Pear & Ricotta Crostini with Honey and Hazelnuts + Homemade Ricotta

pear and ricotta crostini with honey and hazelnuts

When it comes to cooking, I seem to have a split personality. Sometimes the overly-ambitious, make-everything-from-scratch Chelsey shows up in the kitchen, flushed with thoughts of freshly boiled bagels or homemade strawberry preserves. She asks for ice cream makers and pasta machines for her birthday and doesn’t question spending $15 on a literal pinch of saffron. She gets up early for the farmers market and plans her weekly menu on lovely stationery, glowing with good intentions and Saturday morning optimism.

Then there’s the other Chelsey. Continue reading


Risotto with Bacon & Peas + Homemade Chicken Stock

Risotto with Peas and Bacon

What’s for dinner?

It’s a question I have either asked or answered most of the days of my life. I still hear it in our raucous little voices, our bodies bursting down the hallway to the chair where our mom sat reading the latest Karen Kingsbury novel or (quite possibly) “resting her eyes.” Her answer could make our day (Ham and cheese casserole!) or summon a terrible sense of dread. (Meatloaf. Ugh.) These days Jason is usually the one doing the asking, his variety of inflections—hopeful, dubious, confused—usually reflecting the aromas currently emanating from the stove. Continue reading

Roasted Chicken with Zucchini Orzo

Roasted Chicken with Zucchini Orzo | Girl and Apron

This is the story of a Sunday meal come full circle.

It begins around the dining room table of my childhood. We are gathered there after a harried morning of getting ready for, attending, and coming home from church. My siblings and I are fighting over who gets the “chicken bones” on this week’s rotisserie bird. (My mom, wise as Solomon, later created a chart tracking whose turn it was for the coveted legs.) The poultry came swaddled in a plastic roasting bag and was always served with a side of Lipton Alfredo noodles. We ate in silence, for it was delicious. Continue reading