Modern Pantry

Spring Brunch

Gradually, our days begin to lengthen. Young leaves unfurl in the warmth, and blossoms begin their glorious show. It feels as if the world has come alive, all sparkling and new. Mornings are especially effervescent with this vibrant energy…

Emerald Forest Cake

At this time of year, a trip to the farmers market yields slim pickings for the seasonal cake baker, and for a time, this seasonal cake-recipe writer was similarly lacking in inspiration, until I turned my attention to all the wonderful local products in our store cupboards and freezers.

Proven Pearings

I speak from experience when I say that a pastry chef’s palette of seasonal ingredients is crowded with caramel and chocolate browns when winter rolls around. But if you look closely, there are plenty of local options for satisfying your sweet tooth. From the sweet, creamy yellow flesh of a Seckel pear, to the papery mahogany skin of the hazelnut, to the deep, dark brown of extra-dark, bittersweet chocolate, what winter’s offerings lack in bright color and flavor are made up for in richness and texture.

Holidays on the Lamb

The last two months of the year are a time of celebration and giving thanks. Family and friends gather around the holiday table to reconnect and reminisce while enjoying a hearty meal together. When I was growing up, lamb often found its way onto our holiday table. An untraditional meal to many, lamb became our tradition, and to this day, the smell of lamb wafting through the house brings back all those memories of home and comfort.

The Proof is in the Parsnip

Perhaps you’ve heard the expression, “Fine words butter no parsnips.” In other words, flattery (“buttering up”) is meaningless without the behavior to back it up. A variation of sorts on “Don’t judge a book by its cover,” it’s a particularly apt turn of phrase when speaking of parsnips, that humble root vegetable whose gnarled exterior is at odds with its creamy, sweet interior.

Spilling the Beans on Fixing Favas

I admit it: I may have moved to Seattle, first and foremost, because of the food. Growing up in the Midwest, I’m no stranger to Jell-O salads with dubious add-ins like carrots and whipped cream. I can, with unnerving accuracy, predict the contents of a noodle-heavy casserole (called “hotdish” in Minnesota), even under its customary layer of gloppy cheese…

A Very British Picnic

Surprisingly, although the British summer is often non-existent, we Brits have a splendid repertoire of traditional summer foods, which we particularly love to enjoy at outdoor picnics and festivities…


Food trends have a way of coming on quick and fizzling out in much the same way. When I started to see quinoa on even the most casual restaurant menus, I had a feeling it was destined for burnout, but surprisingly (and thankfully) it seems to have some real staying power. And for good reason…

Baked Lemon, Honey, and Rosemary Cheesecake

At this quiet time of year, when the earth is still sleeping and only a few green shoots remind us that we are about to tumble headlong into the madcap cacophony of spring, the pickings are slim when it comes to seasonal produce…


When the temperatures drop, it’s time to turn to comfort menus and heartier dishes. There’s nothing like coming home to a warm family meal after a day on the slopes or a nice winter walk. Here is a perfect winter meal that does just that. This menu also works well for entertaining, and a lot of these components can be prepared ahead of time, so you can relax with your guests…

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