Just a seed

They were known in the neighborhood for their tree growing prowess. Apparently 7 years ago Harriet had a seed in her breakfast fruit that was beginning to sprout, and instead of tossing it in the trash she stuck it in soil and the resulting tree was now sporting hundreds of ripe yellow grapefruit.

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Toaster Oven Brown Betty

These days most folks have air conditioning in the south, and don’t think twice about turning on the oven in the middle of a heat wave. Well I am one of the hold-outs. We don’t have air conditioning and so I have come up with creative ways to bake without heating up the whole darn house!  Of course you can make this in a regular oven, but if you want to save energy find a pan that fits in your toaster oven and give it a try.

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Curried Spinach and Chickpea Stew

This stew is hearty yet manages to feel light at the same time. It is chock full of veggies, but it doesn't take lots of time to prepare. I like to serve it with our french bread brushed with a little garlic butter and an arugula apple salad for a fantastic fall supper.

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Pumpkin Chili 

Pumpkin in my chili was inspired by Jeff Armstrong, a long-time baker and friend at West End. He kept telling me that his family put pumpkin in their vegetarian chili. I thought it sounded strange at first, but the more I imagined what the flavors and textures would be like together the more I wanted to try it. It is delicious!

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Dad's Cheesecake

I grew up going to parties and potlucks, and my dad would often bring this incredibly good cheesecake. Everyone always oohed and aahed over how good it was and asked for the recipe. Then he would laboriously write the recipe on an index card for them. He kept it pretty simple and straightforward with this classic sour cream topping.

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Strawberry Cake 

If you’ve never made a cake before, this is a great one to start with. You will impress everyone, including yourself.  I made this strawberry cake for my best friend's wedding, and even though I was baking at high elevation (different pressure levels change chemical reactions) and was just getting over the stomach flu, it turned out great.

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Super Easy Granola

I've been making one variation or another of this granola since I was in college. I lived in a co-op house with a bunch of hippies and we ate a lot of granola. My friend Wayne said it was so addictive that he had to swear off the stuff.

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Greek Feta Vegetable Salad

It’s nice when a vegetable salad can be prepared ahead of time. This one actually gets better when it marinates for several hours. It complements just about any Mediterranean main dish. Serve alongside roasted chicken, eggplant parmesan, pasta, or make it the centerpiece of a platter with hummus and pita chips.

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Spinach Split Pea Soup 

The active time is only about 10 minutes for this soup. It takes some time for the peas to cook, but once they are done it comes together very quickly.  Fresh herbs are preferred, but I substitute dried herbs all the time, and it is still wonderful.

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