Cooking For Sig

A Sous Chef and Her Stories


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The Last Perfect Season

virginia 2Since I spent about a minute between arriving home from the airport and heading out to the grocery store yesterday evening, I didn’t have time for my usual cookbook browsing and neurotic shopping list assembly. Instead, I turned my cravings into recipes in my head and shopped accordingly. I was craving homey, carb-rich, comfort foods from my past and I knew I needed to eat my mom’s favorite party dish – Virginia Lee’s Chicken and Cold Noodles with Spicy Sauce. Continue reading

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Home Sweet Home

Matt and I are home after three consecutive weekends of travel and we could not be happier. It’s amazing the things that one finds gratifying after being away for an extended period of time – having our neighbor Robin hold the front door open for us, finding the glass of vinegar we set out to catch the gnats in our kitchen filled with tiny bugs, and smelling the lavender candle in the second bedroom wafting down the hall.

While it’s great to be home, it was also a beautiful weekend. Matt’s brother got married in Chicago. I was a bridesmaid for the first time and I was unsure what to expect. The hours of makeup and hair intimidated me. It was a long day. I was tired and grumpy. But the second the ceremony started, I was overcome with emotion. I walked down the aisle, escorted by my youngest brother-in-law. I felt the gravitational pull of family, the spine-tingling and butterfly-inducing promise of a life-long commitment, and the honor of being so close to someone on one of the happiest days of her life. Plus, the food was delicious, the hotel room was gorgeous, and I danced so hard my legs still hurt. Continue reading


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A Very Special Bottle of Wine

My favorite type of meal is a celebratory meal and this week I have been inundated with them. I went to one of my closest childhood friend’s bachelorette party in South Dartmouth last weekend. Fifteen girls gathered to celebrate. We made tortilla soup and tacos for dinner, and eggs and bacon and hash browns for breakfast both mornings. We took turns stirring and taste testing, chopping vegetables and toasting bagels, we added salt, and we nodded in agreement at the improvement. It was collaborative and communal and satisfying in a way that I wasn’t expecting. Continue reading


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My Plate is Full

nicoiseAnd for once, I mean that figuratively, because our dinner plates tonight are actually rather spare. You see, I am in the midst of a bachelorette-wedding-travel whirlwind that is consuming my life and wreaking havoc on my routine. But it’s not all bad. I flew home last night from a lovely weekend in Michigan wine country with my soon to be sister-in-law and a short stay with my in-laws in Chicago. On Sunday night, we had an amazing seafood dinner in Evanston. (You heard me right – great seafood in a Chicago suburb.) I had softshell crabs, a treat to myself whenever they’re on the menu. Continue reading


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Cooking for Matt

I”m going out of town of this weekend and leaving Matt home alone. Matt is a very capable man. He can manage a load of laundry just fine. He can grocery shop like a pro. He makes a good frittata and excellent chicken fajitas. He can follow a recipe better than I can because he has qualities I lack, like diligence and patience. And yet, whenever I leave town, I find myself stocking up on food, making extra meals, doing an extra load of laundry, and cleaning the house from top to bottom, so that Matt has everything he needs while I’m away. Continue reading


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Quintessential Summer

photo (21)For most intents and purposes, I am a city girl. I grew up in a city, went to college in a city, and moved to a new city with Matt to start my adult life. I’ve never owned a car. I like to have everything I need within walking distance. I like to have a short commute to work. I like to walk out my door and be assaulted by options – restaurants, stores, museums, and parks. Continue reading


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Sunday Is For Running & Eating

photo (20)In addition to my food addiction, I have a bit of a running problem. It started in 2007, when Christine, my favorite partner in all outdoor adventures, asked me to do a triathlon with her. My response: “That sounds crazy. Yeah, sure, why not?” She clobbered me in the swim and put further distance between us on the bike. But then, magically, like I had tapped into some hidden fount of energy, I caught up to Christine on the run and eventually passed her. It felt great and easy and natural and I didn’t really want to stop.  And I haven’t really stopped since. Continue reading