Tony and Sarah Nasello
My grandmother, Sunny Mathison, turns 100 this Sunday, June 10, and our family and friends will be gathering at Pelican Lake in Minnesota this weekend to celebrate her amazing life. My grandmother embodies the qualities that have defined the Greatest Generation. She is elegant, faithful, responsible, hard-working, dignified and humble. In the course of her life, she has been a devoted and beloved daughter, wife, mother, mother-in-law, grandmother, great-grandmother, aunt and friend.
FARGO — Summer is the time for what we like to call "big-batch salads," hearty dishes that are large enough to serve about 12 to 16 people, making them ideal for picnics and barbecues. We focus our big-batch salads around a base of either pasta or rice, and use a variety of veggies, herbs and nuts to pack a walloping punch of flavor. Each spring, I create a new salad recipe to add to our big-batch repertoire, and this year I wanted to showcase Sicilian flavors. So I turned to my husband, Tony, for inspiration.
FARGO — If you've checked the forecast for this Memorial Day weekend, I hope you're doing the same little happy dance that I am because it looks like grilling season has finally arrived. The former sailor in me is frantically shouting warnings not to tempt the weather gods with my brazen acceptance of a positive weather forecast. However, I'm a lifelong North Dakota optimist, so I'm throwing caution to the wind and planning a weekend menu centered entirely around grilled foods, including these Grilled Southwest Turkey Burgers.
FARGO — Come tomorrow, Norwegians around the world will join in the celebration of Syttende Mai, the 17th of May and Constitution Day, Norway's greatest national holiday.
FARGO — Scones are one of my favorite pastries to make, and if you look in my deep-freeze on any given day, you'll almost always find a bag of scones just waiting to be popped into the oven. I love the simplicity and versatility of scones, which can be made in just about any flavor, including sweet and savory variations.
FARGO — Cinco de Mayo is Saturday, and it's become an annual tradition in our family to celebrate with a new taco recipe. There's something about a fish taco that fills me with an almost weak-in-the-knees kind of craving, and this year's Grilled Salmon Tacos with my new Avocado, Corn and Cucumber Salsa have left my entire family longing for more.
FARGO — I love crostini, an Italian appetizer consisting of slices of toasted bread that can host an endless assortment of toppings. Their versatility makes them a perfect party food, as you can adapt the toppings to suit any menu. And, depending on the toppings and how thickly you slice the bread, crostini can be light and delicate, or strong and hearty, like today's Wild Mushroom Crostini.
I often receive emails from our readers who will ask questions about a recipe or culinary technique or share a memory about a dish we recently featured. Many of you have the same questions, and I am excited to introduce our new Q & A series, which will be featured every four to six weeks in this column.
Every year around this time, my mind invariably fills with thoughts of France. In my former life as a cruise director, Tony and I spent several spring seasons sailing around the western coast of France, visiting famous port cities like Bordeaux, Rouen and Saint-Malo, as well as some lesser-known stops like Belle-Île, a summer haven for the French but secluded enough to stay off the tourist trail, and Île d'Aix, the tiny little island of approximately 250 residents, where Napoleon spent his last night on French soil and the only cars allowed still today are service vehicles.
FARGO — Even though it's snowing as I write this, April has arrived and with it, the season for springtime salads. This week's Symphony Salad was thus named because it is a beautifully composed salad, which means that it is built and dressed in layers, rather than tossed.