Virginia Willis Blog

10 Reasons Cooks Have to Give Thanks

10 reasons for a cook to give thanks on www.virginiawillis.com

Give Thanks

This Thanksgiving week I have been considering the abundant changes in my life and the many things for which I am thankful. I’ve traveled all over the country meeting people while on book tour; I’ve been fortunate enough to cook with some amazing people, as well as eat a lot of delicious food. I am thankful for my health, my family, my friends, and the incredible gift of loving what I do for a living. I love to cook and I love to write. The fact that I am able to do both as my profession, and see the world while doing it, fills me with gratitude each and every day. It’s also made me consider 10 reasons cooks have to give thanks this time of year. (more…)

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Living Well: Whole Grain Recipes

quinoa on www.virginiawillis.com

Several weeks ago I was asked by Dr.Oz’s website to do a 7-day Vegan challenge. I approached it with a plan of eating as many minimally processed fruits, vegetables, and grains, as possible. I knew that bean, umami-rich vegetable, and toothsome whole grain recipes would the keys to my success. (more…)

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Eat Right for Your Sight on National Kale Day!

eat right for your sight on www.virginiawillis.com

Eat Right for Your Sight on National Kale Day!

A year or so ago I helped edit a cookbook called Eat Right for Your Sight for the American Macular Degeneration Foundation. Macular Degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss, affecting more than 10 million Americans – more than cataracts and glaucoma combined. It was a fascinating project and increased my awareness of this incurable disease. (more…)

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My Day in NYC on 9-11

NYC on 9-11

This picture of my sister was taken in August, just a few weeks before the horrible tragedy in 2001. In 2010, when I wrote my original post, I had not written a word about 9-11. It all stayed bottled up for a long while. Today, this anniversary, I do what I do every year. I call my friend Claire and tell her I love her. Her home was my refuge that tragic day. And, I reach out to my friend and colleague, Faye. She was my mouth and ears to the world. Somehow she could reach me via cell when no one else could, so she called my family for me to let them know I was okay. 

I reworked this piece just a bit, but, I think, at least for a while, this will remain my blog post for 9-11. 

NYC on 9-11

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Save the Flavors: Easy Summer Ratatouille

Easy Summer Ratatouille on www.virginiawillis.com

Easy Summer Ratatouille

A recent evening’s garden harvest rewarded me with the ingredients for a vibrant, tasty, and easy summer ratatouille — as well as the realization that the garden has suffered a bit from all of our recent travel. Much of the broccoli is flowering and the collard green leaves have grown large and tough. The chili peppers have had a bit too much competition with the weeds, yet there are a couple of scraggly volunteer cherry tomato plants that will likely continue to perpetuate until the end of time. The summer squash are doing sub-par, which thankfully means they are producing amounts that we can keep up with! I do get extreme garden guilt when I see our little patch choked with weeds. As a cook, there’s nothing more satisfying to me than harvesting from the garden and walking immediately into the kitchen to prepare it. The vegetables sing and easy summer ratatouille is the perfect way to save the flavors of the season. (more…)

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