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  •     I recently had the great, good fortune to spend an evening dining at Blue Hill at Stone Barns in Pocantico Hills, N.Y., followed by a farm tour the next morning. And I shall say right now that this was the most spectacular, staggeringly creative, delicious meal I have ever had in my life.

  •     I gained four pounds in four days in Charleston. You could gain just as much from reading these recipes.

    Cheese Straws
        This recipe is from the February-March issue of Garden and Gun.
        No yield amount given, dadgummit.
    8 oz. shredded sharp cheddar cheese, room temperature
    1/4 cup softened butter
    1 cup flour
    1/2 tsp. salt
    1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper


        Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  •     The irony of watching “12 Years a Slave” the night before embarking on a little tour of Charleston, S.C., was not lost on me. Nor was the fact that William Tecumseh Sherman is one of my great, great, great uncles, a fact that I may or may not have proudly shouted from one of the city’s many church steeples had I imbibed enough bourbon. But this was more of a food and architecture tour of that lovely city.

  • Cafe Brulot
        Cafe Brulot is a fragrant, after-dinner drink from New Orleans. It is often served in restaurants, with a great show of flaming brandy drizzled down a curl of orange peel into your demitasse cup. I’m not giving you that recipe. Keep it simple. This is also delicious served cold.

        Makes eight servings.
    Zest from 1 orange
    12 whole cloves
    1/3 cup brandy
    1/3 cup Cointreau
    3 2-inch strips of lemon peel
    2 Tbsp. sugar

  •     Coffee is one of the most important beverages in history. As a flavoring in desserts and sauces it is one of the most intriguing ingredients, along with vanilla and chocolate.

  • Couscous With Olives and Garbanzo Beans
        This recipe is from Bon Appetit’s December 2005 issue. Feel free to leave out onions if you care about fellow passengers.

        Serves six.
    1 14-oz. can low-salt chicken broth
    1 10-oz. box couscous
    1 15-oz. can garbanzo beans, drained
    1 cup chopped red onion
    1/2 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
    5 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
    1 tsp. grated lemon peel

  •     We all travel, and we all have to eat. Why is it often the case that our nutritional needs go right out the window when traveling? We surrender to junk food and spend too much. I don’t know about you, but I eat too much when traveling; I think it’s boredom.

  •     When you go through the grocery store this time of year, do you just walk by the odder, wintry vegetables and head for the simpler, “safer,” more familiar ones like zucchini, lettuce, string beans, and so on? I am guilty of this, too. It is so easy to just grab those people-pleasers. You can do anything with zucchini year round, and who doesn’t like green beans with shallots or toasted almonds?

  • Raised Buckwheat Blini, Zhulien Mushroom Casserole, Garlic Cheese
  •     What kinds of foods are our athletes, their families, and fans eating in Sochi at the 2014 Winter Olympics? Well, you needn’t fret over the nutritional needs of the United States ski team. They are not residing in the athlete’s village, but are in the mountains above Sochi cocooned in comfort with private chefs attending to their every culinary need. Almost. It actually appears that they are eating a lot of Asian-inspired meals full of rice noodles and fish sauce.