Saturday, November 13, 2010

Announcement - We're Moving to NY!

Some of you may have been wondering why you haven't heard from me as regularly as there's been little beyond each week's 'In Season.' Here's why, my husband and I are in the midst of organizing a big move from San Francisco to Brooklyn. I'm also in the last throes of finishing my master's project. So I'll certainly be there to inspire and support you during the holidays, but keep in mind our "frenzy-fying" situation.  Do still keep in touch and don't hesitate to get my attention.  Cheers!

Honey Almond Cranberry Sauce

Photo By Mozart's Nose
Thanksgiving came early to my household this year. Here's one of the favorite old dishes, done anew. I love, love this sauce.  This is the first time that I've gone back for "seconds" and had wished I had had "thirds" the next day.

Serves 2, Generously

1 c. fresh cranberries
1/4 c. blueberry, pomegranate, or cherry juice
1/4 c. honey
1/4 tsp (overflowing) almond extract
1/4 c. (heaping) slivered almonds

In a saucepan, add cranberries and juice. Bring to a boil or until you hear first cranberry pop. Cover and turn to low, stirring occasionally, until most cranberries have burst - about 5 min. If it seems thick add bit more juice. Stir in honey - taste for sweetness.  I like mine a bit tarter, so you may want to add more honey that I've suggested.

Remove from heat, stir in extract. Cool and refrigerate.  30 min to serving, remove from fridge, so that it can warm.  Just before bringing to the table, stir in the slivered almonds. These stain pink if mixed in too early.

If you have left overs, reheat and stir in some Amaretto liquor and a bit of water to thin the sauce into a syrup - serve over vanilla ice cream.  Can also toss on top some crumbled Ameretti cookies.

Subscriber's Exclusive - In Season

This week's 'In Season' has just been sent out. The holidays are coming up and each week's column from now to January feature some great ideas for meal inspiration. To sign up, email me - being a gmail 'Follower' only shows the newest posts.

Photo By Mozarts Nose

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Subscriber's Exclusive - In Season

Email Kate at to become a Subscriber and see the rest of my season- based inspirations, plus get the 'In Season' column every Saturday. Cheers!

Photo By Mozarts Nose

Apples, Granny Smith - Maple Hinted Apple, Fennel, and Cheddar Gougeres
Cabbage, Green - See 'Boy Choy'
Carrots - Caramelized and Marmaladed Carrot Upside-Down Cornbread
Beets - Sage Baked Beets, Pomegranate Seeds, and Horseradish Creme Fraiche
Bok Choy - Asian Style Cabbage Wrapped Pork Meatloaf over  Ginger Boy Choy
Broccoli - Cheddar Fritatta Dotted with Lemon Broccoli and Marinara
Butternut Squash - Diced Butternut, Wild Rice, Dried Cranberries with a Cilantro Vinaigrette

Mizuna Mustard Greens 
Onion - See 'Parsley'

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Subscriber's Exclusive - In Season

Photo By Mozarts Nose
Here's a peek at what my subscribers get each Saturday.  Email me at to join in!


Whether or not you subscribe to a CSA, you'll get the best tasting of things by shopping seasonally.  Here's what I got in my CSA this past week, as well as some alongside inspiration. I'll be sending these out each week on Saturdays, so we can 
plan next weeks meals together.

Arugula - Pumpernickel Sandwich with Ham, Sweet Potato Apple Spread, Cheddar, Dijon and Arugula

Broccoli - Minced Roasted Broccoli with Walnut, Roasted Garlic, and Lemon Pesto over Spinach Salad

Bok Choy - Boy Choy Sauteed in Coconut Oil with Coconut Flakes and Raisins

Carrots - Savory Date Carrot Spread with Roasted Peanut Topping

Cauliflower - Wine and Sage Brown Butter Poached Salmon and Cauliflower

Delicata Squash
Green Apples
Green Cabbage
Persimmons (Fuyu)
Turnips, White

Want to see the rest? Email me at

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Acorn Squash Pesto Fingers

We got three acorn squash from the CSA this week. Here's how I made use of one of them. I'm throwing this into my Thanksgiving dinner recipe arsenal. If you get these from a farm, be sure to not only rinse them off, but use a vegetable scrubber to get in the ribs as dirt tends to build up there.  While minerals are an important part of dietary health, I don't recommend eating them as the ideal method of intake. Either way, rinse these well!

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Slice acorn squash as shown below.  Be careful and use a sharp knife, the rind can be tough. Coast both sides with olive oil and S&P.

Photo By Mozarts Nose

Roast for about an hour, turning half way through. Then serve with your favorite pesto, store or home-made.

Photo By Mozart's Nose

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Subscriber's Exclusive - In Season

Here's a peek at what my subscribers get each Saturday. 

Whether or not you subscribe to a CSA, you'll get the best tasting of things by shopping seasonally.  Here's what I got in my CSA this past week, as well as some alongside inspiration. I'll be sending these out each week on Saturdays, so we can plan next weeks meals together.

Photo By Mozart's Nose

Acorn Squash - Baked with Sauteed Onions, Minced Roasted Turnips and Sweet Italian Sausage with Red Wine Vinegar Vinaigrette

Apples, Yellow Delicious - Yellow Grapes and Apples and Slivered Kohlrabi with Curry Yogurt Dressing over Green Leaf Lettuce

Almonds - Fresh Almond Meal and Orange Peel Scones

Arugula - Pomegranate and Roasted Beets over Arugula with Herbs du Provence dressing

Broccoli - Creamy Curried Broccoli Soup

Carrots - Carrot Salad with Red Onion Mustard Confit

Cauliflower - Brown Butter over Roasted Cauliflower with Cheddar, Beer, and Red Onion Fondue

Grapes, Yellow
Green Tomatoes
Kale, Baby 
Onion, Red 
Potatoes, Purple 

Want to see the rest? Email me at to join in!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Many Blessings Broccoli Pomegranate Salad

Many Blessings Broccoli Pomegranate Salad

Be sure to wear an apron when removing the seeds from the pomegranate fruit! I halve it with a knife and then, gently breaking apart and splitting open, remove the seeds as I go.

Photo By Mozart's Nose
Serves 2 (large portions)

2 cups of minced raw broccoli
2 handfuls of pomegranate seeds (one fruit usually has 6-8 of these servings)
4 cups of red leaf lettuce, in a rough and wide chiffonade

For the dressing

2 (really heaping) tsp lemon zest, from an organic lemon
2 T extra virgin olive oil
2 T balsamic vinegar, I use Fini brand
1 and 1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp caraway seeds (aids digestion of the raw broccoli)
S&P to taste

Photo By Mozart's Nose
Mix half of the dressing with the broccoli.  In each bowl make a “nest” with the lettuce, add broccoli to the middle and sprinkle pomegranate seeds, concentrating some in the center of the salad.  Pour the remainder of the dressing around the edge of the lettuce “nest.”

If leftovers, store the broccoli mix and pomegranate seeds separate from lettuce.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Cold Comfort Chicken Soup ~ For Cary

This is a soup that you save up for during the year. Three chicken carcasses stewing across the day. For me food nourishes more than body; it also feeds soul and spirit - the bones boiling for each. Light a candle to sit out and burn all night, making this soup with bones saved.

3 chicken carcasses with meat like leftover legs and other dark meat
3 quarts of water
1 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp basil
2 small bay leaves
1/2 onion, cut into several chunks
2 large carrots, broken in three
3 garlic cloves in their skins
1/2 tsp whole pepper, wrapped in cheesecloth so its easily removed before serving

Photo By Mozart's Nose
Combine everything, bring to the boil.  Simmer for three hours, remove everything from stock.  Pick off meat from bones, set aside.  Continue to simmer for one hour, till reduced by half. Add -

1 small onion, diced - Simmer until translucent, approx 15 min. Add -

3 medium carrots, diced - Simmer approx 10 min until just about soft. Add -

1/4 cup of small pasta, Simmer approx 10 min, until done. Add -

1 tsp Chili Powder
1 bouillon cube, preferably Rapunzel brand.
Cayenne Red Pepper, to taste
S&P, if needed.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Chinese Five Spice Baked Apple Sauce

Photo By Mozart's Nose
I love baking apples - I don't have to "watch the pot" and it concentrates the flavors.  This apple sauce is great on pork, as a side, or as dessert.

This is enough for two good sized servings. Our family is still small!

2 apples cored - one good for sauce, one good for baking
This way its a good mash, but still a little chunky with bites of apple.

1 T water or apple juice

Bake at 350 degrees for approx 30 min., longer if you like more mush.

Then out of the oven (or toaster oven, in my case) -
add 1-2 T salted butter (I lean towards two, but I always lean towards a bit more butta), maple syrup to taste and Chinese Five Spice, approx 1/4 tsp or to taste. Depending on the apple, you'll want more or less maple syrup, but TASTE as you go, because you can't go back!

Salt if needed.

If using this on pork or other savory dish, add a bit of dijon mustard!

Monday, October 4, 2010

The Best Broccoli Salad

Photo by Mozart's Nose
I just came up with something tasty and darkly beautiful - red leaved lettuce and balsamic vinegar contrasting with the fresh calm greening of raw broccoli. The dressing is olive oil, balsamic vinegar, caraway seeds, coriander, lemon zest, and S&P.  So easy and surprisingly, almost floral, but still with the front of the tongue zing.

I'm supposed to be working on other things today, but I couldn't help but share my discovery. Now back to work...formal recipe and picture to come...

First Laureates!

Mozart's Nose has its first Laureate members, Holly and Winston! For their donation they will get a "blog book" - a full color printing of the last year's worth of Mozart's Nose posts. They also receive premium benefits off and on the site and priority access to me in my personal chef capacity.

With their donation I have purchased the domain name  We are so much more than a blog!  I am also commissioning business cards, I hope this will help Mozart's Nose have a more localized reach.

Want to know more about being a Laureate?  Look for a post coming soon or contact me directly by writing to Kate at!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Subscriber's Exclusive - In Season

Photo by Mozart's Nose
Here's a peek at what my subscribers get each Saturday.  Email me at to join in!


Whether or not you subscribe to a CSA, you'll get the best tasting of things by shopping seasonally.  Here's what I got in my CSA this past week, as well as some alongside inspiration. I'll be sending these out each week on Saturdays, so we can plan next weeks meals together.

~ Carrots - Mashed Chili-Style Carrots
~ Corn - Fresh Corn Polenta with Basil and Goat Cheese
~ Cucumber - Cucumber Creme Fraiche and Summer Sausage Tea Sandwiches
~ Eggplant - Roasted Eggplant, Garlic, and Bacon Crostini
~  Grapes - Grape and Orange Peel Compote over Pork Tenderloin


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Confetti Pepper Relish

Photo By Mozart's Nose
This makes approximately 1 cup of relish.

1/2 c banana peppers chopped
1 T green pepper chopped
1 T sweet pepper chopped
1/2 tsp salt

Combine and let stand for 20 min. - allowing for flavors to mix.

In a small saucepan combine

1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp yellow mustard seeds (yellow seed is more pungent than brown)
1/2 c apple cider vinegar

Bring to a boil, then remove from heat and add to pepper mixture. To this add

1/4 tsp celery salt
1 large garlic clove minced

Stir to combine and let rest until cool, then put in an air tight container.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

New Column: Remember This?

I usually keep cottage cheese on hand in my fridge.  Its great for snacking - and usually I top it with salsa and avocado or with applesauce or I make something we refer to as 'schmearcase.' But I was looking through the fridge trying to find a cool snack to our indian summer day and came across the glass jar of wheat germ that I use when making drop biscuits. And I remembered you - 'mi Mama' - and how this was a snack you would make every once in a while with your tub of cottage cheese.

What do you remember Mom, when you make a dish of cottage cheese with wheat germ and honey dashed and dribbled on top?

Saturday, September 25, 2010

CSA or Farmers Market?

Photo by Mozart's Nose
I've been part of a CSA for the last two years (since I moved to San Francisco). Beyond that my educational and professional experiences in the agricultural industry provides an intimate idea of organic farm production. My friend Farah asked me the other day why I choose to do a CSA - after all its a big commitment!

Shopping at the Farmers Market is great and a way to directly help your farmers put food on your table as well as theirs.

But here are some reasons to consider committing to a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) program.

1. Farmer's bills are primarily seasonal - meaning they spend a whole bunch of money up front before the harvest season for seed, fuel, equipment, etc. As a CSA member, you can pay for the entire CSA up front, thus completely defraying the farmer's cost for providing you with your share.

2. Mother Nature can wreak havoc on agricultural production.  So even if you have to pay your farmers every three months because of your personal financial situation, that farmer has a guaranteed income despite what nature throws at her - failure or over abundance even. CSA's also help farmers plant according to a specific need, thus reducing wasteful spending and labor.

3. Ever since I joined a CSA, I eat much better.  "Better" not only in that eating organic/biodynamic is better for the environment and your body, but also better in the sense that this stuff is FRESH and farmers give their CSA members the best of what they have and then they go to the Farmer's markets. It is also better, and this is the best point of all, a CSA is better for me because I eat my vegetables.  When you are given a bushel basket of premium produce each week, there is an obligation.  And I know its for that very reason that most of us choose NOT to do a CSA, but I swear that obligation has made me healthier.  To be forced to eat tasty and nutritionally balanced is one of the best obligations you can "burden" yourself with.

4. Along with the point above, all that produce also "obligates" you to use it through out the week.  The best way to do this and prevent waste is to plan your meals as soon as you get the CSA for that week (For me its on Saturdays). I'm sure you've heard that if you walk into the grocery without a list, you end up spending a lot more.  When you plan your meals, you plan your grocery list simultaneously. It just makes your planning so much easier, just in general.

5. It's fun - most farms hold potluck or other special events for members.  Our farm throws a Peach Party the first week of each August.

I think if you can commit to the amount of food (some CSA's allow its members to split their share, if its too much...but I make do just fine - most of the time I am cooking for one) and you really believe its important to support our local farmers, you should definitely consider a CSA.

Here's a scenario - I went to our local farmers market the other day. It was late, about 15 minutes to close, I was walking past the tents and tables.  There was a farmer practically begging for people to buy his from his table, still loaded with cherries.  The Farmer's markets are unpredictable, sometimes they sell their wares well, sometimes not.  Now I'm sure something good happened to those leftover cherries, hopefully they got donated or were given to friends or the community at large.  But what if they didn't?  I've always been meaning to ask my farmers what happens to Farmer's market surplus.  Now I think I will.

I know a lot of you have considered signing up for a CSA before - have questions still? Concerns? Other reasons why a CSA is better for you and your family? Comment below!

Subscriber's Exclusive - In Season

Photo By Mozart's Nose

Here's a peek at what my subscribers get each Saturday.  Email me at to join in!


Whether or not you subscribe to a CSA, you'll get the best tasting of things by shopping seasonally.  Here's what I got in my CSA this past week, as well as some alongside inspiration. I'll be sending these out each week on Saturdays, so we can plan next weeks meals together.

~Apples - Apple Cheddar Scones with Celery Salt Butter, Apple Throw Together (AKA: Apple Crisp)
~ Cantaloupe - Tanqueray Cantaloupe Granita
~ Corn - Creamed Corn and Creamed Corn Chowder
~ Carrots - Creme Fraiche Carrots


~ Pears - Sliced Pears and Arugula with Honeyed Goat Cheese Dressing, Pear  and Candied Orange Peel Clafoutis
~ Potatoes - Sauteed Chard with Paprika and Onion Homefries Frittata
~ Tomatoes (slicing, paste, and cherry) - Tomato and Grape Chutney; Sliced tomatoes with Green Bean Pesto; Cherry Tomato, Cucumber Salad with Pink Peppercorns

Thursday, September 16, 2010

"One inconvenient location since 1851" ~ Story, Indiana

Photo by Mozarts Nose

The Story Inn and Restaurant is not close to much more than the Horseman's Camp at the Brown County State Park. And this must be one of their most reliable markets. Believe it or not, google does have "street view" of this tiny town. And most of what makes up the town are buildings dedicated to the business of the Story Inn.

I didn't take pictures of the food, as I don't normally dabble in the world of "food critic".  I want to enjoy my meals and expound on them later with fellow food lovers like you. I am just an eater, not someone who deserves special attention. Nor do I like to be a rude person to eat with, distracted by her own intentions.

I did learn that the restaurant at the Story Inn has recently acquired those two chefs who fed us so well.  Jenny and Erick Virt's culinary travels has been far reaching, they had just moved from Woodstock, Vermont, but had also spent time in Chicago and other continental lands. This is a young husband and wife team who have shown great potential in the arts of tasty balance and piquant presentation.  Subtly creative contrasts with crab (tricky) and masterfully heated meats (also tricky).  

As a dining companions, we all went a little ga-ga. Here's what we got ~

Pan Seared Jumbo Lump Crab Cake with Citrus Salad and Tarragon-Hazelnut Aioli

This also had small julienne of what I'm pretty sure is jicama, but would also be fabulous with celeriac for a winter veg version. This generous appetizer made my palate extremely happy.

Grilled Peach and Herbed Goat Cheese Salad with Spiced Candied Pecans, Good Life Farms Mixed Greens and White Balsamic Vinaigrette

I appreciate that they used a herbed goat cheese, not of their own doing (That's just smart, so long as everything is quality.) I was surprised at how complicated this salad was - with each bite.

Certified Black Angus Beef Filet and Local Heirloom Tomato Slices with Fried Buttermilk Leeks, Horseradish Vinaigrette and Chive Oil

I'll mention again how expertly the meats were cooked and being of good quality were full of robust flavor which easily stood in line next to the other features.  This was so refreshing and yet also enriching.  I was tickled to be reminded of the tastes of a very classy BLT. Was especially inspired by the fried buttermilk leeks, has anyone else encountered this preparation?  It was brilliant!

Grilled Bone-in Pork Chop with Green Tomato Jam, Jalapeno Corn Bread Pudding and Sweet Chili Oil

Photo by Mozart's Nose
This was the only dish that I would improve upon. Again the pork chop was juicy and perfectly tender. I took half of this home and reheated it in the toaster oven and the meat was still tender! Overall though this dish was full of sweet.  The jam was sweet and the bread pudding was sweet, and while I couldn't distinguish the sweet chili oil, I'm sure it was sweet as well. 

In my improvements would have been either to make a jalapeno spoon bread or to use a green tomato based salsa or relish.  Also a dollop of creme fraiche and lime somewhere. Pickled watermelon rind could also have a place, adding a nice though, this was very tasty, but I'm a serious stickler for balance and up until this point in the menu, each dish had been superb.

Southern Indiana is a beautiful bit of country (it is many, many things beyond corn and soybean fields) and this remote bit is even better for its culinary delights. Its not much to look at, but up close it has an attractive bric-a-brac quality that inspires nothing but comfort - like you are home for a long respite.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Sunday's Best of the Rest

Grandma Neumann's Orange Rolls
Photo by Mozart's Nose
Serves up a sugar and butter coma for 4-5,  makes approx. 9 small rolls.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Mix ~
2 cups flour
4 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp salt

Add 2 T cold butter, cut into pea size pieces
Add 1 cup milk and mix with a fork until well combined. Form a ball of dough and place on a floured surface, knead, then roll out to half inch thickness.  Sprinkle with ~ more pea sized pieces of cold butter (approx. 2T), liberal amounts of sugar and rind from three large oranges.
Melt 4 T butter.
Photo by Mozart's Nose
Roll up dough into a jelly roll and cut into nine pieces. Place in 8x8 brownie pan (glass is best, only because its easier to see the sides brown while cooking). Liberally sprinkle tops of each roll with sugar. With a pastry brush liberally swipe sides, in between each roll and pour any remaining over the tops.  Sprinkle rind from one orange on top.

Bake for 12-15 min. until slightly browned along sides and on tops of rolls. Also a fork should come out clean.

Enjoyed best with yet more cold butter and a fork. And make sure to scrape up the "goo" from the bottom of the pan.  This something you will fight over, like the pepperoni or sausage pieces that fell off into the pizza box.

Disclaimer: All cholesterol medicines should be taken thirty minutes prior to consumption.

Photo by Mozart's Nose

Monday, August 30, 2010

Help with Summer's Bounty and Winter's Barren-ness

CSA Tip: When you have so much variety in the summer and too little variety in the winter (i.e. a head of cabbage each week), turn to cookbooks dedicated specifically to vegetables and fruits. There are many out there, but Alice Water's Vegetable and Fruit books are my staples.  I look forward to getting copies of Jane Grigson's own Vegetable and Fruit cookbooks.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Summer's Creamed Corn

Photo by: Mozart's Nose
A couple weeks ago I got my first ears of corn from my CSA farm. Orginally I'm from the South - Virginia to be specific - so I have exacting standards when it comes to sweet corn. I'm particularly partial to white corn, though its tricky to find the variety that has a taste profile beyond sweet.  I still want my corn to taste like corn. Yellow corn typically has more "corn" flavor however, nowadays you should avoid yellow corn varieties as they are typically developed for animal feed. Thus they dry well, this makes the kernel tougher for our systems to digest, thus reducing the availability of nutrients.  So if you aren't familiar with cultivars that are developed for fresh eating rather than feed, stick to white varieties.

I'm not sure which cultivar my CSA farm has put in for this years crop, but its pretty perfect in its sugar to flavor balance.  So it makes the perfect creamed corn. Oh and if you have to add sugar or other sweetener to your creamed corn, get different corn!

Summer's Creamed Corn

Serves 4 (as a side dish)

6 ears of corn
1-2 T quality butter (I use Strauss European Style)
1/3 c. minced onion
1/2 tsp. ground white pepper (or to taste)
1/2 c. creme fraiche (If you enjoy a thicker creamer corn, I recommend using sour cream)

 ~Soften minced onion in 1-2 T butter and add the white pepper, while removing corn kernels and "cream"
~To remove the kernels and cream: Use a paring knife to cut off the tops of each kernel.  I stand them on end (in a shallow, but wide container) and run my knife down the length of the ear.  You just want to graze the tops, any deeper and you'll have less "cream" and it can be a tougher "chew" when the creamed corn is served. Then to remove the cream, once again hold then on end and with a spoon, face down, scrape the ear to remove the creamy insides of each kernel.
~ Add the corn to the onions and stir until back up to temperature, reduce the heat to low and cook for five minutes, allowing the flavors to mix.
~ Add the creme fraiche, cook until warmed.
~ Salt the creamed corn, to taste*

*If you want to add a little "Je Nous Se Qua", use truffle salt in place of regular salt.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Pots n' Pans

Ok - here's my take on kitchen essentials. If I was headed to a deserted island only populated by sticks and palm fronds with some random reptiles thrown in, I would pack up:

a cleaver and 3.5 paring knife, a cast iron skillet, a long handled wooden spoon, a ladle, and a knife sharpener (more on that later).

Photo by Mozart's Nose

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Fiddle Faddle with Ebb and Flow

From Tasting Table in regards to Vincent Schofield's sand dabs dish at Ebb and Flow in San Francisco.

"He swapped mashers for sunchoke purée, doused the fish in lemon beurre blanc with fried capers, and finished the plate with a perky salad of black chanterelles, parsley and squash blossoms."

My two cents - manchego cheese in the puree, and kumquat rind in the salad. A substitute for the chanterelles if needed, black figs.