How I Taught My Brother To Cook

Improvisational Tuscan-Provençal-Catalan Cookery (and other good stuff to eat)


Patrick's Friends

  • Dennis Franklin
  • Rondi Leonard
  • Vera
  • Laura
  • Jason Mosher
  • Melody Barrows
  • Mary Taylor
  • Paul
  • Judy Gibbs
  • Everett Yelton 3rd.
  • Liz
  • Debbie
  • Hilary Conway
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Patrick's Page

Understanding My Cooking Philosophy

Basics, simplicity, tradition, and casual all describe basically my fundamental rationale for cooking. I make everything from old traditional, simple "what I ate growing up" stuff to unique creations. I do NOT abandon my roots no matter where my improvisational road takes me. Nothing is made to impress only to enjoy as food is for survival and enjoyment, and not meant to be a "model strutting down the runway" as many restaurants, cooking shows, and magazines would like you to believe. If you want to be cute, fancy and pretentious then that's your business and more power to you, but at least you know where I'm coming from so that's my story and I'm sticking with it. Period.

Patrick's Photos

Patrick's Blog

Trader Joe's Blows and North American Extra Sharp Cheddar is The Way To Go

I don't like Trader Joe's. (at least in my neck of the woods). The only thing I ever buy there is cheese. First of all, to me, everything else is just goofy crap geared for death warmed over quasi-health freaks and morons who think it is a trendy place to be seen. Secondly, they are just to damn happy, especially at check out and with those freakin' Hawaiian style shirts. "Hi, how are you today. Did you find everything you were looking for? Did you see our carob coated dehydrated carrot…


Posted on February 26, 2011 at 1:08pm — 4 Comments

Sabrett Frankfurters.....Let's Talk Hot Dogs

What you see here is a NYC street tradition. It is a jar of Sabrett's hot dog onions. It looks like a jar of sauce in the picture but it is filled with cooked sliced onions IN a spiced sauce. The Sabrett frank is the premier choice on the streets of NY. Any vendor worth his weight sells Sabrett's. Their… Continue

Posted on May 8, 2010 at 12:00pm — 5 Comments


I hate the term. I don't know how long it's been around but it is overused as far as I'm concerned. I consider it a "Foo-Foo" term. (Meaning to be pretentious, fashionable, trendy or chic.)

Come on, what ever happened to, "you know Coke goes well with a turkey sandwich"? No, it has to be, "we suggest a turkey sandwich paired with a Coke on ice". Crap! It bugs me, man!

Is the world trying to force me to use the term? Fine. How about, "PAIR THIS!"

I feel better now.… Continue

Posted on March 19, 2010 at 4:16am — 3 Comments

The Julie/Julia Project

Well, it's been some time since the movie came out and an even longer time since the "project" began, but none the less it is now time to comment on it/them.

The movie itself was ok. Nothing I would watch again, but then again, rarely do I ever watch any movie more than once. The acting was good although the production itself was a bit lacking. I would have rather seen a movie about Julia Child's life.

The "project" was a very interesting concept. Developed primarily out… Continue

Posted on January 4, 2010 at 10:31am — 1 Comment

How To Watch A TV Cooking Show

There are a multitude of cooking shows out there and they are, in general, all alike. Sure, some are better than others in certain respects but they all follow the same format and that is, "here is what I am going to make and here is how you do it".

My advise, is forget about really what the dish is they're making and watch for tips, shortcuts, techniques and general advice. I am not saying that what they happen to be making that day is not important, but essentially all they are… Continue

Posted on November 8, 2009 at 12:07pm — 7 Comments

Comment Wall (18 comments)

At 7:01pm on July 2, 2007, Debbie said…
The picture of you and "Ma" is one that shows the precious and delicate side of a mother and her son. Her smile indicates how proud she was to have had you by her side.
At 6:43am on July 25, 2007, Debbie said…
Barbara Beard is asking......................Hi Deb......I am going to party this Saturday with a Hawaiian theme........Is there anything "easy" i can make without turning on the you have any ideas to give her?
At 12:44pm on July 26, 2007, Debbie said…
Geez, you guys! Don't you listen. Barbara didn't want to turn on the stove! You can do better than that!!
At 12:34pm on October 24, 2007, Paul said…
Do you still make the Apple Brown Betty?
That just popped into my mind today
At 4:49pm on October 27, 2007, Paul said…
Recipes are you kidding?
Improv is the way I go
Although I might look at a recipe now and then to see what ingredients are used.
You might call me the anti-chef
I pity my poor family as I am the main cook.
At 4:53pm on October 27, 2007, Paul said…
I am going to be cooking 3 lbs. of bacon tonight for a brunch party we are having tomorrow.
As luck would have it I stumbled on to your how to cook bacon tip just now so I am going to try it.
At 6:39am on November 12, 2007, Mary Taylor said…
I will see my parents at Thanksgiving and will give them a signed copy of your book. I decided one for my brothers to share will be enough. If they want a copy each, they can buy it! Also, I have to figure out how to "correct' my profile. Paul created it, if you didn't realize - and, of course, he spelled "desserts" wrong! My parents don't make hot, dry, sandy land masses - not last I checked anyway.
You are right, my parents rarely measure anything, unless they are baking - which my Mom does, but my Dad does (bakes) only infrequently with a bran muffin recipe that he likes. They don't make deserts very often - hardly ever, now that I think of it, actually NEVER! They do, however, make desserts! and they are marvelous! Especially the Italian treasure chest "cassata" ... Hmmmmmmmm. Bye for now ... gotta go, Paul wants the 'puter!
At 11:49am on November 12, 2007, Patrick said…
Ok, let's see the cassatta recipe which tells me that your dad is of Sicilian decent. And let's not forget his cardoon recipe. For the non-educated readers out there, the cardoon is a "roadside" thistle typical in Italian peasant cuisine.
At 9:39am on January 1, 2008, Claire Fagin said…
hello Patrick, looking forward to deliciousness!
At 4:52pm on April 4, 2008, Sandy M. Bushberg said…
Nope, never made it to the macrobiotic phase. I was, however, a very strict vegetarian for over 11 years (nothing that came from anything with a face). I now consider myself a flexible vegetarian. Thanks for the welcome, Patrick.

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