April 9, 2014
Guys, I’m on a scone jag.
Apparently, I’m quite susceptible to jags. I get on kale jags during which I eat roasted kale with every meal for weeks. I’m in the middle of a lace jag in both knitting and crochet, producing dozens of doilies and filmy shawls like an old biddy.
A couple weeks ago I had an incredibly disappointing scone from (sigh) Starbucks. It was so unsatisfying, such an affront to the good name of moist, flavorful scones, that I made three different kinds of scones that weekend alone – making my pastry-loving friends and colleagues very happy. And my freezer very full.
This recipe is a variation of the very first scone recipe I fell in love with, back in high school when I first discovered the magic of the oven. Rich with the mahogany sweetness of brown sugar, bumped even higher with a bit of molasses, and loaded with toasted pecans and brown butter, this is a far cry from the sad, dry scones in the coffee shop pastry case.
April 7, 2014
The first day that I walked into Red Bread was the day that the LA Times ran a photo of the newly-opened brick-and-mortar Culver City store/restaurant on the front page of the Saturday Section, along with an article praising its rye. Not being a subscriber, I did not know this, and all of the bread had been sold out by the time I stumbled in at 2pm.
The next weekend, not being what you call an early bird, I again went in during the afternoon, but there was no loaves of sourdough to be had. No matter, a loaf of Russian black bread was tucked under my arm, and I filled my belly with the best quiche I’d had since Soul Kitchen.
April 4, 2014
Locanda is one of those restaurants I find it difficult to write about. Of course, it’s good. Honest food, some of it innovative, in an inviting space with an excellent bar. We even scored a table at the front windows facing out onto Valencia Street.
Everything was delicious and we left happy — but I guess what I’m trying to say is that it wasn’t exciting. Then again, is an Italian osteria meant to be exciting? Isn’t the entire point of the genre extremely simple but well-made, seasonal dishes?
March 23, 2014
Isn’t it so gratifying to find a kindred spirit? When Jessica of Thread and Bones reached out to me for an impromptu brunch while she was in LA, I had just the spot in mind — Gjelina in Venice, the much-hyped, reservationless spot on Abbot Kinney that’s held the food scene in thrall for years.
Over coffees, cocktails, and the clickety-clack of our cameras, under the wary eyes of the desperately hip front-of-house staff, we discussed our paths and passions and Paris — we had both been in the city at the same time and somehow managed not to meet, despite having similar haunts.
To ground the ephemerality of a friendship in its first flutterings of being formed, we had earthy Moroccan baked eggs and sturdy polenta studded with kale and bacon. And cocktails to loosen tongues, bien sur, not that we ended up needing them. We needed another hour or two of meandering through the Venice shops to try to talk ourselves out, and we were still yet unsuccessful. To be continued.