A Birder’s Guide To Everything

March 19, 2014 | By Adam Roberts | 0 Comments

You all know Rob Meyer as my friend who helped paint my kitchen orange in New York, but did you know that he’s also a movie director? And that the movie that he directed and co-wrote with our Oscar-winning friend Luke Matheny is coming out THIS FRIDAY? It’s called A Birder’s Guide To Everything and I was lucky enough to see it when it premiered at the TriBeCa film festival last year. The movie tracks a group of young birders as they hunt down the very rare, very extinct Labrador Duck. It’s also a heartfelt story about a boy who’s dealing with the loss of his mother and his dad’s impending marriage to another woman. It’s funny, it’s smart, and it’s opening THIS FRIDAY in select theaters and On Demand. That’s right, you can watch it at home! Or come watch it with us: we’ll be at the screening at the Sundance Cinemas this Friday at 7:45 where Luke will be conducting a Q&A afterwards. If you’re nice, you can have some of my popcorn.

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One Hour Chicken Soup

March 17, 2014 | By Adam Roberts | 36 Comments

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Imagine this. You get a terrible cold, you’re sick as a dog, your boyfriend gets you juice, soup (Pho from down the street), the works. Then you get better, fly to Florida for your parents’ 40th wedding anniversary, and while there, your boyfriend breaks the news: he has your cold. You’re not there to help, though, so when you return on Sunday–and he’s at the peak of his illness–you know you have to spring into action. You’ve gotta make up for all the TLC you weren’t there to give him during the first two days of his illness. Upon landing at the airport, you rush to the grocery store and stock up on everything you need to make the ultimate cold cure, Jewish penicillin: chicken soup. Only, you want to make it fast.

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That Time I Made Savory Oatmeal and It Was Kind of Weird But I Ate It Anyway

March 14, 2014 | By Adam Roberts | 28 Comments

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When I first heard about savory oatmeal, I felt confused. Onions in oatmeal? Is that even possible? What planet are we on?

I grew up eating oatmeal out of little packets, the kind you tear open, pour some water on and stick in the microwave. My preferred flavor was maple brown sugar, but occasionally I’d opt in for the apple cinnamon kind. Thankfully, no packets said “garlic and onions” or the younger me would’ve run screaming into the hills. The current me is slightly more open-minded.

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Stick A Fork In It (Or: When Food Blogs Stopped Being Food Blogs)

March 13, 2014 | By Adam Roberts | 92 Comments

Modern food blog convention would dictate that this post should begin with a picture. In fact, it’s a bit of a suicide mission to write a post without one. I went on to Google images (a risky proposition, because you can get sued for using someone else’s image) and then thought against it. The whole picture-at-the-top-of-a-post instinct is a byproduct of the very phenomenon I’m here to decry: the death of food blogs as food blogs and their reemergence as newfangled newspaper food sections and magazines.

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Salad Niçoise

March 11, 2014 | By Adam Roberts | 4 Comments

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I almost titled this post Salad Not-çoise because my starting point, with the recipe, was David Lebovitz’s blog post where he beautifully describes a salad–an authentic Niçoise–that is nothing like the one I ended up making. In fact, David might be horrified by the one I made, especially since he quotes Jacques Médecin, the authority on Provencal cuisine, as saying: “Never, never, I beg you, include boiled potato or any other boiled vegetable in your Salade Niçoise.” Shield your eyes, then, David and Monsieur Médecin. What you’re about to see may disturb you.

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Cutting Board Graduation

March 10, 2014 | By Adam Roberts | 14 Comments

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There comes a time in every home cook’s life when you bid farewell to a favorite cutting board and replace it with something better. My cutting board, for the past five years (or longer), has been a neon green rubber affair, one that I purchased at Williams Sonoma after getting knife lessons at the Union Square Cafe for my first book. The advantages were pretty clear: you could scrub the hell out of it and it wouldn’t warp. You could even throw it in the dishwasher. It was big, sturdy, and, most importantly, didn’t damage your knife. I loved how versatile it was (oh no, I’m talking about it in the past tense). You could put raw chicken on it and you didn’t have to worry about salmonella seeping into the pores. You could put several vegetables on it at once and still have room to maneuver. It really was a thing of beauty.

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Lou (A Story of Wine and Sardines)

March 6, 2014 | By Adam Roberts | 14 Comments

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If you’re lucky in your life, you’ll encounter a person who is so passionate about a particular subject, they become a constant resource, a trusted guide through a murky world you might not otherwise enter. Sometimes this happens socially–you meet a classical music maven at a cocktail party who gently nudges you towards Schubert–other times it happens commercially, as in: you stumble into a store whose proprietor reveals themselves to be something of an oracle. The latter scenario played out for me recently when I entered the store that popped up next to SQRL down on Virgil Avenue here in Los Angeles: Lou Provisions and Wines.

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Easy Weeknight String Beans

March 4, 2014 | By Adam Roberts | 15 Comments

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The name of the game on a weeknight, as far as I’m concerned, is “big results, minimum effort.” Recipes that meet that criteria are few and far between, but when you hit on one (like the roasted broccoli, for example) you’ll never forget it.

Meet your new string bean side. You won’t need your old recipes anymore, because all you have to do is memorize this one. It’s pretty flawless.

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