Food Poetry Poetry

Roquefort by David Nutt

Roquefort Blue Cheese Poetry - anneliesz


Dark and damp with drafty corridors
Hidden caves in limestone rock
Allows the cheese to ripen lost in time
This is the place were alchemy unfolds
Like blocks of rounded marble they stand
Proud and stately in silent pose
Their crumbly dough streaked with veins of blue
Palate and tongue tingle with delight
Lactescent, salty with complex tang
Force powerful images of wind swept lands
Herds of sheep in peaceful sleep
While shepherds watch over starry skies
There in the Rocquefort many mysteries lie.


© David Nutt


David shares his passion for cheese through poetry over on his blog, Cheese Poetry with a special emphasis on French fromage (cheese). I’m particularly taken with his poem, “An Ode to Cheese.” He spent his professional life in the financial services industry (Paris and New York).  Some years ago he retired in Normandy. It was in this magnificent countryside he fell in love with French cheese. His feelings for these divine products motivated him to want to share my pleasure with the many French cheese lovers scattered throughout the world. He and a French friend created the website, Fromages. In the early years of this adventure he was assigned to write the monthly newsletter. The next step was a natural evolution to produce a book in a novel and interesting form on a number of France’s most prodigious cheeses. He chose to write about poetry as it has the magic of touching our romantic senses by combining rhyme and words. If John Keats was still alive he would, no doubt, look down on my work as very humble effort.  The book is entitled: Tasting to Eternity.

Food Poetry Poetry

Sausage Poetry by Ewa Chrusciel

Sausage Poetry | Kabanos Sausage Photo by Mike Dent

I buy a sausage at the airport before I leave Poland. Kielbaska, kielbasa,
kabanos, kabanosik. This, my transcontinental dowry. The sacrificial
baby of my tongue. Foreign gods hover over us. If God lets my sausage
in, I will eat it like a saint wreathed in incense, circle a table with
Gregorian chants. Folkberg variations. The baggage carousel spurts my
luggage out. With an air of conspiracy, I transfer this sausage from my
carry-on into checked luggage. I look around. I pray for my sausage
while I move towards customs. The Angelus trickles. The Angelus
salivates. St. George is about to put his spear through a sizzling
dragon. My luggage goes through a “sausage scan.” Can an old sausage
be born young again? The officer pulls me aside. The officer holds my
sausage to the light. His babushka trophy. “It’s a sealed sausage.” I
declare with pride. I’ve brought a new species. “But you declared: no
meats,” the officer says. “Sealed Sausage is not a meat!” Sealed sausage
is a sealed sausage!” I say, as the guardian angels of my sealed sausage
swarm under the investigation light. The officer blinks when I repeat
with determination: “A sealed sausage is a sealed sausage.” He looks
blinded. My hypnotic alliteration throws him back into the waters of
his childhood where eels jiggle Scottish dances. Oh, sweet detained
sausage. Saint of arrests, pray for us. May my new species have mercy
on us. Escape at the borders. Oh, oven bird, whose migratory song is a
sausage a sausage a sausage. Dear sausage of martyrs. Sealed patriarch.
Let the Virgin Liberty swallow it.



Poem by Ewa Chrusciel
Poem reprinted with permission from A Contraband of Hoopoe by Ewa Chrusciel (published by Omnidawn Press, 2014).

Kabanos sausage photo by Mike Dent.

Food Poetry

Avocado- Poem by Arthur Kayzakian

Avocado Poem


my dad once told me to never mess with an unripe avocado

he said if you cut it open too soon

then it will know you are not interested in its growth

so it will begin to die even if you do not eat it

that in some parallel universe

the avocado is a baby gator waiting to hatch

sometimes I watch him crack the shell open

carve out the big wooden seed

and cut its green body into thin slices

I wonder if in that distant universe

the baby gator watches us in horror

with pity for our version of hunger




Arthur Kayzakian is a poet and MFA candidate at San Diego State University. He is also a contributing editor at Poetry International. His poems have appeared in or are forthcoming from Northridge ReviewChaparralTaproot Literary ReviewConfrontationSan Diego Poetry Annual, and Rufous City Review.

Food Poetry Poetry

Wine Poetry: Terroir by Phil Coturri

Terroir Poem_Stone Edge Farm Cookbook

Terroir is an Expression of Place



an expression of place

enhanced by organic practices

soil enlivened from extensive cover crops

breathe flavor and intensity into fruit.



vineyards surrounded by gardens

the complexity of arugula,

Padrón peppers,

ripening tomatoes,


to the bane of the farmer,

the chicken,

lending to exactness of flavors.



the expression of the views

the owl sees

in the morning light as it perches

in an olive tree.



explosion of flavor with each sip of wine

that defines its origin.



chickens the bane of the farmer

let loose in the vineyard hopping up

to steal a sugar-laden berry.



exudes life

life in the soils

life in the flavors

of Stone Edge Farm.



the expression of the roots

embracing the alluvial stones

bringing minerality to the wine.



the cool bay breeze in the evening

after ninety-degree days

that brews the development of ripe flavors.



the flavor of soils defined by respect

not by abuse.



flowers blooming year round

inviting bees and beneficial insects.


Terroir is controlled or enhanced by humans,

we don’t control it

we guide it

to an expression of flavor.



the decisions we make

daily in the vineyard

how we prune

how we train

how we thin the crop so each cluster hangs with integrity

ripening in dappled sunlight.



the decision to harvest

the grapes

send them to the winery.



let the alchemy begin.


—Phil Coturri
Reprinted with permission from “Stone Edge Farm Cookbook


In 2014, something happened in Chicago at the IACP 2014 conference that set tradition on edge: a self-published cookbook won the cookbook of the year award. The author, a lanky man with salt and pepper hair and the widest grin you can possibly imagine set his mast toward the front of the room and sailed on, surprised! So full of glee! John McReynolds, the culinary director for Stone Edge Farm accepted the award on behalf of the Sonoma winery and ever so briefly mentioned the journey that brought them to self-publish their stunning coffee table cookbook full of photos and recipes that might just make you want to head to Sonoma for a long weekend. I caught up with him between sessions, curious to hear more, especially after I found this beauty of a poem written by Phil Coturri, the viticulturist at Stone Edge Farm (and a bit of a legend in Sonoma County for his dedication to organic farming) printed in the cookbook. Seeing poetry incorporated into cookbooks is something that makes me endlessly happy and hopeful that more opportunities might arise for culinary and literary cross-pollination.

In “Terroir,” like the grapevines flanking the sides of highway 101 in Sonoma, I appreciate Coturri’s use of concrete poetry, letting the form guide the eye as it curls toward a long line or dips into an abbreviated one, all shoots and tendrils. Terroir reverberates throughout the poem almost as a mantra as if saying it often reminds the reader and writer that “we don’t control it / we guide it / to an expression of flavor.” When talking to people about tea and notably, terroir, often it is described akin to wine. The place, climate, and condition of the soil all seeps into the final cup, showing how terroir extends beyond the vine. What this bit of wine poetry does well is instruct the reader into the nuances that make up terroir as if we too might join Coturri on a hot Sonoma afternoon in October during crush, as if our eyes might alight upon the grapevines differently. With responsibility. As if they are a gift to be nurtured. As if the domain of terroir expands beyond the vineyard into our own lives, asking where does the alchemy need to begin?

Food Poetry Poetry

Food Poetry: “Segments of an Orange” by Jen Karetnick

Food Poetry Blood Oranges

Segments of an Orange

How can I rest?
How can I be content
when there is still
that odor in the world?
— Louise Gluck


Hours before she died, my grandmother
sucked dry three segments of a navel orange
and, claiming her appetite had a short range,
hooked out the pulp with her finger,
shreds catching on her ring. With delicate theater,
she wrapped the untouched sections in a napkin
she’d halved down the center folded line
to keep them fresh for later.

I fly in to sit shiva from Orange County,
where the branched that bear citrus are bent
by a greedy public who can’t resist
loading their bushels with questionable bounty–
the hard, yellowing rinds left hanging by migrant
workers, who know best this business

of surplus, and restraint, and what to pick when.
And all at once, oranges are everywhere:
In the shampoo I use to wash my niece’s hair.
In the disinfectant wiped onto porcelain
fixtures in the home where the dead are lain.
On the plates I fix for guests too old to rise from chairs;
nestled, smugly poisoning the air
from grass-filled bamboo baskets sent by friends.

My niece balances the fruit on her baby-fat palms
before rolling them to the great-aunts, who can’t
remember the exact numbers of their ages but who speak
with accents Polish enough to date them.
“Range,” Corrie says. She’s learning to want
the meaning to match the sound, so when she plucks

it on the string of her tongue over and over
her relatives will marvel and give applause.
She bowls the fruit at every leg in the house,
each pant-suited visitor a pin to strike and quiver.
Tomorrow, one of my grandmother’s sisters
will trip on a forgotten orange and break
her hip, and the doctor will adjust his face
and pat her silk-clad shoulder, and call her, “Helen Dear.”

And in the hospital, she’ll tell the story
of my frugal grandmother’s last day
to the congregated bedside brood,
and claim she’d prefer a fruit with more glory.
“But should the season call for an orange,” she’ll say,
“at least make it blood, my darlings. Make mine blood.”

                                                                     – Jen Karetnick


Jen Karetnick and I share three things in common. First of all, both of us are intensely interested in food to the point of working in the field of food writing, and specifically are entrenched in our appreciation of restaurants. She writes for a Miami magazine as the local restaurant reviewer; I credit my work in the food field with my first job at a bakery. Then there’s the fact that both of us studied for MFA’s in literature, diving into trying to better our craft through directed programs. But I’m most interested in the link we share where food poetry and recipes converge. In the same year that her first cookbook, Mango was published, her first full-length book of food poetry was bound and released in the collection, Brie Season. She sent me the latter book to read and of all the poems in the book, her poem “Segments of an Orange” is one that didn’t let me go quite so easily after the poem finished.

Part of what gripped me in this poem is its certainty of place and the ways the narrative keeps the symbol of the orange before us. The details make this poem come alive like the moment when her grandmother folds the napkin to save the rest of the orange for later, as if she would have more time or as if she is saving it for someone else to finish. We then begin to see and smell oranges in places outside of that hospital room. Fake oranges in shampoo or disinfectant. The narrator even travels to Orange County as if she cannot get away from the tidal wave of grief that can assail those who lose someone they love. From the very old who pass away to the very young who are still learning to form their mouth around the word, settling on “Range,” the poem takes a turn to somewhere in between in the end. This time the orange has afflicted a mishap on a character in the poem that takes us back into the hospital but doesn’t take a tragic turn. Instead the grandmother’s sister exerts her power over the obstacle calling for something “with more glory.” That she requests a blood orange bewitches the poem with the duality of the symbol. She contrasts her living with her sister’s dying: “Make mine blood.” Wow. What a brutal and breathless way to end the poem! I was struck with how powerful this poem is. Being haunted by symbols of the person who has passed away and then being able to keep the trope going to an unforeseeable end is exhilarating.


About Jen Karetnick
Miami-based poet, writer and educator Jen Karetnick is the author/co-author/editor of 12 books, including three published in 2014: Mango, a cookbook (October); Brie Season, a full-length book of poems (White Violet Press, September); and Prayer of Confession, a chapbook of poetry (Finishing Line Press, June). Her poems and essays have been widely published in Cimarron Review, December, North American Review, Poet’s Market 2013, Poets & Writers, River Styx, Seneca Review, Spillway and the Submittable blog. She works as the Creative Writing Director of Miami Arts Charter School; as the dining critic for MIAMI Magazine from Modern Luxury; and as a freelance writer for outlets including The, Destinations MO, Food Arts,, The Local Palate, Morning Calm/Korean Air, Southern Living and USA Today.

Food Poetry Poetry

Coffee Poetry: Confessions of a Coffee Snob #3 by Jonathan Pacic

Coffee Poetry

Breakfast is on the brain. Last week’s food poetry morsel included a plate of scrambled eggs that would have been perfect for Sun-Tzu, served up by poet Roy Mash. For many, the beginning of a day would be less welcome without a cup of coffee in hand. Even though I veer toward tea nine times out of ten, sometimes, a roasted cup of strong black coffee or sweetened and served with milk is downright glorious. Poet Jonathan Pacic shares his poem, “Confessions of a Coffee Snob #3 – Labels,” part of a series he has written on his ruminations while caffeinating. Enjoy the buzz.


Confessions of a Coffee Snob #3- Labels

I confess
on this measured midlife morning
as I slowly savor
my hand ground
French pressed
fairly traded
cooperatively farmed
single origin
lightly roasted
cup of
I wonder-
are these labels for the coffee,
or for the drinkers?


– Jonathan Pacic



Jonathan Pacic is a student of the moment and a teacher of fifth grade in Aurora, Colorado.  His work has appeared on the board of his classroom, the food literature journal Alimentum, and on sticky notes in the lunchboxes of his three children. He is currently working on a collection of poetry for all readers and a middle grade novel for children.

Food Poetry Poetry Poetry Bookshelf

Food Poetry: Cream of Tartar by Julia Wendell

Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about relationships between mothers and daughters. They can be so fraught of misunderstanding. My mother used to denounce my teenage years as the years I didn’t talk to her. How could I explain the gulf of emotion and crisis upon which I was cresting outside of writing and reading my way through those four profoundly influential years?

Julia Wendell shares a story about cooking with her mother in the kitchen, how together they shared a secret that one of them knew and the other had yet to learn. Her mother’s arthritic hands made certain small acts in the kitchen difficult for her but provided opportunities for her daughter to participate in the process. At the time, Julia questioned the validity of her contributions until she too developed arthritis in her hands year later, and with it, understanding of how important her help had been to her mom. Mothers and daughters can do a kind of circle eight dance, can’t they? So many years later, my mother and I are the closest we have ever been but it has come at the cost of all of the lessons life has taught us through one another along the way.

Julia Wendell’s new book, Take This Spoon explores this tenuous balance between mothers and daughters, grounding it in the food they make together. I caught a glimpse of her food poetry and knew that I wanted to share it with you. Be sure to read beyond her poem, “Cream of Tartar” for Julia’s Cheese Souffle recipe that includes the secret ingredient alluded to in the poem above it.

Take This Spoon by Julia Wendell


Cream of Tartar

by Julia Wendell from her new book, Take This Spoon


Pot-holdering a cloud

of toasted soufflé,

its voluptuous body

billowing over the dish,

we kept its infallible, flawless secret,


referencing the butter-

stained recipe card

by memory only.

Teamwork, we’d wink to each other—

and lots of stirring—never revealing


what separated mother and daughter

from our guests’ amazement

at this seeming perfection—

fleeting, and only as good

as our shortcut:


a bitter white powder lodged

in a glass spice jar

that doubles in volume without fail

what it starts with, transforming

impossible into easy.



Julia Wendell’s Cheese Soufflé

3 tablespoons butter

3 tablespoons flour

1 ½ cups shredded cheddar cheese

About 1 ½ cups milk

5 eggs, separated

½ teaspoon cream of tartar

In a double boiler, melt the butter. Then add the flour and stir until well blended. Add the milk, a little at a time, and stir until the sauce begins to thicken. Add the cheese, stir, and remove from the heat. Beat the egg yolks until light and sunny. Add to cheese sauce which has been allowed to cool slightly. Beat whites until stiff but not dry. Fold in cream of tartar and then blend cheese mixture into it. Pour mixture into a greased ceramic deep dish and place that dish into an oven-proof pie pan that has about ½ inch of boiling water added to it. Place dish and pie pan in middle rack of oven. Cook at 350 degrees for about 1 hour or until soufflé has risen and crust has browned and a knife inserted in center comes out clean. DO NOT open the oven door while cooking. Only check for doneness at the end of the hour. If the pie pan runs out of water within the cycle of cooking, open the oven door ONCE to add a little more boiling water.

Around my house, we always served the soufflé with baked potatoes, peas, and a “Seizure Salad”—but that’s your call.


food poetry Julia Wendell
Julia Wendell grew up in the Allegheny Forest of northwest Pennsylvania. Educated at Cornell University, Boston University, and the University of Iowa, Writer’s Workshop, she left her mid-careers as teacher and editor for the world of horses and three-day eventing. Her children John Logan (a classical sitarist) and Caitlin Saylor (an actor/playwright), grew up with their mother and her husband, poet and critic, Barrett Warner, on their horse farm in northern Baltimore County, where Julia and Barrett still live and work. Julia is enamored of jumping horses over immovable obstacles while galloping cross country. Discover more of her work at JuliaWendell including her new book of poetry about food and the complexities of a mother-and-daughter relationship, Take This Spoon.

Food Poetry Poetry

To the Next Superfood – food poetry

To the Next Superfood

To whom it may concern
and who has ears to learn,
what passes the test one

day will fall out of favor.
Even now, I try and savor
my name in newsprint,

the widespread popularity,
my far-reaching availability,
and the rich talking points

that come with this gig each day:
high in iron! Vitamin C, A and K!
Carotenoids! Flavonoids! Iron!

I can’t shake that while it’s all true
why you buy me is because I’m “new.”
Ask acai or broccoli, salmon or spinach.

Every superhero has its moment
to be eclipsed by what’s current.
I will still be as valuable when I’m

no longer en vogue. Just look at
my role in the Middle Ages, what
a supplement I played in WW II.

So even when you say you’re through
with my curly green edges or you’ve
tired of crisping me into cheesy chips,

I will keep growing and begin to regale
because nothing not even turmeric
can take on brassica oleracea, the mighty kale!

© Annelies Zijderveld. All rights reserved. Please do not reprint or post without attribution. 

food poetry-kale-the food poet


Food Poetry Poetry

Food Poetry Fete: Plan a Burns Night

Poet Robert Burns

Poetry has its way of coursing its way into conversations unexpectedly. I’ve given up alcohol for the month of January, except, of course, I’m making an exception for Burns night. Burns night. It glimmered as a side comment in the long litany of instruction on how to properly roll out and blind bake tart dough. Much like the gaps of baking education I am in the process of filling in, so did planning a Burns night.

To Scots, Anglophiles and poetry lovers, every year on January 25th commemorates the life of poet Robert Burns who wrote extensively of everyday Scottish life. He was a poet of the people. So beloved was he that he remains the national poet of Scotland. Typically a Burns Night commences with a reading of his poem, “Address to a Haggis” and then the feast begins.

In Scotland, the poem is apparently read to an accompaniment of bagpipes and the haggis is sliced and served upon completion of the poem. This can be a bit of a challenge if living in the city of San Francisco or elsewhere in the United States where haggis is not easily found.

Bringing the poetry is just part of the fun. Invite your friends over and give each of them a dish to bring. You can even send them the link to the recipe. While haggis may be in short supply, rest assured a night of revelry, relishing good food and poetry can be yours.


Robert Burns cocktail
Bobby Burns cocktail


Cock-a-Leekie Soup
Vegetarian Haggis
Neeps and Tatties


Clootie Dumpling

Don’t fancy last minute party-planning? In this case, get thee to St. Andrew’s Society on Saturday night in San Francisco for their Burns Night Supper at 6 p.m. While the Edinburgh Castle has held a Burns night for the past 19 years in San Francisco, they’re taking a break this year (though if these Scots have something to say about it, there might be a makeshift one happening there?)

This might qualify as an entry on a poet’s bucket list. Sometimes living in the United States where poetry can seem to live on the margins of society rather than infiltrate it, it can be downright refreshing or astonishing to encounter a culture where a poet’s life and work is honored long after he is gone. Scotland is proud of its “favourite son” hosting many events in his stead. The Haggis Highland Games with a parade and then dancing the evening of the 25th. A humanitarian award, celebration of the works of Robert Burns on display (in 2014) at the Museum of Rural Life and family-friendly events in Edinburgh will also take place to remember Burns.

“Address to a Haggis” by Robert Burns

Fair fa’ your honest, sonsie face,
Great chieftain o’ the pudding-race!
Aboon them a’ yet tak your place,
Painch, tripe, or thairm:
Weel are ye wordy o’a grace
As lang’s my arm.

The groaning trencher there ye fill,
Your hurdies like a distant hill,
Your pin was help to mend a mill
In time o’need,
While thro’ your pores the dews distil
Like amber bead.

His knife see rustic Labour dight,
An’ cut you up wi’ ready sleight,
Trenching your gushing entrails bright,
Like ony ditch;
And then, O what a glorious sight,
Warm-reekin’, rich!

Then, horn for horn, they stretch an’ strive:
Deil tak the hindmost! on they drive,
Till a’ their weel-swall’d kytes belyve
Are bent like drums;
Then auld Guidman, maist like to rive,
Bethankit! hums.

Is there that owre his French ragout
Or olio that wad staw a sow,
Or fricassee wad make her spew
Wi’ perfect sconner,
Looks down wi’ sneering, scornfu’ view
On sic a dinner?

Poor devil! see him owre his trash,
As feckles as wither’d rash,
His spindle shank, a guid whip-lash;
His nieve a nit;
Thro’ blody flood or field to dash,
O how unfit!

But mark the Rustic, haggis-fed,
The trembling earth resounds his tread.
Clap in his walie nieve a blade,
He’ll mak it whissle;
An’ legs an’ arms, an’ hands will sned,
Like taps o’ trissle.

Ye Pow’rs, wha mak mankind your care,
And dish them out their bill o’ fare,
Auld Scotland wants nae skinking ware
That jaups in luggies;
But, if ye wish her gratefu’ prayer
Gie her a haggis!

You could always kick things off listening to someone else reading “Address to a Haggis” if you’re not up for picking your way through- plus this version comes with bagpipes. Pick up your own collection of Robert Burns’ poetry and dog ear your favorites to read throughout the Burns Night meal or pass around and have your friends take turns picking their own poem to read aloud.

Do you host your own Burns Night? What special flourishes do you incorporate into your party? Any other favorite poems you read aloud?


Photo credit: Wikipedia

Food Poetry

Stinging Nettle Soup: Greens in Winter Food Poem

Stinging Nettle Soup | Annelies Zijderveld

Greens in Winter

Stiff edged leaves want

to stick fingers, prick them

if unaware of their nature.


Winter has left us

bereft, for years we knew

what to expect. But now,


farmers throw their hands

out to the fields, then up to

the skies. When precipitation


makes some states quake,

ours is notably barren.

The dustbowl is what came


of December, long remembered

for rain. We ask ourselves if

the Bay area could become L.A.


even as a cloud of smog hovers

where the fingers of fog used

to snake over green hills as cover.


To take a season and shake it up

like a snowglobe is to redistribute

what is known with the unknown,


leaving us to pray for rain for a Fuyu

tree in Anderson valley, to wait and see

if in a year the fruit will blossom and grow.

Stinging Nettle Soup | Annelies Zijderveld



This soup’s bright green color is the perfect pick-me-up for a cold January evening. Sumptuous without being overly indulgent, the almond milk gives just enough of a creaminess with a smidge of warming nutmeg added that lets the subtle flavor of nettles shine. Take note and wear gloves as suggested below. Stinging nettles get their name for a reason when raw, but once cooked, they can be used in similar ways as spinach.

YIELD: 4-6 servings


8 ounces of stinging nettles

3 cups of spinach

1 medium onion

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/8 teaspoon nutmeg

1 teaspoon sea salt

2 cups almond milk

freshly cracked black pepper


Slip your hands into gloves and rinse the nettles. Bring a heavy bottomed pot 3/4 full of water to a boil. With gloves still on, move the nettles and spinach into the pot. Submerge them with a wooden spoon, letting them cook for 10 minutes. Drain them and squeeze the  liquid out of the greens between two paper towels .

Meanwhile, chop the onion. Turn the heat under a medium-sized saucepan on medium heat for 1 minute. Swirl in the olive oil and butter until melted.  Saute the onion until translucent, about 8 minutes. Stir in the nutmeg, salt, the nettles and spinach. Saute for 4 minutes.

Puree the soup in two batches until it’s smooth, adding 1 cup of almond milk each time. Serve with crusty bread, the kind that has enough personality to be a bit sour.

[/print_this]Stinging Nettle Soup | Annelies Zijderveld 2014-01-14 18.11.09


Stinging Nettle Spaetzle – Honest-Food

Pasta with Stinging Nettles and Ramps Pesto – Sassy Radish

Stinging Nettle Ravioli Gnocchi – A Hungry Bear Won’t Dance

Nettle and Ricotta Tart – Treehugger

Stinging Nettle Omelette – Nourished Kitchen


Pineapple Guava Curd

Pineapple Guava Curd

A pineapple guava sits on the counter
huddled as if in conversation with green-backed
friends. Its unseen skill paints the splotched
cream walls of our kitchen into dappled light
nudging through long leafy fronds of palm trees.
I want to bottle the aroma, all mai tai and lapping
waves of an ocean too turquoise to be real.
In the winter morning, when the fog horn
croons outside and a finger could swipe
a smiley face on the frosted windows,
we need a little bit of paradise come down
that it might remind us to remember
ourselves even as the cold and darkness
come too soon and we turn into bears,
clawing our way toward blanketed slumber.

Pineapple Guava Recipes: Pineapple Guava Curd


YIELD: 4 jam jars



6 medium-sized pineapple guavas

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 cup organic sugar

6 egg yolks

1 stick (7 tablespoons) unsalted organic butter, at room temperature



Run a microplane against the soft backs of three guavas, capturing two tablespoons of zest.
Cut the guavas in half, placing them belly-side up and scoop out the flesh, 1/2 cup, into a bowl.
Mash in the zest and lemon juice with the tines of a fork until it resembles mashed banana.

Fill a heavy-bottomed pot with water and set over medium heat until bubbles begin to break
against the sides. Turn heat down to medium low so the water continues to simmer.

Pour sugar into a large stainless steel bowl with a deep well.  Along its edge, crack the eggs, one by one, cradling the yolk in the shell, or if you’re quite adept, in your hand, letting the whites cascade into a waiting bowl or glass, reserved for some other purpose.

Whisk yolk with sugar to make a goldenrod paste and place the bowl over the pot of simmering water. Whisk in the mashed pineapple guava into the yolk and sugar. Feel the length of your arm conspiring with your recollection of a smear of curd on toast as you keep whisking. Whisk with passion. Whisk and let your mind wander about whether Mr. Darcy was a prat to Elizabeth Bennett or if she might have just been too proud to see through his veneer. Whisk as if you can stave off the Christmas season soon coming to a close. Whisk until the curd thickens up like a good redeye gravy, about five minutes. Gently plop pats of butter into the bowl and (need I say it), keep whisking.

Once it all comes together like the sunny buttery light of an easy Sunday morning, spoon it into small jam jars and bring them to room temperature before refrigerating.

Food Poetry

Carrot Top Pesto

Carrot Top Pesto | The Food Poet

Carrot Top Pesto

YIELD: 1 cup



2 cups of frilly green carrot tops, rinsed & patted dry

3 garlic cloves, skins and clove end removed

¼ cup pine nuts

pinch of salt

4 tablespoons of good olive oil


Amass ingredients on top of one another
on a cutting mat: salt 
sprinkled on garlic
on pine nuts on frilly leaves of carrot tops.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather.

Chop and gather until minced.

Pour and stir in olive oil.