Some of my favorite dishes are ones that are made in the spur of the moment,

with whatever ingredients are at hand.

One of those magic moments happened when I was cooking dinner with my friend Mary Karlin while on vacation,

down in Petaluma.

We scavenged from the garden a few Romano beans some Padrón peppers, and picked some wild mint…and voila 

IMG_2246Of course some pancetta, and the use of Mary’s wood fired oven make everything delightful.

So today I kinda did an homage to that dish, with some sweet fresh local beans!


I made a nice oregano and mint infused olive oil with just a touch of “kick” to season the dish,

and left the beans crisp and crunchy

-the yellow wax beans are hard to tell apart from the Maccheroni,

but thats half the fun!

And also, that friend of mine, Mary Karlin  is a quite accomplished cook book author, with great books on

Wood Fired Cooking,

Home Cheese Making,

…and her most recent,

Mastering Fermenting,

Complete with a recipe for Herb Gnocchi in Whey Reduction Sauce, penned by your’s truly!

They are all really fantastic books, you should really them check out!

here’s the shameless link plug again- Great books!

also today:

Pappardelle, in slow braised chicken ragu

Spaghettini, in Cacio e Pepe