Mother 1995With my mother in late 1995

Yesterday would have been my mother Ann Malgieri's 91st birthday.  Every year she would jokingly remind me, "Now don't forget, I want one cake for my birthday and a different one for Mothers Day."  I don't remember that I ever made two different cakes, but I always drove over with a cake and the makings of a special dinner for Mothers Day. 

I'm lucky - whenever I feel a little sad about losing her, I'll automatically remember her crazy sense of humor and smile.  She was curious about everything, youthful in her outlook, welcoming and generous to all my friends as well as her own, and could find something funny in almost any situation.  Once when I served her some mesclun salad she held up a particularly long, straggly sprig on her fork and asked, "Do they gather this stuff in vacant lots?"

I'm fortunate to have so many great memories of my parents - they were a couple in a billion.

A few weeks ago when I was on vacation in Thailand I received an email from Bonnie Benwick, interim food section editor at the Washington Post, asking me to write something about my friend and mentor Maida Heatter.  Since I had visited Maida in early March when I was teaching in Florida, I jumped at the chance.  Not the best picture, but a great smile on a great lady...IMG00030-20120310-1136With Maida in Miami Beach a couple of months ago

I sent a short appreciation of Maida and it was published last Wednesday as part of an article called Mothers of Substance and Sustenance.  Click on the article's name and you can read the whole story that incudes Maida Heatter,  Marion Cunningham, Florence Lin, and others.  You might have to register (free) on the Washington Post website to read the whole story.

Happy Mothers Day!