I have been involved with nutrition research for my entire
professional life, looking into the nutritional role of metals like iron,
copper, and zinc as well as carrying out clinical studies in childhood obesity
and diabetes mellitus. I’m retired now, and so I have become more interested in
things that taste good than things that are good for you. At the same time, I
come from a family of good cooks: my mother was a school lunch lady when they
baked their own rolls and whipped up hot casseroles instead of thawing
something from a restaurant supply company by popping it in the microwave; my
wife won me with her spoon bread and blueberry pie; one daughter still makes
her family meals from scratch; the other daughter is a professional chef; and
even my son gets in the act with some mean biscuits.  Trying out classic cooking methods holds
special interest to me – like making your own hominy.  At the same time, my general passion for
photography has recently become more focused on macro and food images, so in my
dotage, I have finally found the time to combine my three enthusiasms for
writing, eating and cooking, and image making.


50 responses to “ABOUT ME

  1. Ashisha

    Darryl… thanks for leading me to your very inviting blog and biography…
    the images are well designed… adds to the invitation to actually prepare meals inspired by your recipes.
    It is a pleasure to see you combining your “3 enthusiasms” and doing it
    so well.

  2. Lynne Wallace

    Oh Darryl this is a wonderful site. Thanks so much for sharing your enthusiasm and recipes!!!!
    I will miss our Monday night writing sessions, but have this to console me!
    Bon Appetit!
    Lynne Wallace

  3. Wow, sounds like I’ll need to subscribe to your blog too 🙂 Thanks for subscribing to mine! I did not learn a lot about cooking as I was growing up, but now that I’m out on my own I’m exploring a bit more and expanding my horizons.

  4. Thanks for subscribing. I hope you will enjoy the recipes. Keep cooking!

  5. I just wanted to let you know that I’ve nominated you for the Super Sweet Blogger Award because I’ve really enjoyed reading your blog over the past couple months! You don’t necessarily need to do anything, but you can view my post to see the rules and nominate blogs you like!

    • I am so honored by your nomination. I have been away from the internet – how painful is that these days? – but I plan to check out your post and guidelines. All good wishes to you, and thanks for thinking of me.

  6. Sinfully Tempting

    Hi there! I’ve nominated you for the Shine On Award, have a look! http://wp.me/p3EeAS-d9 …you deserve it, congrats! 🙂

  7. Writing, eating, cooking, photographing – yes, that is the perfect life. Before my husband became a physician, he worked in obesity prevention at the CDC (he has a masters in nutrition). What a noble and rewarding profession you embarked in. You must miss it. I enjoy this blog – food, photos and storytelling. Best – Shanna

  8. Dear Darryl, now* I understand your comments regarding the pacojet ( I guess you had heard about it before you happened on it on my blog..)

    *in the context of clinical trials, research, and a longstanding interest in food, plus a family who is interested in food, lucky my for finding you on Shannas blog!

  9. Pingback: Sunday special – erba di mare – antipasto recipe – | polianthus

  10. Darryl, I’m so glad I came across your blog! 🙂 My family and I are on a quest to eat healthier, home made foods, and your articles are very inspiring! I recently started a blog, Life Bellissima — I hope you’ll come by and visit sometime!
    ~ Anna

  11. skd

    Hello Sir,I have nominated you for the dragon’s Loyalty award. Please collect it at http://aromasandflavours.com/2015/07/25/dragons-loyalty-award/

  12. I love your introduction, you have a very amazing background as does your family!! I love cooking from scratch and trying new recipes! Nice to meet you!

  13. I’ve nominated you for the “Versatile Blogger Award”, Darryl. I enjoy reading your blog very much! You are a great inspiration!

  14. Wow, Anna, I am overwhelmed. We finally returned home after 5 weeks of baby sitting throughout California, so I returned to 700+ emails, and I haven’t been able yet to respond to your gracious nomination.

  15. Hi Darryl, I greatly need your advice! Do you have a recipe for London Broil/flank steak and how to prepare it? 🙂

    • The simplest way to cook flank steak is just to score it lightly, season with salt and pepper and then sear it on a very hot pan or grill for 3-4 minutes on a side so it is still rare. Let rest for 5 minutes and then cut very thin slices across the grain..
      But here are two favorite recipes from our family cookbook:
      Although my favorite way to do flank steak is to stuff it, this is also delicious and takes much less effort to prepare. The important thing is to marinate the meat long enough to help tenderize it. It is also a good idea to grill the meat over an open flame for the best flavor, but an oven broiler will also work.
      1 Cup salad oil
      ½ Cup vinegar
      1 garlic clove, chopped finely
      3 Tbsp sugar
      2 tsp salt
      pepper to taste
      1 flank steak
      1. Combine salad oil, vinegar, garlic, sugar, salt, and pepper and place in a baking pan or large freezer bag that will hold the flank steak.
      2. Score the flank steak on one side and pound to flatten it. Place the steak in the marinade, covered in the pan or sealed in the plastic bag and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours or overnight. Turn the meat in the marinade from time to time to make sure that all surfaces are well covered.
      3. When you are ready to grill the meat, remove it from the marinade and place it on a hot fire or under a pre-heated hot broiler. Cook for about 5 minutes and turn, cooking for no more than 5 minutes more. The meat should be rare or medium rare for best flavor and tenderness. Place on a cutting board, and carve the meat across the grain in very thin slices. Serve immediately.
      Comment: Grilled vegetables make a nice accompaniment. Marinate potatoes, whole onions, carrots, or other vegetables with the meat. You will probably need to begin grilling them before the meat so that they are tender when you are ready to serve the meat.
      Yield: Serves 4 to 6 persons

      This is a long-time family favorite. It is excellent for casual family celebrations or as a dish for company. You may use any recipe for the stuffing that you like. AA’s All-Time Favorite Dressing would be excellent although the recipe would make lots of leftovers. You could even use Stove Top Dressing (Argh!!). I have included a simple stuffing that would work if you can’t think of your own.
      2 Tbsp olive oil
      ½ medium onion, diced
      1 stalk celery, chopped
      1 clove garlic, minced
      ¾ Cup chicken stock
      1½ Cups dried bread cubes
      (use good quality French bread)
      1 egg, beaten
      ⅛ tsp thyme
      ⅛ tsp ground bay leaf
      ⅛ tsp black pepper
      ⅛ tsp salt
      1 medium flank steak (about 2-4 lbs)
      additional olive oil
      additional salt and pepper
      ½ Cup boiling water
      1. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and celery and sauté until the onions are translucent but not browned. Add the minced garlic. Stir in the chicken stock and remove from the heat. Add the bread cubes, beaten egg, and seasonings. Add another tablespoon or more chicken stock if the mixture seems dry. Set aside.
      2. With a sharp knife, butterfly the steak so that it opens like a book. Score only the top of the opened steak with cross cuts about ½ inch apart and about ¼ inch deep. Pound the steak to flatten and thin it. Place the prepared stuffing in the un-scored side of the steak, and roll up the steak so that the stuffing is completely covered. Tie the steak with several lengths of kitchen twine, and season with additional salt and pepper.
      3. In a heavy roasting pan over a medium high flame, brown the steak on all sides in some additional olive oil. Add the boiling water, cover the roasting pan, and place it in a 325° oven for 1½ hours. Check frequently during the roasting, and add more water if needed.
      4. When the steak is done, remove from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes. Remove the twine and slice into ½ inch-thick rounds. Serve and enjoy
      Comment: If you wish, you can make a pan gravy from the stock left in the roasting pan. Strain the liquid into a sauce pan, bring to a boil, and reduce to about ½. Stir in 1 tablespoon of corn starch mixed to a smooth consistency with ½ cup of water to avoid lumps. Stir until thickened, correct the seasonings and serve alongside the steak.

      Yield: Serves 4 to 6

    • How did the London broil turn out?

  16. Hi Darryl, I ended up marinating it overnight with your recipe — going to grill it today. 🙂

  17. Darryl, the London broil turned out wonderful! The marinade worked perfectly, and the meat was so tender and flavorful! Thank you so much! I will definitely save your recipes and next time I’d like to try the stuffed flank steak — it sounds so delicious too! Thank you so much for your recipes and excellent advice!

  18. I’m so glad the London broil was successful. Flank steak is one of our family favorites.

    • Thank you, Darryl! Our family loved the recipe — it is definitely a favorite here, too! 🙂 My eldest daughter is already wanting me to prepare it again!

  19. Darryl what a very lovely blog you’ve created here! The recipes seem delicious and we’re very much enjoying your writing and photography too. Happy holidays to you and your family!

  20. Pingback: 2015 in review | freespiritfood

  21. Hi Daryll! Great blog with lovely recipes. Lynn recommended you on her blog. Pleased to meet you!

  22. Darryl, so very nice to read about you and your family. Lynn from lynz real cooking sent me over. I am glad she did. Have a happy day! 🙂

  23. Lyn from Lynz Real Cooking has pointed me to you today and I am SO glad she has. I love what I have plucked at random so far and I am going to follow your blog and I know I am going to enjoy the journey. 🙂

  24. Jackie Malloy

    Do you know Pete Harris? About 30 years ago, Pete Harris was the chef at Amels in the south hills of Pittsburgh. He made a dish called empress chicken, but it was Mediterranean and not Asian. It had little pita toast corners and was my favorite dish. If you could ask him to share that recipe, I would be so grateful! Thanks for your site.

  25. diane mathews

    I am looking for the pie crust recipe that Strawn’s uses for the pies do you have it?

  26. Dear Darryl,

    Are you OK? Tom and I have been worrying about you because it’s been so long since you’ve put up a new post. Though we’ve never met in person, I feel that we’re friends at a distance, and I miss you. Tom does too.

    Best hopes and wishes,
    Diane and Tom

    • Dear Diane and Tom,

      Thanks for your gracious note and for your concern. I was very touched. Yes, I am ok, and yes I have been slothful in my postings. You have inspired me to get back to writing. I have felt like I have run out of things to say, but mostly I have been busy looking after grandchildren here in LA and in the Bay Area. The schedule looks better.

      Every good wish, and thank you.

      • Oh, good — we’re relieved. As I’m sure you know, at our age, we treasure every friend. I’m sure you’ll have more culinary adventures to share, and we look forward to reading them.

        All best,
        Diane and Tom

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