Episode 38: International Connection

Andrea and Stefin reunite after their July hiatus with their first international chat! Stefin is (almost) live from London and though her house is still a work in progress, she and Andrea waste no time catching up. Stefin’s enjoying her London kitchen’s dual ovens (one of which magically turns into a microwave). After a successful multi-state cycling trip, Andrea is happy to be back in her own kitchen indulging in single-serve strawberry-rhubarb pies.

August is Potlucks & Picnics Month and the hosts start off with a winner: Ina Garten’s Peach & Blueberry Crumble. Andrea likes these kind of fruit desserts for their portability, humble good looks and tastiness. Though the recipe calls for individual ramekins, Stefin will make one large batch, and Andrea will try freezing several.

Though both hosts agree the Peach & Blueberry Crumble would be a welcome addition to any potluck table, who among us hasn’t wondered how to behave when hosting or contributing to these events? And, who hasn’t had at least a mild case of the heebie-jeebies wondering how or when all that food was prepared? Fortunately, Andrea has an etiquette expert on speed-dial. (No really.) Helping the hosts (and listeners) wade through the minefield of communal eating is coach, author and etiquette expert Arden Clise, who has wise and thoughtful tips to help us all through the next summertime banquet with our sanity and immune systems intact.

Despite feeling reassured by Arden, the hosts nevertheless allow themselves to recount several potluck horror stories (two involving chocolate fountains — note, avoid them), which quickly spirals into a wide-ranging discussion involving hot wings, historical fiction and the things we do for love. (It’s clear these gals have missed chatting!)

And finally, the hosts step into the Language Lab to decode the differences between crumble, crisp, cobbler, brown Betty, and (Andrea’s favorites) grunt and slump. All start with a fruit base, but there are several differences.

Listeners: Do you have a favorite among the summertime “cobbler”-style desserts? Any we missed?

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