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Food / Dining

This Feb. 2, 2015, photo shows chopped kale and lentil winter salad in Concord, N.H. This winter salads manages to feel both energizing and comforting at the same time. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead)

Fresh take on Irish stew

Friday, February 27, 2015

Chicken and dumplings is a wonderfully simple, deliciously comforting dish — a thick, meaty stew bubbling away beneath a patchwork of moist, pillowy dumplings. So we decided to channel that comfort for a dish suited for St. Patrick’s Day. Taking inspiration from classic Irish ingredients and dishes, we came up with this over-the-top savory lamb stew with a rich broth made from beef stock, Guinness beer and fresh rosemary. And dolloped over the top? Soda bread-style dumplings that are at once hearty and tender. Like most stews, this one only improves with age. For a do-ahead option, prepare the stew as directed, but chill it …

Spice it up

Friday, February 27, 2015

Spice it up Don’t get tripped up by the title of chef Paul Merrett’s latest book, “Spice Odyssey: From Asafoetida to Wasabi, Recipes to Really Excite & Inspire.” That would mean missing out on clever writing, helpful tips for working with spices plus quite a few I’d-make-that recipes, maybe Asian spiced short ribs …

Valley Bounty: Watermelon radish

Friday, February 27, 2015

Watermelon Radish The plain white skin of a watermelon radish covers a hidden gem: a layer of pale green surrounding a brilliant magenta core. Firm and crisp, with just a hint of spicy bite, they’ll add a splash of color to whatever you put them in—salads, stir fries, roasted roots or spring rolls. To maximize the color on your winter plate, mix them …

Great American Meals
  • KEVIN GUTTING
Full sun, temperatures in the mid-20s and calm winds made for a pleasant afternoon for Steve Leiblum and Lennie Ware of Pelham as they walked their dogs Rosa, left, and Red in an area near the Norwottuck Rail Trail south of Amherst College on Friday.

    KEVIN GUTTING Full sun, temperatures in the mid-20s and calm winds made for a pleasant afternoon for Steve Leiblum and Lennie Ware of Pelham as they walked their dogs Rosa, left, and Red in an area near the Norwottuck Rail Trail south of Amherst College on Friday. Purchase photo reprints »

  • JERREY ROBERTS
Bryan Torres, who is an undocumented immigrant who is an Amherst College student, Monday at the college.

    JERREY ROBERTS Bryan Torres, who is an undocumented immigrant who is an Amherst College student, Monday at the college. Purchase photo reprints »

  • CAROL LOLLIS
Northampton residents Andres Wilson and his 3-year-old daughter, Eden Wilson color together at Forbes library in the children's  section Wednesday evening.

    CAROL LOLLIS Northampton residents Andres Wilson and his 3-year-old daughter, Eden Wilson color together at Forbes library in the children's section Wednesday evening. Purchase photo reprints »

Raise your glass, Pioneer Valley: Evodia, an intensely fruity Spanish red

Friday, February 27, 2015

Evodia, Spain Old Vine Garnacha, 2013 $7.89 to $11.99 Over the last year or so, I had been noticing Evodia, a Spanish red wine with a distinctive bluish-purple label, on the shelves of the area’s wine stores, but …

The search for the best breakfast sandwich

Friday, February 27, 2015

On a recent frigid morning, I followed a series of footprints left in the freshly fallen snow up to the front door of the Loose Goose Cafe on East Pleasant Street in Amherst. I knew the cafe had …

Turning lemons into lemon-pepper pork

Friday, February 27, 2015

This is the pork tenderloin that was supposed to be a chicken. But it ended up being one of those delicious mistakes I was so glad I made. I was aiming for a roasted whole chicken that was …

Lawsuit against Purina claims food sickens, kills dogs

Thursday, February 26, 2015

SAN FRANCISCO — A dog owner has filed a lawsuit against a pet food company alleging that thousands of dogs have been sickened or died from eating a brand of dry dog food. Pet owner Frank Lucido filed the suit on Feb. 5 in U.S. District Court in …

A wine to try: 2013 Bedrock Wine Co. ‘Old Vine’ Zinfandel

Friday, February 20, 2015

A WINE TO TRY 2013 Bedrock Wine Co. ‘Old Vine’ Zinfandel Region: California Price: About $25 Style: Gorgeous fruit with a dark undertone Hard to believe it’s been only eight years since the young Morgan Twain-Peterson started making …

Lou & Lucy’s Leftovers: Lou’s beautiful bounty

Friday, February 20, 2015

Rummaging through my kitchen cabinets is often a journey into the unknown. Often, as in I often come across foodstuffs bought “deity” knows when, for who knows what reason. My latest journey into the heart of dark kitchen cabinets unearthed unopened bags of various dried fruits: sliced mango, …

Valley Bounty: Maple popcorn

Friday, February 20, 2015

Maple Popcorn Maple syrup and popcorn are year-round treats, but especially well-suited to the end of February vacation in a cold, snowy year. Popcorn, of course, can be flavored any number of ways depending on the topping, but …

Beerhunter: Lager elbows its way into the craft market

Friday, February 20, 2015

In the warm, bright tasting room of Fort Hill Brewery in Easthampton, my friend took a sip from a sample glass and frowned. He took another and made the same face. “It’s a lager,” I said. “They’re all …

Banh Mi Saigon: Burned out of Hadley, Chuong Son and Mung Pham are back in business selling their exotic sandwich in Northampton

Friday, February 20, 2015

A fire destroyed their restaurant, along with 11 other businesses on Route 9 in Hadley 15 months ago, Chuong Son and his wife, Mung Pham, are finally bringing Banh Mi Saigon back to life in downtown Northampton. It’s …

Tim Driscoll’s Barhopping: Where the cocktail is king

Thursday, February 19, 2015

For years, I’ve wandered western Massachusetts looking in vain for The Serious Cocktail Bar. Sometimes I felt like a parched man in the Sahara Desert, in search of an oasis. That’s not to suggest that there aren’t great …