How to clean, stuff and eat an artichoke

How to clean, stuff and eat an artichoke

Am I right in thinking that the artichoke is a vegetable that many people love but have no idea what to do with? Sure we love them, but we buy them marinated in jars or pureed in dips but don’t have a clue about how to handle the real thing…big,...
The autumn garden: A work in progress

The autumn garden: A work in progress

As summer shifts into autumn, yard work for many means raking leaves and moving the outdoor furniture indoors or covering it to withstand winter. Whatever color is in the yard comes from Mother Nature’s annual fall spectacular as the deciduous leaves change from green to reds, golds and oranges, the...
Dog-a-logue: Local pooches talk toys and treats

Dog-a-logue: Local pooches talk toys and treats

Author Laurel Braitman explains in her book Animal Madness (Simon & Schuster) that dogs can become depressed and suffer severe anxiety if they’re left alone at home too much, or if there’s no time for play; they’ll mope around, sleep too much and suffer quietly. So what’s the solution? We...
October 2014 Home Personality: "Homes with Man Caves"

October 2014 Home Personality: “Homes with Man Caves”

38 Wee Burn Lane, Darien, Conn. $5,795,000 Doug Milne, 
Kelly Real Estate, 203-667-0344 Our feature “Home of the Month”: This classic stone and slate Colonial designed by architect Mac Patterson and situated on nearly five acres on a quiet Darien lane boasts not one but two “Man Caves.” First, the...
Gadget gurus: What's in store for the home cook

Gadget gurus: What’s in store for the home cook

Do you have a Blossom uCap Sipping Cap? If you don’t, you may be missing out on one of today’s newest kitchen items. It’s a colorful, durable, silicone cap that transforms a mason jar into a beverage container with a watertight seal, explains Sanjay Dipchand, vice president of Cook’s Nook...
Say it with flowers

Say it with flowers

Arranging flowers is such a delightfully creative art form, the perfect pursuit for those who wish to display expressions of beauty, elegance and grace throughout their home. From formal or extravagant, to sweet and simple, flower arrangements utilize the most beautiful material with a seemingly endless array of textures, shapes,...
Updating jewelry insurance appraisals

Updating jewelry insurance appraisals

With the current gold market above $1,200.00 per ounce, everyone who has their jewelry insured from an earlier time should be aware that those insurance levels are most likely no longer adequate, even if you have the type of policy that raises values automatically over a period of time. Ten...
The Recipe Box: "Flavors of Fall"

The Recipe Box: “Flavors of Fall”

PUMPKIN BISQUE WITH CURRY AND PEAR (Serves 4 – 6) Ronnie Fein, Ronnie Fein School of Creative Cooking, Stamford, Conn., 203-322-7114 Ingredients: 2 tablespoons butter or vegetable oil 1 medium onion, chopped 2 ripe pears, peeled, cored and cut into chunks 1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin puree 1-1/2 teaspoons curry powder...
Keep growing with season-extending gardening tips for fall

Keep growing with season-extending gardening tips for fall

Warm weather, continued care and robust plants have yielded a bounty of beautiful, fresh vegetables – and personal satisfaction – from your garden this season. As the weather cools and fall approaches, it is not time to hang up your hat, gloves and trowel for the year. Autumn provides optimum...
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Mark your calendars!

Mark your calendars!

2014 Glass House Tour tickets available Tickets are available for tours of the Philip Johnson Glass House, New Canaan, which will run between May 1 – November 30, 2014. New this season: Self-guided tours, which will be available on select dates and offer visitors the opportunity to experience the Glass House campus and its pastoral...
Saturday cooking class at Cucina Casalinga

Saturday cooking class at Cucina Casalinga

On Saturday, November 15, from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Cucina Casalinga, Wilton, Conn., will be offering a special workshop: Lorenza dei Medici’s elegant and delicious Stuffed Turkey Roll from Tuscany
. Bruschetta al prosciutto, parmigiano e balsamico – toasted Italian bread with prosciutto, parmesan cheese and aged balsamic vinegar, 
Butternut squash soup garnished with mascarpone,...
Go on a wine adventure this holiday season


Go on a wine adventure this holiday season


There’s nothing wrong with liking what you like, but you can’t discover new favorites unless you try new things, says wine enthusiast Howard Kleinfeld. While recovering from throat cancer, Kleinfeld, an award-winning commercial music producer, lost his sense of taste for a few years. When it came back, he decided to embrace some of the finest...
Building my Passive House - Part 8

Building my Passive House – Part 8

This is the eighth entry in a series of columns about the design and construction of my newly certified Passive House. Passive House Institute US (PHIUS) offers certification programs for highly energy efficient homes and the home design and building professionals seeking to build them (www.phaus.org). In my previous columns, I’ve written about how foundation,...

Metal heads

The kitchen here is modest. The main feature is an old cast iron and porcelain sink resting on an old steel cabinet. The cabinet is covered with many layers of hastily applied paint. We decided to incorporate that theme into the rest of the kitchen and started knocking about flea markets with the intention of...
Fire prevention tips from The Family Handyman

Fire prevention tips from The Family Handyman

National Fire Safety Prevention Week (October 5-11) is upon us. Cut down deadly fire risks by exercising good safety habits and simple prevention measures. To help, The Family Handyman has rounded up the “Big 7” most common causes of preventable home fires and steps you can take to keep them from starting. Prevention costs little...
Making a house a home

Making a house a home

If you’ve ever watched an episode of virtually any renovation show on HGTV, it’s likely you’ve seen a family similar to the Edwardses. The couple, who have three kids and a dog, started out in a small New York City fourth floor walk-up with no elevator, and moved, after the birth of their first child,...
September 2014 Home Personality: "Homes for the Sports Enthusiast"

September 2014 Home Personality: “Homes for the Sports Enthusiast”

26 Covelee, Norwalk, Conn. $2,325,000 Fran Burger, Fran Burger Realty Group, William Raveis Real Estate, 203-682-0883 Our feature “Home of the Month”: Nestled in Covelee Association, this Aspen-style Barn, designed by noted architect Peter Cadoux, is the perfect haven — year-round or weekend retreat — for the sports enthusiast. Paddle-board, kayak or boat to Long...
September 2014 HomeBriefs

September 2014 HomeBriefs

‘lil Fairy Doors line debuts A line of decorative whimsical fairy doors, intended for both children and adults, has been launched; the doors, available in pink, purple, yellow, green, blue and red, come packaged with a bottle of ‘lil Fairy Dust, mounting supplies and a note to the fairies. The doors can be placed low...
Constant cravings: Hunger for the latest kitchen appliances drives trends

Constant cravings: Hunger for the latest kitchen appliances drives trends

Outdoor grilling and dining are two of the best things about summertime. However, once vegetable gardens die down and the evening air feels chillier, it’s time to leave even the most lavish of outdoor rooms and seek the warmth of our indoor kitchens. So, what’s cooking indoors? The continued evolution of kitchen design has made...
Make every day a spa day: Remodeling tips from the experts

Make every day a spa day: Remodeling tips from the experts

A lovely aesthetic with optimum function is the key to a fabulous bathroom makeover. “It should be full of natural light, easy to clean, with ample room,” says Mark Mosolino, owner, Mosolino Development (www.mosolinodevelopment.com), New Canaan. “Think beyond basics. Design to totally love it! Make it a room to spend a little more time in...
Ridgefielder featured in quilt show

Ridgefielder featured in quilt show

A collection of more than 35 quilts from author and designer Johanna “Jo” Wilson will be featured at “Quilts & Flowers” showcase, scheduled for Sept. 24-28 at Ridgefield Crossings Senior Living, 640 Danbury Rd., Ridgefield. Jo grew up in New England where she was a teacher and Connecticut high school librarian. In December 1979, she...
Building My Passive House - Part 7

Building My Passive House – Part 7

This is the seventh entry in a series of columns about the design and construction of my newly certified Passive House. Passive House Institute US (PHIUS) offers certification programs for highly energy efficient homes, and the home design and building professionals seeking to build them (www.phaus.org). Let me answer the rhetorical question I asked at...
Measuring up

Measuring up

It is said that when you arrive in heaven, all the socks you have lost in your life will be waiting there for you. I don’t know if that’s true, but if I got to heaven I am pretty sure that all the measuring devices I have lost over time would be waiting for me...