We both used to ski a lot every winter. CH up in the Sierra, MH all over the northeast. The routine went like this: hit the slopes early in the morning, take a lunch break to refuel, then back out on the slopes for a couple more runs before the end of the day. President’s weekend meant a 3-day ski holiday. Times have changed. Neither of us has strapped on (oh, that’s right, no straps anymore), has stepped into a pair of skis in years. But, funnily enough, one thing hasn’t—the enjoyment of  a bowl of chicken noodle soup for lunch. Enjoy the rest of the holiday, dear friends.

 

 

It’s one of our favorite winter salads for lunch today—chopped celery hearts and their tender leaves, radicchio, and escarole tossed in a lemony, garlicky, anchovy vinaigrette. Cold, crunchy, bitter, and sharp. It reflects the season, but now that the days are longer and there’s a sense of spring in the air, we can take it. Cook something delicious for yourselves this weekend, dear friends.

 

 

We like to be fair, but today, one of us had a bowl of shrimp risotto flecked with diced prosciutto for lunch and the other only had a big handful of pistachios which she had to crack her way through. Sometimes, we aren’t in the studio together at lunch. And today, hunger trumped patience and fairness. The risotto was awfully good, but not as delicious as when we have lunch together. Excellent company (not hunger!) is the best seasoning.

 

 

It’s a soft misty day. It feels like early Spring, and, in the words of our friend Nash Anderson, it “smells like childhood”. We boiled new potatoes for lunch, then lightly crushed them, browned them in bacon fat and butter, and seasoned them with salt, crushed pepperoncini, sautéed scallions, bacon, and more scallions. Simple but nourishing fare.

 

 

Remember this childhood favorite? We were busy, didn’t want to go to the store, and we had all these staples on hand. So we toasted slices of dark earthy bread,  slathered them with good peanut butter (just peanuts and salt), then layered on slices of crisp thick bacon. This is a perfect combo, simple as can be. What a great way to start the week.

 

Our local butcher sells meaty, smoked pork chops. We prefer them to the unsmoked chops because they stay moist when heated through—as technically, they are already “fully cooked”. Our colleague, Julie Sproesser, shared her grandmother’s “Drunken Sauerkraut with Smoked Pork Chops” (the recipe can be found in our book, “Canal House Cooking, The Grocery Store, Volume N° 6). The chops bake, buried under fresh sauerkraut, juniper berries, salted butter, among other things, and here’s the most important part, a good drink of gin and dry vermouth.  We made a pot for lunch today, to warm us up on this cold, blustery day. Better to give the pot a mid-morning drink, than the cooks! Temperance in all things.