Public domain photo by JJ Harrison ( — Own work, CC BY-SA 2.5,

Easy, cheesy, tomatoey pasta? Yes please! Try this social media inspired, easy pasta dish and before you can say “TikTok” the serving bowl is empty!

Before I go any further I have an admission. I don’t have TikTok and probably never will. I’m in my 50s and it just seemed that if I did, it would be weird. I actually didn’t even know that anyone was cooking on TikTok. I first saw this recipe on Instagram, then suddenly I saw a lot of recipes on Instagram for this same exact recipe. …

Karolina Grabowska photographer credit.

Chances are that you have never heard of Corn Relish. Corn relish is a traditional Southern condiment including the use of cooked corn kernels and is spiced with red and green bell peppers, mustard seed, and equal parts sugar and cider vinegar. There are various types of recipes for Corn Relish and may vary from region to region. I saw one recipe with flour put in it as a thickening agent. I am not doing that here as for me that would be ruining it.

Often Corn Relish is used at the table as a garnish or side dish to…

Mother Grains: Recipes for the Grain Revolution Hardcover. by Roxana Jullapat., (2021) W. W. Norton & Company., (352 pages)

Mother Grains is a lovely cookbook for so many reasons. I write a lot of cookbook reviews, many of them are positive, so why is this one different? The answer is this: The research.

The biggest reason to purchase this cookbook was the time put in by the the author. Roxana Julipat is someone who knows what she is doing and loves the food that she was writing about.

My baking section of my home library is full of cookbooks that feature recipes that were made to include grains other than wheat. This is not unique. Unfortunately, most of the…

Public Domain by Sonabona — File:Kookoo-sabzi.jpg (Version of 20:07, 25 February 2011), CC0,

This variation on the Frittata and Omelet imbues the egg dish with the flavors of spring and summer. A mainstay of the middle eastern Deli, this might become a go-to in your home after trying it.

I’ve lived in many cities that had small Delis or Bodegas that you could get a cup of coffee in on the way to work. In many of these delis they would normally have a display case up top with some cold items on display to purchase à la carte. It would be Quiche slices, Pastia or more often Kuku. I didn’t know what…

By Amadscientist — Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,
By Amadscientist — Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,
Public Domain photo by Amadscientist — Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

When you want BBQ but don’t have a BBQ, this oven tri-tip is what you should be cooking. For the main dish or tri-tip sandwiches, this is sure to please.

I don’t currently have a BBQ grill, but I still like the food that is traditionally cooked at cookouts. While I love burgers and hot dogs, my go-to is tri-tip. Tri-tip is part of the sirloin subprimal cut, usually referred to as “bottom sirloin.” This cut of beef has been referred to by a variety of names, including “Newport steak,” “Santa Maria steak,” “triangle tip,” and “triangle steak.” So names…

By Talskiddy at English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0,
By Talskiddy at English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0,
By Talskiddy at English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0,

“All Summer long
I shall rule just and fair,
Bring your crops to fruit
With the light that I share,
With fire and water,
From earth into air,
But the Wheel it keeps
Steadily turning.
And on the noon of the Solstice
I’ll give up my crown,
To the cold and the Dark Holly King. “

Noon of the Solstice Song by Damh the Bard


I have long celebrated the Summer Solstice, and have seen it become an important celebration for my family. Over the years, I have enjoyed many memorable Summer Solstices, where we lit a bonfire or…

By vanz — flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0,
By vanz — flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0,
Public Domain by vanz — flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0,

Deep in the heart of darkest America. Home of the brave.
Ha! Ha! Ha! You’ve already paid for this. Listen to my heartbeat.

When I was in my senior year in high school we lived with our relatives, and as a result had access to cable again in what seemed like forever. Being back in California in a metropolitan area also provided more access to things outside of the three big cable companies. With a stroke of well-timed luck, I was able to watch the New Years (1984) special “Good Morning Mr. Orwell,” an extravaganza that featured among others, Peter…

Photo by Mick Haupt from Pexels
Photo by Mick Haupt from Pexels
Photo by Mick Haupt from Pexels

My first Job after moving back to San Diego was a surreal experience, one that I will never forget.

When I got out of the Military, I moved to the pacific northwest for a while. I was unable to make a living there, so at my parent's suggestion, I moved back in with them in El Cajon. They were long-haul truckers so they were not home most of the time. My younger brothers still lived at home and while not ecstatic about me moving back with the parents, accepted it well enough.

For no good reason, I had not gotten…

By Maja Petrovska — Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,
By Maja Petrovska — Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,
Public Domain by Maja Petrovska — Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

I’m always looking for quick, flavorful dinners for my family. Bamia is a great addition to your repertoire. One hurdle with this dish is the Okra. Outside of Gumbo or fried Okra, not many people are familiar with it in America. I’ve had variations of this in Afghani restraunt’ s, and it’s always something I enjoy eating very much.

One issue that many people have with Okra is that it is mucilaginous, resulting in the characteristic “goo” or slime when the seed pods are cooked. …

Paul Downey from Berkhamsted, UK — Socca
Paul Downey from Berkhamsted, UK — Socca
Public Domain by Paul Downey from Berkhamsted, UK — Socca

Chickpea flour flatbread, made in a jiff in your cast iron skilled. One template, dozens of possibilities.

The flatbread called Socca is a specialty of southeastern French cuisine, particularly in and around the city of Nice. Socca is unleavened and made from chickpea flour and little else. The method for making Socca is simplicity itself. A thin batter is made of the chickpea flour and just a few other ingredients. The batter is poured into a preheated cast iron griddle and finished in the oven. …


Dean Jones is a Librarian, Cookbook Reviewer, and writer. Dean lives in the SF Bay Area with his lovely wife and their six kids.

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