(Baked) Fried Chicken on Mango Avocado Salad + Fight Hunger with Walmart!

baked chicken on mango avocado salad-23

Even as Tim and I made these (baked) fried chicken salads last Saturday, it was with an awareness that we are remarkably privileged to be able to go to the store, pick out what we want to bring home and then, together, cook it to have something good to eat. Not everybody knows these luxuries. With that in mind, we're glad to write this post as ambassadors for Walmart's current Fight Hunger program, one step towards eradicating the real issues of hunger today, with the help of consumers and six key vendors, working towards an overall goal of providing 75 million meals to Feeding America Food Banks nationwide (and they're close!). Below, in this sponsored post, we are sharing some information about Walmart's current program along with a recipe for the killer chicken we made last weekend, set on top of salads that, in honor of the work Walmart is doing now, feature ingredients found at our local retail location. In our protected pocket of middle-class America, it's hard to … [Read more...]

Mushroom, Leek, and Red Pepper Chicken Soup + Feed South Africa


When we were kids, lunch was brown paper bags, maybe sometimes pizza from the concession stand. I loved lunch. By the time I was 13, I was packing my own, and it usually consisted of a sandwich (peanut butter and jelly or turkey), chips or crackers, yogurt, and dessert. Lunch was a bright spot in a day filled with classwork and school drama, and things always looked a little better after I’d had a granola bar and some chocolate (an argument for early-onset personalities, if ever there were one). Later, in college, I ate in the dining hall; as an adult, with a 9-5 job, I usually packed something or talked a coworker into going out. But, even now, as a freelancer who pulls leftovers like this crazy comforting, highly nourishing soup from the fridge most afternoons, I’ve never had to wonder where lunch was coming from, and lunch has never been the only meal I had access to all day long. That’s one of the many ways my geography and culture have blessed me---and it’s one of the many ways my … [Read more...]

Roast Chicken on Tomatoes + Potato Spaghetti Squash Puree


September 11, 2013 has been a beautiful day here in Nashville. Tim and I woke up early to grind popcorn kernels and make skillet cornbread. The cornbread was a dud, but Tim made a berry smoothie that wasn't. Then, we drove through blue skies and bright sun to our car dealership, twenty minutes south, where a serviceman checked us in to get our air-conditioning fixed and asked the time: It was 9:11 AM on the nose. Twelve years ago this morning, I was standing in a Wisconsin hotel, curling my hair, when my mom shouted from the TV in the main room, "Come look at this!" and I didn't say anything, and we called my dad in Illinois, and he was crying. Today, I walked away from a serviceman and into a Tennessee car dealership lounge, where Tim and I would listen to someone making popcorn and watch a 10-month-old baby boy named John crawl around the room. My mom and I were at that Port Washington hotel because I was scheduled for traffic court on September 11, for driving 24 miles … [Read more...]

Grill-less Grilled Sambal Chicken Skewers over Greens

You would think, after nearly five years of regular blogging, a person would become immune to the kindness in the blog community. At least that's what I keep thinking this week, after publishing Tuesday's post, and hearing such kind, thoughtful responses from so many of you. You would think I would be used to this and, accordingly, that it wouldn't mean much, but, in fact, the opposite is true. You guys. Thank you. Thank you for reading here, caring about what's said, and writing quick notes in response. More and more, I see that it's a gift for bloggers to let the world into their lives, to be "publishing parts of [our] li[ves] for the world to read, [thereby opening ourselves up] to judgement and critique," as Kelsey put it. But, like she concluded, I also see that it's a gift that people do, in fact, read. It's a gift that you come to this space. I might not ever get over the fact that friends and strangers listen to our stories, or the fact that you're reading this one, today, but … [Read more...]

Crockpot Thai Chicken Curry

I realize two days before Thanksgiving is not exactly the ideal time to post a Thai chicken recipe, not when the majority of cooking America is, at this very moment, abuzz with turkey, mashed potatoes, dinner rolls and pumpkin pie. But, forgive me, I have this habit of assuming all of you out there aren't so different from me, and so I figure maybe you're also two days away from attending a delicious Thanksgiving meal in another state, one that's so completely out of your hands, you already know all that will be expected of you is to show up, maybe chop a vegetable or two. In that case, finding another Thanksgiving recipe is not the pressing issue on your mind, but, what to make for dinner tonight, the night before you fly home, is---and so here's something easy and quick. The truth is, even if I were in charge of the meal on Thursday, that would only mean remaking a dozen or so of the same dishes my family eats every year: turkey and potatoes and green beans, maybe a gelatin … [Read more...]

Speedy Chicken Tikka Masala (dairy-free, gluten-free)

Huntsville Alabama

Sometimes I don't feel like talking about food. I feel like posting a pretty picture. I took the above shot last month in Huntsville, Alabama, the town where my college roommate Kim lives and where I met her for the afternoon one Saturday. She treated me to high tea at this fancy little shop, and then she drove me around the area's historic neighborhoods, letting me ooh and ah at the architecture, and to this park off the highway, where we climbed into the woods and looked out through leaves at the parking lot and, off in the distance, the hills of her hometown. Tim was away in New York that weekend (you'll remember his happy homecoming here), and I was missing him, so when I came back to the empty house that night, I was glad to be so tired from driving and touring and eating little scones, because at least that meant I would fall fast asleep, a skill usually reserved only for the male half of this little family, and fall fast asleep is exactly what I did. The next day, … [Read more...]