Archive for 'Christmas'
Christmas Eve morning, 10 o’clock. As always, we are rusticating in southwestern Virginia, where the magnolias are deep glossy green against the brown and the boxwood smells wonderful. Just had breakfast. And now I need to get serious about making enough cheese biscuits to get us through the next few days, and perhaps gingerbread with stars. You know, […]
The pushcart vendors in New York City are amazing. I’m not talking trendy food trucks here, but the unsung produce sellers who stake a claim near subway entrances and corner drugstores. This time of year, they jockey for position with the sellers of resiny Christmas pines, firs, and spruce. Where else can you pick up […]
Around this time last year at a holiday lunch, our friend Elaine Greenstein, an art teacher and author-illustrator of children’s books, gave us a beautifully wrapped but decidedly knobbly present. Intriguing. The parcel was both heavy and cold. When held up to an ear and shaken cautiously, it sloshed. I freed the object from tissue and ribbon, then lifted it […]
We’re heading South to rusticate for the holiday, and if I do nothing else, I’ll fill the house with the rich, spicy scent of gingerbread with stars or one last batch of cheese biscuits. Freshly cut pine and magnolia boughs will decorate the mantel, and the seasonal frenzy will give way to a profound mellowness. That is, […]
I would rather labor over cassoulet for 12 than bake Christmas cookies. The very idea makes me want to run screaming out into the street. Don’t get me wrong: I greatly admire the people who carry on this tradition, willingly or under duress. I’m just not one of them. Cheese biscuits, however, are a different […]
Pears are full of intrigue. Because they are usually rock-hard when you buy them, it’s difficult to gauge when they’ll be ready to eat and whether they’ll ultimately reward you with sweet, meltingly tender flesh. It’s no wonder that many shoppers pass them over for apples, which are immediately gratifying. But some things, as we well […]
A rich and rewarding life doesn’t just happen. You need to surround yourself with interesting people, have a sense of occasion, and know how to make your own fun. My schooling in this began when I was very young. One mentor I always think of this time of year is Aunt Eloise—in truth, a longtime friend […]