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When Life Gives you Lemons...Share!

Our Eureka lemon tree is going wild with the most fragrant, juicy lemons. I offered a few to a friend around the corner a while back and she just sent me a text: "Do you like limoncello?" Indeed I do! She brought some over and shared the recipe with me, which I'll share with you: Deb's Limoncello Place the peels from 10 lemons in a quart jar with vodka. Let sit for 1 month. Strain through a coffee filter set into a strainer. Add 2 cups of simple syrup (1 cup water to 1 cup sugar) or more or less to taste. Deb recommends stirring into Pellegrino and serving over ice. Sip in the garden.

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The Vacation that Wasn't

This summer was meant to be spent at a lake house in New Hampshire. My daughter and her friends, all new high school grads, had created a chill playlist; my husband and I planned day trips and menus; and I had a secret weapon to combat the mosquitoes that would surely be buzzing about: Shoo for Good wraps for all! And then...well, then Covid 19 entered the picture. We're staying home. We'll make the most of it. We really can't complain. (Well, my daughter, her friends, and the entire Class of 2020 can.) We're lucky to be in LA with nice, outdoor space. The mosquitoes are lucky to be here, too, though. They discovered Los Angeles several years ago, as our climate became more welcoming to them.  That's...

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Lunch in the Garden

Food tastes better when eaten outside, period. Especially in summer when the sun is warm and the birds are out. On the patio, under a pergola, or out on blanket on a lawn, food just tastes better there. One of my all-time favorite lunches is home-grown tomatoes, sliced or chopped; a ball or two of buffalo mozzarella; a sprinkling of home-grown basil; a drizzle of olive oil; a good pinch of salt and some pepper. It's quick, easy, salty, and sweet. If I have a lazy afternoon ahead, I'll have a glass of rosé, too. One of my favorites is Commanderie de Peyrassol, a nice, light, and affordable wine from Provence. You can order some here. Don't forget your Shoo for...

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The glorious sun, behind the western hills, Slowly, in gorgeous majesty, retires, Flooding the founts and forests, fields and rills, With the reflection of his golden fires. How beauteous all, how calm, how still!

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Kumquats and Cocktails

The kumquats have been spectacular this year! Not only are they cheerful, little orange balls set in leafy green trees, they’re tasty—and the world’s best, natural breath-fresheners. Our two potted trees produce so much that we get to share with friends. The best recipe I know for cooking with them is the Chicken with Kumquat recipe in Amelia Saltsman’s classic, The Santa Monica Farmers’ Market Cookbook. Order yours on Amazon (there are so many other amazing recipes in it, too). While you wait for her book to arrive in the mail, make a kumquat purée to brighten your quarantinis during this lockdown! I made a ton and shared with friends. The bonus of making the purée is the prize that’s offered when you strain it:...

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