Cooking For Sig

A Sous Chef and Her Stories


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Polar Plunges and Pork Carnitas

imageRemember that streak of healthy recipes I shared with you? Well, it’s over. Because I have discovered the wondrous miracle of homemade pork carnitas. They’re so phenomenally easy to make and so fantastically delicious wrapped up in corn tortillas and topped with shredded cabbage and guacamole, that we might never eat anything else again. Continue reading

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Finding the Dek

imageLast week at work, I sat in on a short talk by Christian Caryl. He spoke to a room full of graduate students, all eager to learn the secret to writing well. Have a point, he told us. And get to it quickly. Support it with just the most relevant facts and say it all with passion. All of which, he confessed, is much easier said than done. But then he suggested the following: Start with the dek. The dek is the very brief description immediately following the headline. The dek is your entire story summed up in a line or two. Once you have the dek, the story’s arc is set and you can travel the curve from start to finish, filling in the details along the way. Continue reading


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The Matt Chronicles: Chanukah Edition

“Chanukah Edition” is a bit of a misnomer. Matt and I are not currently celebrating Chanukah. We are being very bad Jews, as usual. However, we still happily receive our annual Chanukah presents from my mom, who makes sure that we both have a little something to open on all eight nights. I always loved Chanukah growing up. I practically held my breath, waiting for dad to come home from work. As soon as he arrived, we would light the menorah on the mantle in the living room. Dad and I sang the prayers, and mom sang her best approximation of Hebrew words and a tune. Then we would each open a present, before we let dad change out of his work clothes and start cooking dinner. Continue reading


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Plum Crunch (Part One) and a Mandolin

kirWednesday night we’re having dinner at our downstairs neighbors’ apartment (have I mentioned how much I love our building?) and I offered to bring dessert. I have a habit of baking chocolate desserts, partly because Matt and I are both chocoholics and partly because I have several absurdly easy and insanely delicious chocolate dessert recipes in my repertoire. And yet, I feel very strongly that summer desserts should be fruit-based; it just seems seasonally appropriate. All summer long in Maine, my mother made fruit pies with whatever berry was in season: strawberry rhubarb pie, blueberry pie, and (if we were really ambitious and went out to pick wild berries) tri-berry pie. I know mom’s pie crust recipe by heart, but I could never match a Janice pie. They are magazine cover pies and I just don’t have her magic touch or the patience to acquire it, so I am making a plum crunch instead. Continue reading