From Cecilla Rosslee:


On all my travels have I never been able to find good bread outside the parameters of Europe, until I came across this no knead, easy as pie recipe. And…seeing that every single person that tries my ciabatta wants the recipe, I thought it easiest to post it here for them and everyone else to get it!

{ I N G R E D I E N T S } ~ so simple you might not believe it

5 Cups Bread flour
1.5 t salt
1 t yeast
3 c warm tap water

Desolve yeast in 1/2 c (of total amount of water) and let ferment for 5 minutes.
Add to rest of ingredients and stir until it forms a very sloppy dough.
Cover and let rest for 4 hours.

Sprinkle cookie sheet with maize meal and a little bread flour and tip dough out onto it.
Lift edges of dough gently and stretch to form a basic snow shoe form {origin of ciabatta}
Place a small bowl of water in oven to form steam during baking.
Bake bread for 16-20 minutes {or until nice and golden brown} at 420°F / 220°C.

And voila!!! A ciabatta!!!



Ashes and Snow is a photographic body of work that is absolutely stunning.  The photographer is Canadian born Gregory Colbert.  His photography sets out to explore the poetic sensibilities of animals in their natural habitat as they interact with human beings.  None of the photographs are digitally composited or enhanced.

Here are a few examples, but when you have a quiet moment, you must go to explore this online interactive experience.  Click on the “enhanced” version and make sure the speakers are turned on.   Then click EXPLORE.
(if the link does not connect, copy and past into browser)


In the artist’s words:

In exploring the shared language and poetic sensibilities of all animals, I am working towards rediscovering the common ground that once existed when people lived in harmony with animals. The images depict a world that is without beginning or end, here or there, past or present.

Gregory Colbert’s Ashes and Snow is an ongoing project that weaves together photographic works, 35mm films, art installations and a novel in letters. With profound patience and an enduring commitment to the expressive and artistic nature of animals, he has captured extraordinary interactions between humans and animals.

None of the images have been digitally collaged or superimposed. They record what the artist himself saw through the lens of his camera. While Colbert uses both still and movie cameras, the images are not stills from the film.

The animal subjects of the photographs and films include interactions with both wild animals and also those that have been habituated to human contact.

To date, Ashes and Snow has attracted over 10 million visitors, making it the most attended exhibition by a living artist in history.


This was published in the Portland Farmer’s Market Blog by the talented Miriam Garcia and it warmed my heart on this cold, rainy day.

Enjoy, Jill

Article and photo from Miriam Garcia
Last week, on vacation in Mexico, I ate fresh salsa, charred corn, sliced melon and shrimp tacos. The flavors made a sun-on-my-skin kind of feeling happen in my mouth. There really is a kind of happy that comes only from the sun and, apparently, you can eat it. Back in Portland, I realize that these sun-filled foods are not unlike migrating geese or humpback whales, chasing the seasons, gradually making their returns to Northern climes. They’re still far away but they’re getting closer. In the chill of March in Portland, I hunger for warmth; for strong sun, hours and hours of it; and for the foods that only long days can coax from the earth. But all I can do is sharpen my various hungers like so many kitchen knives and wait.

Since ancient times, Winter-into-Spring, the Lenten season, has been thought of as a period of solemnity and abstinence after the misrule of Carnival and before the rites of spring. For some, this is a spiritual experience and for others a slog. Either way, it’s about waiting. And whetting. The Old English word ‘Lent,’ refers to the ‘lengthening’ of days and as our days stretch toward the summer, our markets will open wide to receive returning bounty. Wandering the markets we’ll see the growing light manifesting in successive waves of fruits and vegetables. It’s only March however, and there’s a long way to go.
So, we wait. And whet. We listen for geese, drive to the coast to watch for whales, and wander the markets, looking beyond spring’s tender green offerings all the way to the return of the ripe melon, the sweet corn and the glorious tomato. Across these final few weeks of quiet chill and tentative blossoms, we may as well let the hunger intensify. The foods of the sun will find their way home to us and we will eat them. We’ll be wearing sundresses and shorts and we’ll feel the warmth of the sun on our shoulders and in our tomatoes and the happiness of it will fill us up and feed us well. Soon.
Miriam Garcia is a folklorist-foodie, freelance writer and guardian of a super-secret chicken soup recipe. You can contact her at Miriam_G

Kindle + Library = Love

By Jill Taylor

Between the relentless rain and a nasty cold, I’m not getting out anytime soon. So I’m particularly appreciating my Kindle that wirelessly downloads unlimited books from the library. Yes, I was formerly a ‘I can get it at the library’ hold-out but when the new Kindle launched at $79 and they formed an agreement with libraries, it was time to shed my Luddite ways and convert. Now no more trudging to the library or packing books on planes so I’m happily reading more than ever (and with the larger font size, I’m reading faster than ever).

For those of you with a Kindle (or Kindle app on your iPad) and a library card, here’s how it works. Search on your library site and if there’s an eBook option it will show up to the right. Here’s one I just read and loved as an example:

Click on the “click here to access digital titles” link which leads you here:

Click “Place a hold” and enter your library card number and they will email you when it becomes available for downloading. (Most of the best sellers take awhile to become available however older books usually download immediately.) You will then be automatically directed to Amazon who will download your book wirelessly to your Kindle, piece of cake.

You can hold up to 6 titles at a time (and since I have a Santa Barbara library card too, 12) and check them out for up to 3 weeks. A little trick is you can get around this time limit by not turning on your wireless after its expiration, but if you want to download another book, you’ll have to turn it on eventually.

At first it may seem daunting to go through all these steps but after you do it a few times, it becomes automatic. And by the way, you can also check out audiobooks for your iPod/iPhone using the same method.

Happy reading,

Kathy’s new easy favorite potato recipe

I’ve done this with red, yukon, and my personal favorite, sweet potatoes! > It’s so easy! They are a great “do ahead” for entertaining.
I boil potatoes until just barely soft. Drizzle olive oil and course sea salt on the cookie sheet. Smash potatoes and add more olive oil (and/or melted butter). Sprinkle with more course salts, herbs, parm. cheese or whatever! Roast until crispy on top at a higher heat (425 degrees).

Enjoy !
Kathy Krause

Fun with Scarves

I’m a recent Pinterest addict and on today’s page noticed this link to fun ways to tie scarves. Since I saw Portland awoke to some snow this morning, thought this might be timely if you’re looking for new ways to wear ’em. The ‘four in hand’ is my go-to but am looking forward to trying the ‘fancy braid’, double Boho’ and ‘loop and tuck.’

Stay warm,