Dates (when diced and cooked in oil) take on a cooked bacon/pancetta like texture. They are outrageously flavorful. Paired with green beans, garlic, Marcona almonds, and a touch of rosemary, this side dish is a perfect accompaniment to roasted pork or lamb. Or chicken. Or beef. Or quinoa. Or by themselves. If you can't find Marcona almonds, substitute slivered almonds and reduce almond quantity by half. —Mary Catherine Tee
I’m an old soul. My favorite Saturday morning activity is watching birds on the feeder while drinking strong, black coffee out of my favorite hand-thrown mug. My favorite place to kill time is in antique stores. The less organized the better. I like full-bodied red wines and bitter IPAs. I live for feeling the warmth of sunshine and hearing the stillness of freshly fallen snow. I can thank my stint in Alaska for that. I have salt water in my veins, having grown up in Eastern NC, and (shhh…don’t tell any of my Mainer friends this about me) I prefer blue crab over lobster.