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Thursday, July 23, 2009 09:29 pm

An authentic gourmet Tuscan bistro?

“Education courses teach you words that say nothing.” I heard this bit of wisdom from my music teacher, Esther Duncan, when I was a teenager. In her day, she was a legendary f...
Thursday, July 16, 2009 11:02 pm
It’s quirky — the good kind of quirky. Its eclectic assortment of edibles reflects, I suspect, the owners’ tastes as much as their customers’. And it’s been i...
Thursday, July 9, 2009 07:27 pm
It’s comforting to know that Illinois has some serious competition in the wacky governor sweepstakes. I feel like the folks my husband, Peter, and I met in last January in Louisiana...
Thursday, July 2, 2009 02:58 pm
It’s one of my earliest sensory memories: climbing our old white peach tree, picking one of the rosy fruits, and taking a big bite. The taste was sweet, floral, delicate — alm...
Thursday, June 18, 2009 05:47 pm

The good life on a three-family farm near Rochester

Garrick Veenstra and Andy Heck under their tent at the Old Capitol Farmer’s Market PHOTO BY DAVID HINE It’s as inevitable as death and taxes: when growing vegetables without chemicals, weeds will be involved. Even though sophisticated mulching and planting techniques can minimize and, with diligence, even eliminate them over time, weeds are still there, lurking in the backgrou...
Wednesday, June 3, 2009 05:58 pm

Visit Edgar’s for a tasty suprise

I didn’t know it existed until I saw the sign on the Goodwill store at Chatham Road and Wabash Avenue. Driving away from the garden center behind Hobby Lobby after buying more flowe...
Wednesday, May 27, 2009 07:03 pm

White meat chicken predominates. But should it?

“I’ll bet a dollar we get something this time besides [fried chicken] ribs and neck,” said Leon. “How do you suppose breast would taste?” [Later ….] &...
Wednesday, May 20, 2009 01:03 am
When I was a child, it seemed impossibly exotic. When I was an adolescent, it seemed impossibly tacky: Trader Vic’s in St. Louis. I never ate there, though. For my family, din...
Wednesday, May 13, 2009 01:03 am

Respecting the rest of the pea

I’ve always loved peas. Those frozen peas available in grocery stores aren’t terrible. But they can’t begin to compare with new baby peas, tiny marbles of sweetness that a...


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