Monthly Archives: September 2014

Next Up on My To-Cook List…

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…is the salmon salsa verde actress Tracy Pollan made for her family’s dinner for ELLE’s October Living feature. (I got to try it, and it was literally the best fish I’ve ever had.) Tracy sources her fish from Dorian’s Seafood Market on the Upper East Side, which just so happens to ship nationwide.

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In talking with Tracy and her brother, Michael Pollan — did you know they’re brother and sister? — about the cookbook Tracy wrote with their mother and sisters, The Pollan Family Table (out October 28), I heard a lot about their family traditions. My favorite tidbit was that their mother, former New York magazine editor Corky Pollan, used to let them plan their own birthday meals.

Tracy’s birthday menu: duck á l’orange, French onion soup, and gateau St.Honoré

Michael’s birthday menu: chicken Kiev and flourless chocolate cake

Click here for the salmon salsa verde recipe and to read the full feature.


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A Haunting Debut

It’s no secret: I love a good ghost story. But Katy Simpson Smith’s incantatory debut novel, The Story of Land and Sea, which I reviewed for ELLE’s September issue, replaces the usual gothic bluster with narration that is plainspoken and even puritanical. That’s not to say Smith skimps on the shivers — in rendering a historically faithful portrait of colonial life, she evokes ghosts of many women who died on the North Carolina coast in such detail that the chilly salt air seems to emanate from the page. The world she paints, though populated by pirates and soldiers, is one where harsh reality, not romance, reigns. (After all, these are men who enclose their deceased children in barrels of rum rather than in coffins, for practicality’s sake.) It is stark and beautiful, and a promising start for a novelist whose next tale I can’t wait to read. For now, you can read more of my take on Smith’s first novel here.Screen shot 2014-09-04 at 2.42.32 PM.

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