My husband Ted and I maintain a Little Free Library on the front stoop of our Boston home. Little Free Libraries, more than 32,000 of them around the world, are free community book exchanges where anyone can take a book, and then return it or pass it on, and leave another book for someone else to enjoy. We opened our library in July, and it's become hugely popular, with some neighbors stopping by every day to see if new books have come in, or to leave books in the library for others. One man came almost the first day, and has come often since. At first, he was homeless, living in a local shelter, but he's since found housing nearby. I learned that he used...
You never know who's coming to Thanksgiving dinner, and what food allergies or aversions they might bring along. Vegans, gluten-free, dairy-free -- I've hosted them all, and often at the same meal. The holiday table can be a minefield for the cook! It's great to have a few please-all side dishes on the menu. This cabbage with warm dressing takes minutes to prepare (the cabbage can be shredded ahead of time), and it's free of gluten, dairy, meat, nuts -- free of everything except flavor. Cabbage is undervalued on the holiday table; it's economical, easy to prepare, and adapts well to sweet or savory seasonings. (I just used some cole slaw mix in a Chinese stir-fry last night.) This simple side dish can be prepped...
What could be easier than potato salad made with pesto from your garden basil (or from the supermarket)? This is a great side dish for everything from grilled burgers to roast chicken.
All you need to create this versatile white bean and sun-dried tomato dip is a blender or food processor, and some ingredients from the pantry. Use this as a filling for sandwiches or roll-ups, too.
Great for potlucks or picnics, this black bean salad comes with an Asian twist: a sesame-ginger dressing. Make it a few hours ahead, and serve as a side salad with anything from the grill.
For breakfast, brunch, or a quick and easy weeknight supper, try a frittata. It's an Italian omelet that accommodates any leftover vegetables and herbs you have. This combination of broccoli with basil and parsley is one of our favorites.
How to turn a favorite chicken chili into a meatless main dish, without losing the wonderful flavors of Florida and Caribbean cuisine. All it takes is a visit to your pantry!