Wednesday, July 23, 2014

KICK -UP YOUR SPICE TO KICK THE SUMMER DOLDRUMS AWAY!


Summer arrives with a Bang! The Fourth of July, al fresco dining, luscious fresh fruits and vegetables, the thrill of the outdoor grill, cold, refreshing foods and drink, all spell fun. Add afternoons spent seaside, walks along the beach and glorious sunsets for a summer idyll.


AL FRESCO LUNCHEON

WAVES AT THE BEACH



SIESTA SUNSET


Then there is the other side to the story, pesky bugs and insects, heat, humidity, vacationing crowds and, maybe summer's not so great….well, let's say a little too long to maintain the idyll.

It is at that point when the long month of August looms ahead and I'm already sick of salads and cold food that the desire for a change starts to stir... Of course, I still love that cool food, but the longing for something HOT, both temperature and spice wise erupts, yes, Hot, Spicy Comfort food!

This is when the foods of India, Thailand, South Africa, etc. really make sense. They lift you up, heighten your senses and offer a break from routine.

Today, I discovered a quick, simple, delicious and healthful dish to satisfy that urge, SOLA! You really don't want a huge pot of something at this point, just a taste to clear the air!  Curried Red Lentils with Veggies! 

When I first saw red lentils, I was overjoyed anticipating  a lushly colored dish.  Disappointment set in instantly. As soon as you cook red lentils, that lovely orange/peach color disappears! You are left with an earthy beige mass. Assuming they were the same as the brown lentils I had been accustomed to cooking, I overcooked them. The result was a beige/brown mush and I was crushed.
RAW RED LENTILS


My family used lentils in salad and I fondly remember a hearty lentil and spinach soup loaded with garlic..  So, garlic seemed an obvious thing to add to my mush, along with some spices, oil and vinegar. Not bad,  it actually tasted pretty good.  Since then I have learned how to use red lentils. They make a  great "dip" and a "creamy" soup.

Today, neither soup nor dip appealed.  I was craving a quick, healthy, hot lunch with spice and crunch. A foray into my pantry and fridge revealed the secrets to success. Red lentils, hot and sweet curry spice, carrots, a few broccoli florets and some scallions. A closer inspection of the resources revealed some chopped pistachio nuts and a bottle of Coconut Aminos…Eureka!





CURRIED RED LENTILS WITH VEGGIES

  • 1/2 cup red lentils
  • 1 cup broth (chicken or veggie)
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil or olive oil
  • 1 scallion
  • 1 carrot
  • 5-6 broccoli florets
  • 1 tablespoon coconut aminos
  • 2 teaspoons curry spice
  • red pepper flakes (optional)
  • chopped toasted nuts 
Rinse the lentils and place in a small pan with coconut oil. Saute briefly for about 1 minute to coat lentils. Add broth or water and curry spice. Bring to boil, then turn heat down to simmer. Cover and cook for about 5-6 minutes.

Wash and cut carrot and scallion into rounds. Cut broccoli into bite sized pieces.

Add veggies and cook about another 5 minutes until they are barley tender and most of the liquid is absorbed by the lentils. Add the coconut aminos and red pepper flakes if desired. 

COCONUT OIL AND COCONUT AMINOS*

Serve hot in a bowl and garnish with chopped nuts (almonds, cashews, pistachios) and some extra scallion.

COOKED RED LENTILS AND VEGGIES

I used hot and sweet curry spices from Penzeys. Their Peri Peri spice could also be used.

Substitute vegetables or use extra of what you have on hand..sweet peppers, peas, spinach, snow or snap peas, etc. would all be good.

*Coconut Aminos have the same flavor and saltiness as soy, but is soy free and much lower in sodium and low glycemic…a great healthy choice!

Enjoy!
Sola


Sunday, May 11, 2014

HEALTHY VEGETABLE PANCAKES and THE IRONIES OF DAILY LIFE

I feel like a hypocrite as I sit at my computer writing.  The Japanese Vegetable Pancakes, Okonomiyaki, I served at a luncheon at my Church Book Club were devoured with such enthusiasm that I could not wait to share the recipe with my "Sola" readers and so I sit and write...
Okonomiyaki and 2 Sauces, Soba and Edamame Salads
The dish is healthy, simple, nutritious, delicious as is, but I came up with a "sola" version that is far less work and still retains the flavor and great nutritional benefits!

Now, the confession: while I write, I am savoring the aroma of a rather decadent Toasted Coconut  Cake and "taste-testing" a Farfalle Pasta Salad.  These are headed to the Church for a celebration, so I am sort of absolved from my "sin" and Health-Coach-Guilt. The irony is still glaring, however.
Toasted Coconut Cake with Cream Cheese and Coconut Milk Frosting


Life is what it is…for the most part, I eat and serve what is truly whole, natural and good food, and truly love it, but there are occasions when one must compromise. This is one,.So, here I am, offering you a great, healthy "sola" recipe while  I am in he midst of food for a crowd with questionable nutritional credentials!

I call them "Japanese Latkes"! They are made much like a Potato Pancake, except have several, very nutritious vegetables, a little Asian flavor, and are served with Japanese Sauces instead of sour cream and apple sauce. In Japan it is served as one large "pancake", similar to a frittata, but for our purposes, making several small ones is more appropriate. This way they can be a snack, breakfast, a side dish or dinner, and can easily be frozen and reheated. Okonomiyaki , aka, "Japanese Pizza" and "Japanese Soul Food", enough said.

Okonomiyaki, translates into "what you want - cooked" or "as you like it". You get the picture. There are as many versions as there are people. Street vendors and some restaurants are dedicated to Okonomiyaki only. Eggs, flour, cabbage are the basics, and sometimes there is pork, bacon or ham or shrimp included. Usually topped with 2 sauces, a sweetish Okonomiyaki Sauce, similar to Tonkatsu, and  Japanese Mayonnaise, with vinegar, hot sauce and honey. Then, some add dried seaweed or bonito flakes too.

Some restaurants specialize in "make it yourself" Okonomiyaki. They bring the ingredients and a small burner and griddle and you do it yourself!  They are traditional in Osaka, Hiroshima, Kansai, and in Tokyo, you may find a small pancake. They vary by region, and are available throughout Japan.

When I first made them, I grated the cabbage and made ribbons of the carrots, used all purpose flour and made them medium sized. A little work, but worth it.


Cooking Okonomiyaki





Two were sufficient for dinner.
And they were great! 

When I had to do them for a crowd and wanted to make them gluten-free, I changed a few things. I purchased Angel Hair Cole Slaw mix, thinly shredded cabbage, and bagged matchstick carrot shreds. The work load lessened. Then I added some broccoli slaw shreds for more nutrition and variety and used garbanzo bean flour (chick pea flour) in place of wheat flour for the gluten-free crowd. Now these are VERY EASY!!

It all worked very well too.  Less work, more nutrition and still delicious!

OKONOMIYAKI SOLA GINA

  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cabbage (Angel Hair Cole Slaw)
  • 1 cup matchstick carrots
  • 1 cup broccoli slaw
  • 2 large leaves kale , stems removed, sliced into ribbons (chiffonade)
  • 1 scallion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons (or more) chickpea flour or wheat flour
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 large eggs
  • dash of tamari
  • oil for frying, coconut or peanut oil
Mix all the veggies together and toss with flour. Beat eggs and add tamari or soy (I use Bragg's Aminos).
Heat oil in a skillet. Add veggie mix about 1/4 cup at a time and flatten to make pancake.
Let brown and flip to brown and crisp other side.  Add more oil as necessary.
Drain on paper towels.
Platter of Small Okonomiyaki

Serve with Traditional Sauces  (above) or a soy and rice vinegar dipping sauce or plain!

If you like them and want to have some on hand to eat anytime, triple or quadruple the recipe and freeze the pancakes with wax paper between. Seal them in a plastic bag. Take our what you want, and heat them in a 350 oven for about 10 minutes to recrisp.

Try and Enjoy guilt free!!






Thursday, March 20, 2014

DREAMY STUFFED EGGPLANT or NIGHTSHADE NIGHTMARE!

Eggplant, a beautiful hanging vegetable, shaped like an egg, (hence it's name), Aubergine, in French, a more elegant sound, is a controversial food.

It is a Nightshade vegetable, as are Tomatoes, Peppers and Potatoes (not sweet potatoes). Eggplant is actually a fruit and not always shaped like an egg!  Hmm…read on!

Purple Aubergine  courtesy James Barker
 In fact, it comes in many sizes, colors and shapes.  It can be purple (aubergine), white, green, lilac and striped. The Japanese variety is long and slender, the Sicilian variety is lilac and white hued, the more usual variety is deep purple and bulbous, often teardrop shaped.   I have tasted a tiny purple type, called Fairytale Eggplant which is miniature in size, but big on flavor, tenderness and sweetness.
Green Eggplant courtesy Nuttakit

Violet Eggplant courtesy Patpitchaya

Long purple eggplant courtesy Sommai


The good news is that eggplant is available most of the year, (although it's proper season is fall), and it is a relatively inexpensive and a versatile food. Low in calories and low glycemic, it is a good source of fiber, folate, Vitamins C, K, B6, Potassium and other beneficial minerals.

Now, some of the bad news:  Eggplant can have a bitter taste and is not one of the most popular vegetable/fruits. Often it is served soaked in oil, heavily breaded, drenched in sauce and camouflaged in some way. Some varieties have a bitter taste. When it is prepared carelessly, it is a greasy mess and counters its healthy, savory aspects! Eggplant has the ability to absorb enormous amounts of oil, so caution is advised when preparing it. It cooks well and tastes better without all the grease!

Eggplant  originally came from India and China, over 2,000 years ago. It arrived in Europe around the 14th century, then on to the Middle East and later came to the Americas.  In Europe it is a rich part of  Italian, Greek and Provencal cuisines, and is part of the Mediterranean diet. You will find eggplant served in various ways in Chinese, Japanese, Turkish and Indian cuisines. When prepared traditionally, it  makes a delicious dish in many forms, Baked, Sauteed, Stir-fried, Layered, Stuffed, Pickled and combined with other vegetables in ragouts and sauces. Think Babaganoush, Ratatouille and Caponata! Have you heard of Imam Bayildi,(The Priest Fainted)…?? A Turkish dish? It is worth investigating just why he fainted!! Eggplant and nutmeg play a starring role in this delight!

Eggplant is rich in  antioxidant phenols, plant chemicals, especially  Chlorogenic acid. Chlorogenic Acid is a powerful antidote to free radicals;  it has anti-cancer, anti microbial, anti viral properties and anti  LDL cholesterol properties. So why the controversy?? Isn't this delicious health food??

As mentioned previously, eggplant belongs to a plant family called Solanaceae, or Nightshades. It has not yet been scientifically proven, but it appears that this type of plant aggravates inflammation and arthritis. Suffers often find relief when they eliminate them from their diet. Ancient lore hints that because they grow at night they are "poisonous". All Nightshades had a bad reputation at one time in history! Thank goodness men got brave and tried them! (and lived!)

Eggplant also has oxalates which can crystallize in the body, and  can interfere with calcium absorption.
People in good health and with normal digestive systems, do not have to be concerned. Only those with kidney or other issues need be cautious. Oxalates are also found in many green, leafy vegetables. Eating a variety of vegetables assures a balance and the benefits outweigh any concern about oxalates.

So make up your mind, Eggplant Parmesan, Moussaka, an Eggplant Napoleon? I vote in favor of the purple or other color fruit/vegetabl  

I love eggplant and eat it fairly often. I am sharing a recipe which is healthy, light, delicious and suitable for SOLA cooking. The recipe is an adaptation from La Tavola Marche.

VEGETABLE STUFFED EGGPLANT

Preheat oven 375 degrees

  • 1 medium purple eggplant
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 clove garlic (large!)
  • 4 sweet mini peppers, red, orange and yellow (or 1/2 large pepper)
  • 1 celery rib
  • 4 shitatke (or other variety) mushrooms
  • 1 medium tomato
  • salt, pepper 
  • oregano (1-2 teaspoons)
  • stock or broth
  • Grated Asiago cheese (1/4 cup approx.)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon milk or cream
Wash eggplant and cut in half. Cut again into quarters. Scoop out the flesh and chop. Chop the onion, garlic, peppers, celery and mushrooms. Chop the tomato.
Saute all the vegetables including the eggplant centers in olive oil for about 10-15 minutes until soft and well mixed. Add salt, pepper and oregano. Let mixture cool slightly.

Beat egg with a little milk and add to vegetable mixture.
Stuff eggplant pieces with mixture. Oil a baking dish and place eggplant in dish.
Add some broth or wine or tomato juice (about 2 tablespoons) to baking dish.

Ready to be baked
Sprinkle with cheese, cover with foil and bake for about 30 minutes. Take off foil and bake for 15 minutes more until slightly browned on top. Garnish with fresh parsley and mint if desired or Basil.



Bon Appetit! Buon' Appetito! Sola!

























Thursday, January 2, 2014

ARTICHOKE HEARTS, KALAMATA OLIVES AND CAPERS…any way you want them!!


A dear friend, I want to say old friend, but we are not "old" only our friendship is old, came to visit
on New Year's Eve. Of course, I was busy, until the last moment, and had no time to prepare elegant hors d'oeuvres. The dinner I had planned was easy, yet special, but I knew dinner would be delayed as we had a lot of things to share about our lives…we have known each other as children, teenagers, young adults, married couples, and now, widows, all too soon.



 I prepared an old stand-by, a can of artichoke hearts with olives and capers. With that I made a bruschetta-like topping for crostini and threw together a Spinach Dip for some Pumpkin Cranberry Chips I had on hand, arranged it on a bamboo oval tray and we snacked, chatted and sipped champagne. it was wonderful!

My friend remarked on the artichoke concoction..she loved it and wanted the recipe. It is a delicious, and I had forgotten how good it tasted.

The next day, I combined the mixture with some Veganaise for a sandwich spread. Once again it was delicious, transformed.

During our conversation, I learned that she was expecting a visit from a family member who is a vegetarian, and I thought how appropriate this mixture would be for a vegetarian pasta, and my thoughts went on from there.

Bruschetta, sandwich spread, pasta, rice, quinoa, salad topping, stuffing for chicken, sauce for fish, base for shrimp or chicken entree, etc. etc. etc. This simple, old, staple became an answer to a busy person's prayer for delicious and healthy food! With a few variations or additions, it could be used for almost anything except dessert!

So, I am sharing. It is not a new creation, but it's versatility is a new inspiration for me, and I hope you will find it useful, simple, and delicious too!




ARTICHOKE HEARTS, KALAMATA OLIVE AND CAPERS

    • 1 can quartered artichoke hearts, chopped
    • 1/4 cup Kalamata olives (or green Sicilian olives), chopped
    • 2 tablespoons capers
    • 2 cloves garlic, minced
    • 2 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
    • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
    • 1 teaspoon dried herbs such as Italian blend, Herbs de Provence or 2 tablespoons fresh herbs such as basil or oregano
    • salt and pepper to taste
Mix all ingredients together. That's it!! Serve with toasted Italian or French Bread rounds or crackers.



Variations:
Add Roasted Red Peppers, Sun-dried Tomatoes, Green or Red Tomatoes, Jalapeños,  etc.



You get it…mushrooms, anything you like!!
Now, add Feta, Parmesan or Gorgonzola and put it on pasta, rice or quinoa…or
on top of a salad…or put it in a sandwich…or mix it with mayonnaise for a spread….or
stuff a chicken breast…or sauce for swordfish or mahi...or add shrimp… the possibilities are almost endless, but I don't think I would like it on ice cream!

Happy and Blessed New Year and Enjoy..
Sola Gina

Thursday, December 5, 2013

SAVORY STUFFED ACORN SQUASH: White Beans, Roasted Red Peppers and Greens

Thanksgiving is over (it was wonderful!), but suddenly it's Christmas, Christmas everything, music, red and green, snow, twinkling lights…
and I am left with an Acorn Squash….large.

I had planned to use it as a receptacle for a dip during Thanksgiving Season, but it didn't happen, and the season has passed, and the squash is here.  I've made sweet and rich stuffed squashes, squash soups, squash pie, squash ravioli, and am tired of it, for now;  but the squash is here.  It's presence is nagging me. It's a good, healthy, whole, nutritious food and I cannot let it waste away. Besides, it is tasty.

Flexibility is a good thing when planning dinner. I thought I was going to have Baked Panko Cod-, Zucchini "Pasta" with Sun-dried Tomatoes, Black Olives, Peppers, Spinach and Parmesan and some Roasted Squash, maybe with Maple Syrup and Cranberries (more ingredients left from Thanksgiving!)
Hmm..not right.

I reconsidered. Sweet squash is a jarring note in this meal and the cranberries and maple will be great with oatmeal in the morning… so,  I regrouped my ingredients and came up with this rather delicious, and pretty, and sort of Christmasy Stuffed Squash! The fish remained, the Zucchini "Pasta" simplified, and the Squash created!

The makings of a delicious dinner!!

First you bake the squash to soften it. While it cooks, you can make the stuffing in just a few minutes. Save it for later, or heat and bake just before eating.

It can be a complete meal in itself.  I made extra for another time (I said the squash was large), and I have some roasted squash left for salads or even another soup made with the roasted red peppers too (did I say the squash was large ?).  Cooking and creating is so much fun, and if you think it through, it can be very economical. A squash, a can of beans, a jar of roasted peppers, some greens and I have the makings of several meals.

SAVORY STUFFED ACORN SQUASH
Baked Acorn Squash quarters
  • 1 medium/small squash (or quarters of a large)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/3 cup roasted red peppers, chopped
  • 1-2 cups greens (baby or chopped, swiss chard, spinach, arugula, kale, etc.)
  • 2 tablespoons black Kalamata olives chopped
  • 1 cup cooked white beans, rinse if canned
  • 1/2 cup tomatoes or sauce
  • fresh herbs such as sage and thyme, parsley, oregano or basil, etc. to taste
  • Shredded Italian Cheeses (Fontina, Asiago, Provolone, etc.) about 1/2 cup
  • Breadcrumbs about 1/3 cup
Preheat the oven to 400.
Cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds. I am not posting a picture of this, as I think anyone reading my blog knows what squash seeds look like!
Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Place in a baking dish with a little water on the bottom. Cover with foil and bake for about 20 minutes until softened.

While squash bakes, sauté onion and garlic in oil in a skillet. until translucent. Add red peppers, greens, olives and tomatoes. Toss in beans and herbs to meld flavors. Stir in about half of the cheese at the end.

The stuff sautéing...

Stuff the baked squashes with this mixture.
and here is the stuffed squash 

 Top with some breadcrumbs and more cheese.
Ready for the oven..


Place in refrigerator if not using right away. Otherwise, bake for about 15 minutes until cheese melts and crumbs brown.
I used homemade croutons from sour dough bread toasted in oil and herbs.

for Vegan or Gluten-free, use toasted almonds or walnuts in place of cheese/breadcrumbs.

The transformed Dinner: Stuffed Squash, Zucchini Pasta and Baked Cod

Sola Gina






Wednesday, July 31, 2013

NOT FOR HEALTH COACHES! Homemade Fettuccine with Sausage, Herbs, Cream and Parmesan...for one, with memories..

I saw a copy of a recipe from the NY Times while at a friend's house a while back. It struck a chord within me and I said, "It sounds wonderful, may I have a copy?" I tucked it away, and this past week thought of it again. I was graduating from IIN and the date coincided with an important time for me to remember and honor my husband. This recipe was a good fit..the ingredients were things he loved and as I said, it resonated with me.

My mouth was watering at the very clear image in my mind of the finished dish. I hunted and found the recipe. In actually reading it  through, for the first time, I realized it was a little different from what I had been visualizing, but close enough to follow as a "guide" and "ad lib" to accomplish the dish I was eagerly anticipating!

While prepping the ingredients, I realized that what I was thinking about was something I had created in the past and nearly forgotten! Thirty or more years ago, I taught a series of Italian Cooking Classes and this sausage preparation with cream and and cheese and herbs was a filling I used for homemade tortellini. The memories of the small grocery where the sausage was hand made came flooding back. Trupiano's, a little Italian market in Gloucester, MA, was well known for it sausages, many varieties, all delicious and homemade.

Italian Sausages Grilling (photo courtesy Markuso, Free Digital Photos) 


In fact, later, when I was owner-chef of the White Rainbow restaurant, I used that same recipe idea for a sauce for the homemade fettuccine we served. THAT was the source of the image I had in my mind! The memories of the restaurant kitchen, the sausage, and the young prep chefs I taught to make homemade pasta came to mind. I believe they actually had fun doing it. We certainly laughed a lot, but that was part of managing the stress of running a restaurant kitchen!



Making Pasta dough

Rolling the dough  (photo courtesy Lemonade Free Digital photos)

Having fun in the restaurant kitchen


Now, for the  truth about this post that makes me zany. My camera is not working, I cannot post actual images of my delicious pasta, nor the green salad I devoured, nor the lovely wine I sipped to round out the meal and make it all special.  I don't want to wait  until I can recreate the experience in order to share it, so I pulled up photos of past meals, took a few from a photo source, and put them together to create a sequence. The actual finished dish will have to wait until I have a working camera and make it again..sorry, but I can share the recipe for you to enjoy along with some old photos!!


The Elegant White Rainbow Restaurant 

HOMEMADE FETTUCCINE WITH HOT SAUSAGE, CREAM, PARMESAN AND HERBS

  • 4 ounces fresh pasta, fettuccine
  • 1 large hot Italian Sausage
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 3/4 cup cream
  • sea salt, ground pepper, nutmeg to taste
  • freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil
  • 8-10 fresh sage leaves
  • butter
Snip the sausage casing the length of the sausage and remove the meat.  Saute the onion and garlic in oil in a skillet. Add the sausage meat and break up into crumbly pieces. Cook until done. Pour in the wine and let evaporate a little.
Turn down the heat and stir in the cream. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Simmer for a few minutes. Toss in the fresh basil.
In a smaller skillet or pan, heat some butter and fry the sage leaves until crisp, just a few minutes.


Sage frying

Drain on paper towels.
Cook the pasta in boiling water for 3-5 minutes until al dente. Drain.

Homemade Fettuccine and Spaghetti

Serve pasta in a hot bowl with sauce. Add lots of grated parmesan!!
This dish is so simple that you need to use the best possible ingredients to make it shine! Homemade pasta, sausage and Parmagiano Reggiano! It is rich and unctuous, don't skimp!

Enjoy a nice red wine..I had Nero D'Avola Sicilia. If you use a mild Italian Sausage, a big, fruity white wine would be fine...

Sola Gina






Saturday, June 22, 2013

TRADITION vs. CONVENTION: Pork Tenderloin with Apples, Cream and Calvados Normandy Style

A tradition is something of value entrusted to posterity. We need to preserve these! Convention is something popular everyone agrees to do or accept. We need to question these.

 Go to this link for my latest blog comments on this subject and recipe!! http://cornucopia43.com

In addition to my above mentioned comments on food traditions and conventions, another tradition comes to mind...that of passegiata in Italy. In the late afternoon/early evening, in most and especially southern, Italian towns an event called passegiata occurs. People take to the streets of the center of town and STROLL, leisurely and share in conviviality with their friends, neighbors and townspeople. They add a little sociability and get some exercise before dinner.

In our hectic world today, perhaps passegiata is no longer a daily event, but it is a tradition and something worth keeping. The Sunday passsegiata is in the afternoon and includes a walk in town or by the seaside for the family. Like our Sunday afternoon family "drive", a thing of the past, this tradition would be lovely to revive. The quiet time together or alone, dropping our daily routines and obligations, would be healing, nourishing and give us strength and optimism before heading back to the chaos in our lives.

Tradition is an important part of who we are. Keep it alive and well within you!


I just returned from a wonderful trip to France including a stay in Normandy.  The surroundings instantly felt familiar and friendly...what?  everyone spoke French, I did not, I was thousands of miles from "home", why this comfortable feeling?

Normandy is much like my native New England. It felt like Vermont on the Maine Coast! Lilacs were in bloom, Locust trees, roses, purple chive blossoms, flowering apple trees!! Traditons!

Cod, cold water lobsters, clams, mackerel, oysters, even smoked haddock!!  No wonder this distant land felt so familiar. The Norman character seemed familiar too, much like the New Englander...steadfast, real, down to earth and dependable. Traditons!

The Maine Coast

The Norman Coast

Lobsters, Clams, Oysters and Crabs in Normandy

Clams in Maine

Cooked lobsters in Maine


Enjoy the photos and go to my Cornucopia Blog for the recipe and more Tradition vs. Convention thoughts on food.
In France, tradition reigns, and in the USA it should! We have it all, but need to value it more!! 

Sola Gina..