feast magazine article, sides

roasted beets + fennel with tahini-dill dressing.

beet and fennel in tahini-dill dressing. | a periodic tableEver had a recipe you just couldn’t shake? Me too…this one. I wrote a feature for Feast which celebrates our beautiful and bountiful creameries around the midwest, and this was one of the recipes I developed for it (because hey, that’s my job.)

Often when I step back from a feature, long after it’s wrapped and published, I see my mindset during recipe development. Spring features are always challenging to work on; you find yourself working in a completely different season which looks nothing like the one you’re aiming at. I can’t think of a more stark contrast between months than that of March (the publish date) and January, especially when you’re talking about seasonal ingredients. Continue Reading…

breakfast, brunch, desserts

chocolate babka.

I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating: there is a singular, luminous joy I get from simply following a recipe versus having to create it from scratch for an assignment. It’s a completely different experience than development, or even tweaking in that you just don’t have to think. It’s a hands-off, no-thought-required, King-Arthur-take-the-wheel situation, and it’s blissful.  Continue Reading…

brunch, salads, sides

grilled cantaloupe salad with hot paprika vinaigrette.

grilled cantaloupe salad with hot paprika vinaigrette. | a periodic table

I made this salad two years ago, and I’ve never stopped thinking about it. It was part of a series of menus I did for different times of the year – this was meant to be the first installment, set to publish in late May. Due to circumstances far too buisness-y for me to be involved in (I’m less Don Draper and more Peggy in these situations), the menu series didn’t begin until late September of that year, which means most of the recipes I had done for May had to be scrapped or reworked for the season and theme. Continue Reading…

brunch, desserts

rustic apple galette + caramel sauce.

apple galette + caramel sauce. | a periodic table

Current status: actively avoiding my job.

Sometimes recipe development and finding weird things for people to use in their cooking feels awesome: sometimes it feels like the worst job ever. “Worst” is an overstatement, yes, but it’s not all sunshine and adorable Asian fruits, if you know what I mean. Continue Reading…

appetizers, mains

pork + vegetable potstickers with soy dipping sauce.

pork + vegetable potstickers with soy dipping sauce. | a periodic table

Potstickers, dumplings, whatever you want to call them, these little wonder-pockets are an outtake from a project I work on quarterly where I’m assigned an exceedingly normal, seasonal ingredient and two recipes per month, every month. I develop the recipes, photograph the finished product, send it off to an editor, and my work is done. It’s kinda fabulous for someone who’s job is usually the polar opposite: weird ingredient, article and recipe, shooting with a pro. It feels good to flex my “hey, I can make a solid apple galette” muscle once in a while; this project satisfies that.  Continue Reading…


summer strawberry pie.

summer strawberry pie. | a periodic table

This little space came up in conversation towards the end of this school year. Normally I run a pretty covert operation, but some of the other moms were onto me: my own fault, because the “what do you do” question does tend to come up frequently as you spend time with people. Don’t get me wrong: I never try to hide what I do…I’m just not up in people’s faces like “Hi! Do you know me? I’m the author and content creator of A Periodic Table, and I work for this great magazine, blergety-blerg, and my work has been featured in…” and on it goes. I suck at that.

There’s an anonymity to blogging which gets shattered the instant someone in “real life” knows about it. Instead of say, one of you talking to me from Baltimore, Halifax, Scottsdale  or points beyond over email, suddenly it’s like, one of your school-mom friends hanging out with you at a kid’s birthday party. They are right there. There’s no real reason it’s weird: it’s just the context is very different at first, and even after almost 6 years, it’s still something I have to get used to. Continue Reading…

salads, sides

sassy asian chicken sesame salad (for when you can’t adult.)

How much more adult can that salad get?!

You ever get the feeling like – no matter how hard you work at it – you just can’t get it together? Do you ever feel like I can’t get it together? No kidding.

I’ll dispense with the “It’s a new year'” intro because yeah; it’s March, and I’m just now working on my 2017 goals; I know some of you can relate. Goal Numero Uno is to get back to this, to here, to writing – I need the practice, but I need the time, and that’s been lacking so far this particular year. Continue Reading…

Baked Occasionally, desserts

Baked, Occasionally: whipped shortbread cookies (for those holiday cookie trays.)

whipped shortbread cookies. | a periodic table

You know what makes holiday cookies great? Variety, general appeal, and ease of use. I don’t mean that last one as “look how easy it is to eat these bad mamma-jammas,” I mean that cookies on a cookie tray need to be – for the most part – extremely easy to make.

Or else it’s just no fun, right? Fussy cookies are for other times of the year, or maybe you compromise and include one fussy one in a sea of easy ones, but really, you need to keep it simple if you want to enjoy your holiday too. Continue Reading…