bread and butter

The Thanksgiving Matrix

Nov 27, 2019
Ulrike Leone / Pixabay

Lael and Jenn are joined by a special guest to discuss something "peculiar and remarkable." Without giving too much away, it has to deal with a special kind of food planning referred to as "The Matrix." You'll have to listen in to the discussion to find out more. 

The Season We Feast

Nov 25, 2019
Element5 Digital / Pixabay

It’s that time of year again! The season we feast! We’ve chosen certain days to spend interminable hours thawing turkeys, swearing at pie crusts and refining our bread making skills … all in order to allow our friends and extended family to gather and stuff themselves silly.

'Caramel Is All The Good Within This World'

Nov 15, 2019
mrobenalt / Pixabay

I don’t have a big sweet tooth.  I never have.  I didn’t even like chocolate, the ultimate sugar cliche, until something shifted after I was pregnant.  And I still, after 45 years on this planet, believe chips are a fine meal replacement – especially in the corn or tortilla families.  

Do I Hafta??

Nov 15, 2019

I’ve realized, by hanging out with people who don’t know how to cook, that I really can competently make my way around the kitchen. I’m a home chef, not a pro. But I’ve realized, by watching the way my teenagers slaughter apples with a chef’s knife and massacre a brownie mix … a brownie mix! How hard could it be? … that over the years I’ve actually become pretty handy to have around, culinarily speaking.

Jars Of Grease

Nov 1, 2019
piviso / Pixabay

I have two medium glass jars of leftover bacon grease sitting on my kitchen counter, nestled in between my bottle of olive oil and my vintage avocado green floral motif butter dish.  I never assumed I would be the sort of person who strains and saves bacon grease to use in my cooking, but, really, now, it’s low on the list of broken assumptions I’ve amassed in my decades on earth. At least I can assuage this assumption with the knowledge that it’s really my husband who does the straining and the pouring.  I simply benefit from the full jars.

rawpixel / Pixabay

There is an abundance of inspiration on how to eat well from the big world. Every culture does it just a bit differently – from favoring an emphatic slurp over a bowl of noodles in Japan to the taboo in Italy against mixing seafoods like calamari with cheese. 

S. Hermann & F. Richter / Pixabay

For a recent segment, Lael and I played a ‘Name that Utah City with a Food Name.’ If you missed it, check out this link. Listen to the clues and see if you can guess the Utah cities. There are a few more Utah towns or cities we couldn’t fit into that round; but, they deserve just as much love and culinary attention.

A Tour Of A Costa Rican Chocolate Farm

Sep 27, 2019
Alexander Stein / Pixabay

In Costa Rica this summer, after two idyllic weeks of traipsing through cloud forests and relaxing on warm beaches, I still hadn’t had the chance to tour a chocolate farm. This had definitely been a priority on my pre-trip agenda, but I had procrastinated … mostly because I’d hyped the experience up so much in my head, I was afraid of disappointment. 

hirosho9 / Pixabay

"Did you know you would be a game show contestant today? We’re going to play Utah Cities with Food Names. I’ll give you some clues. Each answer is a city in Utah and the city has food or a food substance in its name."

The Age Old Practice Of Pickle Fermentation

Jul 19, 2019

Last summer, lurking in a corner in the dark of my basement was a vat of tiny warty cucumbers from our garden, now drowning in a salty brine of peppercorn, dill, garlic and grape leaves. It was my first ever experiment in fermentation. I faithfully checked the vat daily, ensuring the vegetables stayed submerged below the brine-line and to skim any scum from the surface where the saline content wasn’t high enough to prevent undesirable microbial growth.

Wikimedia Commons

Lael - So Jenn, last week I was thinning out my kitchen cupboards.  They are full of stuff, but if I could only have 10 essential tools in my kitchen, what would I choose? It's kind of the desert island question, if you had a kitchen on the desert island.  Here they are, you tell me what you think.  I’m going to start at the end.

What Are Your 'Kitchen Essentials?'

Jul 5, 2019

Jenn - So Lael, recently you shared with us your top 10 essential items for the kitchen.

Lael – I did

Jenn – It was a great list.  I got to thinking, we have some sophisticated listeners on Utah Public Radio, and maybe they have a lot of those items.  So what about a list, maybe just a top 5, of some essential tools that you may not have in your kitchen.  Well let’s jump in and see.

Nothing Satisfies Like A Good Spring Clean

Jun 20, 2019
Karolina Grabowska / Pixabay

Every year or so at my house, it rains plastic containers. I reach up to the top shelf to stack those last few plastic containers and lids, but there is just no more room, and they come pattering down to the tile floor. That’s always the signal, as reliable as spring crocuses, that it’s time for the annual kitchen cleanse.

moerschy / Pixabay

Spring in Utah -- the grill covers are torn off with the first sunny day, then go on again for those late storms that seem to surprise us every year. By summer, we finally feel confident enough to shed the covers for good and get down to some serious outdoor eating.

“I’m Not THAT Allergic To Peanuts”

May 29, 2019
Iva Balk / Pixabay

Last month we hosted a dinner for a group of high school students … most of whom I’d never met before they appeared, ravenous, in our driveway. It was perfect weather that day not to allow 25 teenage boys inside the house. Soon the grill in the backyard sizzled juicy Angus hamburgers, salty franks and a few well-seasoned black-bean burger patties. A folding table was loaded with buns and condiments, plates of crisp veggies, creamy red potato salad, a huge plate covered with tiny squares of dense fudge … chocolate and peanut butter.

The Power Of The Drizzle

May 17, 2019
Pixabay - estelle heitz

You know me as a no-frills home cook. Just listen to me rave about left-overs or two-ingredient dishes. So, this may come as a curveball: In the last few months, I have come to respect the Power of the Drizzle.

Caramelizing Onions

May 11, 2019
Pixabay - Couleur

They are all liars … well, most of them are, anyway. Almost all the recipes stuffed in my grease-splattered binder at home that call for cooked onions indicate that it’s somehow possible to caramelize them in five minutes or under. Pshaw. It’s not possible.

To Haggis Or Not To Haggis

May 6, 2019
Christopher Pelletier

Haggis. You’ve heard of it, though, if you’re like me, that’s about as far as it goes.

Equator And Spicy Foods

Apr 26, 2019

You may not know it, but when you choose between roasted red potatoes and curried rice for dinner, you are participating in a fascinating culinary phenomenon happening on a global scale.

Right On With Leftovers

Apr 19, 2019
Alan Levine - Flickr

I’ve been thinking about leftovers. Not the stubborn remnants of the casserole that turned out a little questionable even on the first go-around. No, I’ve been thinking of welcome leftovers. The curry that improves with time, giving bold spices the chance to marry and settle down. The chicken salad that tastes better the next day.

The Great Utah Scone Baking Show

Apr 4, 2019

By now, those of us gifted at-home DNA testing kits over the holidays are receiving the results. And, if you’re a Utahn, chances are good those ancestry profiles show roast beef and gravy runs in your blood.

Crumpets vs. English Muffins

Mar 29, 2019

In the United States, we enjoy many brilliant British exports … fish and chips, Harry Potter, Downton Abbey and Benedict Cumberbatch. But, we don’t have crumpets.

Two Ingredient Wonders

Mar 22, 2019

Three little words: beautiful to my ear and rich in emotion. Three little words I just don’t hear often enough: two ingredient recipes.


Climate change affects more than just the weather and news cycles. Vast ecological changes are creeping upon us … like a slowly rising proof. And our food, so dependant on a narrow range of factors – including temperature, rain and changing ecosystems – is under the grim auspices of this slow threat. 


If your doorbell rings this time of year, there’s a fair chance that it’s a neighbor, bundled in layers, bearing a cellophane-wrapped plate of homemade caramel or frosted cookies. It’s the season for these folks to make their way around the block, balancing plates and towing kids, sharing piles of chocolate dipped pretzels, almond cookies and gingerbread. It’s the Neighbor Plate, the Utah equivalent of caroling – with less crooning and more calories.