sparklers and pie

we redeemed tradition. and july 4th.

first with pie. recipe found here (from What Would Cathy Eat), with an adaptation using a cooked sauce filling, mixed with strawberry and rhubarb pieces. it was delicious and this recipe will absolutely be on the to-be-made-again-and-again list, although we plan to experiment to see if the fruit can hold its form better. i’ll be sure to update when that happens, and hopefully with photos of the process. overall, i’d say it turned out very well, especially for my first pie attempt ever.

…and then there were sparklers. we had a very detailed discussion about how to synchronize our sparklers… so we were all pretty excited to see the results:

in addition to our lovely *USA* we also successfully made a “Go USA” sign, but I may hang on to that one until the Olympics begin. go team go.

have an awesome weekend.

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happy fourth of july

hope everyone had a wonderful independence day! the only strange part for me was that this year we missed fireworks. SO strange. i can count the number of July 4th’s sans fireworks on one hand…maybe on two fingers even. actually make that one indented thumb and one regular, because i’m not certain that there have been even two independence days in my twenty-five years without a display of pyrotechnics. i might have to go light a candle. maybe that will compensate a bit.

or maybe tomorrow, after i cross the border into the great state of Pennsylvania where the sale of fireworks is legal (and according to the billboards, quite plentiful), i will pick up a handful of sparklers so we can celebrate fake fourth of July tomorrow night. and by then, the strawberry rhubarb pie that I made with my aunt will be ready to eat. (yep, I started a pie at 7:30 pm… and it needs to cool. so there’s that.)

but, that said, pie-making was my token American activity for the day. other activities included apartment-hunting in Philly. one place we loved but discovered it didn’t allow dogs (which made us sad), but then another favorite appeared just down the street (which made us glad). so, tomorrow, decisions await. and if all goes smoothly, we could be living around the corner from our favorite.pizza.place.ever. (did there need to be a “period” between pizza and place? what’s the proper technique on dramatic period placements? i debated it…)

anyway, more later on pizza, apartments, faux independence day, and the outcome of the pie. (and, to my strawberry-allergic Grandmom: if you were coming over today I would have made raspberry-rhubarb, don’t you worry!). also, note to self and everyone else: there is a darn good reason that you roll collards (and long leafy things) on the horizontal (i.e. along the short side) because otherwise you have long spaghetti-like collards when you chiffonade them. no one likes spaghetti collards. well, we like them well enough, but they hang out of our mouths. but this is what I get for bagging practice collards from other chefs-in-training. yep, i’m a fruit and veggie hoarder. still, i’m not alone in this hoarding subset. i think it’s gaining momentum. truly. at least among the culinary student demographic, so i hear. also, i’m impressed by how many times i just said “collards” in this post; i didn’t see that coming.

and with that, i leave you with a nostalgic photo (above) of fireworks from last summer. i do believe i smell a pie in the oven. happy America. and forever thanks to all the veterans (Grandpop, Pop Pop, and the many others) for their service to this country and commitment to freedom.


happy independence day!

happy 4th of july! we love this holiday and will be spending the day grilling some tofu burgers, eating fresh corn, drinking iced tea and Boylan’s soda, and just kicking back and enjoying this long weekend.

[fireworks from this past Friday in Princeton. polaroids made using Polaroin]


how He loves.

we’ve really been loving this song lately.


we hope you feel loved and blessed this Easter sunday.


good friday.

“It’s Friday.
the earth trembles. the sky grows dark. my King yields his spirit.
but it’s Friday. it is only Friday.
Sunday is a comin’.” (John L. Jefferson)

(Rembrandt, The Three Crosses, ca. 1660.)


happy valentine’s day!

i love any reason for fresh flowers, but i’m particularly admiring this lovely, Valentine’s Day bunch from my wonderful husband. any men in need of advice should go to him.

[you also get a sneak peek of our “little” home… sometimes affectionately called our studio, but in reality known as the room we are living in – and transforming – at my parents’ house this year. more on that later.}