The Dorothy Project: Poppy seed cake.

Welcome to installment No. 1 of The Dorothy Project, in which I’ll cook my way through many of the recipes in my grandma’s old recipe file. First up: one of my favorite desserts from growing up. I loved poppy seed cake so much it was the top layer of our wedding cake. Get my grandma’s old-fashioned recipe on writes4food.com — it’s really easy! Continue reading

Summer melon and golden tomato salad with honey-lime vinaigrette.

Working on the theory that food that grows together tastes good together — and on a corollary theory that Feta cheese makes pretty much any summer salad that much better — I hacked together this recipe for Summer Melon and Golden Tomato Salad (did I mention Feta?). It’s so simple it’s stupid. Plus, honey-lime vinaigrette. You’ve got all the ingredients on hand or at your neighborhood farm stand. Get the recipe on writes4food.com! Continue reading

Couscous salad with apples and feta.

I made up this recipe after we had a similar salad at a delightful little bar/cafe in Lucca, Tuscany. Couscous is the ideal base for any kind of salad—and this one has a lovely range of flavors and textures: crisp, sweet apple, salty Feta, briny olive, crunchy almonds. It’s kinda perfect, actually. Get the recipe for Couscous Salad with Apple and Feta over on writes4food.com! Continue reading

Quite possibly the best summer gazpacho.

quick blender gazpacho recipe | writes4food.com

I’m sort of a junkie for gazpacho — that most refreshing (and no cook!) of summer soups. I’ve shared many variations on writes4food.com, including a Cool White Gazpacho that’s traditional in Spain but uncommon here. This latest Quick Blender Gazpacho recipe is my go-to for the Summer of ’17. Get the recipe on writes4food.com! Continue reading

Quick fresh tomato soup.

low-fat tomato and roasted red pepper soup recipe | writes4food.com

Who doesn’t love grilled cheese and tomato soup? It’s, like, the best lunch ever. And it makes a great easy supper. But—blech!—canned tomato soup. Nope, you need this Quick Tomato Soup recipe: really great, good for you and almost (almost!) as easy as opening up that can. Get the recipe on writes4food.com. Continue reading

Quick, summery tabbouleh salad.

homemade tabbouleh salad recipe | writes4food.com

Traveling in Italy recently, we saw a whole range of prepared salads on antipasta bars and at little food shops. Salads made with couscous and roasted vegetables, or white rice and chopped veggies, or farro with cheese and seasonal vegetables (my personal favorite). I’m sharing on writes4food.com a recipe for tabbouleh salad, a Middle Eastern composition of grain, herbs and chopped vegetables that’s in the same vein. No-cook, refreshing, the perfect centerpiece of an easy summer supper. Get the recipe on writes4food.com! Continue reading

Black pepper taralli (or, the best cocktail snack ever).

black pepper taralli

When Rob and I traveled to Italy recently, I was obsessed—obsessed!—with taralli, those most perfect of cocktail nibbles. Cute and round and packed with flavors of olive oil, pepper and salt, these little, round, shortbread-like crackers are perfect with an aperitivo. They’re hard to find in the U.S., so I was delighted to find an easy recipe to make them at home. Get it at writes4food.com! Continue reading

Grandmother’s blueberry buckle.

Armed with a pint of fresh blueberries from Northern Kentucky’s Thistlehair Farm, I dug out Grandmother’s recipe for Blueberry Buckle. I found it in her battered copy of “Betty Crocker’s Picture Cook Book” from 1950 and made several enhancements, notably adding orange zest to the streusel topping. It’s perfect with vanilla ice cream, and nearly as good eaten over the kitchen sink right before bed. Get the recipe on writes4food.com! Continue reading