Monthly Archives: September 2010

Project Food Blog: Ready Set Blog

Gran Fran and Ms. Iz

Why Me? I’m Awesome…..

I know. Right? Can you believe I had the nerve to say that? Here is my very good reason….. is hosting a food blogging contest and wants to know why I deserve to be the next food blogging star. So, I figured, I’ll start with a very bold statement and take it from there.

In reality, though, it’s not about me, really, though that’s always fun. It’s really about the content, the soul of the writing and what people take away from my posts.

Going out on a limb here to state that my writing is funny, smart and educates those who read it. Being raised alongside tomes by Julia Child, The Chicago Manual of Style and all of the works of Dr. Seuss — especially Green Eggs and Ham, I honed my writing skills.  I want to convey the essence of what it feels like for me to cook, to serve friends and family and most important, to create. My passion for food is equal to my passion for fun, so my kitchen is a lively place where friends and family come to meet.

The recipes I post are based upon (or fully lifted from) my mother’s kitchen. She is known as Gran Fran, along with my dad, just known as Joe, they have 11 grandkids.  Her sense of flavor and adventurous nature in the kitchen allowed me and my four siblings to get an education in the kitchen that not many of our friends got.

Growing up in the 1970s in Queens, NY, we were a large family with two working parents. The recipes Gran Fran shared with us (over the phone from her office in very low almost inaudible tones for fear her office mates would hear her conveying a prized roast beef recipe to one of us) we’re still using today and passing them onto our own children. The key was to always use fresh ingredients, make as much as you could from scratch, and experiment here and there with old favorites.

My initial intention in starting the blog was to continue the story lines Gran Fran had laid out in her own blog, which she had stopped updating for awhile. As time went by, my blog became more about how I incorporate these family favorites into my life. I’m a single parent, so my budget is tight, but I’ve always lived by the same rules as my parents did when it comes to food. I cook most of our meals, and maintain the ideal of most-things-made-from-scratch.

I am not here to preach to those who do not enjoy cooking. Rather, this blog is to shine some light on the ease and fun that I find in cooking and to inspire others. The joy I have in recounting events of the day or how my meal turned out, or a memory the dish I just made evokes, is enough of a prize.

But, to be considered the Next Food Blogging Star would be a terrific bonus. I deserve the title because of my passion for cooking, the quality of my recipes, the long reach of my stories, and the love my family has for cooking.

So, please, starting Monday, September 20th, click on the badge to the right (the one with my lovely face on it) and vote for me!!!

ps: My little girl is my real reason for pursuing anything at all :)

Posted in blogging, cooking with kids, foodbuzz, gran fran, posts, recipes | 4 Comments

Back from Paris

It has been a good four months since I’ve posted, and I apologize for my absence. But, little Ms. Iz and I went to Paris for five wonderful weeks this summer which took a lot of prep beforehand and a bunch of reorientation afterward. And, so, now that back-to-school mania has calmed down, I am back.

I did chronicle our trip on a separate blog, which you can access here  at Summer Jet Setter. There are a few days missing on the end of the trip, but all of Paris is there in all it’s glory.

To the left, you will see the most amazing Baked Egg dish I have ever experienced.  We managed a lot of eating in Paris, but this was the best for me. Half a dozen eggs, half a pound of bacon, some cream and lots of potatoes, and you have yourself a fabulous dish. The pan it was cooked in was brought to the table. I managed to eat almost the whole thing myself, but in hindsight, I wonder if this was meant for more than one person.

My good friend Fred went to Paris a few weeks after me. Before he left, he asked for explicit instructions on how to find the holy grail of baked eggs. I gave him the info, he missed the restaurant several times, finally found it, and sent me a lovely picture of his meal. Worth going half way around the world for these eggs, we both agreed.

Here is a recipe from Epicurious for baked eggs in ham crisps. I have not made it, but wanted to include at least a guide for how it’s done.

Paris was extraordinary and I am very much prepared for the new school year and all that lay ahead!!

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