Sometimes I regret my offer to bake for a friend's birthday. I've had several friends forgo the traditional cake in favor of pie. While I do love a layer cake, I can muster up great pies: pecan, pumpkin, lemon meringue, French silk or any number of creamy, fattening pies.
My daughter knows that in our family, food is an expression of love. The other night I made a stew, and she praised the meal between each spoonful. Her proclamations were almost comical, with long sighs as if she was experiencing new levels of flavor.
As a child, I ate sheets of teriyaki-flavored nori by the dozens. Green flecks lived in my teeth. I'd try to get non-Japanese friends to eat some, but I think they assumed I was crazy to eat stuff that was considered fish food.
If California strawberries that stay in California are as good as residents claim, mangoes in Hawaii definitely rival that legend. The sweet and perfectly tender varieties grown on our island seem to dwarf those that are shipped in, still green and well packaged.
My husband and I disagree on the necessity of balancing the five tastes: bitter, salty, sweet, sour and umami. This is the guy that says he's going off sugar and then justifies eating frosted Pop Tarts because they're "not dessert."
Cauliflower has come a long way since its days as a steamed vegetable covered in thick, viscous and suspiciously yellow cheese sauce. I wasn't ahead of the trend in accepting cauliflower at my dinner table.
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