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Brandon Kinder: The Right Regrets

Brandon Kinder: The Right Regrets

  Brandon Kinder’s two albums are part of my “pandemic” playlist. Last year I asked Brandon to perform where I live, in Wiesbaden. He said if I found a venue he would add Wiesbaden to his European tour. I did. And Brandon was true to 

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Culinary Curiosities (Update)

Culinary Curiosities (Update)

I have a trail of crumbs to follow, some are my own… I want to visit Les Deux Garçons, where M.F.K. Fisher sipped sherry while her girls indulged in glasses of lemonade in Aix-en-Provence. I want to find the lounge in Paris where Craig Claiborne 

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A Polished Life

A Polished Life

(Fiction) Our mother always liked to say, “Sarah and Maurine, only a true southern lady can wear red nail polish and not look like a tramp”.  My sister Maurine and I longed for the day when we would turn 18.  This was the designated age 

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Spelt Strawberry Muffins

Spelt Strawberry Muffins

Makes 12-15  ¾ c. granulated sugar ½ c. almond milk ½ c. applesauce (I used unsweetened) 1 lg. egg 1 tsp. vanilla extract ¼ tsp. almond extract 2 c. spelt flour  1 tsp. baking powder ½ tsp baking soda ¼ tsp salt 2 c. diced 

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M.F.K. Fisher: Ghosts of Dijon

M.F.K. Fisher: Ghosts of Dijon

In 1929, a bright-eyed 21-year-old American woman stepped off a transatlantic ocean liner and found herself in Dijon. Mary Frances Kennedy Fisher, now better known by her initials, was unaware of the culinary and literary sojourn that awaited her on rue du Petit-Potet. Yet those 

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M.F.K. Fisher’s Shrimp Cucumber Soup

M.F.K. Fisher’s Shrimp Cucumber Soup

“She would make it the night before and then just pour it from a chilled pitcher in the fridge when it was time to eat.  She loved the fact that it was made with buttermilk, which she knew many turned their noses up to, but 

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Maredret Monastery: Where Nuns Spin Gold

Maredret Monastery: Where Nuns Spin Gold

I’m not Catholic, but my love of Belgian beer often ushers my footsteps to monasteries and abbeys. As you likely know, many monks in Belgium make and peddle beer, but if you look in the shadows, you will discover the nuns at Maredret Monastery creating 

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Empress Earl Grey Chocolate Tea Cake

Empress Earl Grey Chocolate Tea Cake

 ½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature  1 cup spelt flour (*see note)  ½ cup unbleached white flour  1 tablespoon Earl Grey tea⁣ (*see note)  1 teaspoon baking powder⁣  ¼ teaspoon salt⁣  1 cup granulated sugar⁣  2 teaspoons grated orange zest   ¼ teaspoon vanilla  2 

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Schlosshotel Kronberg: Where Luxury and Love Coexist

Schlosshotel Kronberg: Where Luxury and Love Coexist

Sleeping under the slate roof of Schlosshotel Kronberg will leave those who appreciate history, design and luxury happy. It’s a castle, but staying within the art lined halls feels like overnighting at the wealthy aunt’s home you dreamt you’d had. The estate was completed in 

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Verona: Where Streets are Paved Pink

Verona: Where Streets are Paved Pink

In Verona leave your rose colored glasses at home. This Italian city is steeped in romance and passion, even the pedestrian alleyways are paved in pink limestone. Scribbled hearts with names and poems are written on walls, telephone poles and public letter boxes. You can’t 

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Gruene Hall: A Snake. A Beer. A Memory

Gruene Hall: A Snake. A Beer. A Memory

(This post is a memory from 2014.) Walking into Gruene Hall, boots are greeted not only by worn wooden floorboards, but with a clacking sound as heels scoot over weathered metal license plates that are nailed to the floor. I wasn’t sure if their purpose was to add 

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Not a Typical Love Story

Not a Typical Love Story

Falling in love with someone nearly half my age wasn’t the plan. After all, I’ve been happily married for seventeen years. We even have four daughters. I most certainly didn’t expect my ten-year-old and a pop icon to introduce me to this new love. Our 

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