family.  I … Continue reading

Race Recap: 2012 Mermaid Series Alameda Sprint Triathlon

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I finished my first triathlon!  I didn’t drown in the Bay.  I didn’t freak out in the middle of the swim and have to be rescued.  I swam 400yds, biked 12 miles, and ran 2.5 miles, all successfully, and I did it in just over 90 minutes.  That’s the short summary, what follows is an (excessively) detailed account of my race. I had packed everything the night before, so I woke up at 4:30 AM to have a cup of coffee and eat some oatmeal with banana and almond butter.  I did a final obsessive check of everything I had … Continue reading

So I’m Doing a Triathlon Tomorrow…

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So I’m competing in my first triathlon tomorrow, and I’ve kept the whole thing kind of quiet here on the blog.  At first, I was afraid I’d chicken out or get injured.  Then writing about it made me just a little extra nervous.  But now, I wish I ‘d written about the training.  I’ve been searching around looking for other people’s first time accounts, and there just aren’t enough beginner triathlon stories out there.  So here are some brief thoughts on this training cycle, and also a few things I’m totally freaked out about before the race. At first, I … Continue reading