Tuesday, March 31, 2009

comfort food

for my friend, connie, who is craving rigatoni and invited us to dinner tonight.

Cheesy, hammy, gooey rigatoni:

1/4 lb. ham, sliced thick
1/4 c. Fontina cheese
1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp. flour
1/2 lb. rigatoni
1/4 c. dry bread crumbs
1/4 lb. Mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup Provolone cheese
3 tbsp. butter
2 c. milk

Dice the ham. Grate cheese coarsely. In saucepan, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter over low heat. Stir in the flour and cook, stirring frequently, until it bubbles. Whisk in the milk; bring to a boil, stirring constantly and continue to cook for a minute. Stir the ham and the cheeses into sauce. Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Cook rigatoni in boiling salted water until almost done. Drain and mix with sauce. Season to taste with salt and plenty of pepper. Butter a 1 1/2 quarts baking dish and pour in rigatoni. Cover loosely with foil and bake until bubbling, 25 minutes. Remove foil; heat broiler. Melt remaining 1 tablespoon butter and toss in bread crumbs. Scatter crumbs over noodles. Brown the dish in the broiler for about 5 minutes and serve with massive green salad, chianti, and if you've got room, dessert.

Monday, March 30, 2009


having one of those days where my heart and brain are just racingracingracing, and since i don't have a candle handy, thought this might help me wind down.

Friday, March 27, 2009

happy weekend

this weekend i'm going to take my sweet dog, lucy, for a winter walk on the beach. she's getting old, and moving more slowly (aren't we all), but she perks right up as soon as she smells the salt water.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

window of the day

to do item no. 64

have yet to see the cherry blossoms in japan, but i have walked around the reservoir in central park under a canopy of pink flowers. not quite the same but still gorgeous.

photo by tirau dan.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

think pink

when you're having a bad day, just think pink. these photographs by yvette inufio do the trick.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

what i'm craving

... is a trip to le marche aux puces de Saint-Ouen, the famous flea market in paris, to find two vintage chandeliers for my study and bedroom. but since i don't work for AIG, i'll settle for... by those nifty swedes at ikea. just $39.99. gotta love it.

what i'm reading

this book is the most sensuously gorgeous love story, one that affirms the power of art and creativity over hatred and destruction. it's published by europa editions, a tiny powerhouse publisher that seems to have a genius eye for spotting smart, original books that you can't put down.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

happy st. paddy's

... a wish for a bit of irish luck to one and all.

Friday, March 13, 2009

window of the day

i love this worn-down balcony, which still retains its graceful elegance and, perhaps, memories of grander days. in my dreams, i'd open those blue doors some summery morning, a tray of fresh pain chocolat and cafe au lait in hand, to enjoy breakfast while i watch the world go by.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

sweet things

in anticipation of spring, i bought this sweet bird (and cupcake!) from the super-talented kate wilson. and really, when you think about it, what would the world be like without songbirds or baked goods?

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

hidden talents

lately i've been thinking that too many of us conceal our talents, tuck them away, like treasures in a box. in the past week i've met an engineer who decorates cakes with fondant icing, turning them into confection dreams and a friend's contractor, who built a recording studio in his house to write music that he's too shy to play publicly. the mother who carpools my son to soccer is a black belt in karate. another friend writes screenplays at night....an entreaty to all: don't tuck the best parts of yourselves away for safe keeping. blow open that box, rejoice in your talents. share them, and enrich the world.

Friday, March 6, 2009

love and toothpaste

it hit me last night that practicing love is an artform that should be expressed in small, quotidian gestures: putting toothpaste on the toothbrush for a spouse, fastening the last button on a shirt for a child, making a meal and sharing it with a friend instead of relying on e-mail to suffice. these small, perfect gestures get lost in a blur of deadlines and chaos and commitments. my wish for everyone this weekend is to have time to love deliberately.
oh, and a happy, magnificent, fabulous birthday to theodore.