Tag Archives: Boston Globe

#GlimpseoftheOrdinary

Team photo: Boston Americans 1901 – proto-Sox

Wednesday, September 6, 2017 8:20 pm

Wednesday is Food Section Day. I pick up both the Boston Globe and the New York Times.

Manage a fairly “on time”  home arrival and even the signs put up by the Gas Company that the places where I usually park will be a Tow Zone  starting tomorrow at 7 AM doesn’t prove to be much of a hindrance – I get a place even closer to my house than usual.

tow_away_no_parking__10374.1426344590.500.659

They’ve closed off three blocks of a five block street. And then there was Harvey in Texas, so did all the Utility trucks go there? They haven’t seemed to have started digging and the pile of pipes is as tall as it’s been…

Not sure what to have for supper. Had a big salad for lunch, so maybe some toast, or there’s more of the bread and cheese not Baked French Toast. (The real problem with eating food that has no name is the effort to have to describe it every time.)

In the Globe (I start with the food sections, headlines can wait – what is this about Red Sox stealing signs???? Applegate? No, Boys of Summer – steal BASES, not signs  …)

There’s a  “Sicilian pasta  with Ricotta” and I remember that I bought some ricotta at the Farmer’s Market – last week, the week before??  Better check the expiration date.

All good – AND there’s the box of tri-colored rigatoni that I got on sale…

Tricolor-RotiniR

Put the water on, salt it like the sea.

Re-read the recipe to make sure there is no hidden ingredient or technique that will trip me up …so far so good.

SICILAN PASTA WITH RICOTTA

16 oz. short pasta shape (cavatappi, radiatore, mezzi rigatoni) I had tricolor penne. Prince. It had been on sale. It was also 12 oz. so I adjusted accordingly.

16 oz. whole milk ricotta – 2 cups. I scooped out half and then half of what was left.

¾ cup pasta water – I used 4 oz.

1 cup freshly grated pecorino Romano for serving

Olive oil, salt and pepper for serving.

 

  1. Bring salt water to a boil. Add pasta, in this case 6 minutes (more or less. I stand over it, spoon in hand, scooping up single pieces, “Are you DONE? Are you Tender? Are you Ready YET??” I look and taste to al dente.
  2. I have a measuring cup that fits under my colander, so when I drain I can have all the pasta water I want. If the water from a can of chick pease is acqua faba, shouldn’t past water be acqua pasta? Or acqua basta, as enough already!
  3. Pour ½ cup of the pasta water back into the pan, toss in the ricotta, and stir it all around. Add the hot penne and stir some more.
  4. Decide it needs more contrast, more bite, more zing than more cheese, so fish out a jar of Kalamata olives – just the thing.
  5. On the plate – a soup plate, because – I put the pasta, top it with some olives and a nice twist of black pepper.

Claudia Catalano Boston Globe Wednesday September 6, 2017, p. G4

I eat at kitchen table.

The downstairs people get a Peapod delivery while I sit down.

peapodstopshop

Leftovers will be for lunch OR a supper frittata later this week.

Time to put on the kettle for a cup of tea. And to read the rest of the papers.

Red Sox…..

RedSoxPrimary_HangingSocks.svg

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Filed under Recipe, Supper

Inventing Coffee Cake

Do You REALLY Live Here?

My Life As A Pilgrim

(the title of my yet to be written memoir….)

Chapter Six

Travel, travel back in time……..

And then there was the day we invented coffee cake.

Since most of Europe wasn’t all that into coffee in 1627, it’s really much more impressive then it sounds.

But we were young…..and we knew so little

me 1981 Joe Carlin

Seriously, young. What I looked like c. 1981.

baking bread Jean-François_Millet_1854 Kroller-Muller Museum

What I thought I looked like….Millet, for want of a 17th century role model (then – remember – no internet!)

It started out simply as baking.

Bread.

We baked and baked and baked. We baked just about everyday. We learned a lot about bread very quickly. But we did not know that there were actual 17th century instructions for bread. And we had the assumptions of the 1970’s – remember the Bi-Centennial? – to guide us.

Plat-bread-1

We didn’t know about this recipe. No internet. Not that many books on food history.

Basic bread – Four ingredients.

Flour. Water. Salt. Leaven.

We got it.

'Still life with a glass of Rhine wine, bread and fruits' by Sebastian Stosskopf (Alsatian painter, 1597-1657), 1644

We made bread that looked like the bread in the 17th century paintings.

And we learned to use the wood fired oven, before EVERYONE had a wood fired oven. And we were good at it. We saw the potential to use pizza as a training tool to learn about the wood fired oven.

Massive buy-in. Who wouldn’t want to help for pizza?

We got….a little bored by four, just four, always the same four, ingredients…

So we started

…..adding things.

Many things you can add to bread and they rather disappear in the loaf, at least visually.

A little sugar. We used brown sugar then  – because we didn’t have sugar loaves and most of us didn’t know we should want them.

still-life-with-fruit-and-sugar-loaf_unknown_about-1720

1720

Brown_sugar_examples

Because obviously brown sugar is more Oldie- Timie, right?

Butter. To make it richer.

A little milk Ditto.

A few eggs….why not?

chickens-at-Plimoth-Platation

Got hens? Use hen-fruit!

Not all at once, not every time, but more things, more frequently.

And then a few spices crept in.

cinnamon

Cinnamon

Ingwer_2_fcm

Ginger

Muscade

Nutmeg

ClovesDried

Cloves

Hmmmmm – that could be a song…..

Of All the Birds

Of all the birds that ever I see
The owl is the fairest in her degree:
For all the day long she sits on a tree
And when the night cometh away flies she.

Tu whit — Tu whoo,
To whom drink’st thou? — Sir Knave, to thee.
My song is well sung, I’ll make you a vow
That he is a knave that drinketh now.

Nose, nose, nose, nose,
And who gave thee thy jolly red nose?
Cinnamon and ginger, nutmeg and cloves:
that gave me my jolly red nose.

 

And then

 

Raisins.

More properly, raisins of the sunn.

Grape_Rasins_plus_Zante_Currants

Raisins and Currents – both are dried grapes, just different sized grapes.

The thing with raisins, is that everyone can see them.

Sometimes they are mistaken for flies….sometimes they concealed flies…….but with raisins you’ve made raisin bread, and everyone knows what that is.

So you learn to put the raisins in last and pull the un-raisined dough down around them….

We thought we’d made cinnamon raisin bread. But really, we had re-invented Gervase  Markham’s Banbury Cake.

Banbury_Cake_Gervase_Markham_1615

Because we didn’t know there were perfectly good cakes we could have made without any slights of hand and amazing feats of prestidigitation.

This was all in 1981 and 1982….it was Michael Best’s edition of The English Housewife where we saw the error – and genius – of our ways.

That wasn’t until 1986.

Markbested

We didn’t see it as coffee cake, or think of it as coffee cake, and certainly didn’t call it coffee cake. Bread . It was Bread.

UNTIL a day in 1981…in the fall….and a reporter for the Boston Globe was there when we were taking the loaves out of the oven and asked if it was coffee cake.…..

apearce

1981 – Abraham Pearce in the 1627 Village. This was the story the papers had come for. Or Thanksgiving. They were always there for Thanksgiving.

We neither agreed nor disagreed.

We may have pointed out a passing flock of geese overhead. Or those hens squawking about….and goats, we probably pointed to the goats, frolicking and gamboling as goats do…..

Perhaps another housewife threw the dishwater out her door, yelling, “Ware Slops!” like we used to do.

We may have sung…..

We all held our collective breath until the picture ran in the paper. The coffee cake was merely identified as bread, although if you looked close you could see the raisins…..

Just another day making history.

 

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Filed under Bread, Cake, Perception ways, The 17th century, The 1980's

Bean Town

Another Saturday night  in

National Baked Bean Month

here a deep breath away from Bean Town.

Random Fun Facts (and/or factoids) :

Boston became Bean Town as a branding ploy in 1907bean-town-origin-sticker An article in the April 25, 1907 Boston Globe describes the sticker:

“The sticker is in the form of an irregular seal about 1-3/4 inches in diameter, the lettering and design being in embossed white and the background a brilliant red. In the center of the seal appears a typical Boston bean pot surrounded by two clasped hands, the two signifying the fact that Boston will not only be ready to extend the ‘glad hand’ to the homecomers during the reunion week, but that there will be something more substantial in the way of entertainment than a mere greeting.”

This was not popular in every quarter of the city – beans were seen as being somewhat ‘common.’

And not Boston Common common….

“Boston Common (2014) IMG 2995” by Billy Hathorn – Own work. Licensed under CC BY 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Far too ordinary common.

 But wait – there’s more……

On August 11-16, 1890, the Twenty-Fourth National Encampment of the Grand Army of the Republic, a Civil War veteran’s reunion, took place at Boston. The Beverly Pottery Company of Beverly, Massachusetts supplied thousands of small ornamental bean pots as souvenirs for the troops, and this helped to make the bean pot a symbol for the City of Boston.

So, it seems that Beverly, Mass and Boston can duke out who was Bean Town first…

Meanwhile in 1910

And this is good old Boston,

The home of the bean and the cod.

Where the Lowells talk only to Cabots,

And the Cabots talk only to God.

-John Collins Bossidy

Sometime in the 1930’s

beanpot candy

These little candies – Boston Baked Beans – were available.

Which aren’t beans at all, they’re peanuts (which are legumes, which make them broadly bean family….pretty clever, candy-maker!) and a spicy cinnamon candy coating. These were among my favorites to find in my Trick or Treat bag at Halloween.

In December of 1952,

Boston Arena was the site of the first Beanpot Hockey Tournament

beanpot hocky poster In 1959 The Pot Shop opened on Boylston Street.

No, not THAT kind of Pot Shop…. Cannabis_sativa_leaf_Dorsal_aspect_2012_01_23_0830THIS kind of Pot Shop

PotshopBoston Vincent Zarrilli1959

Vincent Zarrilli, 1959

with THESE kind of Pots.

with THESE kind of Pots. The Official  Beanpot of Boston, saith the Chamber of Commerce in 1962.

And last, but certainly not least, THESE Boston Baked Beans….

Unwrapped went to visit here

Unwrapped (Food Network) went to visit here

And one last Boston Baked Bean….

Beans on Toast

Beans and Egg on Toast

Beans and Egg on Toast

My niece has been adding baked beans to her eggs and toast. Beans, not only great for supper, but also great for breakfast!

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Filed under New England

Pi Day is coming!

3.1415

Which makes me think of pie…..not just the circumference of a circle

pie chart

but if you’ve applied to MIT, there’s the other pi to consider

Since March 14, ’15 is also Opening Day for Plimoth Plantation there will be some pie there, too, in the 1624 English Village.

Parsnip Pie - minus the 21st century pan  - contender for Pi Day 1624

Parsnip Pie – minus the 21st century pan – contender for Pi Day 1624. It has to be seasonal as well as 17th century

A 21st century recipe for Parsnip Pie

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Filed under Pie, Recipe, winter

Red Potato Salad

More of a pinkish mauveish reddish….pnkyredthat’s what happens when you mix red beet root ….

with just about anything.

In the Victory Garden Cookbook it’s called Russian Beet and Potato Salad. Not red potatoes, not this time.
I thought I could play up Spud/ Sputnik angle by calling it Spudnik, but then I thought it might go unnoticed…..or worse, you’d think that I could NOT spell, and  didn’t even know how to use Spellcheck.
Sheryl Julian who was with the Phoenix back in the day, now with the Globe – I have a whole lot of her Sunday Globe columns in my clippings file. Here’s a story with her Apron obsession, which doesn’t sound so obsessive to me…..

The New York Times also had an Apron photo essay/story recently….

But the season is good for beets and potatoes, and this salad is almost a stand alone meal, if you add a hard boiled egg – a cold one for a hot day and a hot one for a cool night. For now is that part of September that is still Summer, but encroaching Autumn.

Autumn Leaves - John Everett Millias 1856

Autumn Leaves – John Everett Millias 1856

Red Beet and Potato Salad

2 medium potatoes

¼ c chopped parsley

1/3 c chopped scallions (or chives or Vidalia’s)

1 cucumber

1 dill or half sour pickle (or 2, 2 pickles)

Salt and pepper

4-5 medium beets

Mayonnaise

Horseradish mustard

  1. Cook potatoes until just tender, peel as soon as they can be handled and cut them into ½ inch pieces.
  2. Peel cucumber, cut in half and remove seeds with a spoon. Cut into ½ pieces.
  3. Cut pickle in to ½ dice and add with spuds and cukes.
  4. Add parsley and scallions and mix gently.
  5. Cook beets, slip off their skins and cut to ½ pieces.
  6. Just before serving add beets and season to taste.
  7. Dress the whole thing with a mixture of mayo and horseradish mustard.
  8. The longer the beets sit with everything the more magenta the whole thing gets. Sprinkle with vinegar of it’s too flat. Salt and pepper everything, too.

Victory Garden Cookbook p. 25.

Victory Garden Cookbook - Marian Morash

Victory Garden Cookbook – Marian Morash

Fractals, chlorophyll and solstice - what's not to love about September?

Fractals, chlorophyll and solstice – what’s not to love about September?

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Filed under Books, Summer, TV shows

(Pizza) Pie Are Square

 \pi r^2 is the mathematical formula for the radius of a circle.

The old joke is

Pi R square.

No – Pie are round, cornbread are square

But real pizza are square.

Real pizza being the pizza I was raised on, made by my aunt at the crack of dawn and available when we went to visit. So, Italian pizza are square and American pizza are round.

Punch, or Puncilla with a a pizza - I know it's round, he's Neapolitan

Punch, or Puncinella with a a pizza – I know it’s round, he’s Neapolitan

I’m not sure when I got my favorite pizza pan, but this is the pan I have made LOTS of pizza in.

It's ceramic , so it's like a baking it in a pizza stone

It’s ceramic , so it’s like a baking it in a pizza stone  – I got this from the Pampered Chef

In 2007 I finally found a pizza dough recipe that approaches my aunts. It was in a story in the Boston Globe. I have the clipping, so I know the exact date: December 12, 2007.

In this story, family members compete for the best pizza, in a Pizza face-off. Between the the two dough recipes, I found my best, most reminiscent of my childhood  dough.

Big Pan Square Pizza

Dough

4 cups  flour  – it’s really better if part of it is whole wheat – anywhere from 1/2 cup to 2 cups as part of the total 4 cups.

4 1/2 teaspoons  dry yeast (don’t sweat the details) that’s 2 packets

1 cup warm water with 3/4 cup warm milk

2 teaspoons salt

1 Tablespoon Italian seasoning*

6 Tablespoons (or more) Olive oil

Toppings:

sauce/cheese/etc – you know the drill

  1. In a large bowl mix the flours together. Add the yeast and mix some more. Add the salt, you’re seeing the pattern. Add the herbs and mix it up one more time.
  2. Add the water and milk mixture and 2 tablespoons olive oil. Mix until you can’t mix anymore, then turn it out and knead it until it’s all smooth and and when you poke it with your thumb, it springs back at you.
  3. Add a little more olive oil to a bowl (wash out the one you started with if you want to use that – no rough ragged bits in the side to slow you and complicate things later). Cover. Refrigerate overnight or up to 72 hours.
  4. Oh, you want pizza TODAY??? Then leave out of the fridge and let rise until doubled 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
  5. If you’ve refrigerated the dough, let it come to room temp, about 2 hours.
  6. Set oven to 500 and if you have a pizza stone, put it in the oven now.
  7. Put 2 Tablespoons olive oil in your cookie sheet/ large four cornered baking pan.  Press the dough into the pan, dimple the top with your fingers (it’s no really necessary, but it’s lots of fun). Put sauce on (not too much). Because this is going to bake for a while, you’re going to put the cheese on later.
  8. Bake for 25 minutes.
  9. Take out of the oven and put on the rest of your toppings. Put back in the oven for another 5-10 minutes, until everything is hot and melty and just right .
  10. Let it cool a little before before slicing and serving.
  11. Mangia!

* Italian seasoning – I never bought a premixed Durkee’s definition of Italian until I made this recipe. I have no idea what possessed me. I have actually made repeat purchases. One shaker jar V. pulling out several and making choices…..

The original also called for dry milk powder, which I bought and used for virtually nothing else, and when I ran out I started using just plain old milk, which I’m much more likely to have on hand.

The original story was Pizza face-off is a family holiday festivity by Nancy Shohet West in the Boston Globe, December 12, 2007 p. E4.

Durkee Italian Seasoning

Durkee Italian Seasoning

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Filed under Christmas, Pizza, Recipe

(Pizza) Pie Are Square

 \pi r^2 is the mathematical formula for the radius of a circle.

The old joke is

Pi R square.

No – Pie are round, cornbread are square

But real pizza are square.

Real pizza being the pizza I was raised on, made by my aunt at the crack of dawn and available when we went to visit. So, Italian pizza are square and American pizza are round.

Punch, or Puncilla with a a pizza - I know it's round, he's Neapolitan

Punch, or Puncinella with a a pizza – I know it’s round, he’s Neapolitan

I’m not sure when I got my favorite pizza pan, but this is the pan I have made LOTS of pizza in.

It's ceramic , so it's like a baking it in a pizza stone

It’s ceramic , so it’s like a baking it in a pizza stone  – I got this from the Pampered Chef

In 2007 I finally found a pizza dough recipe that approaches my aunts. It was in a story in the Boston Globe. I have the clipping, so I know the exact date: December 12, 2007.

In this story, family members compete for the best pizza, in a Pizza face-off. Between the the two dough recipes, I found my best, most reminiscent of my childhood  dough.

Big Pan Square Pizza

Dough

4 cups  flour  – it’s really better if part of it is whole wheat – anywhere from 1/2 cup to 2 cups as part of the total 4 cups.

4 1/2 teaspoons  dry yeast (don’t sweat the details) that’s 2 packets

1 cup warm water with 3/4 cup warm milk

2 teaspoons salt

1 Tablespoon Italian seasoning*

6 Tablespoons (or more) Olive oil

Toppings:

sauce/cheese/etc – you know the drill

  1. In a large bowl mix the flours together. Add the yeast and mix some more. Add the salt, you’re seeing the pattern. Add the herbs and mix it up one more time.
  2. Add the water and milk mixture and 2 tablespoons olive oil. Mix until you can’t mix anymore, then turn it out and knead it until it’s all smooth and and when you poke it with your thumb, it springs back at you.
  3. Add a little more olive oil to a bowl (wash out the one you started with if you want to use that – no rough ragged bits in the side to slow you and complicate things later). Cover. Refrigerate overnight or up to 72 hours.
  4. Oh, you want pizza TODAY??? Then leave out of the fridge and let rise until doubled 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
  5. If you’ve refrigerated the dough, let it come to room temp, about 2 hours.
  6. Set oven to 500 and if you have a pizza stone, put it in the oven now.
  7. Put 2 Tablespoons olive oil in your cookie sheet/ large four cornered baking pan.  Press the dough into the pan, dimple the top with your fingers (it’s no really necessary, but it’s lots of fun). Put sauce on (not too much). Because this is going to bake for a while, you’re going to put the cheese on later.
  8. Bake for 25 minutes.
  9. Take out of the oven and put on the rest of your toppings. Put back in the oven for another 5-10 minutes, until everything is hot and melty and just right .
  10. Let it cool a little before before slicing and serving.
  11. Mangia!

* Italian seasoning – I never bought a premixed Durkee’s definition of Italian until I made this recipe. I have no idea what possessed me. I have actually made repeat purchases. One shaker jar V. pulling out several and making choices…..

The original also called for dry milk powder, which I bought and used for virtually nothing else, and when I ran out I started using just plain old milk, which I’m much more likely to have on hand.

The original story was Pizza face-off is a family holiday festivity by Nancy Shohet West in the Boston Globe, December 12, 2007 p. E4.

Durkee Italian Seasoning

Durkee Italian Seasoning

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Filed under Christmas, Pizza, Recipe