Tuesday, January 26, 2010


Guess what? Today I received the wonderful news that Harold Dieterle, season 1 winner of Top Chef, has agreed to submit his bittersweet memory!! Not only has he won Top Chef, but, also has an amazing restaurant in New York's Greenwich Village called Perilla. I am so excited! Harold is the first celebrity chef to accept my invitation. Hopefully, there will be many more to come. I will keep you posted!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Glossed and Found

Graham Kostic from Glossed and Found is absolutely amazing! Today, he came over to my house and we shot a video cooking segment! It was my first time doing a live interview and it went great. I was so nervous that I was literally shaking. He was so calming and fun to work with that he made me forget we were even on camera!
I decided to make something that would be fun to make and look pretty on TV. I will keep you posted on when the video is up on the internet!

Here is the recipe:
Breaded Chicken Breast in Garlic Wine Tomato Sauce
4 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
1 Egg beaten
Bread Crumbs
Oil for frying
1 Cup White Cooking Wine
1 Cup Water
2 Large Tomatoes - chopped
1 Garlic Clove, crushed and chopped
1 Cup Chicken Broth
Several Sprigs of Fresh Parsley chopped
Salt and Pepper to Taste

Coat chicken with egg and then the bread crumbs. Heat oil in frying pan. Fry chicken until golden brown on both sides. Remove chicken from pan. Pour water and wine into pan and bring to a boil. Add tomatoes, garlic, broth, parsley, salt and pepper. Return chicken to sauce pan. Simmer until tender, about one hour.
Serve with rice or pasta and enjoy!

Monday, January 18, 2010


Things that happen in January:
The weather is cold.
It is dark and gloomy all of the time.
The holidays are over.
The gym's are packed with people who are working on their New Year's resolutions.
The Golden Globes and Superbowl are aired.
It is my mother's 4 year anniversary of her passing.

Ever since 2006, January has become the most difficult month of the year for me. The entire month has a dark cloud over it. My mother passed away January 23rd. The date makes me sick to my stomach. I remember vividly every detail of her final days. The date has always had this power over me.
Last week, I was watching Oprah. Nate Berkus did a segment on grief with Paula Dean. In the segment, he talks about how he has let the dates go. Nate lost his partner in the Tsunami 5 years ago. He discussed how the "dates" of his birthday, holidays, and day that his partner passed had a hold over him. He decided to let the dates go and to remember when he chose to remember. I wish that I could let the date of January 23rd go and remember my mother when I choose to not when the calendar tells me to. It is a great piece of advice and I hope it helps some of you!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Cold Winter Nights

Nights like these are the perfect evenings to sit by the fire place, read a great book, and eat a yummy hearty stew. I am currently reading "The Help" by Kathryn Stockett. It is amazing!! Sorry, I digress. Anyways, tonight I am making beef stew. I have been cooking it for 5 hours already and the house smells delicious.
I remember being a kid and coming home from school to this smell. It is rich, filled with garlic and tomatoes. You can smell the freshness of the vegetables and beef stewing. I remember being called down to dinner and taking the first bite! Mmmmmm! I love the way the meat just melts in my mouth and the vegetables are so soft they just slide down. My mother used to make warm biscuits to serve with dinner. There was nothing better to warm me up on a cold winter night.
What is your favorite stew? I want to hear all about it! Submit it today at www.bittersweet-memories.com

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Best of the Best

Great News!! We have been featured in Best of Best Dining Chicago and The Examiner. I am so excited. Check them out at:

Also, this Friday the 15th, we will be featured on Claire Bidwell Smith's Blog, "Life in Chicago". Look for my new bittersweet memory story and Pepper Steak recipe at:
Claire is so interesting to me. We have very similar stories about our mothers. They both passed away from cancer and were both excellent cooks. Also, we are both featuring them in our work. Claire is a grief counselor and is going to be giving me some expert opinions for the book! She is also an amazing writer who has been praised with the honor of one of the best blogs in the world by the Sydney Morning Herald and featured as a blog of the week by the San Francisco Chronicle. I'm so excited about developing our relationship and working together.

Need help writing your story?

I have been eagerly waiting to read all of your stories and recipes but they are coming in very slowly. In talking with a bunch of people, I have learned some reasons for why that may be the case. Many of you have expressed that you are having trouble sitting down to write your story because it brings up too many bittersweet memories and is difficult; or you think that the recipe is not good enough; or you think that your story is not going to be written that well since you aren't a writer. Well, I am here to help!
I am looking for a bunch of stories and old traditional recipes. I am not looking for the best written story or the best recipe. I am looking for your bittersweet memory! I want to help you write your story. Please email me and we can write it together. We can make your memory a masterpiece!