Columnists

  • Bologna’s pride: Bolognese sauce

    Bologna’s pride: Bolognese sauce

    Every cuisine has its signature sauce, and the staple of northern Italy’s Bologna is a thick, full-bodied meat sauce. Ragu, as the Bolognese call their celebrated sauce, is characterized by a mellow, gentle, comfortable flavor that marries gastronomically well with a broad noodle slightly wider than fettuccine known as tagliatelle. In her book “Essentials of

  • Valentine wine

    Valentine wine

    Ogden Nash’s mini-poem, “Reflections on Ice-breaking,” posits as follows:   Candy is dandy But liquor is quicker.   Clever, yes, but why must it be a competition? Why not have candy and liquor — especially if the liquor is a red wine and the candy is dark chocolate? Never were two basic food groups so

  • Why is it all about the ring?

    Why is it all about the ring?

    Dear Carolyn: My girlfriend of three years always badgered me about getting married before our four-year anniversary. At first the arbitrary deadline annoyed me, but after living together for two years and working through the death of her mother, I really am taking the thought seriously. I’ve even started to save up for a ring.

  • Auld Lang what?

    Last Thursday, Jan. 25, was Robert Burns Day. The Scottish poet’s birthday is an occasion for drinking, bagpipes, poetry and haggis. We indulged in all said diversions with the exception of the haggis and the bagpipes. Also, the poetry. Haggis is a delightful Scottish dish in which taste-tempting sheep’s offal is mixed with yummy suet

  • We’d like to move back home

    We’d like to move back home

    Dear Carolyn: How do you figure out whether moving back “home” and blowing up your career in order to do so is the right thing to do? I realize you can’t answer this, but my husband and I are despondent living away from family lately and feel like we’re depriving our 2-year-old from being near

  • Crimes of passion

    Crimes of passion

    Martin Cruz Smith, in his breakout novel “Gorky Park,” profiles a beverage called chifir. His protagonist is chugging it to stay awake. “Chifir was tea concentrated not twice or 10 times but 20 times,” Smith wrote. A man without food, Smith continued, “could work three days straight on a few cups of chifir.” Chifir came

  • Scrunchie back in favor

    Scrunchie back in favor

    No matter the decade or our hair length, we always keep scrunchies in our giant basket full of hair products. If you were born after 1990, perhaps you don’t know what a scrunchie is? Well, it’s an elastic device to pull your hair back in a ponytail, but it’s covered in soft fabric, which scrunches

  • When FaceTime becomes an intrusion

    When FaceTime becomes an intrusion

    Dear Carolyn: My sister-in-law recently relocated to our area. We invited her to join us for our traditionally quiet New Year’s Eve celebration. About two hours before midnight, she pulled out her iPad and FaceTimed her daughter, son-in-law and granddaughter, and proceeded to talk for the next two hours or longer. Essentially three people were