Happy Solstice 2010!

Last night I was fortunate to have clear skies in which to see the full lunar eclipse and celebrate the winter solstice. My companion while viewing the celestial spectacle was Ernie the goat (I don’t know where Bert was, probably in the shed):


I’ve also been blessed to be celebrating the holidays with family. There has already been a ton of great food, dancing in the kitchen with my 98-year old grandma and my mom (see below), and the unexpected gift of finding out this morning that The Locavore’s Handbook is number fourteen on The Daily Green’s 20 Best Cookbooks and food books of 2010!

Here’s my dad, Kelly Johnson, with an uninvited lunch guest a few days ago:


And here’s the start of a holiday spread I helped put together for some of my mom’s vegetarian friends. veggie-feastThe hit of that meal was definitely the agro-dulce butternut squash. Or maybe it was the skordalia (Greek garlic dip). Whatever; it was all good:

The following day my mom’s husband, Frank Coberly, balanced out the vegetarian night by roasting a leg of lamb, and he was on chef duty again the next day making a Mexican-style meal with homemade tortillas (note to self: must get tortilla press. We’ve got good corn meals, if not masa, from locally grown corn at home in BK. Should work, right?)

Tomorrow I’m going to learn how to make my Dad’s pumpkin-pecan pie and we’re taking it over to Gideon and Anne’s.

Anyway, all the feasting and celebrating has meant lots of time in the kitchen. This is a video of me, my mom Penelope Lagios Coberly, and my Grandma Nea (Eugenia Kilgore) in the kitchen, but there’s very little cooking getting done:

3 Generations Dancing in the Kitchen

Here’s wishing you a Happy Solstice and New Year!



The Locavore’s Handbook: The Busy Person’s Guide to Eating Local on a Budget

Botany, Ballet, & Dinner from Scratch: A Memoir with Recipes

Foodie Weekend at Artists & Fleas

Artists & Fleas in Brooklyn, NY is doing a full weekend of foodie fun today and tomorrow. Anarchy in a Jar and My Friend’s Mustard will be there along with many other local artisinal food producers. Cathy Erway of Not Eating Out in NY will be doing a book signing today, and I’ll be there doing one from 3-4:30 p.m. tomorrow, Sunday 12th. Lot’s of interesting and yummy stuff–please stop by if you’re in NYC!


The Locavore’s Handbook: The Busy Person’s Guide to Eating Local on a Budget

Botany, Ballet, & Dinner from Scratch: A Memoir with Recipes

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Homemade Corn Flakes

One of this week’s DIY projects was making corn flakes breakfast cereal. It was easy and tasty; I’ll definitely make these again. Read on for how to make your own and stop buying the stuff in a box.


I started out with Mark Bittman’s recipe for breakfast cereal in The Food Matters Cookbook, but tweaked it a little by using local honey instead of the sugar in his recipe.I used finely ground corn meal from Oak Grove Plantation and Farmer-Ground Flour‘s half-white wheat flour. The only non-local ingredient was the oil.

Leda’s Corn Flakes

Makes approximately 4 servings

1/2 cup finely ground cornmeal, plus a little extra

1 1/2 cups flour (Bittman uses whole wheat)

1 1/2 tablespoons honey

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1. Preheat oven to 300F. Lightly dust two baking sheets with corn meal.

2. Put all the ingredients except the honey in a food processor and pulse to combine. Dissolve the honey in 1/4 cup water. Add the honey water to the other ingredients and let the machine run for a little while. Add additional water 1 teaspoon at a time until the dough holds together but isn’t sticky. Divide the dough into two balls.

3. Lightly flour a work surface and roll out the dough as thinly as possible, adding flour as needed to keep the dough from sticking. Bittman says “1/8 inch thick or even thinner.” Transfer the dough to one of the baking sheets. Roll out the second half of the dough and transfer to the other baking sheet.flakedough

4. Bake until crisp and lightly browned, about 30 minutes. Let the pans cool completely before crumbling the sheets of baked dough into flakes.

They look more like broken crackers than commercial corn flakes, but the flavor and crunch is excellent.jaroflakes The only thing I’ll do differently next time is roll them out even thinner in hopes of getting a lighter texture.

The Locavore’s Handbook: The Busy Person’s Guide to Eating Local on a Budget

Botany, Ballet, & Dinner from Scratch: A Memoir with Recipes

Leda on Facebook and Twitter