Recipes The Tunacado Salad: You Can’t Tuna Fish!

When it comes to a surplus, some foods are easier to wrangle than others. Extra apples become applesauce and apple butter. Easy. Extra peaches become preserves. No problem. Extra cabbage becomes sauerkraut or kimchi. Cucumbers, beans, onions and carrots become pickles. But what happens when you come across a great sale on tuna? Well, as it turns out, that, too can be preserved. J and I are huge fans of the oil-packed tuna that typically comes in jars from Spain and Italy, but those are not cheap .

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Recipes Preserved Grapes & Pecans: A Way with Les Conserves

On a trip to Paris a while back, I stopped in a bookshop on a quest for cookbooks. There were many fine volumes, but one in particular stood out as a must-have. Les Conserves is a glossy, photo-packed soft-cover (Produced by a French division of Reader’s Digest! Why don’t they make such lovely books for English readers?) is ideal for a French neophyte like me. Just look at this recipe for grape preserves.

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Recipes Recession-Proof Espresso: Be Your Own Barista

I must say, I’m a little torn these days between supporting my local coffee shop and saving some money by making my own espresso drinks. They need the money. I need the money. I’ll probably just split the difference. I love the community that local, independent coffee shops provide, but having worked as a barista in college, I also know that the process of creating coffee drinks is easy (and yes!

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The Chocolate Ice Cream Bombe: On Bombe-Building for Beginners
Recipes The Chocolate Ice Cream Bombe: On Bombe-Building for Beginners

At culinary school, we spent one whole class period making bombes, and though it was a wonderful experience, I’ve noticed it’s not polite to talk about that sort of thing in public. People can’t hear the silent “e” at the end of bombe, so one risks being labeled a terrorist. Thus, it becomes necessary to modify the word on each utterance… “pastry bombe” or “ice cream bombe” or “bombe cake” or something of the sort.

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Recipes Vibrant Green Coconut-Mint Chutney

I tend to eat lamb year-round, but for many, springtime is prime time for lamb roasts and chops. And I must admit, I’m not sure why mint jelly is the traditional accompaniment. I mean, it’s fine, but I just don’t think it’s quite as tasty or complex in flavor as my Coconut-Mint Chutney. This bright, fresh-tasting sauce is very similar to one I learned while working with Chef Floyd Cardoz of Tabla and Bombay Kitchen.

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Recipes Stuffed Eggplants

I’ve been off on a bit of a Claudia Roden kick for the past couple of weeks, and I must admit it’s an awfully tasty kick to be off on. In case you don’t know who she is, let me just put in a word for her classic The New Book of Middle Eastern Food — an impressive culinary resource. I love the way she breaks down recipes to discuss how ingredients and preparations differ a little in the different cultural versions of the same dish.

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Recipes Pancakes: The Thick, The Thin & The Hearty

This week brings Shrove Tuesday, known to some as Mardi Gras and known to me as Pancake Day . While I grew up with the thick, pillowy pancakes that appear in diners and truckstops across the nation, J. was raised on a delicate, European-style pancake… something more along the lines of a crepe. I must admit, the discovery that not everyone ate the same kind of pancake was a bit of a shock to me.

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Recipes Smorgasbord: A Defense Against Doldrums

The stale, crusty edge of winter lingers forever, it seems. And while I know Shakespeare called April the “cruelest month,” I feel February is a strong contender for the title. What’s to be done with these days in which citrus season is closing and spring shoots and greens are still weeks away? I’ll throw in my vote for that greatest of Swedish traditions… and no, I don’t mean IKEA, I mean the Smorgasbord .

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Recipes CSA Madness & Eileen’s Crispy Greens

Riddle me this, reader… It’s never taken me more than 10 minutes to complete my annual Community Supported Agriculture program signup. So why did I just return from a CSA signup session that took TWO HOURS? What’s the sudden public obsession with local vegetables? Should I blame Michael Pollan? Mark Bittman? Alice Waters? The recession? The FDA peanut recall? All or none of the above? Maybe this is the year in which investments in financial markets feel more risky than investments farmers’ markets.

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Recipes Dangerously Spicy Chocolate-Chili Fudge 2.0

Rich, dark and spicy. Is there a homemade treat for Valentine’s Day that’s more thematically appropriate than my Dangerously Spicy Chocolate-Chili Fudge? I’m doubting it… especially now that I’ve gone through and improved the recipe. I whipped up the first version of this fudge two years ago, but I thought the texture was slightly less than perfect. It was just a bit too chewy . In this new & improved version, I’ve added more butter (which makes it creamier) and I’ve replaced the nutmeg with vanilla, which improves the overall flavor in a magical way.

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About Me

Miss Ginsu is a nom-nom-nom de plume of Leitha Matz, who worked at Tabla and FreshDirect in NYC, wrote about the food scene from 2004 to 2009 in Brooklyn and presently lives in Berlin. Occasionally seen on TV cooking segments, Leitha has also written for FreshDirect, contributed to Cee Cee Berlin, The Food52 Cookbook and has been interviewed/quoted in The Food Keeper as well as The Washington Times and Salon.

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