Recipes for Trouble

2008: Cooking (and eating) My Heart Out

The best meals are unplanned. A restaurant you never heard of, you’re anxious because your friends rely on you for culinary expertise, but the aromas and the warm, relaxed energy draw you in and then you’re sure. A sudden idea for a meal, and the people you invite at the last minute, their wide…

Recipes for Trouble

Tradition, and Morroccan Lamb Tagine

Where I come from, Tradition comes with a capital “T”, and maybe with a refrain from Fiddler on the Roof. I’ve tried tweaking the traditions, especially at Christmas. But Ukrainian Christmas is what it is. Twelve dishes, each of them labour-intensive. The solemnity of a sacred meal that draws unabashedly from Saturnalia, agrarian ritual,…

Recipes for Trouble

Lighting Up the Darkness

Christmas. Is All. About. Loss. she said, several weeks or was it months, ago. That stayed with me. Like a pit in a peach, or a rogue seed in an otherwise silky tangy mandarin orange. Christmas carols in a car, on a dark velvety Christmas Eve. Phone calls across the country. Missing my nieces….