I should have been writing. Instead…biscuits.



biscuits reduced size

Yep, biscuits. So much more rewarding than wrangling over a first draft that points to the dwindling intellect of a ‘certain writer’.

They were the finale after the arugula pesto and the tofu spread.

Pretty sure I lost my two readers with those last two words, but stick with me here…

Solution to tofu that tastes [and behaves] like spackle: Heat the olive oil, bloom the spices in the oil, *then* add the tofu, the caramelized onions, the arugula, and whatever else won’t resist your purposeful grope into the fridge.

Essentially, you make a tofu scramble and pulverize it in the food processor. Now you actually have something with flavor that you can spread on bread, but without the sinfulness of cheese.

Back to the biscuits…today, I used the New York Times’ all-purpose biscuit recipe as my starting point. I had already sullied the food processor when I made the pesto, so I snagged a cube of butter from the freezer and grated it into the flour. [The photo below is telling me I should have also added parm to the mix.]

parmesan-cheese grater


So, no cheese this time, but afternoon coffee and biscuits ensued.

dog mug

Sitting in the backyard sun, feet up on another chair, two of my favorite foods, my truly favorite person, and the knowledge that the writing projects will still be there when I saunter back. Life’s good.



I should have been writing. Instead… [the sequel at 375 degrees].

The weather is cool enough to fire up the oven, so it’s time to roll out the crusts I made on Saturday.

My French teacher, Brother Reinkens, would prefer I call it a ‘galette’–do you get the feeling I’m haunted by my high school years?…time out…my facial tics are back…….okay, the medication’s kicking in…I call this, not so simply, “If Picasso made a rustic apple-dotted-with-raspberries pie.”

rustic apple pie

This is the smaller, experimental cinnamon-with-vanilla crust, so you’re looking at a pastry with six-inch sides. I turned over the larger crust to my wife, who opted for those plums from the neighbors. That hummer is still baking.

However, here is the real reason to make extra pie crust–in this case, sour cream pie crust.

pie crust strips

These food-like mutants of dubious origin will soon morph into strips of bubbling butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon.

Like this, for instance…

pie crust strips baked

Finally, lest** you think barbarism reigns supreme in the kitchen, my wife dials things back with symmetry, order, even beauty [though don’t think I’m not reveling in the plentiful ooze on the right edge].

plum galette


**My apologies for the snooty use of ‘lest’. Trying to make up for the ‘arson aftermath’ look of the pie crust strips, I’d say. [An aside: I really don’t get why Food Network hasn’t come calling for my descriptive flair. I think Ina Garten and her Hamptons crowd and I would hit it off quite well.]

Geez, the kitchen smells good. Time for an afternoon mug of Mayan Blend…

dog mug


I should have been writing. Instead…

First of all, I’m thankful my boss is so forgiving, so understanding, so

  • interested in cooking as I am.
  • accepting of the power of displacement activities. [i.e. baking, procrastination in the form of picking up apples from the backyard, watering the front yard heathers to stave off the 100 degree heat, baking some more, making poblano pesto, watching golf–a sure sign that I’ve completely succumbed to the lures of the passive life]
  • open to writing tasks being mere suggestions in one’s life, not mandates.

Of course, I am he. [Yes, that’s grammatically correct and it sounds so wrong, so snooty, so…sophomore year English class.]

Well, anyway…[picture Brother McCarthy hovering, arms crossed, berating me for not getting to the point within the first 20 words]

I’ve pounded out my first 1000 words already, but I’m in debt from the two previous days of productive weenieness.

I blame my neighbors.

You see, no matter how misguided and unjust the practice, my boss is also firmly on-board withfingerpoinitng


Those nice folks dropped off a bag of fresh-picked plums and my wife [and co-boss] mentioned the word ‘galette’ and since I took French during my first two years of high school, I really had no choice.

And because I am extremely intuitive when it comes to baking, I concluded that I needed a crust.

No big deal. I like to try different crusts, but I would say any crust should work for you.one-and-a-half of these little hummers are sitting in the fridge–

I now have one-and-a-half of these little hummers [aka crusts] sitting in the fridge–all those gluten strands relaxing, all those fat/flour/butter globules [hardly prime terminology for cookbook authors] hydrating.

The half of a crust resulted from me thinking, ‘Hey, I have a half cube of butter, plenty of flour, plenty of salt, plenty of sugar, full-fat yogurt, and an adventurous spirit!’. Okay-yes, my inner monologues aren’t quite that formal, but I threw those together in proper proportions, fed that adventurous spirit by tossing in cinnamon and some vanilla, and well…

Will let you know how this all shakes out.